Fawlty Towers named best British sitcom by comedians

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Fawlty Towers has been named the best British sitcom of all time in a survey of comedians and comedy writers and actors.

The 1970s sitcom came out on top despite only running for 12 episodes across its two series.

More than 100 professional comedians were surveyed, including David Baddiel, Jenny Eclair and Alexei Sayle.

Steve Coogan’s alter-ego Alan Partridge was named the most popular TV comedy character.

A scene in which Partridge discovers a room dedicated to himself in a superfan’s house was also named best comedy scene.

Other scenes which made the top five included Del Boy falling through an open bar top in Only Fools and Horses and Basil Fawlty’s argument with a group of German guests, during which he stresses: “Don’t mention the war!”

The “comedy audit” was conducted by TV network Gold ahead of the launch of We Have Been Watching – a new series which will examine present and past sitcoms and sketch shows.

Dad’s Army was voted as having the best one-liner, in a scene where Pike is asked his name by a German prisoner and Captain Mainwaring says: “Don’t tell him, Pike.”

Other popular sitcoms with the voters included Blackadder, The Office and Father Ted.

Coogan was named favourite male comedy actor while Joanna Lumley was named favourite female comedy actress.

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