Home Television Comedy Friday Night with the Crazy Gang

Friday Night with the Crazy Gang

1 9 5 6 (UK)
6 x 30 minute episodes

The Crazy Gang had been film stars of the war years but by the time of this series (produced for Associated-Rediffusion under the wing of impresario Jack Hylton) they had become more or less permanent fixtures on the London stage in a succession of sell-out revues.

Reduced by now to five members (Chesney Allen, who outlived them all, had retired due to ill-health) they made little attempt to tailor their act to television, each show looking like it had been photographed live from the stalls.

The gang maintained a frantic barrage of corny gags, puns, visual jokes, vulgarity and topical references, with Diana Dors, Fabian of the Yard and even the Suez crisis finding their way into the scripts.

Some of the jokes seemed fairly risqué for the time, as when a woman explained that she had concealed her emeralds in her bustle during a highway robbery and was met with the observation; “Pity your mother wasn’t here, she might have saved the cart.”

Bud Flanagan
Jimmy Nervo
Teddy Knox
Charlie Naughton
Jimmy Gold