Posts from 24th February 2012

Feb 12

Brief Times at Hardwicke House

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Today is the twenty fifth anniversary of the very first airing of Hardwicke House. And tomorrow is the twenty fifth anniversary of the very last.



Hardwicke House was a star filled, high-profile comedy set in a comprehensive – Grange Hill shone through the prism of ITV sitcom.  But it was their new, late night flavour of sitcom, tinged with fashionable ‘anarchy’ – the snarkiness and mock brutality that had almost become standard in the the thrall of of alternative comedy.  A later, unbroadcast episode even featured the Comic Strip stamp of approval: cameos from Mayall and Edmonson.  ITV had great faith in it, showing the first extended episode the day before its regular, weekly slot.

It had plenty of jokes, but what it became notorious for was the callousness of teachers and pupils alike.  In one episode a teacher tricks a new girl into electrocuting herself, while elsewhere the school hard boy, played by a youngish Kevin Allan, forces his victims to eat raw liver.