Series: French and Saunders
British comedy sketch show starring Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders.Widely popular in the late 1980s and the early 1990s, the show was given one of the highest budgets in BBC history to create detailed spoofs and satires of popular culture, movies, celebrities and art. The duo continue to film holiday specials for the BBC, and both have been successful starring in their own shows. French went on to star in The Vicar of Dibley. Saunders won a BAFTA, an Emmy Award and international acclaim for writing and playing the lead role of Edina Monsoon in Absolutely Fabulous, which led to her minor, cameo roles in the American sitcoms Roseanne and Friends.1987 - 2010
This series provides examples of:
- Crosscast Role: Many of the parodies involve Dawn and/or Jen playing male characters, for example Dawn as Gandalf and Jen as Frodo; Dawn as Obi-Wan, Jen as Qui-Gon; or Dawn as Slash, Jen as Axl.
- The Dung Ages: Featured in one of the regular sketches.
- Lampshade Hanging: In the Gone with the Wind parody, they talk about how bad Scarlett's accent is.
- Laugh Track: A sketch (featuring Dame Helen Mirren and Julia Sawalha) parodying sitcoms had the incessant laugh track constantly interrupting the already terrible punchlines, ruining the timing of the actors by cutting them off when they were speaking, until they got annoyed and walked off the sketch.
- Long Runner: 20 years, not counting the 2009 Comic Relief special.
- Show Within a Show: The first series followed the (fictional) unbelievably low-budget cringey 'French & Saunders Show' that consisted of frequent epic fails.
- Parody: They did a series of parodies of films such What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? and Gone with the Wind.
- Spiritual Successor: Consider this a live action The Muppet Show.
- Time-Shifted Actor: In the Star Wars parody, Toby-Jugs Kenobi (French) wants to know if she'll grow up to become Alec Guinness.
- Wallpaper Camouflage: Played for laughs in a sketch parodying some current Costume Drama. Part of a pair of curtains turn out to be our heroines' voluminous dresses.
- X Meets Y: Basically a Live-Action TV The Muppet Show.