UKTV will not censor anti-German jokes in remakes of lost 'Dad's Army' episodes

Tom Beasley
Contributor
Legendary sitcom 'Dad's Army' ran from 1968 to 1977 on the BBC. (Credit: BBC)

The upcoming remakes of three lost Dad’s Army episodes will maintain the anti-German jokes of the original scripts.

UKTV is remaking the trio of series two episodes from 1969, which were lost as part of the BBC’s policy of wiping or recording over videotapes, prior to the creation of its permanent central archive in 1978.

The new versions of The Loneliness of the Long Distance Walker, A Stripe for Frazer and Under Fire are set to air on the channel Gold in August.

Read more: Which Dad’s Army character are you?

Pirates of the Caribbean actor Kevin McNally will portray Captain Mainwaring in the remakes, with Robert Bathurst, comedian Kevin Eldon and Gavin and Stacey star Mathew Horne also joining the cast.

A library picture of the cast of Dad's Army. (L-R) Clive Dunn, James Beck, John Le Mesurier, Arthur Lowe, John Laurie, Ian Lavender and Arnold Ridley. (Credit: PA)

The Daily Star reported that some of the dialogue in these episodes contains anti-German sentiment and jokes, but these lines will be maintained in the new versions, despite the possibility for controversy.

In one of the episodes, Mainwaring refers to German forces as “Boche” - a slur that is often translated as “cabbage head” - and another character refers to them as “Schweinhunds” (pig dogs).

Read more: Martin Clunes says sitcom wouldn’t be made today

A UKTV spokesman said: “Our stance is not to edit great comedies of the past if we can avoid it.

“And in this case the scripts reflect the mood of the country at that time in history and are based on the experiences of the writers including Jimmy Perry’s service in the Home Guard during the Second World War.”

Classic sitcom 'Dad's Army' was remade for the big screen in 2016, starring Toby Jones and Bill Nighy. (Credit: Universal)

Dad’s Army broadcast 80 episodes over nine series and is one of the most beloved sitcoms in British history.

It is still regularly repeated on TV, along with other widely admired 1970s sitcoms including Fawlty Towers and Porridge.

Read more: Mixed reviews for Dad’s Army movie

A film version, released in 2016, starred Toby Jones as Mainwaring and also featured Bill Nighy, Michael Gambon, Tom Courtenay, Blake Harrison, Daniel Mays and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

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