1 9 7 9 – 1 9 8 0 (UK)
14 x 30 minute episodes
Vera (Denise Coffey) and Norman (Tony Aitken) Straightman were an ordinary working-class couple whose efforts to live a quiet and very ordinary life in their very ordinary home were constantly shattered by the unwelcome intrusions of guests from the world of television.
Two recurring visitors were an unnamed, slightly camp male neighbour, oddly attired in suit and headscarf, and ‘Mr Sprote of Hackney’, a scruffy individual who lived in their sideboard and was treated like a pet.
In series two, the format changed to short, sharp sketches and mildly deranged slapstick.
The Straightmans reappeared in the last episode, a black and white spoof Agatha Christie-style whodunnit in which a roomful of characters was killed off one by one until no suspect remained, whereupon the door opened and Vera and Norman entered, announcing that now that everyone is dead they could return to the series.
Writers from the LWT show would go on to contribute to Not the Nine O’Clock News.