TV Comedy on the Radio

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Nick Odell

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Aug 23, 2021, 4:57:14 AM8/23/21
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My apologies if this question has already been asked: even more
apologies if I was the one who asked but have since forgotten both the
question and answer but...

How were all these television comedies such as Steptoe, Yes Minister
and Dad's Army adapted for the radio? I can find plenty of information
about shows that started on the radio and later gravitated towards TV
but not a lot on how it happened the other way around.

Did an engineer simply re-edit the TV sound track? Did they call the
cast back into the studio for a radio recording or make recordings at
the TV series read-through before rehearsals started? Or did they do
something else?

I'd love to know.

Thanks,

Nick

William Wright

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Aug 28, 2021, 4:58:35 PM8/28/21
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On 23/08/2021 09:57, Nick Odell wrote:
> How were all these television comedies such as Steptoe, Yes Minister
> and Dad's Army adapted for the radio? I can find plenty of information
> about shows that started on the radio and later gravitated towards TV
> but not a lot on how it happened the other way around.
>
> Did an engineer simply re-edit the TV sound track? Did they call the
> cast back into the studio for a radio recording or make recordings at
> the TV series read-through before rehearsals started? Or did they do
> something else?

As far as I am aware, the Dad's Army radio series was a radio recording
from scratch. I suppose there were some visual gags that wouldn't have
worked on the Radio (The episode where they have a runaway Barrage
Balloon springs to mind)

Nick Odell

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Aug 29, 2021, 10:42:22 AM8/29/21
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On Sat, 28 Aug 2021 21:58:33 +0100, William Wright <use...@m6wiq.uk>
wrote:
Thanks, Bill. That's interesting. I don't suppose you know whether
they were recorded at the same time as the TV series or whether they
brought the cast back into the studio afterwards? It's not going to
ruin the rest of my life not to know this but I'm just curious, that's
all.

Nick

William Wright

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Aug 29, 2021, 4:24:05 PM8/29/21
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As a guess, I think they recorded them separately as the radio series
started in 1973 (With the TV Series starting in 1968).

In addition, the series was complicated with the untimely passing of
James Beck. According to Wikipedia, this happened after the first radio
series was recorded but before it was broadcasted. As a result, James
Beck's (Private Walker's) lines were performed by other actors.

Nick Odell

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Aug 31, 2021, 9:56:36 AM8/31/21
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On Sun, 29 Aug 2021 21:24:04 +0100, William Wright <use...@m6wiq.uk>
That's a connection I hadn't made - thank you. I had imagined that the
radio version was made at more or less the same time as the TV
programme to satisfy the large number of people for whom radio was
still the main way they consumed the BBC but with a time-lapse like
that it clearly wasn't the case. It's amazing that they managed to
assemble (almost) all the cast and create an authentic sound so many
years after the original TV show began. Although to be fair, that was
probably only in the middle of the full TV run.

Thanks,

Nick
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