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  • Mr Gordon Brittas is chief of Whitbury Newtown Leisure center. He thinks he's brilliant, but in fact everything he does turns into a disaster. The only person in his staff who thinks he's brilliant too, Colin, who's cleaning toilets all the time, is an absolute failure. Brittas's wife is depressed all the time - guess why. No one's coming to the leisure center - guess why. Gordon Brittas has a dream, but it never quite turns out the way he planned it. THE BRITTAS EMPIRE does have its surrealist moments (Carol "Whitbury Newtown Leisure Center how may I help you?" is keeping her children in drawers), it has its "thrilling" moments (like when Santa Claus tries to kill the whole staff during a survival course)... but everything is always funny, like Gordon Brittas when he tells his own dad "don't you SON me" -- or when he tells his wife about a "magical moment" he spent with her but she doesn't know what he's talking about....or the Christian fundamentalists from the U.S. who pronounce Brittas's name as "bright-ass" and want to re-baptize him... THE BRITTAS EMPIRE is, as the man himself, Gordon Brittas, would say, "eeeeeexcellent"....
  • This is probably in my favourite top 3 sitcoms from the 1990's.

    The character of Gordon Brittas played by the wonderful Chris Barrie is probably one of the best sitcom characters of all-time.

    Anyone who likes British comedy but has yet to see this series, i'd recommend they seek this out because it is brilliant (virtually every episode)!

    i'd love to see the cast & writers return for a new series.

    Chris Barrie is probably more famous for playing Rimmer in "Red Drawf" but the Brittas Empire is his best work in my opinion.

    Each episode is totally mad & far from boring!
  • Gordon Brittas, the manager of Whitbury leisure centre, has a lot in common with the legendary Basil Fawlty of "Fawlty Towers". He lacks any sensitivity to anyone else, never listens to anyone and always knows best what should be done. Of course, the results of his actions are usually similar to the ones Basil gets. Each and every episode ends in some kind of a catastrophe, or to put it in Gordon's words: "I'm proud to say that in the entire history of Whitbury leisure centre, only 23 people were killed and none of them was a staff member" (quoted from memory).
  • This is one of the funniest British comedies I've ever seen, besides The New Statesman. Mr. Brittas and Carol have got to be the funniest characters in this serial. Mrs Brittas also provides some humour, and each episode guarantees a few laughs. Definitely worth watching!!
  • I've only recently discovered this gem on PBS. This has got to be one of the funniest shows I've ever seen. I haven't laughed so hard in quite awhile. I've never seen anyone as clueless as Brittas. I didn't start until the epi where they believe he's dead. I hope that this wonderful show continues on American TV.
  • aries8988 November 2002
    I think there is one line that sums up this fantastic Brittish show: "Last year we had 600 people visit this centre and I am proud to say that 500 went home uninjured"- Mr Brittas During the Episode "Exposed".
  • I tried not to like the Brittas Empire, writing it off as just a banal offering churned out from the comedy mill at the BBC. But as I viewed more I began to see Gordon Brittas as a train wreck that you could just not avert your eyes from. Everyone, including the viewers are in the joke except him because he is the joke Gordon is a well-meaning do-it-by-the-book type of manager of a Sports Centre who thinks of everything except doing the one thing that a manager should do and that is to ensure that the customers enjoy themselves. Everyone sees his flaws; his staff, his customers even his hypochondriac wife, everyone except himself and his loyal if somewhat smelly acolyte, Colin. Nonetheless, there is a noble, virtuous streak in him which redeems him and makes him above all else a sympathetic character. After the first season, the writers got to grips with the character and placed him in even more embarrassing scenarios and he continued to grow ever more unaware of his wife's adultery, her pill popping, the staff's gay relationships and the fact that the receptionist is clearly delusional and keeps her two children hidden in a cupboard behind the reception desk. Clearly, the Brittas Empire is not as well observed as the David Brent's Office and is not quite as hopeless and error prone as Frank Spencer but as an iconic representation of post Thatcherite Essex Man you could not wish for more
  • This show was a riot. Chris Barrie as Gordon Brittas was a nightmarish manager come true. For the entire run of the show he had seven or eight people fleeing in terror from his anal minded rules and regulations and following things by the book and sticking to proper procedures and filling out the appropriate forms, and you could count on things to go wrong. The staff always outnumbers the clientele, 3 to 1, as no one will ever come to the centre.

