Keeping Up Appearances: 1990s UK Series

adoptedbyhoundsJanuary 31, 2013

Yesterday I picked up a grandchild from a preschool run by a woman from the UK. I mentioned to her that DH and I had stumbled across a British TV series available on Netflix, called "Keeping Up Appearances."

Not only did she say she loved that series, but others who overheard us stepped right up to say they absolutely loved it.

I think it is a "Hot Topic" because the series playfully takes on people across the British social strata...but especially the snobbish, social climbing central figure, Hyacinth Bucket (pronounced Bouquet). The same types of characters in the series can be found here in the US. We all know some people who enjoy putting on airs and making themselves tiresome to everyone around them. And we know others who are less well off, but remain down to earth and likeable, and well endowed with common sense.

This got me thinking about this forum, our different backgrounds, places of origin, and ways of seeing the world. It has me wondering if anyone here watches Keeping Up Appearances, and what they think of it. I think it's hilarious and would like to know what you all think.

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momj47(7A)

Oh goodness, I've been watching that for years, and also "As Time Goes By". I love it, Patricia Routledge is a great actress. I've seen her in other shows, she's very versatile. And her poor husband - talk about long-suffering. she nails the eccentric social climber. And what a family.

She said once that every year, when filming started, she wondered if she could become Hyacinth again, but as soon as she put the clothes on - Hyacinth emerged again.

We don't do that kind of character with as much subtlety, kindness or love.

Here is a link that might be useful: Link

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 12:59PM
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david52_gw

long time fan.

"One relative Hyacinth isn't ashamed of is wealthy sister Violet (Anna Dawson); the leading lady will often boast to visitors of Violet's home "a luxury bungalow" and of how this sister has a "Mercedes, sauna, and room for a pony", whilst trying to keep the oddities of Violet's cross-dressing husband, Bruce, a secret. (Bruce's cross dressing is revealed to Hyacinth in series 2.) Hyacinth also tries to impress people with the intellectual prowess of her beloved, but unseen, son Sheridan (he takes courses in needlework at a polytechnic), inviting the derision of those she is desperately trying to impress. She often begins the stories with "I'm sure you've heard about Sheridan" to which the listener responds "frequently". Sheridan makes frequent phone calls from his polytechnic asking for money...."

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 2:57PM
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demifloyd(8)

I don't regularly watch much of anything (except the recent horror series with Jessica Lange on FX) but I am familiar with the Series--my mom and dad LOVED that show, and dad would watch it every day, along with "Are You Being Served?"

They loved everything British (except for the food), but particularly the humor.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 3:07PM
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bill_vincent(Central Maine)

Used to watch it all the time. What a kick!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 3:16PM
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duluthinbloomz4

I'm sure I've seen every episode in the series at least twice. Hyacinth's interactions with Daisy and Onslow amuse me no end.

Love the riparian picnics, candle light suppers and the fine Royal Doulton china with hand-painted periwinkles.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 3:30PM
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marshallz10(z9-10 CA)

Another fan here although I've not paid much attention in recent years.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 10:50PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana(zone 5/6)

Another fan here, along with Red Green, a Canadian comedy.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 10:58PM
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youngquinn_gw

Long time fan here and I adore As time goes by

    Bookmark   January 31, 2013 at 11:17PM
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labrea_gw

Fun show, I have a few old VHS copies of it under the TV along with my Royal Doulton tea set.
Poor Richard suffered so terribly! Series ran from 90 to 1995.
Played by Patricia Routledge who claims she cannot go anywhere without people thinking she is literally like Hyacinth.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 12:15AM
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tobr24u(z6 RI)

Another great one was Waiting for God...

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:22AM
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momj47(7A)

We have a new TV channel available, WETA UK, which shows nothing but British TV - it's just terrific. I've found shows I love that never made it across the pond.

'Allo 'Allo and New Tricks are two that I like. Can't stand Benny Hill, Monarch of the Glen is good, and they are showing All Things Great and Small. All are great fun to watch.

And BBC America is showing Law and Order UK. And of course, Dr Who - my favorite, by far.

