The Star Hyacinths

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Always hindering Hyacinth's best efforts to impress, and providing an unwelcome reminder of her less-than-refined roots, are her lower-class sisters Daisy Judy Cornwell and Rose Shirley Stelfox in series 1; Mary Millar thereafter , and Daisy's proudly "bone-idle" husband Onslow Geoffrey Hughes. They, along with Hyacinth's senile father , frequently turn up inconveniently usually in their clapped—out Ford Cortina Mk IV — which always makes a characteristic backfire when it arrives , with Hyacinth going to great lengths to avoid them saying: "Richard, you know I love my family, but that's no reason why I should have to acknowledge them in broad daylight!

Rose is very sexually aggressive and promiscuous, adding to Hyacinth's embarrassment. Hyacinth's senile father frequently has flashbacks to the Second World War , and often exhibits bizarre behaviour, sometimes involving embarrassing situations with women Onslow describes him as "barmy". Two relatives of whom Hyacinth is not ashamed are her wealthy sister Violet Anna Dawson and her unseen son Sheridan. However, Violet's social acceptability is damaged by the eccentric behaviour of her transvestite , equestrian -loving turf accountant husband Bruce, whom she violently attacks because of his behaviour.

Hyacinth also tries to impress people with the intellectual prowess of her beloved son Sheridan who actually only takes a course in needlework at a polytechnic. Hyacinth boasts about the "psychic" closeness of their relationship and how often he writes and phones her, although he never writes and only phones his mother to ask for money much to the despair of Richard. Hyacinth's neighbour Elizabeth Warden Josephine Tewson is frequently invited round to the Buckets' for coffee.

Though she is ordinarily calm, Elizabeth's nerves go to pieces in Hyacinth's house, causing her to smash Hyacinth's china and spill coffee and biscuits on Hyacinth's Burmese rug. Elizabeth is occasionally able to "one-up" Hyacinth herself by reminding her neighbour that her daughter is at university, whilst Sheridan is studying at a mere polytechnic. Liz's brother Emmet David Griffin moves in with her at the beginning of series 2 after a messy divorce. Hyacinth, upon learning that Emmet is a musician, frequently and abruptly sings out-of-key at him to try to get a part in one of his productions, making him terrified of leaving the house, lest she see him "She'll sing at me!

Emmet's problems are made worse by Hyacinth's mistaken belief that his frightened reactions indicate that he is infatuated with her; which, in fact, could not be further from the truth.

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Hyacinth frequently confronts the postman with complaints, such as having to receive mail bearing second class stamps, harassing him to the point that he will go to extreme lengths not to face her; and she often forces workmen and other visitors to her home to remove their shoes before entering. Michael, the vicar of the local church Jeremy Gittins is also loath to face the overbearing Hyacinth, to whom he refers to others as "the Bucket woman". The vicar and his wife sometimes exact comic revenge on Hyacinth for her snobbishness; on one occasion, when she was one of a group of volunteer helpers at the church, the vicar's wife saw to it that Hyacinth's hand went up prematurely and assigned her the job of cleaning the church toilets.

Keeping Up Appearances aired for five series, four Christmas specials, and one short Children in Need special, from 29 October to 25 December The series officially ended after the episode "The Pageant", because Patricia Routledge wanted to focus on other TV and theatre work, including Hetty Wainthropp Investigates which began airing in Exterior shots around Hyacinth's house were recorded at Heather Road in the village of Binley Woods , Warwickshire , east of Coventry.

Exterior shots around Daisy's and Onslow's council terrace were taken in Stoke Aldermoor in Coventry. Some scenes were also shot in Swindon , Oxford , and Bristol. One scene was shot in Oslo , Norway. The opening sequence shows Hyacinth writing an invitation to one of her trademark candlelight suppers; this invitation lists Hyacinth's address as "Waney Edge, Blossom Avenue, Fuddleton". In the same sequence, the invitation is eventually sent to an address in Eddleton. Neither town actually exists. However, there are several references to the characters being in the West Midlands throughout the series, as when Hyacinth said that she could become the " Barbara Cartland of the West Midlands Social Circuit Scene" in the episode " The Hostess ".

In another episode, police officers wearing West Midlands Police jumpers escort Richard home and several West Midlands Travel buses are also seen throughout the series. Richard's car is a Rover series SD3 saloon.

Onslow drives a Ford Cortina number plate VSD S that is in poor condition and backfires loudly almost every time it starts or stops, embarrassing Hyacinth, and frequently crushing her hopes of creating a perfect impression with new people. Onslow is also the owner of the rusting carcass of a Hillman Avenger in his front garden, in which lives Onslow's dog that always barks at Hyacinth as she approaches. Neighbour Elizabeth drives a white Austin Metro City hatchback with number plate F RLA which, despite being the subject of comments from Hyacinth about its age, is newer than Richard's car.

The show sees the pair introduce classic clips from the series. In , the documentary series featured an episode dedicated to Keeping Up Appearances. Clips from an interview with Patricia Routledge from were also included.


