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The Two Ronnies — Series Three
The Two Ronnies Series Three Together they were the
  brilliant faces of one of
  the best British comedies
  of the 70s and 80s.
  Now you can own The
  Two Ronnies
on DVD —
  and prove the truth of
  that old saying: Laughter
  is the best medicine...”

"IT'S GOOD TO BE WITH YOU AGAIN, isn't it," says Ronnie Corbett by way of an introduction to The Two Ronnies as Series Three of the renowned comedy comes out on DVD for a well-timed airing.

Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett may have been an unlikely comedy duo, but their talents complemented each other perfectly in a series which ran for sixteen years and has become part of British television history.

With a unique mix of comedy (news items, party sketches, medical mix-ups, Ronnie Barker's word-play speeches, spoof dramas and Ronnie Corbett's rambling monologues), wonderful musical moments from well-chosen star guests like Dana or Elaine Delmar and dancing from Pan's People, The Two Ronnies was a highlight of the viewers' evening.

This third series was broadcast from September 1973 to January 1974 and among the many classic spots are the Ecclesiastical Gossip and the Shouting in Library sketches, Ronnie Barker's series of "How to…" public service films; Ronnie Corbett's audition as a continuity announcer and the incomparable country singers Jehosophat and Jones.

The 2-disc DVD features all eight hilarious episodes which include a series of wonderful send-ups of the popular 1970s television series — including Star Trek, The Onedin Line, Upstairs Downstairs; and Jason King.

One of the most memorable sketches was Colditz, where Ronnie Corbett is told that the castle is impregnable. He responds: "…that's what they said about Doreen Phipps — how wrong they were!" And, as he disappears down the escape tunnel he utters the memorable words: "When I get to France, I'll send you a letter".

Such dry one-liners as: "President Nixon said today that he had not taken a lie detector test… If there was one missing, it was taken without his knowledge"; "In Dublin today, police raided the printing press of Ireland's most brilliant forgers and took away two million £7-notes" and "President Amin arrived with his witch-doctor in a mumbo jumbo jet" make this DVD a must-have for all Two Ronnies fans.

Nobody was safe from The Two Ronnies' wit — these were the times before the days of Political Correctness. Ronnie Corbett would laugh at his own jokes and Ronnie Barker, the more serious of the two, tried not to. There were moments of naughtiness, the art of the innuendo was perfected and there was lots of fun and "utter nonsense".

Another classic sketch is the learner driver taking his test. What would you say to the examiner who tells you: "I prefer to drive with the door slightly open — should you hear it close, drive with care because it means… you're on your own."

The team of writers were exceptional and included the multi-talented Marty Feldman, John Cleese and Michael Palin. Notable guests included the charming Julia McKenzie and Dilys Watling, the orchestra was directed by Ronnie Hazlehurst and the series was Produced by Terry Hughes.

To give you a further taster of what's in store: "When police sealed all exits, thieves broke out of all entrances" and, finally, a word of advice: "Ladies, if your electric blanket doesn't work; simply shut it off and get a man in". Classic!

The Two Ronnies Series Three was released on DVD on 17 March (2008) at an RRP of £15.99. Duration: 8 x 44 minutes approximately | Catalogue Number: BBCDVD2412.