Running from 31 July 1968 to 13 November 1977
Key Cast List:
|Arthur Lowe||Capt. George Mainwaring|
|John Le Mesurier||Sgt. Arthur Wilson|
|Clive Dunn||Jack Jones|
|John Laurie||Pte. James Frazer|
|Arnold Ridley||Pte. Charles Godfrey|
|Ian Lavender||Pte. Frank Pike|
|James Beck||Pte. Joe Walker|
|Bill Pertwee||Chief Warden Hodges|
|Edward Sinclair||The Verger|
|Colin Bean||Private Sponge|
|Frank Williams||The Vicar|
MY NUMBER ONE SITCOM OF the 60’s is Dad’s Army. I believe that it was by far the best sitcom in this era and remains one of Britain’s most successful ever sitcoms today. Throughout my childhood I was brought up watching the hugely popular show, best noted by the nation for its soft comedy approach.
Alternating moments of gentle character comedy with broad slapstick, the family show was a vital reason for its popularity which is why today, it mains as popular as ever.
It comes in as my number one above my other four choices because Dad’s Army, from start to finish always made me laugh. The storylines were always very cleverly written and as a result of this the characters were able to fulfil their maximum potential.
Writers Jimmy Perry and David Croft spoke often about how import the character portrayals were, for me Dad’s Army shows this excellently. The seven main leads were all created perfectly and helped greatly with the depth of acting experience from within the cast.
I think the show didn’t have any real weakness but in 1973, the sitcom had started to decline. Not because of the writing or acting, but most of the story ideas had already been explored. Towards the end of the series the episodes lacked the depth of humorous jokes of the earlier shows.
Despite this, Dad’s Army still remains one of Britain’s most successful comedies. From excellent writing, cast and storylines, it gave the show depth and will remain a massive hit with the viewer’s forever.
Set in the Second World War, in a fictional seaside town of Walmington-On-Sea, Dad’s Army evolved around the home guard; a defence organisation protecting England’s South Coast from the invasion from Nazi Germany.The opening credits of the sitcom “Who do you think you’re kidding Mr Hitler?” showed the Germans approach with the Home Guard protecting Britain.
Compiled with upper and lower class, young and old, brave and frightened individuals who are ineligible for military service due to their age or professions, meaning that were exempt from conscription, the country couldn’t be in safer hands.Appointed by himself, the leader of the pack, Capt. George Mainwaring was the local bank manager. The pompous, self-important and nationalistic leader was in charge of the liable Local Defence Volunteers. His assistant Sergeant Wilson was the opposite.
Gentle and easy-going, he was an upper-class bank employee who continually questioned Mainwaring’s judgement, “Do you think that’s wise?” Wilson was a Captain in the First World War and lodges with the Pike family, and is Pike’s biological father.
Also Capt. Mainwaring often clashes with the vicar but his main hatred is with ARP Warden Hodges; a local grocer who always calls him a “Napoleon”.
Among the team were Lance-Corporal Jones, who is an old soldier and the town’s butcher, Private ‘Cockney Spiv’ Walker who used the war to good effect, selling goods on the black market. He was the only fit and healthy man of the Walmington-on-Sea’s Home Guard but due to his corned Beef allergy, he was excused from regular armed force duties.
Furthermore Private James Frazer is a Scots undertaker, old and innocent Private Charles Godferry always needed to be excused for being taken short and Private Frank Pike, a mummy’s boy who continually wore a scarf to prevent illness.
Many scenes throughout the series underline that the men are unsuitable for war, which i find makes the characters more enjoyable and engaging to watch. From Pike continually wearing his scarf to the fantastically laid back sergeant Wilson “Would you mind awfully falling into three lovely lines?”
It is funny and disheartening to see Mainwaring and his team of ‘hopeless’ men attempt to prepare for invasions with the majority of exercises going wrong.
Growing up watching Dad’s Army I have enjoyed so many classic moments but here is my all-time favourite.
Written by, Jimmy Perry and David Croft