While pretty much everyone knows what Back to the Future is, Fawlty Towers is more of British thing. Having said that, and despite the fact that only 12 episodes were ever made, it is a comedic institution. Following the exploits of Basil Fawlty (John Cleese), an eccentric hotel owner, and his overbearing wife Sybil (Prunella Scales), his sensible maid Polly (Connie Booth, who co-wrote the series with Cleese and was burnt as a witch in Monty Python and the Holy Grail) and their clueless and often beaten Spanish waiter Manuel (Andrew Sachs) the series charts the decline and fall of the great institute of hostelry known as Fawlty Towers.
By far the most well known episode is entitled ‘The Germans’ where Basil Fawlty, following a head injury and discharging himself from hospitals, finds a group of four Germans staying at his hotel. He then proceeds to insult them (at first unintentionally then not so unintentionally) by making repeated references to the war. Rather than bore you any further with my description here’s the most famous bit (language warning for any kids – it’s not that bad, but just in case):
The ironic thing, the most laughs I’ve ever seen this clip get was from a bunch of Germans! However, by far my favourite scene is when Basil, with his world falling apart around him, experiences some car difficulties. When the car finally gives up the ghost the following ensues:
Gets me every time. Anyway, it’s 40 yrs since the first Fawlty Towers episode.