Frankie and Bruce (1975)

TV Movie   |    |  Comedy, Documentary

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30 January 2005 | F Gwynplaine MacIntyre
| Titter ye not much; they didn't do well.
Bruce Forsyth and Frankie Howerd are two giants of British television comedy. Forsyth is still going strong as I write this, while the late Mr Howerd ("oh no, Missus!") remains popular in repeats and his films. But they had two vastly different performance styles that didn't mesh well. Although they teamed up for some variety broadcasts, the best portions of each such offering were Bruce's and Frankie's solo monologues, rather than the sketches in which they attempted to play off each other.

This special is hardly the best example of either man's work, although they come off fairly well in their respective solo turns. The oddest moment occurs just after the opening, when Bruce -- lithe, glib and pencil-slim -- informs the audience that he and Frankie both had to get medical examinations for insurance before they could film this special. 'Now, I keep myself fit,' says Bruce, clearly delighted at his own figure ... but he then explains that Frankie had some problems.

Cue the unfunny comedy sketch, in which Frankie Howerd, playing himself as a physical wreck -- hardly a stretch -- enters the doctor's surgery for a check-up. Bruce Forsyth, in a lab coat, plays the doctor ... but he looks and sounds exactly like Bruce Forsyth, which is a bit confusing.

These two comedians did their best work separately, and I don't recommend this team-up unless you're a completist. I'll rate it 3 out of 10, only because I'm a fan of Forsyth.

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Comedy | Documentary


Release Date:

3 September 1975



Country of Origin


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