Fawlty Towers

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Fawlty Towers
Created by
  • John Cleese
  • Connie Booth
Written by
  • John Cleese
  • Connie Booth
Directed by
Theme music composerDennis Wilson
Opening theme"Fawlty Towers"
Ending theme"Fawlty Towers"
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series2
No. of episodes12 (list of episodes)
  • Susan Imrie
  • Bob Rymer
  • Bill Harris
Running time30 minutes
Production companyBBC
Original release
Release19 September 1975 –
25 October 1979

Fawlty Towers is a British television sitcom. It was broadcast by the BBC in two series, one in 1975, the other in 1979. Only twelve episodes were ever broadcast. However, the show is still liked by millions of people. Fawlty Towers has influenced other comedies.

It is set in a hotel in the coastal Devon town of Torquay.

Main characters[change | change source]

The owners of the hotel are Basil Fawlty (played by John Cleese) and his wife Sybil (Prunella Scales).

They are helped by Polly, a young British maid (Connie Booth) and Manuel, a clumsy waiter from Barcelona in Spain (Andrew Sachs).

In series two there is also a chef, Terry (Brian Hall).

Basil is a rude, angry man, who fought in the Korean War. He has been married to Sybil for fifteen years. Sybil and Basil do not love each other. Polly has a talent for painting, and this is shown in some episodes when her artwork is laid upon the front desk, annoying Basil. Manuel speaks only a little English and he often makes mistakes due to misunderstanding things. When he makes a mistake Basil usually apologises to the guests by saying, "I'm so sorry, he's from Barcelona."

Other characters[change | change source]

The Major (Ballard Berkeley) is a regular guest. He is old and forgetful. The aged and easily shocked Miss Tibbs (Gilly Flower) and Miss Gatsby (Renee Roberts) are also regular guests.

Episodes[change | change source]

There were twelve episodes of Fawlty Towers made.

The first six episodes were made in 1975, the last six in 1979. Fawlty Towers still has many fans, and many people regard it as the best comedy series made by the BBC. It was voted 5th in a poll in Britain to find "Britain's Best Sitcom" 2004.

One of the most famous episodes is "The Germans". In that episode, people from Germany are visiting the hotel. Basil dislikes Germans, because he blames them for starting World War II. He tells his staff not to mention the war ("Don't mention the war!"). He himself continually mentions the war, and even imitates Adolf Hitler.

The episodes, in order with date of first showing, are:

Season One[change | change source]

  • A Touch of Class (19 September 1975)
  • The Builders (26 September 1975)
  • The Wedding Party (3 October 1975)
  • The Hotel Inspectors (10 October 1975)
  • Gourmet Night (17 October 1975)
  • The Germans (24 October 1975)

Season Two[change | change source]

  • Communication Problems (19 February 1979)
  • The Psychiatrist (26 February 1979)
  • Waldorf Salad (5 March 1979)
  • The Kipper and the Corpse (12 March 1979)
  • The Anniversary (26 March 1979)
  • Basil the Rat (25 October 1979)

Other websites[change | change source]