Original Run: September 19th, 1975 – October 25th, 1979
Created by: John Cleese, Connie Booth
Directed by: John Howard Davies, Bob Spiers
Written by: John Cleese, Connie Booth
Music by: Dennis Wilson
Cast: John Cleese, Prunella Scales, Andrew Sachs, Connie Booth, Ballard Berkeley, Brian Hall, Renee Roberts, Gilly Flower
BBC, 12 Episodes, 30-35 Minutes (per episode)
Fawlty Towers really is one of the all-time greatest British sitcoms. So much so, I’d hear people talk about it in the States for years until I finally saw it around the year 2000 or so, in my early twenties.
Being that I was already a big John Cleese fan, I wanted to give it a watch because of him and because his only other early work that I’d seen had been the Monty Python stuff. And while I’m not into that stuff like a lot of people slightly older than me, I always had a love for Cleese along with Eric Idle.
In my opinion, this is the best John Cleese has ever been in a main role. Being that he wrote the show alongside his then wife, Connie Booth, it was very obviously tailor made for him, accenting his strengths while allowing no faults to show. Granted, I can’t think of a time where Cleese ever showed his faults but maybe I’m a bit biased.
The rest of the cast is enjoyable, as well, though. Even the regular secondary characters in this are pretty perfect and prove with every episode that they can hang with the guy that would become a comedy legend.
Sadly, Cleese and Booth were divorced before the second season was filmed but whatever issues may have arisen in their personal lives, it didn’t effect the quality of the show.
However, it’s also probably why there weren’t more than two seasons, which is still immensely disappointing, as twelve half hour episodes just aren’t enough. But I guess quitting while you’re ahead doesn’t allow for a drop off in quality.