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John Sullivan's 'Dear John'


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Old 02-09-2012, 17:35
Styker
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Well if any BBC executive is reading this and needs something to do maybe they could look into remaking this for a modern audience!
If they can match the quality of the original series or better which I doubt, then I sure would welcome a new bunch of series about this starting from the begining of course.
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Old 02-09-2012, 21:12
LYNN(E)
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Please refrain from turning this polite thread about 'Dear John' into another rant at 'Only Fools' some of us love both and don't mind that Only Fools is on TV (excessively mind) quite often.

Anyway 'Dear John USA' what was that like?
Sorry if I caused offence but I still don't see why GOLD have to keep showing OFAH when there are so many good comedies around
They could have a John Sullivan weekend instead & include it along with Dear John & Just Good Friends
There are so many good comedies around & its a Comedy Channel & a good variety each day would make good viewing
Come on GOLD
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Old 02-09-2012, 21:14
chuffnobbler
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Ooh, I wouldn't mind seeing Just Good Friends again!
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Old 02-09-2012, 21:32
koantemplation
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Ooh, I wouldn't mind seeing Just Good Friends again!
It's a shame they have to have subtitles for part of the DVD as they had music playing and the copyright holder didn't let them use it unless they paid more than they were will to pay.
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Old 02-09-2012, 22:29
ilovecorrie2
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Ooh, I wouldn't mind seeing Just Good Friends again!
I don't have to rely on repeats. I've got it on dvd and dug it out last week owing to the talk about Dear John. Still as good as ever and showed that John Sullivan could write well for women (in fact if I recall rightly someone did say that's why he wrote JGF - to show he could). The strange thing is that even when Jan Francis as Penny does get funny lines the studio audience don't laugh - the same line delivered by Paul Nicholas (Vince) would have them wetting themselves so I'm all for the new style of sitcom which doesn't have a studio audience. Second only to Fools and Horses as John Sullivan's finest.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:32
chuffnobbler
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Jan Francis is such a good actor ...

Maybe the audience were primed to laugh at Paul Nicholas, he being a Cheeky Chappie type, while Jan was frostier (from memory). Studio audiences are strange beasts though, aren't they?!
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:22
gurney-slade
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The episode where John goes to Ralph's and they talk about an awful holiday Ralph had had where some thugs had tipped over his caravan, the Kirk comes round and Kirk tells about a great holiday where they tipped over someones caravan......

What made me nearly wet myself was when John borrows Raph's electric shaver then drops it in the terrapin tank

There was a lot more to it - but it was all in the build up

Haven't seen that episode since it's original air date but have seen most of the other episodes on Gold.
My favourite episode too. I've recently bought the boxed set and it's still very funny.
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:30
gurney-slade
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I also liked John Sullivan's 'Roger, Roger' which was set in a min-cab office and billed as comedy drama. It was a bit Marmite, with some people really disliking it. I remember it mainly as the first time I clocked Philip Glenister!
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Old 03-09-2012, 14:14
jdm271541
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Lordy. I didn't realise how many people love this much forgot gem from the BBC.

There are so many memorable lines and situations. One of my favorites:

Kate: Its like talking to a bucket of plankton!

Kirk: What's plankton?

Ralf: Its the planet where Superman was born.
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Old 03-09-2012, 14:57
chuffnobbler
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Its the planet where Superman was born.
Brilliant!

I think I need to dust off my VHS boxset. Great stuff!
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Old 03-09-2012, 16:27
ilovecorrie2
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Jan Francis is such a good actor ...

Maybe the audience were primed to laugh at Paul Nicholas, he being a Cheeky Chappie type, while Jan was frostier (from memory).
YEs she was frosty as was the actress who played her mother but that didn't mean she didn't get the funny lines - not as many as Paul Nicholas of course but funny nonetheless but yes it did seem that the audience were primed to laugh at anything and everything Paul Nicholas said. I once heard Jan Francis being interviewed and saying she didn't think the script was very funny. I bet that went down a bundle with the scriptwriter!

Studio audiences are strange beasts though, aren't they?!
They are indeed. I remember a few occasions when watching Rising Damp I felt sorry for Rigsby but the audience just giggled. There again they can surprise the writer - hence the anecdote about Fools and Horses where Del took the groom from the wedding cake and John Sullivan wondered why they weren't laughing. It was pointed out that they weren't laughing because they were crying. I think once he realised he could make people cry as well as laugh, his scripts did at times become quite maudlin and never more so than in certain episodes of Dear John which were on a par with Steptoe and Son for the amount of pathos heaped on. Just Good Friends could at times be sad too but not immersed in it like Dear John was. The characters in Dear John seem more stereotyped than in any of his other sitcoms and Kirk wasn't even an original character - he was modelled on John Travolta's character from Saturday Night Fever - even down to the white suit. I think even Citizen Smith, despite the cast changes, is/was preferable to Dear John.
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Old 03-09-2012, 19:32
TheBaronSpell
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Personally I wouldn't rely on a channel to broadcast something your fond of or keen on seeing again. That's how 'Only Fools' manages to remain (rightfully) very popular and in your face 24/7.

As a keen fan and collector of comedy/sitcom boxsets. I'd highly recommend you buy 'Dear John'.