And Garrow's Law. Oh my. It's just terrific, I'm gobsmacked by this show.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 7:51AM
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tobr24u(z6 RI)

Cheers!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:04AM
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chase_gw

Another huge fan of Keeping Up Appearances and As Time Goes By. Totally addicted to Downton Abbey as well. Maggie Smith is amazing!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:09AM
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labrea_gw

Liked As Time Goes By and I was a big Ab Fab & Catherine Tate Show Fan, (Catherine Tate played a multitude of Strange & funny characters) my favorite being Nan a very obnoxious granny,
Or This Elaine Figgis (unfortunately I've met this kind of character a few times in my life)

Here is a link that might be useful: Oh My

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 9:24AM
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david52_gw

Along these same lines, one can purchase the complete 14 DVD series of Monte Python's flying circus for $53.96.

Santa, are you listening?

Here is a link that might be useful: monte python

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 10:23AM
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pnbrown

It's a classic. They reminded me a lot of my in-laws.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 12:50PM
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agnespuffin

Compare those old shows with what passes for entertainment now, and you get the real meaning of "They don't make'em like they used too."

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 1:01PM
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epiphyticlvr

I have loved the Brit comedies for years. I started watching them when I lived in England and contined when I came back. Thank you PBS!!! I still catch Ab Fab and no matter how many times I watch I still giggle. Love Edwina and Patsy and like so many others, I love Downton Abbey (and not liking Lord Grantham) :)

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 1:41PM
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chase_gw

Epi, I missed the last episode of Downton due to traveling and likely will miss this Sunday's due to the Super Bowl.....I'm bummed!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 4:43PM
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Pidge

chase, you need to get yourself a Tivo or a DVR. Or better yet, buy the series and watch it again and again.
I just realized that you must have missed the Sybil episode. That really is a bummer.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 4:49PM
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youngquinn_gw

Any faWlty towers fans here?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 4:50PM
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labrea_gw

Prime Suspect with Helen Mirren, excellent! I was also fan of Being Human, Dr Who & it's spin off Torchwood.
Are You Being Served old fashioned comedy style but I found it hysterical

Here is a link that might be useful: Are You Being Served

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:08PM
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epiphyticlvr

Epi, I missed the last episode of Downton due to traveling and likely will miss this Sunday's due to the Super Bowl.....I'm bummed!

Chase, don't be bummed. I believe you can catch episodes on Hulu and they are also being shown on the PBS website for a limited time. Last weeks was...well, I'll let you make your own judgment. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Downton Abbey

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:17PM
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subtropix

We have been lovin' he Brit sit coms for years. Never seems to get stale even though we know every scene and have the dialogue memorized. Hundreds of channels and virtually nothing to watch is mostly the story. Most of these smart, witty, non-vioent, shows run on PBS--the channel the the Right wing wants to disappear--along with the big bird. If you enjoy 'Keepin' Up', check out...

'As Time Goes By'

'The Vicor of Dibley' (this one is too unapologetically irreligious, AND unabashedly Christian to have ever been produced in The USA)
and...

'Absolutely Fabulous' (reason enough to get Logo--Gay cable station)

'Faulty Towers'

And..

'Are You Being Served?'

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:25PM
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ann_t

Love British comedy. Adding The Vicar of Dibley and Father Ted to the mix.

Funny, Mrs. Bucket pronouncing her name Bouquet reminds me of John Boehner and how I really want to pronounce his name.

~Ann

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 5:31PM
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mawheel

Another fan here of British comedies and dramas.
DH and I have watched "Keeping Up Appearances", "Are You Being Served", "The Vicar of Dilby", "Waiting For God" and several others whose names I forget. I think we've seen the complete series of "As Time Goes By" at least four times over the years, but never tire of it. Of course, British "cop" shows are great, too: "Morse", "Jack Frost", "Midsomer Murders", "Lewis", "Prime Suspect", the list goes on and on.

