Take It From Here
Classic BBC Comedy show with Jimmy Edwards, June Whitfield, Joy Nicholls and Dick Bentley

There are a couple of post-war radio series that can be said to have shaped comedy and this is certainly one of them. Written by Denis Norden and the late Frank Muir, this show first aired in 1948 and ran for 13 seasons. It was different in its outlook to shows like ITMA and was completely post war in its attitudes, acknowledging more than a passing nod that the audience was both intelligent and with some level of literacy. The style of the show was more akin to that of revue, and showed influences of the American style of radio comedy.
It is probably wiser to start with a show before TIFH, Navy Mixture, which ran for 25 editions from the 5th July, 1947. This show was one in the variety vein, with comedy, music and novelty, all introduced by the young Australian radio prodigy, Joy Nicholls. Featuring 'Professor' Jimmy Edwards (an odd association considering that Edwards, complete with handle-bar moustache, spent the war serving in the RAF), Vic Oliver, a regular on Hi Gang!, Leslie Welsh (a memory man) and The Song Pedlars. Edwards' regular spot, a sort of light hearted lecture, was written by Frank Muir, and a guest on one show, Dick Bentley (incidentally another Australian) performed material penned by Denis Norden. It was the producer Charles Maxwell who joined Muir and Norden, after the end of the series, to plan another vehicle for Nicholls, Bentley and Edwards, this was to be Take it From Here.
The first edition of Take It From Here hit the airwaves on the 23rd March 1948, Edwards 28th birthday, and went completely un-noticed, very much like the remainder of the series, despite its six month run. The second series (and the BBC must have thought it good enough to make a second series!) saw the upturn in fortunes. Wallas Eaton had now joined the cast and was providing a number of voices, and, probably most importantly, Tommy Handley died. Tommy Handley was undoubtedly the most popular comedian of the time (perhaps of the century) and had kept the poulation going through the war with ITMA, and with his passing there was a huge void, not least of all on the standard repeat slot for ITMA. TIFH took its place and started to win over an audience that formerly listened to ITMA, and achieve national popularity.
Like a lot of shows, TIFH was split generally into three sections, the opening patter, a sketch on a theme or a recent news item, and then a film parody, although there was crossover of topics, especially topical references throughout. Word play also featured very highly in Muir and Norden comedy, and this was probably most notable in the later series My Word where both explained the origins of word and phrases, and also Call My Bluff on TV. The cast were also the targets of the comedy with references to Bentley's age, and Edwards' size and nasal growth! Catchphrases had proved popular throughout the war, with ITMA virtually a long list of catchphrases, and TIFH was not going to buck the trend. The theme and credits were not sacred either and Muir and Norden saw to it that they were equally as comical as the show itself and twisted the normal announcements to suit their needs. One announcement that is not humourous but quirky is the name Herbert Mostyn. This name is the result of the middle names of each of Muir and Norden and was used when either or both actually contributed lines to the show.
In 1953, after the end of the 6th season, Joy Nicholls decided to return to her native Australia, and was replaced by Alma Cogan and June Whitfield. The first sang and took up small parts, whilst hte second, an unknown actress, performed alongside Bentley and Edwards. It is worth noting that Betty Marsden was also in the running for the job, and radio history might have taken a completley different shape if the two had swapped roles, June in Beyond Our Ken and Round the Horne and Betty in TIFH!
The 7th season was then billed as the 'completely new' TIFH, and started on the 12th November 1953, with a reassurance from Edwards that the show would be back to the tried and tested the next week. The 'old Wal' character, played by Wallas Eaton, was retired for a season and 'disgusted of Tunbridge Wells' appeared, and the most famous new part of the show was Muir and Nordens answer to the trend of nicey, nicey radio families such as the Huggetts and the Lyons family (Ben and Bebe), and was to enter radio history as The Glums. They were all that the clean living families were not. Mr Glum, the head of the family, was boozy and brash and played by Edwards, with his wife, played by alma Cogan, generally heard as a indestinguishable noise from 'upstairs'. The son, Ron, was played by Bentley and to say he was intellectually challenged would be an understatement. As the series progressed, so did his stupidity (a move that is also reflected in Hancock's Half Hour, where Bill Kerr, incidentally another Australian, also played a character that progressively got dimmer). To make the family complete was Eth, the love of Ron's life. This became one of the most popular sections of the show, and far from being ditched to return to the adopted format, it was incorporated and promoted, with a vast amount of correspondence received from courting couples drawing similarities from Ron and Eth's life. This can still be reflected in as much as BBC worldwide have issued one volume of TIFH on cassette and one entirely devoted to The Glums.
By the tenth season, the 250th show was reached and The Glums had become the main feature of the show, and subsequent series saw the reduction of the contribution of the Keynotes to just one musical item. The Glums remained the mainstay fo the show until the series finally ended and was only missed on the 10th anniversary of the series on the 26th March 1958, however, it seems as if almost to make up for this temporary loss, two complete shows were given over to the family. By the last show of the twelfth season, Eth and Ron got as close as they ever were to tying the knot and nearly made it to the alter, however, an uncovered manhole was their downfall. This series did mark the exit of Muir and Norden, and Eric Merriman and Barry Took, the team who had been writing Beyound Our Ken worked on the scripts, but as had been the case with BOK, they did not see eye to eye and each wrote their own sections, with Took and an uncreditied Marty Feldman covering The Glum family chronicles. The thirteenth season was the last however, and although The Glums did not stop here, TIFH did.
25 years after their first outing on radio, The Glums came to television, with Edwards the only original member of the cast. Ian Lavender, most famous for playing Private Pike in Dad's Army was Ron, and Patricia Blake played Eth. Michael Stainton played Ted the barman. They first appeared as a 10 minute sketch within Bruce Forsyth's Big Night, with a further series of 8 following a year later, giving in all 17 editions, covering 25 stories. All were written by Muir and Norden and produced by Simon Brett. The TV revivals were not as popular as the radio series, but did cause a new generation to experience The Glums and seek out recordings of the original radio broadcasts.

