Wednesday 19 June 2019 by Chris Ballard

BBC under fire for airing Frank Spencer audition tape instead of Tory leadership debate


Frank Spencer audition tape

Viewers were surprised to tune in to BBC 1 last night to see an old ‘Some Mothers do ‘Ave ‘Em’ audition reel rather than the serious political discussion they were expecting.

The TV listings described it as an hour of intelligent debate between five men who want to run the country. What the audience actually got was sixty minutes of five supposed adults doing their best to act like children.

Questions went unanswered, nobody really listened, they shouted at each other, one of them even removed his tie to the undoubted annoyance of his mother.

BBC scheduler Simon Williams explained what happened.

“Hands up, my bad, I played the wrong tape,” he said.

“This was actually an audition tape from 1973 when we were trying to cast the role of Frank Spencer.

“Ronnie Barker and Norman Wisdom had both turned down the role and we hadn’t yet found Michael Crawford.

“We just went out into the streets and found five total wallies by asking simple questions like ‘What nationality is your wife?’ and ‘Is that a woman or a letterbox?’.

“When they dithered and got the answers wrong we knew we’d found people who could potentially embody one of the most iconic idiots ever seen on British screens.

“Crawford only ended up getting the role instead of them because he was professional, pleasant to be around and was guaranteed to turn up to things.

“Sorry about the whole Tory debate thing though – I’m sure that will all be fine. They know what they’re doing.”

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