The news that Ronnie Barker's hand-written first draft of the legendary Four Candles sketch, from The Two Ronnies, is up for auction tomorrow (June 1) got me thinking about other definitive examples of British comedy sketches.
Off the top of my head I came up with these, in no particular order, as the ones that have stuck with me since I first saw them aired and, I believe, encapsulate the character of our nation's peculiar brand of humour.
While I don't remember much else from Fry & Laurie or Goodness Gracious Me (beyond them being very funny shows), I could have posted many, many more sketches from Mitchell & Webb, Not The Nine O'Clock News, and, of course, Monty Python's Flying Circus.
But I decided to stick with the classics. These are the sketches I find playing in my head at appropriate moments when something - an action or a phrase - stirs memories of these particular nostalgic comedic routines.
The Hedge Sketch - Fry & Laurie
Going Out For An English - Goodness Gracious Me
Are We The Baddies? - Mitchell & Webb
Football Commentator - Mitchell & Webb
Swedish Chemist Shop - Not The Nine O'Clock News
Gerald The Gorilla - Not The Nine O'Clock News
The Cheese Shop - Monty Python
Argument Clinic - Monty Python
Dead Parrot - Monty Python