The TV Cream Advent Calendar: Door 12

Ah yes, the Christmas Day comedy special. A chance to wash down the excesses of the day with a dose of light humour and polished laughs. A chance to sit back and relax in the company of shows like…

Get Some In! (1975)
Gags about ration cards, veal and “darkies”? Shhhh, most people will be too pissed to notice.

Two’s Company (1976)
Elaine Stritch and Donald Sinden bicker over the bon-bons.

Are You Being Served? (1977)
“Mrs Slocombe, Captain Peacock would like to know if you need someone to give your turkey a stuffing.”

George And Mildred (1979)
The last ever episode, called ‘The 26 Year Itch’. Spoiler: after four years and five series it was to be left unscratched.

Father’s Day (1983)
Channel 4’s first and, for a while, only homegrown sitcom, done so cheaply that lead John Alderton had to wear his own clothes.

Hi-De-Hi (1985)
Hmm. Hard to see how this would have leant itself to a Christmas special. The gang stage an out-of-season revue to raise money to buy Mr Partridge a new pair of spectacles? A charity pantomime ends in tears when Spike refuses to play the fairy godmother?

Dear John (1987)
More cheery fare. Though you’d surely take this over My Family any day.

Bread (1988)
Oh dear god. A bunch of people joylessly bickering round the dinner table, shouting insults and blubbing and storming off and coming back and joylessly bickering some more. Cue titles. Cue 69 (count ’em!) more minutes of bickering.

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