Here at BBC Towers we've been granted access to the vaults to pick some of our favourite comedy moments. Now, we love a catchphrase as much as anyone and a great one is often repeated in the office, on the bus, and in pubs up and down the country, so we thought we'd reintroduce you to a few old friends and a few you may have forgotten. Enjoy!
The antics of Edina and Patsy in Absolutely Fabulous endeared them to a generation during their 12 year tenure on the BBC. The show, written by Jennifer Saunders, focused largely on the dysfunctional relationship between Edina and her sensible daughter, Saffron. Here, Edina returns home from a fashion show drunk despite promising to give up alcohol.
'Allo 'Allo! ran for a decade on BBC One and featured a memorable cast of characters, from French café owner, René Artois, to Herr Flick of the Gestapo, but it was British spy Officer Crabtree who always brought the house down posing as a French Police officer. Good Moaning!
Mrs Slocombe's pussy! We are, of course, referring to the dear lady's cat. Yet, her feline-fixations were not the only source of merriment at the Grace Brothers' department store in BBC One's Are You Being Served? After all, who could forget Mr Humphries catchphrase? All together now, "I'm free!"
Marching, once again, with ill deserved confidence in the direction of this collection, the words "I have a cunning plan", undoubtedly spawned a plethora of similar...um...cunning plans just as futile. However, Baldrick was never one to be put off by previous failures as we see here in 1987's Blackadder the Third.
BBC One's Dad's Army followed the misadventures of a platoon of The Home Guard during World War Two. It ran from 1968 to 1977 (nearly twice the length of the war) and featured many great one-liners, such as Captain Mainwaring ridiculing mummy's boy Captain Pike with three simple words. You stupid boy!
Dave Allen at Large ran from 1971 to '79 on the BBC and featured a series of satirical sketches and live solo material. Throughout his career Allen's shows were uniquely memorable for the sign off, "Good night, thank you, and may your God go with you", as we see in this clip.
The Fast Show revolutionised the sketch format with quick, short sketches and catchphrases a-plenty. Whilst Paul Whitehouse was the face of the show, which ran from 1994 to '97, the other performers were also given some of the best catchphrases, such as Arabella Weir's Insecure Woman.
Little Britain demonstrated a different side to the country with some of the seedier, more unusual but certainly hilarious characters to have graced our screens. After an initial run on BBC Radio 4, the show moved to television and BBC Three in 2003, where we got our first look at enfant terrible Vicky Pollard and her scattergun slang, and committed Welsh homosexualist Daffyd Thomas - the only gay in the village.
History Today was ostensibly a sketch featuring two professors discussing great moments in history. The truth, however, was rather different as Rob Newman and David Baddiel digressed into abusing each other with phrases such as "See that Thora Hird? That's your girlfriend that is." Newman and Baddiel In Pieces was broadcast on BBC2 Two in 1993 and here are Professor F. J. Lewis and his colleague deep in discussion.
The name Victor Meldrew entered the national lexicon in 1990 as a misanthropic, grumpy old man, who seemingly finds fault with everything in One Foot in the Grave. But it was his catchphrase, quoted ad infinitum, that really stuck in the mind during the show's ten year BBC One run and became a household phrase for grumpy old men everywhere.
Poor old Rodney Trotter, cursed not only with being the younger brother of Del Boy and the butt of his many windups, but also on the receiving end of his most withering of putdowns. Only Fools and Horses was first broadcast in 1981 and ran until 2003, including specials. It also featured plenty of classic moments and memorable phrases, though none quite as brilliant as, "Rodney, you plonker!"
It's probably unsurprising that Alan Partridge only had one television chat show since he murdered a guest live on television. Still, although his chat show was short lived, his catchphrase, as seen in this clip, endured. Knowing Me Knowing You was another show which began life on BBC Radio before a first series aired on BBC Two in 1994. Two further series were broadcast showing Alan's attempts to make it back to television. He failed.
The UK's most popular space-based sit com, Red Dwarf ran for 11 years from 1988 and revolved around Dave Lister, played by Craig Charles, the last surviving member of the human race, and an assembled group of creatures, holograms and robots. Here, Lister teaches Kryten the mechanoid to say a familiar Red Dwarf insult.
For a catchphrase to be named word of the year it really has to capture the imagination of the public, so when the character of Lauren Cooper from the BBC sketch series The Catherine Tate Show first uttered the phrase "Am I bovvered?" teenagers (and adults) everywhere discovered they were 'bovvered' enough to use it. A lot.
Tommy Cooper often said "Just like that" to demonstrate how a trick should work. Unfortunately, it didn't often work just like that. So, when he demonstrated an egg trick on the 1964 Royal Variety Performance the front row cringed in reluctant anticipation. Cooper got his first start on the BBC talent show New To You in 1948 and became a TV staple until his death in 1984.
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