This text taken from http://www.britishcomedy.org.uk/comedy/tifh.htm

!No MP3s found. The MP3 files used by this podcast appear to be missing. They may have been removed permanently from their source location.

  1. Tiptoe Through The Tulips (0Mb)
  2. Balling The Jack (0Mb)
  3. Listener Research (0Mb)
  4. The Bentley Boy (0Mb)
  5. Every Little While (0Mb)
  6. Little Girl (0Mb)
  7. Taking Miss Mary To The Ball (0Mb)
  8. Royal Navy Barracks (0Mb)
  9. Desert Island Risks (0Mb)
  10. In The Park In Paree (0Mb)
  11. The Apple Song (0Mb)
  12. Horse Racing (0Mb)
  13. Down By The Station (0Mb)
  14. Robin Hood (0Mb)
  15. Remember Me (0Mb)
  16. Kiss Me Sweet (0Mb)
  17. Confidentially (0Mb)
  18. Hopscotch Polka (0Mb)
  19. Thats My Weakness Now (0Mb)
  20. My Grandfathers Clock (0Mb)
  21. Policemans Holiday (0Mb)
  22. Six Times A Week (0Mb)
  23. Because You Kissed Me Goodnight (0Mb)
  24. Strawberry Fair (0Mb)
  25. Juvenile Deliquency (0Mb)
  26. Now It Can Be Sold (0Mb)
  27. No Better Than She Should Be (0Mb)
  28. Lady Godiva (0Mb)
  29. Outside Of Helen (0Mb)
  30. Of Martian Men (0Mb)
  31. Hup The Working Classes (0Mb)
  32. Rock And Roll (0Mb)
  33. Pygmalion (0Mb)
  34. Mona Lisa (0Mb)
  35. The Country Doctor (0Mb)
  36. Dinner For One Please James (0Mb)
  37. Rasputin (0Mb)
  38. The Highwaymen (0Mb)
  39. Breach Of Promise (0Mb)
  40. Sacred Scarab (0Mb)
  41. The American Couple (0Mb)
  42. Shangri La (0Mb)
  43. First Husband (0Mb)
  44. Henry Viii (0Mb)
  45. Cornish Smugglers (0Mb)
  46. Palaeolithic Man (0Mb)
  47. The Tea Room Trio (0Mb)
  48. The Student Prince (0Mb)
  49. American Cop Movie (0Mb)
  50. Court Martial Of Major Beamish (0Mb)
  51. Africa Story (0Mb)
  52. The Clifton Suspension Bridge (0Mb)
  53. Harley Street Surgeon (0Mb)
  54. Maltravers Grange (0Mb)
  55. New Headmistress (0Mb)
  56. Escaped Convict (0Mb)
  57. Ron Plans To Emigrate (0Mb)
  58. Hiawatha (0Mb)
  59. Dr Jekyll And Mr Hyde (0Mb)
  60. Boa Jim Air Charter (0Mb)
  61. Probation Officer (0Mb)
  62. Lighthouse Keepers (0Mb)
  63. Monte Carlo Casino (0Mb)
  64. Invisible Man (0Mb)
  65. Pepe Le Moko (0Mb)
  66. Sex Change Operation (0Mb)
  67. Lucrezia Borgia (0Mb)
  68. Circus Story (0Mb)
  69. King Arthur (0Mb)
  70. Matrimonial Agency (0Mb)
  71. Madame Butterfly (0Mb)
  72. The Country Doctor (0Mb)
  73. The Iron Duke (0Mb)
  74. Robin Hood (0Mb)
  75. The Murder Trial (0Mb)
  76. The Pantomime Horse (0Mb)
  77. The Prison Governors Story (0Mb)
  78. William Tell (0Mb)
  79. Marple Hall School (0Mb)
  80. The World War 2 Boffin (0Mb)
  81. The Scarlet Pimple (0Mb)
  82. Cowboy Story (0Mb)
