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Book Reviews - Review 112

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Graham McCann

Fawlty Towers: The Story of Britain's Favourite Sitcom

Category: Miscellaneous | Published: 2007 | Review Added: 29-12-2007

Rating: 3 - Worth reading

A fairly thorough, and intermittently enlightening, account of the conception, making and reception of the classic 70s comedy. Much of the content won't be new to fans of the show - the extensive plot synpopses, the inspiration of the deranged real-life Torquay hotelier for Basil Fawlty - but there are interesting explanations by the actors of how they interpreted their parts, and some of the author's observations about the show's characterisation border on the insightful. Ultimately, though, the book aims its sights at the broadest possible readership, and most of the prose wouldn't be out of place in the Daily Mirror in terms of either its style or its penetration. That's no doubt a testament to the scope of the show's appeal; but as testament to the subtlety and brilliance of its writing and execution, one can't help but feel that this book falls a little short.

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