Maybe it's just a matter of taste. Plenty of people were standing up last night and saying how funny the man was, But- no- really you couldn't re-run his big- and very expensive- shows now and expect anyone to want to watch. Other shows of similar vintage survive. I think Morecambe and Wise are over-prized- some of their stuff is really ropey- but you can still repeat them at Christmas and people will tune in; There's something there that survives. A few days back they showed a similar tribute to Frankie Howerd- who is older and deader than our man and still glorious. Then there's Dad's Army. Same vintage, still funny in parts. Clive Dunn- who died at Christmas- is a national treasure and all that. Our man- much bigger in the day than Dunn- is not a national treasure. The kids won't have heard of him. Nothing of his stuff that they showed last night made me want to do anything but curl up like a salted snail.
Comedy is one of the great mysteries; what lives, what dies. How can something be funny for a season and then not? And why do some things go on being funny forever?