    I was surprised when he electrocuted the participants in a baptism in the pool by dropping a light fixture in it, his wife, Helen, calmly observing, wondering if her husband plans on clubbing the stunned victims like her uncle used to do salmon. Then the centre was attacked by Roman legionary re-enactors as the poor staff fought them off as they were pummeled by stones and arrows. The police and fire department will never come when called, they apparently have gotten so many calls from the centre.

    Another time, all the heating oil was being stored in a closet and a stray roman candle was fired into said closet. And a gas leak from a drill that punctured a hole in the pipe is ignited by the little figurine that marks off time on the wall clock. Another episode had Brittas charged with murder in a botched up drug deal. Wielding a chainsaw, Brittas screams at his receptionist, Carole, "Stop me before I hurt someone!" He was found innocent in that one.

    An emu running amok was one of the more baffling episodes, a shark was released into the company pool, the entire staff, including little Timmy, were found to be pregnant after a medical test, and Brittas had his feet put in a cement block. Carole gives birth to her twins in the empty steam room (later she keeps all her children in cupboards and drawers), Julie the secretary also gives birth in the centre, but Helen, his poor wife, gets trapped in the car while being driven to the hospital to have twins and has them delivered by med students in drag in the middle of the street. You feel sorry for Helen because she struggled so hard to keep from having Gordon take her to the hospital as she knew something like that would happen.

    The one that stood out to me the most was when Brittas accidentally, of course, electrocuted happy children holding hands, including his own wife, after they had to witness pigeons flying and frying in the ceremonial torch he just lit. Then there was the 'death' episode, when Gordon is crushed under a falling water tank. He makes it to the pearly gates. This one you have to see to believe. And a future episode showed the staff twenty five years in the futre, all finally having realized their dreams and ambitions, having survived Brittas, they could do anything they wanted and successfully.

    Funniest of all is that Gordon never seems to be aware of the chaos and damage. As he said after electrocuting the children and his wife, he has "brought people together, holding hands in intensive care."

    With eyes like Joan Crawford, Julie looks at him and says "right, don't go do anything else you can be proud of."

    Only Laura, one of his staff, is patient with him and can work around him. The others, like Colin and Linda, are oblivious to him while the rest are wanting him gone, dead or alive. The show reminded me of Sigourney Weaver and the other people running from the alien in the Alien movies, as the staff and Helen literally go out of their way to avoid Gordon Brittas and his ideas and plans. . . and dreams.

    The show ran in my area one time, no repeats, and it was a year later before they were shown again. This time I recorded them off.

    The final episode was reminescent of Bob Newhart show, which did it better, but I couldn't help but think while this show was airing in England, America was laughing at Tim Allen sticking his finger in a light socket and nominating him for Emmy awards.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The Brittas Empire is one of my favorite Britcoms. I've never understood why it hasn't been given more attention in the US. It's much, much funnier than Are You Being Served? yet is still unknown here. I had to buy a region-free DVD player & order from amazon.uk so I could watch the show. It's worth the effort and price. Chris Barrie is hysterical as Gordon Brittas,the man you'd like to punch five minutes after meeting him. All the actors play their parts so well. Harriet Thorpe is consistently a riot as the flustered receptionist Carole. So is Julie the cranky secretary who joins the cast in Series 2. Pippa Haywood hopefully won lots of British Emmys for her excellent portrayal of Gordon's addled wife. Even the supporting players had clearly defined characters. Linda was eager to please and a theological student with a weaponry fetish. Tim & Gavin were the gay couple dealing with Tim's hysteria and dislike of management and Gavin's desire to advance in his career by becoming management. Yet they managed to stay together. And as others have said, the character Laura was the calm center of this hurricane. No matter how bizarre a turn events took during an episode, there was still one foot grounded in reality. The character of Laura had a lot to do with that as well as the skill of the writers. For the first five series this show is consistently laugh-out-loud funny, while managing at times to be very tender and explore the characters a little more deeply.

