Martin Clunes admits sitcom Men Behaving Badly would flounder if made today

Martin Clunes reckons Men Behaving Badly would struggle to get made in the modern world.

In fairness, he admits, it struggled to make it on to screens in the 1990s.

The actor, 57, describes the comedy – which returned for a charity special in 2014 – as “of its time” and jokes: “These days, it’d have to be People of No Particular Gender Behaving Badly.”

Tongue-in-cheekness aside, he adds that a pilot for the show was so “s***” that the laddish comedy almost never saw the light of day.

Fawlty Towers director John Howard Davies steered the initial episode, and Martin says he was instructed to “be more like John Cleese.”

He adds: “They kept saying, ‘They’ve got to be chalk and cheese, these two. Gary and Tony have got to keep arguing.’”

“That pilot never got shown,” he continues to Radio Times. “We remade it – and if you look at the way the show went, it was completely the opposite.

“Gary forgave Tony for sleeping with his girlfriend, that’s how close they were – and that’s why it was funny. But at the time there were these very rigid ideas, and I think that’s what killed sitcoms.”

Funny that… Martin stars in a new one, Warren, on BBC1 from Monday.

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