I won't be watching the Super Bowl on Sunday, at least not while "Downton Abbey" is on!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 7:00PM
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subtropix

Will definitely be watching the Bowl, got $ on it, then off to fair England for Abbey. Ya gotta live life to is fullest!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 8:41PM
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chase_gw

Epi, thanks a million!!! Can't wait to cuddle down and watch it!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:37AM
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jmc01

Nikoleta, when you are ready for more Netflix choices, check out McLeod's Daughters. An Australian series that's also very good!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 8:45AM
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epiphyticlvr

My pleasure Chase. Enjoy!!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:32PM
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adoptedbyhounds

Thanks jmc...and everybody else for your comments and for sharing information about other series you like. I'm going to miss Hyacinth when I get through the entire Keeping Up Appearances series. Your recommendations for other series will be most helpful. Thank you all.

FWIW, discovering Hyacinth was kind of like stumbling across buried treasure. You know...you find out something special has been sitting there all along, but you just didn't recognize it for what it was!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:58PM
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denninmi(8a)

Big fan of Hyacinth and Richard, but my favorite character is Onslow. Unfortunately, the actor who played Onslow died of cancer just before Christmas.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 3:55PM
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labrea_gw

Poor Onslow!

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 4:02PM
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chase_gw

We also really enjoy the Australian series " Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries ". Its a bit thin but totally entertaining.

Here is a link that might be useful: Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 4:08PM
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epiphyticlvr

You know...you find out something special has been sitting there all along, but you just didn't recognize it for what it was!

Try watching PBS sometime and these treasures, among others, wouldn't be hidden from you. They have been airing these shows for years and years.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 5:26PM
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sable_ca(z9CA)

Fawlty Towers, my favorite! Have seen the episodes many times and still cackle my head off; when John Cleese does that goose-step and wheels around on one leg I am on the floor. Reading this thread, I think we should explore more BBC comedies.

Thanks to Netflix we are addicted to certain crime series, Midsomer Murders even when it's slow, although some series are too "edgy" (violent) for me. We have watched almost every Masterpiece Theatre series ever made and many other series as well. Right now we are finishing King Edward the Seventh. My favorite is The Forsyte Saga, the original, not the horrible remake with that dreadful actress.

We're also watching Downton Abbey, but out of habit; I just don't love it. Like Maggie Smith and the downstairs folks, but the upstairs crowd seem to be strolling through life wondering what to do. IMO Upstairs Downstairs was better.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:11PM
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ronalawn82(z9FL)

nikoleta, I admit to watching (whenever I can), WEDU - channel 3 (Tampa Bay)- from 7 pm on Saturday nights until I fall asleep.
I get to see the "Lawrence Welk Show", "Are You Being Served?", "Keeping Up Appearances" "As Time Goes By" and one other. This last changes every so often. "The Vicar of Dibley" and "Yes, Minister" are memorable.
I seldom stay awake for any more.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 7:57PM
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chase_gw

Epi, just watched the missed episode of Downton.......and I'm not at all happy wIth Lord Granthom either!

Sable, Midsomer Murders is a huge favorite here too, as is Frost and Inspector Lewis....earlier Morse.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 8:07PM
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adoptedbyhounds

The creator and writer of Downton Abbey (Julian Fellowes) weighs in on its popularity as well as some of the criticism the series as received. Interview linked below.

FTA: "In Britain, he says, "we've had a century of being encouraged to dislike each other. And I suppose 'Downton' is in a different position to that."

This nonjudgmental embrace of the highborn life has exposed the show to the criticism, leveled widely, that it celebrates Edwardian opulence without due regard for the period's inequities. Lord Fellowes disagrees. " 'Downton,' I think, has achieved its success for the opposite reason, which is that all the characters are taken seriously," he says. "I don't think we patronize the servants, we don't make them comedic. Nor do we automatically hate the family or regard them as selfish and mendacious and so on.""

Here is a link that might be useful: Downton Abbey

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 7:15PM
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chase_gw

...and your point would be?

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 11:40PM
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adoptedbyhounds

Posted by chase z6 (My Page) on
Sun, Feb 3, 13 at 23:40

...and your point would be?

