Letter to the Editor: Removing episodes of classic TV show is faulty logic

John Cleese criticised the decision to remove Fawlty Towers episode from UKTV.
John Cleese criticised the decision to remove Fawlty Towers episode from UKTV.

A perfectly good idea can become a bad idea by taking it too far. The present campaign against racism is an example. 

Don’t get me wrong: Racism is an abomination and should be condemned, but removing episodes of classic British comedy Fawlty Towers, and cutting out certain scenes, because of alleged racial content, seems too much.

Suppose you were asked to write the script for a TV series on the Nuremberg Nazi trials. Hermann Göring was among those on trial. He was a leading Nazi, who held antisemitic views. 

Like racism, antisemitism is an abomination, but as the writer of the show, should you be told that you cannot have Göring saying anything antisemitic? 

Of course not: Such remarks would be quite consistent with his character. The same applies to Basil Fawlty. 

He is a narrow-minded bigot, brilliantly played by John Cleese, and like it or not, that is his attraction as a character. 

If he were mild-mannered and perfectly reasonable, where would the series be?

Brendan Casserly

Benvoirlich

Bishopstown

Cork





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