Carry On Christmas (TV special, ITV, 24 December 1973)


A department-store Santa links various sketches about historical Christmases…

What’s it spoofing? Father Christmas, cavemen, 18th-century house parties, the First World War trenches, ballet and Robin Hood.

Funniest moment: Jack Douglas sings a song in the Sherwood Forest skit and for a moment you think the final line of a verse will end with ‘fuck’.

The cast:

* Sid James: Sid Belcher (Santa), Seed Pod, Sir Henry, Sergeant Ball and Robin Hood

* Joan Sims: Mother, Senna Pod, Bishop’s wife, Adelle, Salvation Army woman, Maid Marian and traffic warden

* Barbara Windsor: Virginia, Crompet, Lady Francis and Fifi

* Kenneth Connor: Shop manager, Anthro Pod, the Bishop, Private Parkin and Will Scarlett

* Bernard Bresslaw: Pea Pod, camp aristocrat, darts player, Captain Ffingburgh, Much and policeman

* Jack Douglas: Carol singer, Crapper, German soldier and ballad singer

* Peter Butterworth: Carol singer, old man, darts player, German soldier, Friar Tuck

* Laraine Humphreys: Bed customer

* Julian Holloway: Captain Rose

Top totty: Barbara Windsor.

Review: A final lame TV special. It’s full of atrocious jokes – some stolen from Carry On Cleo, Don’t Lose Your Head and Carry On Abroad. In a scene with Barbara Windsor playing a 13-year-old girl, it also contains comedy paedophilia. Flabby, forgettable and painfully unfunny.

Two fake beards out of 10


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