At its peak, an episode of Jeremy Lloyd's innuendo-driven department-store sitcom could glue 22 million bums on sofas. Yet series one, which went up against Corrie, slipped by unnoticed, only acquiring a fanbase when it was re-shown. Are You Being Served? finally went off air in 1985, so sauce-starved aficionados will gobble up this clip-and-comment treat first shown on New Year's Day 2010.
Cast, crew and writers gather to tell the back story (Lloyd got the idea from working at Simpsons of Piccadilly) and reel off anecdotes from the 13-year run. Among them is Frank Thornton, who played the punctilious Captain Peacock and died in March 2013, aged 92.Ruth Margolis, Radio Times, 13th April 2013
"Before we go any further, Mr Rumbold, Miss Brahms and I would like to complain about the state of our drawers. They're a positive disgrace." This was about as sophisticated as Are You Being Served? got, yet it ran for 69 episodes from 1972 to 1985, becoming one of Britain's best-loved sitcoms. Despite its reliance on tame innuendo and catchphrases, it showcased impeccable comic acting from Wendy Richard and Mollie Sugden, who both died last year. The show also made a star of the late John Inman. His character, the mincing menswear fitter Mr Humphries, was criticised by gay rights groups, but Inman was later hailed as a gay icon (especially in San Francisco, after the series became a cult hit on US TV in the 1980s). This documentary tells the sitcom's story. It's preceded by profiles of Sugden and Inman, and 1975's Christmas special; afterwards there's a colourisation of the original black and white pilot episode. Wonder what colour they'll make Mrs Slocombe's... hair?The Telegraph, 1st January 2010