    When series six began, Laura was gone as were the original writers. And from the very start the show sucks. The new writers just didn't seem to get it. The show lost its heart. I think the series could have survived the departure of Laura if the original writers had remained. The new writers focused only on chaos and not the warmth underneath. Suddenly there is a LOT of angry yelling going on for almost the entire time. The new character of Mrs. Bidmeade adds nothing to the show, through no fault of the actress. I read once that the original writers said that one main rule was that the chaos must always emanate from Gordon Brittas. No wacky characters coming into the center to create chaos. The new writers ignored that. In one episode some weird cult from Chattanooga comes in to welcome Gordon into their fold and baptize him. They refer to him as "Mr. Bright Ass", which was funny the first time, but not the subsequent seventeen. Colin also becomes more bizarre and everyone just runs around yelling all the time. I was surprised it made a seventh series, but that just went on to prove the writers didn't care about the audience. Brief spoiler: The final episode has Gordon sitting on a bus headed for his new job at a leisure center. It turns out it was all a dream and he was simply imagining passengers on the bus as his staff.WHAT AN INSULT!! Never mind the technical issue of 'well where did Laura come from, she's not on the bus?' but this device is tired and clichéd and smacks of lazy writing. It is an insult to the fans who fell in love with these characters to have hack writers completely negate everything that happened before. It's also an insult to the original writers and all their hard work. Get series one-five and laugh your head off with wonderful characters and funny writing and don't waste your money on series six & seven.
  • ShadeGrenade17 August 2006
    I've never understood the school of thought which says all prime time comedy is 'bland' whilst anything post-watershed is 'dark' and 'original'. 'The Brittas Empire' was enjoyed by a family audience, yet also managed to be 'dark'; people got shot, electrocuted, decapitated etc. Chris Barrie played 'Gordon Brittas', manager of a leisure centre, a man whose incompetence is matched only by his delusions of grandeur. His put-upon staff include the odious handyman Colin and emotionally overwrought receptionist Carole. Brittas' wife Helen is neurotic and who can blame her for being so? Richard Fegen and Andrew Noriss have not received nearly enough credit for their cleverly constructed scripts, which carefully balanced 'slapstick' with 'black comedy'. They had the sense to include normal characters such as Laura. Comedy shows peopled entirely by loonies get tiresome very quickly. Not regarded as one of the comedy classics of the '90's, but funnier than many of the ones that are.
  • Although this comedy doesn't hold any amazingly new comedy formula - it doesn't seem to have to. THE CHARACTERS hold it together brilliantly, as does the twisted plot of each episode.

    Gordon Brittas could be someone you know! The kind of person who insults and upsets you when all they're trying to do it help and give you some 'sound advice'. They mean well, but destroy everything, and indeed everyone, they go near.

    The main thing about someone like Brittas, is they're hard to hate. You can't tell someone off when all they're trying to do is good! This is what makes the character of Brittas outrageous, but also believable. And it answers the question as to why after all these years he's still married and still has full time employment!

    Mrs. Brittas makes me laugh the most. What a wonderful depressed, sarcastic, pill-popping character she is. Most importantly, they explain during the first series through her dialogue, exactly why she stays with Gordon. She feel comfortable with him, despite how annoying he is. It seems she is almost stuck in a rut, so to speak.

    Colin is another great character. "I was just syringing my ears and I seem to have flushed out a couple of wood lice!!" The idea that the deputy wet of a leisure center who is suppose to be healthy and fit (and indeed should be!) looks and probably smells like a tramp is hilarious! Being Brittas' lackey gets him into some hilarious slap-stick situations.

