A Study On the Fawlty Towers Sitcom

Essay by spacko29High School, 11th grade February 2008

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We have been watching the episode "the Germans" of Fawlty Towers. It is a sitcom (situation comedy) mostly filmed inside of the same hotel in Torquay. Humour in sitcoms come from events that could happen in everyday life being blown up out of all proportion, some of the devices they use are; farce, comic timing, black humour and many more. Sitcoms are always filmed inside or very close to the place they are using, in this case, Fawlty Towers and always using the same main characters; Basil, Sybil, Manuel, Polly, and the Major but every episode having different guests which makes it funny because they do not know what happens in the hotel and they nearly always end up in the middle of the weird events that go on inside the hotel.

Sitcoms are very hard to script and quite clever because there is 1 main plot but 4 or 5 sub plots around the outside which in the end all work together using comic timing to make humour for example, in "the Germans" episode Sybil was in hospital with an in grown toenail and telling Basil what to do to get the hotel nice for when the Germans arrive but after Manuel sets the kitchen on fire Basil manages to find himself in hospital with concussion but escapes and makes the visit for the Germans very unpleasant because he does not know what he is doing.

The first episode of Fawlty towers was made in 1975, so watching back on an episode now seems odd because the humour used would not be accepted today because of what they used to exploit humour out of like; racism, sexism, and homophobia with the different names the major has for homosexuals, however also using types of humour...