Comedy actor Henry McGee, the 'straight man' for Benny Hill for many years and a regular in 60s and 70s sitcoms has died.
In the 1980s it became fashionable for 'alternative' comedians to label Hill's humour as 'sexist' and outdated. Much of this was mere snobbery: unlike our daring, new university educated 'alternative' comics, the comedy old guard were almost all working class. Hill's comedy was not sexist- as he pointed out himself- it's the girls who always end up chasing him. But while Hill's career hit the buffers in the new p.c. climate, the 'alternative' comedians who replaced him, formed a new comic 'establishment' of their own (with their own production companies of course)- and became very, very wealthy to boot. The most grotesque example of how yesterday's anti-establishment radicals become lackeys of money power is Ben Elton. Sixteen years ago, Elton co-wrote BlackAdder III, with its powerful anti-war message. Yet in 2003, Elton was expressing his support for that very 'alternative' project: the Iraq war.