    Carol, the receptionist with post-natal depression who keeps her baby in her desk draw, is a vital character as well. She almost seems impervious to Brittas when he's compared to her other problems and she is often found sobbing at her desk.

    The plot of each episode is a twisted journey that builds up and up with Brittas trying more and more to get everything under control, but everything just gets slowly worse. People get trapped in lifts, fainting from heat exhaustion and starting to cry after Brittias' words of encouragement.

    A GREAT SHOW - well worth watching over and over again. Easy to watch and really easy to laugh at.
  • First of all, I find it hard to believe that this launched way back in 1991. Apart from the cars and clothes, it hasn't dated, the humour has remained raucous, relevant and divinely silly. Politically things have of course changed, and the thought of a Leisure Centre actually opening is almost now unthinkable.

    Made during a time where the abiilty to create big characters was very much there, and whilst you can perhaps argue that Gordon Brittas wasn't as big as say Victor Meldrew, for many he was.

    Chris Barrie was terrific as the majestically annoying Brittas, he had to ability to make you laugh, and feel utterly irritated in unison. Incredibly well written, it was hugely funny, with big characters, Carole and Colin in particular.

    Watching it now, it stands up to the test of time. It is very funny indeed. 8/10
  • The Brittas empire kept me in stitches. Chris Barrie is one of the funniest actors I've seen! Pity they stopped the show.
  • jamesmoule13 November 2006
    The first episode of this series had me rolling on the floor. The situation of promoting someone to get rid of him rang so true. In my profession, I saw the same CV hype and management disasters that were in the program. I was surprised that some people found it deeply confronting and hated it with a passion. Perhaps they were Brittas types themselves! The supporting cast also mirrored reality, loyally supporting a boss who didn't deserve their support and being blamed for all the problems that the boss created. Of course, the people who appointed Brittas were not going to admit to having made a mistake. He had, after all, impressed them at interview. Had he not had a wide range of positions, demonstrating a depth of experience? They, like other interview committees, did not not investigate Brittas' record in these positions and see the trail of destruction that he had left.
  • Sometimes you see a character on television or in film that makes you wonder what you would think of them if they were a real person and you could actually meet them. Other characters you might be sure you'd run away from, screaming in terror. I think that - if I had the fortune (perhaps that should be misfortune) to cross the path of Gordon Wellesley Brittas, I would surely end up on as many combinations of tranquillisers as his poor wife Helen gets through.

    Earlier this year, I made the excellent choice to buy the complete DVD box set, including all the Christmas specials and every single episode from the seven series made by the BBC, and every now and then I like to watch a few (or maybe even more than a few) episodes, so I can remember the brilliant comedy I used to watch when I was little. This weekend, I've watched a terrible mix-up in communications that led to Buttercup the cow having her breech calf delivered to the strains of a Mozart piano concerto by a gynaecologist who'd just finished playing squash, while poor Carole the receptionist went into labour in the swimming pool and ended up having her twins delivered by a vet in the leisure centre sauna.

    I've watched a massive tarantula escape from the box somebody sent it to Brittas as hate mail in. I saw Brittas run amok with a chainsaw and concluded that he decapitated the poor unfortunate who had been knocked unconscious behind the door he was trying to cut through. I've seen him deal with his wife Helen's occasional visits to him by telling his deputy, Laura, "Take Mrs. Brittas for a cup of coffee, and perhaps a doughnut" over and over again. Poor Mrs. Brittas has twins in the middle of a high street while the whole town watches her, simply because she was unfortunate enough that she couldn't insist on Laura being the one who took her to hospital.

    Sometimes you see a character on television that you don't believe in, but I don't see anything of that kind at Whitbury Newtown Leisure Centre. I see Tim and Gavin, insanely jealous of each other, and yet in a relationship that is never explicitly stated, but that I can understand now much better than when I watched the comedy as a child. I don't know how Laura copes as deputy manager, and in the end I think she doesn't know how she does it, either. It is an eternal mystery to me that no one tries to treat Colin's countless skin complaints, or sends Julie the secretary on a customer relations course. I don't know how Carole's children survive living in drawers and cupboards behind the reception desk, but they do.

