In case my last post seemed a little negative and critical, here's something joyous and wonderful. I see that Channel 4 have posted large amounts of their archive on Youtube, including this one treasure that had a considerable effect on me, Mr Don and Mr George. It was a spin-off series from the sketch show Absolutely, and starred Moray Hunter and Jack Docherty, who also both wrote it.
The show was transmitted in 1993, when I was about 18 (and a serious comedy geek). I totally loved it and the show demonstrated to me what was possible comedically in the modern era. Pythons, Goons and Goodies are all great, but they were all some time ago (even in 1993). I wanted something that was positive, genial, silly and knock-about. And I found it in Mr Don and Mr George. Lots of wordplay, daft, self-defeating conversations and surreal turns. The plots made sense, but it wasn't about the story - much more about the gags. Perhaps this was the problem with the show (though not for me) and why it never quite got a big enough audience. That said, I seem to remember it was scheduled for Friday night at 10.35pm - and this sort of comedy never really seemed suited to the slot (although Paul Merton had had some success in that slot a few years earlier - when Paul Merton was a superstar and was on Have I Got News for Your wearing a T-Shirt saying 'Turn over at 11'). It's worth nothing that Mr D & Mr G, this much forgotten jewel, was broadcast two or three years before Father Ted and, I believe, paved the way. I'd be interested to hear the views of others on this subject.
I taped the episodes off the TV onto a VHS back in 1993, and then a few years ago scrubbed them by mistake. The realisation I'd lost them was awful at the time, as I was pretty sure they wouldn't be re-released on DVD. And they haven't been. But they are on Youtube. Joy of joys. Go see.