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Company & Co

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BBC, London, 1980
price: 90p; 160 pages

The blurb on the back:

More posh than punk, elegant and sophisticated Sam Company and her equally accomplished brother Simon open a club in Chelsea. The two singers are helped by Billy, a man with a past, and Barbara, a lady with a cheque-book. The club prospers until a newcomer takes a fancy to Barbara's purse. Retrieving the lost loot leads the entire company into hilarious escapades very different from any approved by bank managers or police inspectors.

opening lines:
'Liberty, fraternity, efficiency.' Simon Company, on the establishment of Company and Co.
'Oh, brother!' Samantha Company, on the same occasion.

Let's see. TV series about popular music - not a very rich vein of entertainment. There was the majestic Rock Follies, of course, the slightly less majestic No Excuses, and the very wonderful but uncelebrated Jangles (starring Hazel O'Connor). And then there was Company and Co with - from left to right - Philip Lowrie, Maria Aitken and Simon Williams, a series so forgotten that it makes Jangles seem as familiar as Fawlty Towers.

I have to be honest and say that I remember nothing whatsoever about the series. All I have to go on is this paperback, and on the strength of that, I'd recommend that no one need bother re-issuing the show on a special edition DVD box-set. It's very poor. It's supposed to be a light-hearted caper, but trust me, your heart will feel anything but light after even a few pages. And if you get further than that, I'd be very much surprised. Hard to know why this exists. The best bit of it is that line from the back of the book: 'more posh than punk'. I like that.

Incidentally, although Mr Kershaw takes full blame for the book, he wasn't solely responsible for the scripts, that duty having been shared between him, John Peters, Carey Harrison, Adele Rose, Terence Feely, Watt Nichol and Laura Lanson. Never have so many...


rock & roll
TV tie-ins