    Perhaps the most frightening aspect of Gordon Brittas is that he genuinely cares for everyone. His staff, his wife, his children and his leisure centre are all so very important to him, but it seems to be in his nature to drive them to the brink of sanity and back. And whatever Gordon does - be it knocking out a famous Russian pianist with a bowling ball, or taking charge of his irate staff when they get snowed into the leisure centre together - he always does it for the best. And that's the scarily appealing thing about him.
  • If you have never seen the Brittas Empire I wish I was you because I'd love to laugh at it again for the first time. Chris Barrie brilliantly represents the kind of officious but well-meaning twerp that the world is now infested with, believing in the words of his wife that he is the oil that greases the machine, when really he is a big bag of grit. I think you can see his influence elsewhere with Alan Partridge and David Brent just a couple of characters with a bit of Brittas in them.

    The other characters are well represented with the permanently afflicted Colin and his pill-popping wife standing out in particular. The episode in which Brittas closes the Leisure Centre in order to find a stolen £5 note and imprisons the near-incontinent Colin in a locker to catch the culprit unawares is a particular favourite.

    Some of the later episodes are a bit weaker but the writers on the whole do a good job of thinking up ways for Brittas to inflict misery on the staff and patrons of Whitbury Newtown Leisure Centre.

    It is a shame we don't see a lot of Chris Barrie these days as he has obvious talent as a comic actor as well as an impressionist.
  • The Brittas Empire is great, and everything you could want from a comedy.

    the story lines are mad and the characters madder but that's the appeal, escapism, to be lost in the madness of Whitbury new town leisure centre.

    The premise is the leisure centre run by the amazing Gordon Brittas, a picky, annoying, fussy, squeaky voiced man who constantly causes havoc, whilst annoying the public and organizing too many staff meetings and team bonding sessions. the staff are all too familiar with his ways and they add to the fun.

    There's the fantastic caretaker Colin, disgusting, huge boil on his cheek. couldn't care less secretary Julie, Carol the receptionist whose son lives in the cupboard, Gavin and Tim (Are they gay?) Brittas would be horrified. Linda and Laura, pretty normal, but good, Laura knows how to get round Brittas and Linda is quite feisty and then there's Gordon's long suffering wife Helen, a bit flaky, shop-lifter, obsessive and quite often pregnant, all of them are great actors and very funny.

    Every week something bonkers occurs, anything you can imagine happening at a leisure centre seems to happen; murders, explosions, and mainly customers wanting to kill Gordon.

    Well written and Chris Barrie (Brittas) is just great to watch, his mannerisms make me laugh so much and the way he doesn't listen to any of his staff reminds me of so many managers.

    Even when Gordon Brittas was on a sponsored silence he was annoying! Watch this for a bit of fun and an escape from real life, definitely the best of the 90's.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Almost surreal. Completely bonkers scripts. The series is often verging on farce, but has a very spiky, cynical edge to it.

    The leisure centre would, of course, run smoothly if Gordon Brittas were not involved. Even in his absence, he is able to ruin things by sheer force of will. Whilst attending a job interview in Brussels, his orders are given by phone: this leads to his leisure centre becoming overrun with rats, and a fertiliser bomb exploding in the bins.

    The glorious Harriet Thorpe as Carol, the frantic receptionist, steals every scene in which she appears. Her nervous energy, leading her to call Mr Brittas "Missbriss" throughout, is absolutely infectious. Slamming her babies in desk drawers, doing the ironing whilst on duty, she's a hoot. Likewise, Pippa Haywood stands out, as Helen Brittas: popping pills and flirting through her desperation.

    A word also for Tim and Gavin, the gay couple who don't actually seem to like each other. While Gavin is keen for promotion, Tim is consumed with hatred for Brittas.

