15 IAN PAYNE from WALSALL: I am sad to hear of the recent death of comic genius Eric Sykes – last of the Vaudevillian style entertainers.
He scripted so many marvellous comedy shows like THE PLANK and SYKES and wrote for others. So many great comedians appeared in his shows, many also sadly gone, but who can ever forget Eric, Deryck Guyler, Hattie Jacques, Richard Wattis in SYKES and Tommy Cooper, Spike Milligan, Jimmy Tarbuck, Jimmy Edwards and Roy Castle, etc in THE PLANK.
SYKES was the longest running TV sitcom ever made, starting in the early 1960’s and ending in 1980 and still holds that title. Eric wrote every script for that sitcom and kept it going with a passion, fighting for its total existence for nearly twenty years. THE PLANK was made in 1966/67 and was probably the last successful slap-stick comedy film ever made. Others were tried at later dates, but the public mood moved away from that type of comedy by then.
When I wrote a book about Wednesbury/Walsall born Richard Wattis between 2003 – 2005, Eric contacted me with this memory :
“I have so many memories of Richard, he was a wonderful actor. There is one particular memory that always makes me smile when I think about Richard.
I had been asked to do a world tour with the show and Hattie Jacques and Deryck Guyler were delighted, however Richard came to me with that wonderful look he had and told me that he couldn’t possibly join us all on the world tour because he had such a fear of flying. I tried to talk to him in the hope that I would convince him that everything would be all right. I’ll never forget he looked at me and said ‘Eric, infact I have to take a Librium to cross the road’.
I never did persuade him and we went ahead with the world tour but it was never the same without Richard”
Eric was a real gentleman and a kind person, with an affinity for his fans - may he RIP. He is probably meeting all those he knew and worked with in the big theatre bar in the sky as I write. He is missed already and will be missed for many years to come. Sadly we will never see or meet his ilk again.
14 darren from northampton: Why this classic comedy isnt remembered in the same way that Dads army is is totally beyond me. The characters were well rounded with their own quirky personalities, the story lines were well written and there was a real sureal aspect to the whole thing.
Eric - you are a genius, thanks for all your work.
13 Charlotte from London: We named our dog Corky after PC Corky Turnbull.
12 Peter Mc Conville from Belfast: I have just received a beautiful signed photo from Eric but the accompanying letter epotomised this great man for me and one line in particular. "I did appreciate you writing to me." That says it all. Peter. Belfast.
11 Ian Payne from walsall: Great sitcom - the longest running in UK TV history.
I have just written a bio about Richard Wattis [aka Charles Brown], who was the nosey neighbour in SYKES.
Eric Sykes sent me a lovely tribute about Richard as follows :
"I have so many memories of Richard, he was a wonderful actor."
see brief bio about Richard Wattis by me in who's who section of www.tonyhancock.org [THAS Website]. It also shows the lovely portrait of Richard Wattis by my good friend Gary Morgan now hanging in the foyer of Wednesbury Art Gallery in STAFFS.
10 Keith Dagnall from Wirral: truly underrated sitcom, favorite episode has to be the guest appearance of Peter Sellars.
Eric and Hattie play host to Sellars escaped convict. Sellars couldn`t help ad-libbing, testing eric`s comic skill and timing.
Watch THE MAN carefully, it`s all in eric`s eyes and comic timing.
9 bob gray from immingham: To Eric and Hatti, but when i lived in Barnsley i was a lotty driver
i was staying in Salford,near Old trafford walked into a pub and there playing the wash board was Derek Guyler
bless em all
8 Elaine Holland from Nottinghamshire: I think just a glimpse of this man & every human being cannot help but smile or giggle anticipating what is to come and you know it will be funny,Truly one of the greatest comedy writers and performers England has had & will ever have,a genuine and very nice man. I am 44 & very fortunate to have watched most of Eric sykes work the silent fim the Plank being one of my favourites.
7 Andy Brett from Cambridge, England: How I loved this! Corky, the copper, Peter the cuckoo clock! And not forgetting our wonderful Eric, Hat and Mr Brown! Then there was Miss Rumbelow later. She moved into Mr Brown's house when Richard Wattis, who played him, died.
I loved all the Sykes versus Brown storylines, and Madge from the bread shop, who desperately wanted to marry her 'Ricky'!
Hattie was wonderful, a kind and caring voice of reason in the show, but gullible and with a whimsical streak. I'll never forget her calling the cuckoo clock 'Peter'!
Eric Sykes and his team were pure gold.
6 Graham from South Wales: Sykes goes woefully unrecognised when you consider his comedic achievements. My favourite episode of Sykes was the most surreal and anarchic of the lot - the one where he and Hat are bus driver and clippie respectively. When they are fired for being too nice to the passengers and they walk the bus route and are then joined by their former passengers, ignoring the actual bus...sheer comic genius.
5 Dario from Accrington,Lancs: Eric Sykes is a comic genius who is very much underrated. His physical movements and hand gestures are superb. Hattie was ideal as his sister. The best 'sitcom' by far!
4 Matthew from Somerset: Hattie Jacques is brilliant as Hattie Sykes.
3 Rosie from Darlington: My favourite episode is the one where they go caravanning. I cannot remember the title of that one but I'm sure you will know which one I mean. In the end the have a porridge fight and Eric remarks "Cor... there was a brick in that!" as one smashes into the window! I can never go to our caravan without thinking of this episode! The other campers wonder what is going on when I start giggling... in my mind's eye I am seeing Eric and Corky battle it out!
2 Chris Searle from Bristol: I remember watching the show when I was young (I'm now 36) and feel great nostalgia seeing them again. Only now, watching them again, do I see that maybe I appreciated the subversive nature of the ideas and themes expressed within the storylines (well, just maybe!). Great stuff anyway, thanks!
1 Ivor Nicholas from St Albans Hertfordshire: I would like to say that when the series sykes was originally being shown on tv, I was very young, I am now 48 Years,and I have many happy memories of watching Hattie Jacques and Eric Sykes all those years ago - I miss many of the original TV personalities which were around in the 1950's and 60's. In my opinion not many of today's film and television stars have the same degree of talent or carisma!