Carry On Again Christmas (TV special, ITV, 24 December 1970)

Again_christmas

Long John Silver, Jim Hawkins and others head for Treasure Island…

What’s it spoofing? Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island (1883).

Funniest moment: Nipper the Flipper (Charles Hawtrey) wants to be the cabin boy. However, Silver says to him, “We’ve already got a cabin boy. You’ll have to be something else. How do you fancy the cook?” And Nipper replies, “Well, I’ll have to look at him first.”

The cast:

* Sid James: Long John Silver

* Kenneth Connor: Dr Livershake

* Charles Hawtrey: Old Blind Pew, Nightwatchman and Nipper the Flipper

* Terry Scott: Squire Treyhornay

* Bernard Bresslaw: Rollicky Bill

* Barbara Windsor: Jim Hawkins

* Wendy Richard: Kate

* Bob Todd: Ben Gunn and shipmate

Top totty: Barbara Windsor.

Review: Urgh. This tatty, bawdy TV special was a chore to sit through. It was made in black-and-white. Some sources claim this was to keep the budget down, but the recording date matches up with an ITV cameramen strike that also affected the first few episodes of Upstairs Downstairs. Whatever the reason, it doesn’t help. Neither does the decision to abandon the previous year’s sketch-show format and present one continuous – and very boring – story. The cast are trying to get mountainous laughs from molehill gags. They don’t succeed.

Two peg legs out of 10

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