  83. Harrys High Class Hairdressing (0Mb)
  84. The David Dunhill Murder (0Mb)
  85. Ron Goes On Money Or Nothing (0Mb)
  86. The Glums Take In A Lodger (0Mb)
  87. Ron The Babysitter (0Mb)
  88. The Sale Priced Bedroom Suite (0Mb)
  89. Rons Will Bequest (0Mb)
  90. Ron Gets Amnesia (0Mb)
  91. How Ron And Eth First Met (0Mb)
  92. Birthday Boy (0Mb)
  93. Ron Plans To Emigrate (0Mb)
  94. Burgled By Uncle Charlie (0Mb)
  95. Rons Birth Certificate (0Mb)
  96. Mr Glum Stuck In The Bath (0Mb)
  97. Consent Battle (0Mb)
  98. Rons Lucky Day (0Mb)
  99. The Glums Dine Out (0Mb)
  100. The Glums Visit Eths Father (0Mb)
  101. Cousin Wilbraham Arrives (0Mb)
  102. Rons Tatoo (0Mb)
  103. Mrs Glum Leaves (0Mb)
  104. How Ron And Eth Became Engaged (0Mb)
  105. Glums House On Fire (0Mb)
  106. Rons Head Caught In The Park (0Mb)
  107. The Glums Bagwash Service (0Mb)
  108. Ron The Artists Model (0Mb)
  109. The Train Trip To Brighton (0Mb)
  110. Eths Tax Refund (0Mb)
  111. Ron The Budgerigar Teacher (0Mb)
  112. 10th Anniversary Edition (0Mb)
  113. Next Doors Furniture (0Mb)
  114. Eths Old Flame (0Mb)
  115. Eth Is Accused Of Stealing (0Mb)
  116. Rons New Suit (0Mb)
  117. Daddys Boy (0Mb)
  118. A Saga Of Sixpence (0Mb)
  119. Rons Grandfather (0Mb)
  120. Mr Glums Permission (0Mb)
  121. The Glums Move A Bed (0Mb)
  122. Ron Joins The Police (0Mb)
  123. Ron Needs A Dinner Suit (0Mb)
  124. The Christmas Raffle (0Mb)
  125. Christmas Hide And Seek (0Mb)
  126. Ron Changes His Name (0Mb)
  127. The Glums Are Locked In A Store (0Mb)
  128. Ron Gets Trapped In A Sofa Bed (0Mb)
  129. Ron And Eths Wedding Reception (0Mb)
  130. Mr Glum Tries To Sell The House (0Mb)
  131. Ron And Eth Plan To Elope (0Mb)
  132. Ron And Eth Inspect A Flat (0Mb)
  133. Honeymoon Promise (0Mb)
  134. The Eternity Ring (0Mb)
  135. Rons Steamship Job (0Mb)
  136. Ron And Eths Wedding Day (0Mb)
  137. Ron Feigns Amnesia (0Mb)
  138. Ron Is Taken To The Pictures (0Mb)
  139. Ron Regains His Memory (0Mb)
  140. Ron Learns French (0Mb)
  141. Ron The Actor (0Mb)
  142. Ron The Athlete (0Mb)
  143. Mr Glum Writes A Letter (0Mb)
  144. Ron The Newspaperboy (0Mb)
  145. The Glums Go Carol Singing (0Mb)
  146. The Christmas Party (0Mb)
  147. The Light That Failed (0Mb)
  148. The Fancy Dress Ball (0Mb)
  149. Rons New Suit (0Mb)
  150. The Masked Bandit (0Mb)
  151. Ron Learns Ju Jitsu (0Mb)
  152. The Masked Bandit (0Mb)
  153. Mrs Glum Leaves (0Mb)
  154. Mr Glum Sells The Furniture (0Mb)
  155. Ron Learns To Swim (0Mb)
  156. The Glums Leave For Australia (0Mb)

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