UK says yes to Porridge series but no to Are You Being Served? & Young Hyacinth

BBC grants 6 episodes for its sequel to Ronnie Barker sitcom, but its thumbs down for others.


The BBC has approved a full series for its Porridge sequel, which was part of the broadcaster’s 60th Anniversary of Comedy.

But one-off revivals for Are You Being Served?, Goodnight Sweetheart and Young Hyacinth -a prequel to Keeping Up Appearances– will remain just that ….a one-off.

All three have been denied full seasons by the BBC.

Porridge sees Kevin Bishop play the grandson of Ronnie Barker’s iconic comedy creation Norman ‘Fletch’ Fletcher, behind bars for computer hacking.

In the comedy special he was joined by Ralph Ineson as prison bad boy Richie Weeks, EastEnders’ Dave Hill as his cellmate Joe Lotterby, and Catastrophe’s Mark Bonnar as Officer Meekie. But the cast for the full series is still to be confirmed, with production due to start in January 2017.

Creators Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais said: “We’re in a state of disbelief that Porridge is coming back after all these years, but Kevin Bishop is a worthy successor to Ronnie Barker. So even though we feel like recidivists, we’re more than happy to go back inside.”

“It was an honour to be asked to play Fletch although I never thought it would go further than just the one-off homage,” said Bishop.

“To be welcomed back by Porridge fans and the BBC to make a full series, is one of the proudest moments in my career. Dick and Ian are true sitcom masters and I know they’re going to write a brilliant series.”

8 Responses

  1. I checked out both Are You Being Served? and Young Hyacinth yesterday after this post reminded me about them AYBS was quite funny, but I couldn’t imagine a full season run of it. I couldn’t bare more than 8 mins of YH.

  2. I’m sorry, for me there was only one Norman Stanley Fletcher and that was Ronald William George Barker. A new series may be fine for young folk not familiar with the original, but not for my age group. You can’t go back.

  3. Disappointing news about Goodnight Sweetheart. The general online consensus was overwhelmingly positive, and it seemed that Porridge wasn’t well received at all. Would be great to see ITV step in and take it on (as they did with Birds of a Feather).

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