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back to article Yes, Prime Minister to return after 24 years

The great satire of British bureaucracy, Yes, Prime Minister, is to return after 24 years away from our TV screens. The original scriptwriting duo of Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn has already turned in their first plot, says UKTV, which has has commissioned the show to be broadcast on UK Gold. The BBC originals, Yes, Minister and …

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Anonymous Coward

Que?

UK Gold - a pay channnel that runs old shows. Odd choice for a new program.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Que?

Was exactly my first thoughts, along with, who will watch it on channel most people dont even have and those that do don't even know they have it. My next thought was, oh yeah tory's back in power, explains everything. Just waiting for the overdue interest rates rise and the tears of oh I have to pay my debts back and cheaper house prices.

Personlay I think they should of left Yes Priminister alone as a classic and moved onto the house of Lag's erm I mean Lords.

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Megaphone

Re: Que? - NO NO NO NO NO!

In a democracy no government is "in power" they are elected into OFFICE!

Correcting this all too often made fundamental error what the medja continue with is urgently required, now, without a vote! Reminding politicians that they are "in office" would help remind all of us of the true function of democracy.

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Re: Que?

yep, one of the deadbeat channels. Didn't Red Dwarf go there to die too???

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@Andrew Moore

Re: Que?

yep, one of the deadbeat channels. Didn't Red Dwarf go there to die too???

@Andrew Moore

Hey! Dont go dissing Red Dwarf. Its one of the greatest sitcoms of all time, and after Dave(a different channel owned by UKTV) started rebroadcasting it, it gained such popularity with a new audience that werent alive the first time around that Dave commissioned an Easter Special 3 parter called Back to Earth.

Whilst not as good as the originals, it was still the most viewed show on Dave ever, and has now led to a whole new series of Red Dwarf being filmed(already complete) that will be showed on Dave in Autumn.

Maybe, just maybe the same will happen with Yes Minister.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Que? - NO NO NO NO NO!

"In a democracy no government is "in power" they are elected into OFFICE!"

How naive.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @Andrew Moore

No. He was right. Red Dwarf did go there to die. Unfortunately it took about four series longer than it should have, to do so.

As for the 'comeback special', are you serious? Even the cast looked embarrassed to be seen anywhere near it.

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Re: Que? - NO NO NO NO NO!

well you speak as you see,

but when i was a lad and thatcher was ripping the arse out of my society, it sure felt like she was in power

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Re: @Andrew Moore

all the official full series of Red Dwarf except the new one which hasn't aired yet were made for, and originally aired on, the BBC. All the way up to series 8. Dave / UKTV only ever got re-runs and the post-series 8 specials.

fan consensus, for what it's worth, is that everything up to season 6 is definitely worthwhile. everyone more or less agrees that season 6 had some of the best gags in the whole show, but lost the strength of formatting of earlier seasons. opinion differs somewhat on whether season 5 is great or mediocre. 3 and 4 are universally adored.

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WTF?

"The modern mandarin is no longer a patrician High Tory; he's probably a Guardian-reading, carbon-offsetting Coldplay fan - with a risqué Tinie Tempah playlist for dinner parties."

Only Andrew Orlowski can complain that our government leans too far left.

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

oops...

You do realise that by calling top civil servants "Our Government" you've done a Reverse Freudian Slip. You've actually got something correct, if only by accident.

Sir. I salute you!

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Yes, omitting the part played by the lobbies and party think-tanks is quite a lacuna: ACTA and the soon to be launched "Big Society Corporation" being cases in point. Mandarins didn't dream up public-private partnerships.

I'm rather fond of a dedicated civil service.

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FAIL

> Mandarins didn't dream up public-private partnerships.

Yes they fucking did.

Ministers are intellectually incapable of thinking deeply about how to finance and operate public services. Only the mandarins have the numbers and knowledge to do that. Or understand how the machinery of government actually works. Ministers don't have the time or inclination to invent things like public-private partnerships and (more importantly) don't have the capacity to do that sort of work while in charge of their departments. It takes years for ideas like public-private partnerships and PFI to be developed: by which time the minister will have moved on. Ministers rarely get involved in the running of their departments, let alone anything concerned with long-term strategic restructuring or reform which takes 10-20 years to achieve.

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Anonymous Coward

Deja Vu

On the prescience side - the first series ever included Public Private Partnership, ID cards and cost cutting.

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Ru
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Indeed... why are new scripts needed?

Just replace the political events of the past with ones that are happening now and keep the plot and dialogue otherwise intact.

The problem will be finding a good cast... the leads of Yes, [Prime] Minister will be exceptionally hard to replace.

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Re: Deja Vu

And Yes Prime Minister (as opposed to merely Yes Minister) started off with Trident, a banking scandal and something to do with manipulating the press...

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Leads

Derek Fowlds is still around, though he's possibly a bit old now (born 1937) to play a Sir Bernard who has worked his way to the top of the Civil Service...

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Re: Deja Vu

I watched the series again some time ago. Really amazing how modern the topics where, and how views on these topics have changed.

