Son of Little Britain
Fresh from the global success of Little Britain, Matt Lucas and David Walliams decided to set their next sketch show in the world of the airport terminals. Such was the faith of the BBC in the pair that the first episode was broadcast on Christmas Day 2010. The corporation’s faith in the show was rewarded – 12.47 million people tuned in.
Location filming took place at London Heathrow and Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield. The rest of the filming took place at Pinewood Studios.
Memorable characters that featured in the series included Precious Little (played by Lucas) who constantly causes problems in the coffee kiosk area, so that she can have the day off, Melody Baines (Walliams) and Keeley St Clair (Lucas) the Liverpudlian check-in girls who work for FlyLo and Terry (Walliams) and John (Lucas) the baggage handlers who don’t handle with care.
Runway to success
The series paid homage to fly on the wall series Airplane and Airport with the latter making a star out of the flamboyant Aeroflot Ground Services Manager Jeremy Spake. He went on to co-present The Toughest Job in Britain, Holiday, The Angry Pirate and City Hospital. He was even hired to film some specially recorded promotion spots for UKTV. We’re not sure where he is now, however!
Time Travelling Tones
This time Lindsay Duncan’s smooth, sultry tones provided the commentary rather than former Doctor Who Tom Baker. The connection with Doctor Who was maintained, however, Lindsay had appeared in the 2009 special Water on Mars, opposite David Tennant.
Especially shot instructional videos were filmed for BBC online and presented in the style of spoof air-travel websites. One featured FlyLo workers Melody and Keeley taking us through the check-in procedure.
Come Fly on the Wall
A special programme looking at the making of the series, Come Fly on the Wall was broadcast on BBC One on 8 February 2011. It went behind the scenes and presented outtakes and interviews with the stars.
Despite the BBC announcing that it had commissioned a second run on 28 January 2011, the series failed to return. Walliam’s said it was because Matt didn’t want to do another one.