    Plenty of laughs, as the scripts get weirder and weirded. A live broadcast of a religious TV show destroyed by a runaway emu? That'll be The Brittas Empire. The building's structure weakened by the receptionist excavating more space for her children to live, leading to a water tank dropping through four floors? That'll be The Brittas Empire. Quite unparalleled in its strangeness, this show guarantees more belly-laughs than most. Great fun.
  • The Brittas Empire has always stuck in my memory from when I used to watch it when I was little and for years I have wanted to see it again but it is never repeated on BBC or even UKTV like all the other BBC comedies like Only Fools & Horses, Open All Hours etc. I don't understand why because it is one of the best comedies I have ever seen. Anyway, a little while ago I was flipping through the Sky channels and I noticed it was on Bravo. I watched it all day and was in stitches with laughter but then I never saw it on there again. Anyway, that prompted me to look for it on the internet on DVD and I couldn't believe it when I saw that I could get a set of DVD's with all 7 series on! I finally got them this Christmas and I have been watching them since and I have almost seen all of them now, just the last 3 or 4 eps of series 7 to go.

    Anyway, I seriously recommend that you get the box set of all the 7 series if you love this, sadly rarely shown, comedy! In fact even if you have never seen it before by the DVDs because I am sure that if you like comedy you'll love this! All of the series are good but my favourites are series 3,4&5 I think. I particularly like the episode where Gordon gets Helen stuck in the car when she is giving birth to the twins! I could remember this episode really well from when I first watched them on TV in the 90s when I was little!! My favourite characters (apart from Brittas without whom, of course, it wouldn't work) are Carol (the receptionist who keeps her children in the drawers), Helen (Brittas's Wife) and Laura (Brittas's deputy (series 1-5) who holds everything together when Brittas is wreaking his havoc!).
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Richard Fegen and Andrew Norris' 'The Brittas Empire' ran on the BBC for nearly ten years, yet is barely remembered now. Reasons as to why are unclear. Whatever the reason, it is a shame as 'The Brittas Empire' was one of the finest sitcoms the '90's ever produced. Chris Barrie had became a household name as the grotesque hologram technician Arnold Rimmer in Rob Grant & Doug Naylor's 'Red Dwarf' in the '80's. It was in 1991 that he landed the role as Gordan Brittas, the smarmy manager of Whitbury Newtown Lesuire Centre.

    Brittas, though deep down a well-meaning and optimistic person, is a snob and generally tends to put his actions forward before thinking them through properly. He has a receptionist in the shape of Carole, a homeless manic depressive who keeps her son Ben in a drawer behind the desk. Other characters include Gordan's neurotic wife Helen, deputy Laura Lancing, unhygienic handyman Colin and Brittas' snidey secretary Julie.

    Barrie is outstanding as Brittas. Many have unfavourably likened him to David Brent from 'The Office'. Nonsense, the characters are poles apart. For one, Brittas' was deep down a good person who just didn't think. Brent, on the other hand, was a bully and a braggart. Barrie played Brittas in such a way that it made him likable. Harriet Thorpe, Julia St. John and Pippa Haywood, three of the most beautiful women ever to grace a television screen also impressed, as did Mike Burns who as Colin made you want to clamp a clothes peg over your nose whenever you watched him.

    One of my favourite moments had Brittas being unable to move after having his feet stuck in cement, prompting one of his staff to remark: ''If we put you in a pair of shorts, we'll all be set for a game of Subbuteo!''. Fegen and Norris' clever scripts combined traditional sitcom with black comedy and slapstick - swimmers got electrocuted, old people had the supports of their walking frames sawn off and an old man went crashing through a window in a mobility scooter.

