Carry On Sampling!

Sampler Magazine, with Carry On Line, Summer 1997

The Carry On Films are a major part of British Film & Comedy History. It's slapstick, politically incorrect and full of terrible jokes... they're just superb

Carry On films began in 1958 with 'Carry on Sergeant' and ended (rather badly) with 'Carry On Columbus' in 1992 which unsuccessfully tried to revamp the old style with modern comedians and actors. No chance. A Carry On Film isn't a Carry Film without Kenneth Williams, Babs & Sid complete with appropriate catch phrases and "looks to camera". In the 90's I suppose the films seems very politically incorrect, blokes chasing women around for sex and the like but at the end of the day, it's only comedy, they're about having a laugh. They never claimed to make any sort of statement at all and anyone who takes offence from these films should really lighten up. They still are the funniest collection of films the UK has ever produced.

The main stay of stars in the films have of course done many other things on stage and screen, Sid in the sitcom, 'Bless This House', Hattie starring with Eric Sykes, and Babs going on to star in Eastenders of all things, but it is Carry On that immortalised this wonderful collection of characters. Sure, Sid was a dirty old man, but we loved him with his wicked laugh, bubbly nose, trilby hat and lecherous grin. Sid James was a superstar, it's as simple as that.

In total there are about 30 films, the early films being in Black and White. Many films were simply set in everyday life; 'Carry On Camping' & 'Carry On Abroad' about families on holiday, 'Carry On At Your Convenience' about life at work. But for me, the funniest were the period Carry Ons; 'Carry On Don't Lose Your Head' (a bizarre title) all about the French Revolution, the absolute gem that is 'Carry On Henry' which sees our Sid cast as Henry VIII and his quest to get some garlic free nookie and 'Carry On Cleo' where poor old Kenneth Williams playing Julius Caesar mutters the immortal phrase "Infamy, Infamy, they've all got it in for me". Class. This film also stars another future soap star as Cleopatra who went on to become Coronation Street's Alma Baldwin!

Sadly, many stars are no longer with us, Sid James, Charles Hawtrey, Kenneth Williams, all gone but still on occasion the likes of Leslie Philips, Joan Sims and Kenneth Connor pop up on TV. We love them all and the good news is they're all out on video and at incredibly reasonable prices. Yeah! pure escapism into a world where the only thing you need to worry about is having a laugh watching Sid fail to get his oats... "Blimey!" So, "Stop Messing About" and enter the competition now!