For some reason 'Citizen Smith' hasn't had a full dvd boxset collection release. Or has it?
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Old 03-09-2012, 20:16
ilovecorrie2
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Personally I wouldn't rely on a channel to broadcast something your fond of or keen on seeing again. That's how 'Only Fools' manages to remain (rightfully) very popular and in your face 24/7.

As a keen fan and collector of comedy/sitcom boxsets. I'd highly recommend you buy 'Dear John'.

For some reason 'Citizen Smith' hasn't had a full dvd boxset collection release. Or has it?
Yes Citizen Smith has been released. I've got the boxed set. From what I can remember (it's been a while since I've seen it), it ran to four series but cast changes meant some of the quality was lost along the way especially when Peter Vaughan left. I wouldn't go out and buy Dear John but I did have it bought for me. Although it isn't as good as Fools and Horses, Just Good Friends or Citizen Smith I do rate it as higher quality than many other sitcoms but I see it more as a drama comedy than a comedy drama. The characters are all so sad so whenever I feel like wallowing in misery I put the dvd on. .

p.s. One thing I've noticed whilst watching Just Good Friends again recently is that it seems to be a catchphrase free sitcom. No 'power to the people', no 'lovely jubbly' and no 'were there any sexual problems'. . .
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Old 03-09-2012, 20:49
Karen1974
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I ordered this box set from Amazon, it arrived today, so will play it tomorrow whilst ironing. Can't wait to see the Disco episode.
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Old 04-09-2012, 00:44
TheBaronSpell
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May I be wrong in cheekily demanding a slice of the increased sales of 'Dear John' boxset sales?

I'm being tempted into checking out 'Just Good Friends' as much as others are keen on watching 'Dear John' by the way.

Perhaps keep this thread going strong until GOLD give it a decent time slot and easing back on Fools?
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:05
Itsnotreal
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Dazzling Darren the dj lol!
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Old 04-09-2012, 13:14
TheBaronSpell
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Dazzling Darren the DJ who only had one song lol
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Old 04-09-2012, 14:45
chuffnobbler
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For all those interested in seeing Dear john once again ...

http://www.find-dvd.co.uk/dvd/Dear-J...al/1101777.htm


And, as it was mentioned, here's Citizen Smith ...

http://www.find-dvd.co.uk/dvd/Citize...-2/1015401.htm
http://www.find-dvd.co.uk/dvd/Citize...-4/1015283.htm
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Old 04-09-2012, 17:42
pete137
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I loved this program at the time and would love to see it again. I think it was a very important program as it was a much needed kick up the backside to many couples who were stuck in a comfortable, yet boring, marriage rut. Divorce became more common in the 80's and I think the program showed that getting married in your 20's and 30's did'nt mean you would stay married for life. You have to work at marriage and dont let it become stale. I bet in he 80's there were thousands of dull "John's" all over the country worried after watching this - anyone, man or women could become a "John".

Wish they would show it again.
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Old 04-09-2012, 18:42
wuffles
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Dazzling Darren the DJ who only had one song lol
His patter wasn't up to very much either, he just shouted 'boogaloo' at random intervals during the disco.
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Old 04-09-2012, 19:54
fiveinabed
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I also liked John Sullivan's 'Roger, Roger' which was set in a min-cab office and billed as comedy drama. It was a bit Marmite, with some people really disliking it. I remember it mainly as the first time I clocked Philip Glenister!
I loved Roger Roger! It took a while to become mainstream, but the characters were very well written, especially David Ross (Baz), Keith Allen (Dexter) and Marlon, the gormless no-hoper.
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Old 04-09-2012, 23:42
Pizzatheaction
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I loved Roger Roger! It took a while to become mainstream, but the characters were very well written, especially David Ross (Baz), Keith Allen (Dexter) and Marlon, the gormless no-hoper.
I loved the episode where they'd been putting some unwanted fuel down the taxi office's toilet for some reason, then the unwitting boss went in there and lit a fag.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:06
Eurostar
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I loved this program at the time and would love to see it again. I think it was a very important program as it was a much needed kick up the backside to many couples who were stuck in a comfortable, yet boring, marriage rut. Divorce became more common in the 80's and I think the program showed that getting married in your 20's and 30's did'nt mean you would stay married for life. You have to work at marriage and dont let it become stale. I bet in he 80's there were thousands of dull "John's" all over the country worried after watching this - anyone, man or women could become a "John".

Wish they would show it again.
It was no advertisement for divorce, that's for sure. All of the characters were rather sad, lonely and depressed, no matter how much they tried to hide it.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:19
TheBaronSpell
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I'm so glad some of the late great John Sullivan's other work is getting the exposure and recognition they deserve via this thread.

Whilst I'm enjoying reading up on the likes of 'Roger, Roger!' and 'Just Good Friends' this thread was originally a mini 'Dear John' fan club in which some of us questioned why the BBC never gave the show a much earned third series etc.

Anyway for those less likely to purchase the boxset we'd hope that GOLD give it a better slot the next time they repeat it and that the BBC consider remaking it in between the dross they commission on BBC One nowadays.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:23
TheBaronSpell
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Also I'd like to congratulate us on reaching our 100th post. :P

Hope many people have been enriched by digging out old VHS tapes or the boxset of Dear John and sitting through classic episodes again. I know so many of you are purchasing it lately so I hope you enjoy it as much as I did when I found it in my Mother's collection recently!
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