    It outstayed its welcome, unfortunately ( it should have ended after series five when Brittas was allegedly killed by a falling water tank ) but all the same it was an excellent show and a re-run is long overdue.
  • Brittas Empire is one of the funniest British comedies. My biggest regret is the relationship between Gordon and Laura, their unresolved feelings and mutual attraction. I would love for them to bring the show to America after Whitbury Leisure Center burns down. Gordon, Helen, Carol, and the children arrive in Los Angeles to run a run down hotel in Los Angeles, Brittas Hotel. In L.A., they run into newly divorced Laura and her son. Imagine Brittas running an American Los Angeles hotel which is one step away from condemnation. Now, imagine Brittas Hotel as a potential sitcom, the laughs would be endless and it would be a hit. Most people don't get the brilliance of such humor. I loved the cast members like Gavin, Tim, Colin, his disrespectful secretary that I understand more and more. The show always made you laugh enough till you cried. I can't wait for the DVD to be shown in America.
  • I have to agree with the other posts, except the 1 star review. But even that review is more positive than the poster realized. They said it didn't compare to Matthew Perry's show. Well, anyone who thinks Matthew Perry is the least bit entertaining isn't likely to appreciate, or even understand this show. It is brilliant, and each episode builds on the past episodes. All of the characters are, like in Fawlty Towers, worthless. You don't care about the characters, so when the writers have things happen to them for comedic effect, you simply laugh your butt off, and don't find yourself feeling bad for them. It is simply light hearted entertainment.
  • I recently started watching this series and have come to realize it was one of the best Brit-coms of all time. It has a certain warmth to it with the right combination of actors and actresses. I can relate to the idiocy of the know-it-all boss as I have encountered several such bosses over the years, along with the employees who are doing the best job they can in spite of it all. To be a British creation, there is miraculously little foul language. There is even a bit of CHRISTianity to it in a few shows. This is one of those few gems that could have continued for several decades, yet they ended it far too soon. Still, it does have a proper ending that you must see. I am not going to spoil it for you. Watch it all, and enjoy!
  • The quality of the humor is not comparable with that of Fawlty Towers. To make matters worse, while Basil was himself the source of problems, Gordon is just unpleasant. At a certain point it becomes annoying to see the entitled lazy government employees.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    For me this show is comedy gold, and I couldn't get enough of it when it was on the box. It made a pleasant change of venue and characterisation, to other comedy shows.

    It was I believe very popular which is why I can't understand, why I have never seen it recycled on any of the available TV channels.

    The part of Gordon Brittas, fitted Chris Barrie like a proverbial glove. It was a happy coincidence that the two came together, to make such a perfect fit.

    There is a veritable plethora of supporting characters that make up a rather motley crew, to staff the Whitbury New Town Leasure Centre.

    All of them are played to perfection by the actors that flesh out their parts, into humorously human beings.

    Laura played by Julia St. John is essentially Brittas Chief aid as Assistant Manager, and if she were promoted the Centre would run like clockwork. She seems totally oblivious to the perils, of having a pillock like Gordon Brittas in charge of the Centre.

    Colin played by Michael Burns supposedly has medical fitness responsibilities, yet in reality he is about as fit and healthy as I am. Colin is also one of the few people at the Centre, to have any time for Gordon Brittas as the Manager.

    Carole played by Harriet Thorpe is the Centre's Receptionist and forced by dint of personal circumstances, into becoming something of a single mum. Carole's parenting problems often place her in an awkward position in relation to her job.

    Gavin and Tim are played by Tim Marriott and Russell Porter, they work happily together as essential elements of the Centre's working team. Every other team member seems to be fully happy with their relationship, though Brittas remains blissfully oblivious.

    Linda played by Jill Greenacre is seemingly a perpetually happy, and chipper staff member. She is one of the few people who managed to cope with Gordon Brittas as Centre Manager.

    Julie played by Judy Flynn is a keen and efficient staff member, with a rather sarcastic turn of phrase when cornered by Brittas.

    Thus we have the staff absolutely essential in normal circumstances, with a sensible person in charge to the smooth running of the Centre.

    Now we have the dream team the Brittas family they do have a couple of kids though for an unfathomable rationale they are scarcely seen.

    Helen Brittas played by Pippa Haywood is a perpetually long suffering spouse, who resorts to whatever gets her through her existence with Gordon.

    Last and by all means least is Gordon Brittas played by Chris Barrie, someone with absolutely no people skills. Brittas is resolutely the last person, to ever be put in charge, of anything or anybody.
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