Ingrid is marrying Lennie Godber but Fletch feels frustrated because his ex-wife and her partner are paying for the wedding when he feels that he should be. He is thus tempted when a man called Piper...
Fletch goes to see his probation officer,who is disappointed that he has not got a job. Fletch explains that he was going to work in a cardboard box factory but his wife Isobel ran off with the owner...
Fletch is finally released - after getting his coat stuck in the prison gates - and on the train home meets Mr. MacKay,who tells him he is retiring. Two men get on the train - Oaksey,known to Fletch,...
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Well, I got the DVD of Going Straight the other week, and put it with my DVDs for Porridge. I've read all that stuff that says GS wasn't received as fondly as Porridge - and I've also read that Ronnie Barker thinks it's just as good. I am in full agreement with Mr Barker here.
First off - yes, Going Straight dispensed with the "less is more" approach that made Porridge (and almost all the greatest sitcoms bar Fawlty Towers) so brilliant. But that's the only problem I have with it.
I suspect that the people who dismiss this show were disappointed because it wasn't just more Porridge. Well, the whole point is that he's been released on parole. Alternately, for the people who miss Warren, Lukewarm and Grouty - remember that they were all sent down from different parts of the country, and so when released, all went home to different parts of the country. To have them all on the outside together would not be realistic. The only fellow ex-con to be kept in the series was, of course, Lennie Godber. Plus Fletch's daughter Ingrid has a much bigger part in this series - again, to be expected.
Certainly, the series still has the same emotional resonance - Porridge dealt with the pressures of being in prison, and Going Straight deals with life on the outside for ex-prisoners, and the prejudices they are up against. Much like the prejudices that sequels tend to be up against . . .
Overall, I like this series. Not quite as much as Porridge, I'll admit. But certainly enough to recommend it to anyone who is a fan of Porridge. Who said that sequels aren't as good?!
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