Suburban sitcoms

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  • 94 SC STELLA.jpg
    'Stella Street'

    2 Neighbours

    Maurice Gran ‘Once we’d got the two main characters, we needed to invent a next-door neighbour of the type in 1950s American comedies, who would come in for five minutes, be funny and go away again. Because Lesley Joseph [as Dorien] was so funny and so ambitious, she didn’t go away again.’ David Nobbs ‘Reggie Perrin is more a sitcom about work than home, so neighbours don’t feature. But his domestic background [trapped in Climthorpe] is essential to his character.' ‘In central London, whatever the specific architecture may be, people don’t really know what other people are up to. People in the suburbs don’t go out to dinner five times a week. They sit at home. And so who is at home next door becomes the most important thing.'

    ‘When I was a boy we had a row with a neighbour because my father had parked his car slightly in front of their house instead of entirely in front of our house. As a result of which, every time we went out in the garden, if the wind was blowing in the right direction, he’d light a bonfire.’

    Phil Cornwell
    ‘In “Stella Street” it was about people being petty, like Michael Caine shouting: “You can take your leg of lamb and your bleeding mange tout and you can stick them right up your fat arse.” ’

    94 SC PeepSHOW.jpg
    'Peep Show'

    Sam Bain ‘In series one of “Peep Show”, we did focus a lot on the neighbour Toni. That was classic neighbour sitcom territory… The sexy older lady next door… A bit of a sitcom cliché, to be honest’

    Brian Cooke ‘In “George and Mildred”, Geoff and Anne lived next door. Geoff would come home and say to the child: “Don’t play on the grass, you’ll bruise it.” He decided he didn’t want a second child – he’d rather have a wine cooler.’

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