1 9 6 8 – 1 9 6 9 (UK)
7 x 30 minute episodes
Originally a Comedy Playhouse presentation called View By Appointment, this short-lived BBC1 comedy series – written by Jennifer Phillips – starred Beryl Reid as Irene (“Rene”) Jelliot – extrovert, highly sociable and slightly mad – and Hugh Paddick as her twittish husband Sydney – quiet, slightly frightened and painfully shy.
In the original play, the bored couple advertised their house for sale as a ruse to meet new friends.
The six subsequent half-hour episodes relied on more traditional situations, such as Rene trying (unsuccessfully) to organise a sophisticated musical soiree in her home (replete with sardine canapes), and Sydney reading his wife’s diary and discovering her secret love for the milkman, expressed in white-hot phrases that were a glorious send-up of women’s magazine fiction.
Critics almost universally panned the series, which they saw as a sad waste of great comedic talent.
View by Appointment || The Lost Chord | The Vacuum Affair | Virtue’s Reward | The Council Wears Earrings | Welcome to Great Britain | The Bed Bug