The Hound in the Left-Hand Corner, by Giles Waterfield

Stephen Bayley is delighted that someone has written the hilarious museum comedy he planned

Television: It Was 25 Years Ago Today 'Rising Damp', a landmark of TV comedy

On 2 September 1974, ITV launched a sitcom showcase series. It bore a marked resemblance to the BBC's fruitful Comedy Playhouse, in which Steptoe and Son had first appeared. And ITV's first half-hour pilot was to become as well loved.

Accidental Heroes of the 20th Century 34: Cosmo Kramer, TV Character

THERE IS a long and honourable tradition of eccentric minor characters in a sitcom becoming popular in their own right. Sometimes, in the accepted parlance, they "spin off" into their own shows. Dr Frasier Crane was originally introduced into the Eighties sitcom Cheers to give Ted Danson's Boston barman some competition in his will they/ won't they romance with Shelley Long's barmaid. Fifteen years later, Frasier is the most popular sitcom on American television. Ted Danson's and Shelley Long's careers have long since stalled.

Right of Reply: Richard Briers

The comedy actor and star of `The Good Life' replies

On Air: Mister Men behaving badly

Simon Nye is too busy writing jokes to misbehave. James Rampton talks to the saviour of the sitcom

TV history puts `Dad's Army' in firing line

WARTIME members of the Home Guard - butt of the television comedy series Dad's Army - last night angrily rejected allegations that they were incompetent and accident-prone, writes Diana Blamires.

A windswept farewell to a comic genius

HUNDREDS of mourning fans, television and showbusiness stars, and Ireland's President Mary McAleese braved lashing rain to bid final farewells to Ireland's favourite wit, Dermot Morgan, star of the Father Ted television comedy, who died after a suspected heart attack at his London home last Saturday, writes Alan Murdoch.

Forty reasons to Carry On drinking well into the New Year

Cries And Whispers

Property: Rising damp? No such thing

It is one of Britain's best-known building problems. It has inspired numerous gags and given its name to a TV comedy series. But now, it seems, rising damp may not exist at all.

Arts: The man who gave the British sitcom its finest hour `If I may be a bit pompous, we made people laugh'

Jimmy Perry once penned comedy classics like `Dad's Army' and `Hi-de-Hi!'. But he isn't writing for TV now. Why? Because times have changed, he says. It comes as quite a shock to learn that, even back in the 1960s, the BBC was in thrall to those dreaded persons with clipboards, market researchers. Even more worrying is the news that perhaps our best-loved sitcom was almost strangled at birth by them.

Tributes flow for Paul Eddington, 'a brave man and a fine actor'

The worlds of showbusiness and politics yesterday paid glowing tribute to the star of Yes, Prime Minister, Paul Eddington, who has died after a brave battle against skin cancer.

The man who is Sunday night

Two sitcoms fill peak viewing time on BBC1 tonight, and Roy Clarke writes both. Tim Minogue reports
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