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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: January ::
Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.0235  Tuesday, 29 January 2002

[1]     From:   Harry Hill <
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        Date:   Monday, 28 Jan 2002 12:28:33 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."

[2]     From:   Peter Hyland <
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        Date:   Monday, 28 Jan 2002 13:32:39 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."

[3]     From:   Gabriel Egan <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 29 Jan 2002 10:28:49 -0000
        Subj:   Re: "He's very clean; isn't he." and RP


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Harry Hill <
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Date:           Monday, 28 Jan 2002 12:28:33 EST
Subject: 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."

No-one has yet pointed out the meaning of the joke "clean old man", and
its contemporary reference to Wilfrid Bramble's not-so-private habits.
The whole country knew of the dear actor"s practised predilections!

    Harry Hill

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Hyland <
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Date:           Monday, 28 Jan 2002 13:32:39 -0800
Subject: 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0217 Re: "He's very clean; isn't he."

Tom Dale Keever:

>There is no need to attempt a contrast between Brambell and Foxx, both
>of whom were inimitable geniuses, to hold that the British series was
>far better than its US spin-off.

Precisely. I would no more wish to denigrate Foxx by praising Brambell
than I would Harry H. Corbett, who brilliantly played Brambell's doomed
son. But the British series is superior.

In reply to Don Bloom, I don't know about Foxx, but I'm pretty sure that
Brambell never did Shakespeare. Not much of his career was on stage,
though he did appear in THE CANTERBURY TALES. It is worth trying to get
hold of a copy of the Terence Davies film trilogy, however, for
Brambell's role in the final segment called DEATH AND TRANSFIGURATION.
It might shed some light on the recent thread about whether comic (or
comic-looking) actors can play serious roles.

Peter Hyland

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Gabriel Egan <
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Date:           Tuesday, 29 Jan 2002 10:28:49 -0000
Subject:        Re: "He's very clean; isn't he." and RP

Tom Dale Keever wrote

> Brambell's co-star was Harry H.  Corbett, a veteran
> of Joan Littlewood's Theatre Workshop, and a major
> talent in his own right.

When interviewers asked what the 'H' stood for, Corbett liked to reply
"hanything".

Don Bloom asks:

> did either actor ever do Shakespeare?

In the Steptoe and Son episode "A Star is Born" (First broadcast 28
February 1972 on BBC1, series 7 episode 2), Brambell (playing Albert
Steptoe) describes the beginning of the local amateur dramatic society's
"Richard the hundred-and-eleventh" ("Richard the third, pater") thus:

"Old matey 'obbles on, 'Now is the winter of our discontent', and 'is
'ump falls off."

Those concerned with the relationship between class and Received
Pronunciation should note that Albert Steptoe's working-class West
London accent ("Ascot? No, Acton. Well, it's more Shepherd's Bush
really") renders "off" as "orf", just like the toffs.

Gabriel Egan

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