"Don't mention the war!" a manically goose-stepping John Cleese once said in the hotel known to millions as Fawlty Towers. Some 16 years later, producers of a German remake of the classic BBC comedy chronicling the antics of Basil Fawlty have dropped the episode where he infuriates Teutonic guests by referring constantly to the Second World War.
Fawlty's comments – he mistakenly orders "a prawn Goebbels, a Hermann Goering and four Colditz salads" – were deemed too controversial for a modern German audience.
The new version is being filmed with German-speaking actors running a hotel in the North Sea resort of Sylt. If the pilot is successful, 10 more episodes of the first 12-show Fawlty Towers series broadcast in 1974 will be made – but without the episode "The Germans".
BBC Worldwide, commissioned to make the series with a Cologne-based production company owned by the broadcaster RTL, said mixing the Nazi era and comedy remained difficult in Germany.Reuse content