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The Castle

The Complete BBC Radio 4 Sitcom
Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
Categories: Film, Radio & TV, Comedy
4.5 out of 5 stars (17 ratings)

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Summary

Hie ye to The Castle, a rollicking sitcom set way back then, starring James Fleet (The Vicar of Dibley), Neil Dudgeon (Life of Riley, Midsomer Murders), Martha Howe-Douglas (Horrible Histories) and Ingrid Oliver (Doctor Who).

Thrill! - as brave knight Sir William De Warenne’s dungeon renovation falls foul of the Health & Safety inspectors.

Swoon! - as young Lady Anne tries to lose her cut-glass accent in an attempt to get on 'The Only Way Is Wessex'.

Sympathize! - as Lord of the castle Sir John hires the latest top-of-the-range horse, but can’t work out what to do with the built-in “ashtrays”.

...and Get Out Your Laughing-Spats! as Bates the new valet arrives hotfoot from Downton Abbey....

This is medieval England seen from a 21st-century comedy perspective complete with the now-legendary lute jingles. If you’ve ever wanted to hear the medieval versions of 'Jumping Jack Flash', 'Mama Mia', 'I Shot the Sheriff' or even 'Agadoo', this is the series to buy!

Sir John Woodstock (James Fleet) is the Lord of the Castle and basically in charge of keeping order in the ramshackle medieval village. Although he hates all that torturing and usually lets the peasants off with a bit of community service. He lives in his huge but slightly falling down castle (but then it was built by the French, so what can one expect) with his daughter Anne (Martha Howe-Douglas) and very teenage son Henry (Steven Kynman). Anne’s best friend Charlotte (Ingrid Oliver) nearly always joins Anne on her constant quest to find fit men in the village. And Anne certainly isn’t interested in Sir William De Warenne ('Knight errant, scourge of the Levant') (Neil Dudgeon) who lives across the way. Unfortunately he can’t take a hint and is besotted with Lady Anne, and Sir John thinks it a good match. Ah! what is a Lady to do! Cardinal Duncan (Jonathan Kydd) (a man of the cloth - in particular crushed silk, which he loves), has to endure De Warenne’s incessant plans to woo Lady Anne and has little time to peruse sweethearts of his own. Which, oddly enough, he doesn’t seem to mind.... 

Written by Kim Fuller with additional material by Nick Doody and Matt Kirshen. Music by Guy Jackson. Produced and directed by David Tyler.

©2020 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2020 BBC Worldwide Ltd

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AN ABSOLUTE JOY!!

I thoroughly enjoyed The Castle. Brilliantly written, brilliantly presented, brilliantly cast. Extremely funny. I was sad it ended. There's not enough good stuff like this available. Laugh out loud funny. If you enjoy this, you will enjoy "Bleak Expectations" which is also brilliantly written and very funny. Thoroughly recommend both.

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Love it.

I took a punt on this one, wthout knowing much about it. Turns out that I stumbled on a real gem. It's funny, well produced and the cast are excellent. The characters are just great: an ahead of his time inventer,a wizard, a witch, a noble lady helplessly in love with a peasant and much more.

This is one you can listen to again and again.

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  • Ijw
  • 03-01-20

one of the best for BBC

well-produced humor containing tongue in cheek medieval hijinx. the reputation of the Crusades will never be the same.

if only the BBC was still capable of producing this level of entertainment.