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The episode revealed that there were serious artistic differences between Clarke and Snoad. Specifically, Clarke refused to act as anything but a writer and rarely visited the set or location shoots, necessitating that Snoad make minor rewrites to accommodate the realities of taping. This infuriated Clarke, who disliked any tampering of his work, and Snoad thought Clarke was being unreasonable.

The situation was mitigated in later series by the hiring of a production assistant whose sole job was to keep Clarke apprised of Snoad's changes, and to keep Snoad informed of Clarke's opinion of them.

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In early , Geoffrey Hughes reprised his role as Onslow once again for a clipshow of the series; this was to be broadcast on American television, and sees him teaching a credit course at the Open University , and has selected "successful relationships" as his subject matter. The special was also released on Region 1 DVD. As described by both Roy Clarke and Geoffrey Hughes as part of a discussion of the character of Onslow in Radio 4 's Archive on 4 : On Northern Men [15] broadcast in , as well as referenced in in-house BBC literature, when Keeping Up Appearances didn't return after Patricia Routledge announced she no longer wished to play Hyacinth, Clarke's proposed spin-off series would have seen Onslow forced to take a supposedly "easy" job tending the gardens of a large manor house estate owned by a doddery and rather forgetful old Lord.

When the Lord passes away suddenly, Onslow, Daisy and Rose who it is implied was having a fling with the Lord, causing the heart attack which led to his passing end up 'temporarily' moving into the manor house to mind it, due to a legal dispute with the deceased Lord's estranged brother whom Rose immediately starts lusting after who wants the land. A mislaid deeds paper left by the forgetful old Lord would supposedly clarify who has rights to the estate, buried somewhere in the gardens that Onslow is left to ineptly try and keep in shape.

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Most of the conflict would have come from the Lord's brother and the manor's snooty neighbours, the wealthy Hyde-Whytes, who are not happy about the "commoners" who have taken up residence next door although it later transpires that Mr. Mary Millar , who played Rose from series two to series five, died on 10 November George Webb , who played Daddy, died on 30 December Charmian May , who played Mrs. Councillor Nugent, died on 24 October Geoffrey Hughes , who played Onslow, died on 27 July Shirley Stelfox , who played Rose in series one, died on 7 December Clive Swift , who played Richard, died on 1 February Clive Swift reprised his role as Richard recording a narrative to compensate for the lack of images.

In the United States, the complete series was available via streaming through Netflix and Amazon Video , but is no longer available to stream on either platform. In Australia the complete series is available for streaming on Stan as of Three books related to the series have been released in the UK. This was first published in , and is a light-hearted guide to manners, as seen through Hyacinth Bucket's eyes.

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It is based on the TV series' scripts and contains many black-and-white photos of scenes from the show. This was published in and is presented in a diary format chronicling a year in Hyacinth Bucket's life, with typical comments about her relations and neighbours. This was published in late , the book includes rare photos which were taken during the filming of Keeping Up Appearances.


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  7. The book contains full plot synopses for all episodes, main cast details, filming locations for all episodes which used outside shots, and stories of some entertaining events which happened during filming. Due to the popularity of Keeping Up Appearances in the United States, books about the series have also been published across the Atlantic.

    This comical series guidebook was published in the late s by WLIW It was co-authored by mother-and-daughter writers Georgene and Mary Lee Costa. It features summary descriptions of each episode, cast and crew biographies, series photographs and an interview with Harold Snoad. Since it was written during the filming of the final series of episodes, Snoad included the co-authors of the guide as extras in the episode "The Fancy Dress Ball".

    In , the television show was adapted into a play entitled Keeping Up Appearances that toured theatres in the UK. Main character Richard Bucket, Hyacinth's husband, does not appear in the production, but is frequently referred to: Hyacinth addresses to him off-stage and talks to him on the phone. The main plot of the show revolves around Emmet directing a play at the local village hall, but when Hyacinth is cast in the play's leading role disaster is in the making.

    Culver directed an additional production of this adaptation with performances on 5 August and 6 August at Saint Luke's Episcopal Church in Forest Hills, Queens. In , it was announced that a prequel to the series entitled Young Hyacinth would be made, following a year-old Hyacinth Bucket during the early postwar years and set some forty years before the events of Keeping Up Appearances. The prequel sees Hyacinth working as a maid and attempting to manage her family so they appear well above their means. In the special, Hyacinth is in a relationship with a Mr.

    William Hitchcock, whom Hyacinth forces to dress up and wear a hat when they walk. The special ends with her drunken Daddy falling into the canal, which Hyacinth's employers see, causing her great embarrassment. However, she blames Daddy's behaviour on "an old war injury". Approximately 4. A total of 4.

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    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. British sitcom. Monaural series 1 Stereo series 2—5. Main article: List of Keeping Up Appearances characters. Main article: List of Keeping Up Appearances episodes.