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No Strings (BBC Sitcom, Rita Tushingham, Keith Barron)



In BBC sitcom No Strings mismatched Leonara (Rita Tushingham) and Derek (Keith Barron) share a flat. This early Carla Lane series began life as a Comedy Playhouse entry.

1974 was obviously a big year for UK comedies about flat-sharing, besides No Strings, Man About The House and Moody and Pegg were also on air this year.

Hazel Holt in the The Stage (24 Oct 1974) felt the series was uneven and that Rita Tushingham seemed to be “labouring under the handicap of having to speak lines by Carla Lane (consciously or unconsciously) palpably written for Polly James.” That feels like projection on Holt’s part to us, knowing that Carla Lane was the writer of Polly James starring sitcom The Liver Birds. Both characters in No Strings were from Liverpool.

Guest stars included Michael Staniforth, Jessica Benton, Robert Gillespie and Tommy Godfrey.

Cast: Rita Tushingham as Leonora; Keith Barron as Derek

Writer: Carla Lane / Producer: John Howard Davies

UK / BBC One / 7×30 minute episodes / Pilot: 16 April 1974 Season: 4 October – 8 November 1974 Fridays at 7.45pm