ID cards? European non-sense. The Brits will never buy it! We'd have a revolution on our hands.

A National Database? Outrage in the land, the papers and the news... privacy is at stake.

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Re: Leads

Surely he'll get at least a walk-on as a member of the House of Lords, though...

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Re: Leads

Read the books. Sir Bernard did indeed go out at the top. In fact the whole premise of the written version of the series is the idea of Sir Bernards notes released under the thirty year rule.

Still at the top of my all time favourite sit-coms. Hope any new attempt does the previous version justice

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Pfft

Why do new series? Half the episodes are as relevant now as they were 20 years ago.

Which is utterly depressing and laughable at the same time, if you think about it.

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Windows

Without Nigel Hawthorne...

..I doubt it'll work.

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IT Angle

Re: Without Nigel Hawthorne...

Two words.... Reggie Perrin.

That was awful without Leonard Rossiter (much as I love watching Martin Clunes on the tellybox, I just couldn't get into the remake.)

Also: Where's the IT angle? Unless they plan on giving the new PM a C&G in computer studies....?

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(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

IT angle...

...well as Andrew has marvellously chronicled over the years, government bureaucrats play a massive part in the way IT, technology and science develops and shapes ou- oh screw it, who doesn't like a bit of Yes, Minister?

It's Friday and we should be sipping a pint in the glorious sunshine.

C.

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Re: IT angle...

That's a great idea. I hope Captain Cyborg is in it.

And Ben Hammersley.

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Pint

Re: IT angle...

Seldom a truer word spoken, brother! :-D

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Re: Without Nigel Hawthorne...

I saw the stage version of Yes Prime Minister a few months ago and it worked well, even without the great Mr Hawthorne. Actually it was pretty good - the TV show was genius, this was a fair bit darker, so I'm sure the sequels will work well.

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@severen

I think the problem with Reggie Perrin was that business no longer operates as depicted in either the original series (or in the remake for that matter). In fact, the remake looked like it was set in the early 80's, which is where it really went wrong.

The premise is probably still reasonably sound, but the writers really needed to talk to some people who have real jobs and write to a proper backdrop instead of just trying to shoe-horn the original scenarios into modern business.

Government, by contrast, has changed very little in the past 20+ years; probably not much in the last 50+ years.

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Pint

Excellent!

Low Fat Offal Tubes for breakfast all round!

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Bronze badge

Still looking forward to it.

I know it will be different -- with the EU and no cold war and climate now the hot topic, the political landscape is different. But has politics really changed THAT much? When I was growing up in the 70s, politicians and bureaucrats were seen as lying self-serving toadies who were too smug and too clever and deserved a slap on the chops for wasting our tax money on whatever the lobbyists told them to. Whereas today, ...

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Will this be a good idea?

Yes.

And no.

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This may also be seen as a courageous decision.

A brilliant series that still makes me laugh.

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Anonymous Coward

I can foresee all sorts of unforeseen difficulties...

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Happy

A balanced answer, indeed.

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Happy

Nice, though would really love to see Spitting Image return...

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I'll add a vote for Spitting Image, and hope for a return of Drop the Dead Donkey too.

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They could use the same puppet for Cameron and Milliband!

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Paris Hilton

Thus averting a national Latex shortage and allowing politicians to carry on with their weekend activities unmole........ Sorry molested.

Paris because.... well, you know. ;-)

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DTDD

Ooooh yes, that would be delicious.

A whole new series (or 10) of DTDD could be dedicated to phone hacking, bribing plods, etc. The material would be endless.

"I'm not here".....

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Woo Hoo!

Here's hoping that it's almost as good as the original. And I'm also hoping that it doesn't get cut after one season of performing really really well, like so many of my other favourite TV shows have.

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Hmmm

The quoted critic clearly never saw the stage show. Jay and Lynn's writing is as relevant and as funny as evert.

The worry I have is in the casting. When I saw it in Glasgow the three male leads were terrible - especially the one who played humphrey.

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Re: Hmmm

Martin Freeman in the Bernard role.

For the wordplay of Sir Humph, I was thinking Stephen Fry or Rowan Atkinson. But with Rowan, there would be modern day Blackadder comparisons.

Jim Hacker? Hmmm, need to think that one over.

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Re: Hmmm

I could see Rowan working, he could do the Humphrey soliliquays and give the impression he believes he's talking complete sense

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Re: Hmmm

"Jim Hacker? Hmmm, need to think that one over."

Nicolas Parsons.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hmmm

I am going to call it now.

Either the new Humphrey or the new PM will be a woman.

My money is on there being a Humprette

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hmmm

"My money is on there being a Humprette"

HumpFreda surely

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hmmm

Sandy Toksvig for Humprette?

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Re: Hmmm

I like the idea of Mr Parsons, but I think he would be better as the PM to the "new" Jim Hacker's Minister for DAAs. Now Atkinson in the Hacker role (think down-trodden Bean) I can see dealing with a conniving Sir Humphrey-esque Stephen Fry with able assistance from Stephen Marchant as "Bernard" I could see working well

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hmmm

you know, I could actually see that, good point.

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