Same as yours, I hope. I'm enjoying a friendly chat and sharing of information and opinions with others here. Yesterday I checked out the Australian series you mentioned, because it sounded fun. But when I tried to view it online, the message said you had to be in Australia to get it that way. :(

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 1:21PM
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epiphyticlvr

Chase, glad the link worked and you were able to catch up.
I didn't get to see yesterday's but will view it later today.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 2:11PM
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chase_gw

Nik, I didn't mean to be snarky but in rereading my post I can see how It could come across that way. Sorry.

I was interested in what you thought of the series and the opinion piece you linked to.

Bummer about not being able to get the Aussie series it's very entertaining.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 4:37PM
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chase_gw

Epi.....I'll be watching it tonight too. By all accounts Lady Granthom is not at all happy with Lord Granthom either....

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 4:44PM
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chisue

Our library has been our resource for many British TV programs on DVD's. Anyone remember the three-part "House of Cards" about Parliament?

We're continuing to watch the gentle mysteries on "Midsummer Murders", although the population of Causton should be zero after all these years (three per episode), and there must have been 100 episodes by now. They've used up one Inspector Barnaby and are starting on a second.

"New Tricks" is on, what, Year Eleven?

Agree with momj -- "Garrow's Law" is a keeper.

We watched all the "Foyle's War", "Touch of Frost", "Inspector Lewis" and "Lovejoy" episodes. How about "The Last Detective"?

The "Judge Deed" series is good until you tire of the increasingly unbelievable 'teases' involving the judge and his former law student.

John Hannah is in the "New Street Law" series. Always like him. Wasna he in "Rebus" as weel? We even watched "Hamish MacBeth" if only to see the Westie. Is "Doc Martin" too recent?

"Land Girls" was good. I like "Call The Midwife" best of the newer productions.

What can you expect from people who would own an Austin Healey 3000 (twice)? Maybe you want "Pie In The Sky"?

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 7:00PM
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adoptedbyhounds

No problem, chase.

Have you watched the movies based on Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy? They have Swedish sub-titles. They're so engrossing, we've watched them twice and it won't be the last time. It took a while for the last two to become available on Netflix. Maybe the Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries will come along without too much of a wait. Not sure how they decide what they will offer via streaming.

A couple of years ago at Christmas, our son gave us "State of Play" from the BBC. Have you watched it??? Possibly the very best mystery story EVER.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 8:10PM
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chase_gw

No I haven't but will send DH on a mission!

If you can find the Prime Suspect series...BBC starring Helen Mirren you must watch it absolutely riveting.... fabulous !!!

Thank to the BBC for their wonderful productions and the CBC and PBS for bringing them to us.

Here is a link that might be useful: Prime Suspect

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:09PM
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chisue

We are catching up on the end of "The Wire" today, which reminds me to mention "The Hour", also starring Dominick West. (Amazing how he dropped his British accent as the Baltimore Cop in "Wire".)

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:44PM
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epiphyticlvr

BBC America recently started to run Ripper Street. I haven't watched it yet so I can't give an opinion but I'm recording it as it airs and I'll watch it when I have the time.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ripper Street

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 9:59PM
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mylab123(z5NW)

Have never seen any of them or even heard of many of them - when working I very rarely watched television, that quiet, free time at night after the child was in bed and chores done - it was all about the latest books we each were working on.

I missed the first season of Downton Abby but am already now looking into renting the Redbox copies of the first two seasons. If they dont have the second season out, I might even spring for new. I know Id love it, right down my alley from everything Ive read about it.

If you love Downton Abbey, Im betting you would also love "The Remains Of The Day," a Merchant/ Ivory movie from the 90's.

And another one put out by them, name escapes me, about a country home a deceased womans relatives are fighting over.........oh, delicious! When I recall the name I will post it, gorgeous storytelling, starring my favorites- Emma Thompson and Anthony Hopkins in both so what could possibly go wrong? :)

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:07PM
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mylab123(z5NW)

Deleting a dble post

This post was edited by mylab123 on Mon, Feb 4, 13 at 22:12

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:08PM
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mylab123(z5NW)

"Howard's End" would be the name of the second one.

Between the two, my favorite would be the one I haven't seen recently.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2013 at 10:10PM
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