Agony

Agony. Image shows from L to R: Jane Lucas (Maureen Lipman), Val (Diana Weston). Copyright: London Weekend Television.

Agony

Jane Lucas is a radio and magazine agony aunt whose problems seem to eclipse those of her 'patients'

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Chappers

  • Saturday 21st November 2020, 11:11am
  • Surreyish., England
  • 31,249 posts

I searched and I'm really surprised that there is no thread on this already.

I used to love this, not least because I loved Maureen Lipman, the main character and Anna Raeburn on who the series was based and who co-wrote it.

I was consequently looking on Ebay to see about buying the whole set. I understand that there were 3 series.

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Alfred J Kipper

  • Sunday 22nd November 2020, 5:16am
  • Aldershot, England
  • 6,259 posts

Yes, surprisingly so for such a good sitcom, although it only went for three series, unusual for an ITV sitcom which tended to be long runners if popular, which it was. I'm thinking maybe if it had more established sitcom writers it would have run for longer, I'm sure Anna Raeburn was very busy with her day job. I believe she plotted in some true cases as the writers of Yes Minister did, some were very funny.

What's more surprising is its lack of showing since, I haven't noticed a single repeat of it, I can only imagine because of some political correct nonsense, although I can't recall who it may have offended. Very sharp dialogue made for its star and it's since been compared to Frasier and Ab Fab. I remember I did find the style of having a central wise cracking character a bit American at the time, but no more than Porridge, which was and is untouchable. Odd that something as loud and overplayed as Ab Fab gets such a following and something actually funnier with a similar woman centric setting gets forgotten. Eh?

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Chappers

  • Sunday 22nd November 2020, 6:55pm
  • Surreyish., England
  • 31,249 posts

Maybe Adrian Love (Andy Evol) took exception.

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A Horseradish

  • Sunday 22nd November 2020, 10:27pm [Edited]
  • United Kingdom
  • 7,529 posts

Quite an interesting thread. I have several observations in the vein of what Martin Kelner might call "for the teenagers" as in being remote from their lives and not actually of much interest. With humour. Still, here we go. One, Maureen Lipman is a great comedian - what we would once have called comedienne. Next, this from memory was ITV so at least here ITV breaks its own stereotype of not being ground breaking. Third, there was an Agony Again. Aaron might correct me on this one but I have a feeling that was on BBC.

Fourth, Anna Raeburn was for me as a teenager from a virtually Victorian upbringing with hindsight the stuff of illicit listening under the bedclothes. I don't think I picked up on sexual problems as much as the openness on sex which seemed problem less. That was Capital Radio in the 1970s at around - what? 7pm ish - before the watershed - and she had an almost unnerving robust manner which later went into that script. Fifth, what you get there and this is where ITV shows its radicalism are gay characters who are not camp which was probably a first and later came After Henry. I think from a social evolution perspective that was important but it always looked a bit forced to me. Maybe it would have to be to get beyond where things had been hitherto and if it was important to many, great. I am not especially interested in people's sexual orientation myself as I don't engage with others in that way. I am purely for common interests/fun.

But I used to be a massive radio fan. I have very strong opinions on what was great about radio in years gone by or simply good. And what especially brings me to this thread is the mentioning of Adrian Love who was of course the son of TV band leader Geoff Love. Adrian hosted that show rather bravely but very calmly in demeanour with the feisty Anna. I have to say Ade was one of the most natural broadcasting voices of all time, one of the most soft and calm and reassuring, albeit not soppy but with a subtle bite and some humour, and in my view he was mong the best of his era. It was such a shock to hear that he had drifted into alcoholism and then he was yet another who died so young. Agony - yes - but I loved Adrian.

He was a smashing guy - for what it matters - and it may do today - and good - his Dad Geoff was black:

I do hope this is seen as a nice - and historically evocative - post.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ksQpLpJxEck

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Aaron

  • Monday 23rd November 2020, 8:28am
  • Royal Berkshire, England
  • 68,709 posts
Quote: A Horseradish @ 22nd November 2020, 10:27 PM

Third, there was an Agony Again. Aaron might correct me on this one but I have a feeling that was on BBC.

It was! See: Agony Again.

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Chappers

  • Monday 23rd November 2020, 8:29pm
  • Surreyish., England
  • 31,249 posts

Anyway I've just ordered the whole series of Agony. Good to see Maureen as a younger woman although I still find her attractive.

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Alfred J Kipper

  • Wednesday 25th November 2020, 8:32am
  • Aldershot, England
  • 6,259 posts

A bold decision seeing as it's not been shown for 40 years, (unless someone knows different) I'm still holding back on the Upchat Line because I never saw a bit of it. (Seeing the patchiness of sitcoms like Get Some In from that period have made me a bit hesitant now) I only sporadically saw Agony, and probably had it on as background mainly but you were probably a more avid watcher of it if and you like the star then this should be a good buy, as from memory it virtually relaunched Lipman as a witty raconteur and very popular guest on chat shows.

Please report back on it and with intelligence as to why you think it hasn't been re-aired, the unPC quotient and how edited it looks. Thank you.