Eyebrows were raised when in the year of America's Bicentennial celebrations, Granada produced a sitcom bearing the unfortunate title of 'Yanks Go Home!'. Devised by Peter Eckersley, it was set in the Lancashire town of Warrington in 1942, which has become overrun by G.I.'s who, according to the surly locals, are 'over paid, over sexed, and over here'. The local girls find these new arrivals fascinating, and not just because they are handing out chocolate, gum and stockings.
With the B.B.C.'s 'Dad's Army' about to end, I.T.V. clearly hoped to pinch some of its audience. They gave the show a big build-up, including a 'T.V. Times' cover and article, but alas it proved only moderately successful. The main problem was that the subject matter had already been covered by 'Dad's Army' itself, in a wonderful episode entitled 'My British Buddy!'. Each episode had a different writer ( such as H.V. Kershaw, John Stevenson, Anthony Couch, Michael Carter, and Julian Roach ), so the characterisations were somewhat inconsistent. The obvious canned laughter did not help either. Alan MacNaughtan played 'Colonel Ralph Kruger' in the first season. Bruce Boa was particularly good as the swaggering 'Sergeant Gus Pulaski'. Future 'Coronation Street' actress Meg Johnson was glamorous barmaid 'Phoebe Sankey', whose dippy daughter 'Doreen' ( Catherine Neilsen ) married 'Private Floyd Tutt' ( Jay Benedict ) in the final episode 'First Of The G.I. Brides'. Other reliables were Norman Bird, Harry Markham, David Ross and Peter Sallis. Best amongst the cast though was Freddie Earlle, whose 'Corporal Pasquale' was straight out of 'Sgt.Bilko'.
'Yanks Go Home' saw the return to television of Stuart Damon, not seen since 'The Champions'. He played 'Corporal Vince Rossi', and later wrote an episode. Not a great show then, but a good try. In 2012, Network released the entire series on D.V.D.
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