Fawlty Towers’ famous ‘don’t mention the war’ episode has been temporarily removed from a streaming service, because it ‘contains racial slurs’.
The episode, called The Germans, first aired in 1975, and it features the Major Gowen character using offensive language about the West Indies cricket team.
John Cleese’s misanthropic hotel owner Basil Fawlty is also seen marching around, shouting ‘don’t mention the war’ in front of a group of visiting Germans, a clip that became very famous.
According to reports, Major Gowen’s scenes had already started to be removed by some broadcasters.
A UKTV spokesperson said: “UKTV has temporarily removed an episode of Fawlty Towers The Germans from Gold’s Box Set.”
They continued: “The episode contains racial slurs so we are taking the episode down while we review it. We regularly review older content to ensure it meets audience expectations and are particularly aware of the impact of outdated language.
“Some shows carry warnings and others are edited. We want to take time to consider our options for this episode.”
This comes as most streaming services and broadcasters are reevaluating content which is now deemed offensive.
Many other programmes have also been removed from streaming services due to blackface, for instance, Come Fly With Me, Little Britain and The Mighty Boosh.
Others, such as Gone With The Wind, depict slavery in a positive light and have therefore been removed from streaming services.
Happy Valley fans spot ‘unrealistic’ plot details in explosive finale
As Happy Valley fans tuned in on Sunday evening to watch the last ever episode of the gripping show, some viewers pointed out ‘unrealistic’ plot details that went amiss.
As the BBC crime drama aired for the final time after nine years and three seasons, viewers across the nation were so gripped to the edge of their sofas when 9pm came around on February 5th, many failed to realise a few ‘convenient errors’ along the way.
They watched on as convicted criminal Tommy Lee Royce, played by James Norton, broke into Sergeant Catherine Cawood’s home, played by Sarah Lancashire, while she was sleeping on her sofa. But she woke up and left only to return later, while he was still there.
As fans prepared to bid farewell to tough, witty, no-nonsense copper Sergeant Cawood, and her evil nemesis Royce, the pair had one final stand-off in her kitchen. In a gripping scene, millions of viewers had been waiting for, the two traded insults and emotional home truths in an incredibly tense final meeting.
Royce, bleeding out, was left weak and unable to attack his arch-enemy as he had done in the past, eventually setting himself on fire.
In the end, Cawood came out of her house alive saying ‘We had another bit of a tussle. I won’, on her last shift before her retirement. She left Tommy after she put him out with Claire’s blanket saying: “I think I may have singed one of your crochet blankets.”
But Royce’s journey from being on the run and ending up at Cawood’s, was not as plain sailing as it had started when he broke free from custody while on trial in court, to cycling past racing police cars, and smiling to himself as he planned to take his biological son Ryan away to Benidorm.
He ended up having to kill his former allies thanks to a well-placed rock during a showdown in a field – something that didn’t go unnoticed by viewers.
Taking to the keyboard, one viewer wrote: “Watch out for the convenient rock!! #HappyValley.” Another typed: “Ahh yes, the convenient rock in that empty grass field. Ultimate murder weapon #HappyValley.” And, a third tweeted: “Funny how there always seems to be a handy rock.#HappyValley.”
“How lucky it was for Tommy that there happened to be a convenience rock nearby, followed by an even bigger convenience rock to finish the job! #HappyValley,” was another of the many tweets about the handy rock read on Sunday night.
But the well-placed murder weapon wasn’t the only ‘convenient’ detail Happy Valley fans spotted – with many questioning why police weren’t watching Catherine’s house.
Strictly Come Dancing’s Dan Walker shouted: “WHY ARE THE POLICE NOT WATCHING THE HOUSE? (I know it’s only a TV show & sorry for shouting) #HappyValley.”
Another typed: “Maybe the police should watch Catherine’s house? Just a thought. #HappyValley.” Another declared: “Ignoring the fact her house would have been under police guard #DramaticLicence #HappyValley.”
The final scenes of the gripping finale was filled with humourous exchanges and heartwarming moments, with viewers praising the show’s creator Sally Wainwright for the realistic elements.
“This argument between catherine and tommy is so f***ing funny #HappyValley,” one fan posted online as Catherine and Tommy traded insults.
“I’m obsessed with Tommy and his sassy responses #HappyValley,” another added, with one more delighted viewer gushing: “Sally Wainwright is a master storyteller. This finale is more set in reality than some over the top finales that are total fantasy #HappyValley.”
New film about Pendle Witch Trials being made by Greater Manchester woman
‘She was forced into this horrible situation.’
