Birds of a Feather

Birds of a Feather

infobox television
show_name = Birds of a Feather


caption = Opening credits (1990–98)
format = Sitcom
runtime = 95x30 minutes
1x40 minutes
4x50 minutes
1x60 minutes
1x75 minutes
creator = Laurence Marks & Maurice Gran
starring = Pauline Quirke
Linda Robson
Lesley Joseph
country = United Kingdom
network = BBC One
first_aired = 16 October 1989
last_aired = 24 December 1998
num_episodes = 102
list_episodes = List of Birds of a Feather episodes
imdb_id = 0096545

"Birds of a Feather" is a British sitcom that aired on BBC One from 1989 to 1998. Starring Pauline Quirke, Linda Robson and Lesley Joseph, it was created by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, who also wrote some of the episodes along with many other writers.

The first episode sees sisters Tracey Stubbs (Robson) and Sharon Theodopolopodos (Quirke) brought together when their husbands are sent to prison for armed robbery. Sharon, who lived in an Edmonton council flat, moves into to Tracey's expensive house in Chigwell, Essex. Their next-door neighbour, and later friend, Dorien Green (Joseph) is a middle-aged married woman who is constantly having affairs with younger men.

Cast

*Pauline Quirke - Sharon Theodopolopodos
*Linda Robson - Tracey Stubbs
*Lesley Joseph - Dorien Green
*David Cardy - Chris Theodopolopodos "(series 1; series 7 and 8)"
*Peter Polycarpou - Chris Theodopolopodos "(series 2 to 1994 Special)"
*Alun Lewis - Darryl Stubbs "(series 1 to 1994 Special)"
*Doug McFerran - Darryl Stubbs "(series 7)"
*Simon Nash - Garth Stubbs "(series 1)"
*Matthew Savage - Garth Stubbs "(from series 2)"
*Stephen Greif - Marcus Green "(1990 Christmas Special)"
*Nickolas Grace - Marcus Green "(series 1, 5 and 7)"

Plot

For sisters Sharon Theodopolopodos and Tracy Stubbs, life is never the same again when both their husbands are sent to prison after unsuccessfully carrying out an armed robbery. Sharon, a common, large and loud-mouthed character from Edmonton moves into her wealthy sister's luxury home in Chigwell, so the twosome can give each other support.

Sharon has always confessed to feelings of inadequacy next to her prettier, blonde, and elder sister Tracey and felt she had the tougher childhood. Her marriage with Chris, a Greek Cypriot waster, was always childless, this due to Sharon's inability to have children, according to Chris's family who thus condemn her, however at the end of series one it becomes clear that Chris is the one who's at fault. Sharon happily cheats on her husband whilst he's in prison, and gives him grief when visiting.

Tracey however, loves her husband, Darryl, who once made money from a conservatory construction business (as well as bank robbery). Tracey has a son, Garth, who after going to boarding school becomes a chef.

The sisters’ neighbour, is the aging, snobbish and man-eating Dorien Green, who's also Jewish. Dorien is married to Marcus, however she's always getting involved with other men, and also a regular, if uninvited, guest at Tracey’s house, and engages in regular banter with Sharon; the former mocks the latter about her weight, whilst Sharon enjoys teasing Dorien about her promiscuous lifestyle and age.

Sharon and Tracey's maternal aunt, "Auntie Sylvie" (Vivian Pickles), is frequently mentioned and appears twice. cite episode|title=Someone Else's Baby|series=Birds of a Feather|serieslink=List of Birds of a Feather episodes#Series Two (1990)|credits=|network=BBC|station=BBC1|airdate=1990-12-13] cite episode| title=Holy Ground|series=Birds of a Feather|serieslink=List of Birds of a Feather episodes#Series Nine (1998)|credits=|network=BBC|station=BBC1|airdate=1998-12-24]

Episodes

"Birds of a Feather" aired for 102 episodes from 16 October 1989 to 24 December 1998. 95 episodes are thirty minutes in length, while one is forty minutes, four are 50 minutes, one is 60 minutes and one is 75 minutes. The theme tune is Irving Berlin's "What'll I Do", which from the third series onwards is sung by Quirke and Robson.

Most episodes were written by Laurence Marks & Maurice Gran, Gary Lawson & John Phelps, Geoff Rowley, Sue Teddem, Peter Tilbury, Geoff Deane, Tony Millan & Mike Walling, Damon Rochefort and Sam Lawrence. Keith Lindsay & Martin Tomms, Steve Coombes & Dave Robinson, George Costigan & Julia North, John Ross, Frankie Bailey, Miles Tredinnick, Jenny Lecoat, Alun Lewis, Richard Preddy & Gary Howe and Ian Davidson & Peter Vincent & Tony Jordan all wrote one episode each.

Other countries

"Birds of a Feather" was sold to over 30 countries worldwide, and the format was sold to countries including Australia (ABC TV), Spain and South Africa. The show is regularly re-run on Australian pay TV.

An American adaptation, called "Stand by Your Man" was made by Fox. Rosie O'Donnell played hard-up Lorraine Popowski, while Melissa Gilbert-Brinkman played her rich sister Rochelle Dunphy. Sam McMurray played Rochelle's husband Roger, and Rick Hall played Lorraine's husband Artie. The Dorien character was called Adrienne Stone played by Miriam Flynn. The series aired for only eight episodes from 5 April 1992 to 9 August 1992.

DVD releases

The first series of "Birds of a Feather" was released by Prism Leisure Corporation on 6 January 2003. Series One was released in Region 4 (Australia) in March 2007.

References

;General
*Mark Lewisohn, "Radio Times Guide to TV Comedy", BBC Worldwide Ltd, 2003;Specific

External links

*bbc.co.uk|id=comedy/guide/articles/b/birdsofafeather_7770740.shtml|title="Birds of a Feather"
* [http://www.phill.co.uk/comedy/birds/index.html "Birds of a Feather"] at Phill.co.uk


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