Thursday, 11 December 2014

Theme Time : Spike Milligan - Q

Like an oasis in the desert, BBC4 blessed us last night with some much needed comedy nourishment in the shape of a compilation of the best bits from Spike Milligan's seminal Q series (a second instalment airs tonight at 10:30) along with a documentary about the great man.

The Q series was a surreal sketch series that ran on BBC2 for 6 series 1969 to 1982. The first series was entitled Q5, followed by Q6, Q7, Q8 and Q9 and a final series entitled There's A Lot Of It About. Debate still rages as to why Milligan adopted the title Q, with some claiming it was a riposte to the 1967 launch of the QE2 which had been dubbed Q4 whilst others claim it was an in-house/technical reference; Q5 was, in terms of the BBC's then 6 point technical quality scale for broadcast, severe degradation to picture or sound, whilst Q6 meant a complete loss of audio and visual.

Whatever it referred to it was still bloody funny and stole Monty Python's thunder, airing a full seven months before the Oxbridge performers sketch show made its debut. The piano theme tune was as distinctive and discordant as Milligan's humour

And who could forget the busty 'glamour stooge' (70s comedy seemed full of them didn't they?) Julia Breck?

Well, however uploaded to YouTube this short compilation of some of her appearances certainly couldn't.

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