A woman from Greater Manchester is making a short film about the infamous Pendle Witch Trials with filming now underway.
Emma Swinton, 37, from Barrowford in Bolton will make the film, based on the true event which took place in 1612. Eleven people went to trial — nine women and two men — and ten were found guilty of witchcraft and executed by hanging – one was found not guilty.
Emma’s short film will take a closer look at the life of nine-year-old Jennet Device, who was a key witness in the trials and many historians argue her testimony led to the death of her family members and neighbours.
Emma’s film, which is currently untitled, will offer the audience a more sympathetic look at Jennet’s life.
Speaking to The Bolton News about her film, Emma said: “The film will be centered around the story of the Pendle witch trials but not as everyone knows it. The story of Jennet Device really interested me. I feel like she was misunderstood.
“She was a child, didn’t have any legal help, and was taken away from her family. I can’t believe any child would stand up in court and make claims that would get their family members killed.
“She was forced into this horrible situation.”
The film will be told through the eyes of a fictional staff member and Emma hopes it will portray the ‘sense of the injustice and coercion’ that could have been happening in English courts at the time.
She continued: “Through the film I want to explore the fear women may have felt at that time, wondering if they would be next to be accused. I want to give people a different perspective on the story. We have the facts but where is the human side of this historical story?”
Emma added: “Ever since I was a teenager and dreamed of being a film maker, this is the film I wanted to make. It’s been a long time in the making and I’ve done years of research.
“I am more excited than stressed. I feel really organised. It’s a lot of work but I am feeling really together. Everyone is so lovely and enthusiastic and understands the reason why we are making the film.”
It is not yet known when the movie will air but camera crews are set to descend on various filming locations, including Pendle itself and across the border in Yorkshire, starting this week.
On August 20th 1612, the 10 condemned prisoners, including all of Jennet’s family and some of her neighbours, were taken to the moors above the town —still known as Gallows Hill — and hanged.
Alizon Device, Elizabeth Device, James Device, Anne Whittle, Anne Redfearn, Jane Bulcock, John Bulcock, Alice Nutter and Katherine Hewitt were all killed that day, after being found guilty of murder by witchcraft.
Happy Valley fans still have ‘loads of unanswered questions’ following series finale
‘I’ve got so many unanswered questions!!! #HappyValley.’
Many Happy Valley fans who tuned in for the gripping BBC crime drama’s final ever episode said they were left with ‘so many unanswered questions’ as the rolling credits came in.
In the final episode we saw no-nonsense copper Sergeant Catherine Cawood work her final shift on duty before her retirement.
But as the final credits rolled, many were left bewildered as they still had ‘so many unanswered questions’ when the series came to an explosive end on the evening of Sunday, February 5th.
Fans watched as Sergeant Cawood came back to her home to discover that someone had broken-in, knowing evil criminal Tommy Lee Royce was still on the run. As she carefully entered her home, she asked, ‘hello?’ to which Royce replied, ‘hiya’ as he sat at her kitchen table, and their final stand-off was on.
Royce knew his rampage had finally come to an end. Surrounded by family photo albums he had a heated exchange with his enemy as he washed down a handful of painkillers with bottles of spirits, with Royce finally setting himself alight in the ultimate crescendo.
After a dramatic last day on the job, we see Cawood back in the office packing up her belongings as she solves the murder of Joanna Hepworth, after her friend Alison traced back some prescription pills to pharmacist Faisal Bhatti. Joanna’s abusive PE teacher husband is revealed to be a predatory groomer and gets locked-up for having indecent images on his computer.
But viewers felt there were still many unanswered questions: what eventually happened to dodgy pharmacist Faisal and was he charged with the death of Joanna; how will Ryan deal with the death of his biological dad Tommy Lee Royce; or why did PE teacher Rob Hepworth’s daughter never take her coat off?
Taking to social media, fans of the show needed to share their burning questions.
@_LauraHowells tweeted: “Too many unanswered questions left hanging. Why did the little girl never take her coat off? Will they connect the dodgy pharmacist to the suitcase death? How will Ryan deal with TLR death? Gahhh.”
A second fan, @alicewellsx wrote: “I’ve got so many unanswered questions!!! #HappyValley.”
And, a third fan, @abbie_threlfall posted: “All the unanswered questions though what happened to Ryan, why the child always wore a coat? Will Claire get a new crochet blanket? #HappyValley.”
With @Hann3529 also adding: “Why does the daughter always have her coat on? What happened to Nev and the holiday? What’s the situation with Neil? Ryan’s reaction to TLR death? So many unanswered questions.”