Flippin' 'Eck, Tucker!
September 18, 2008 4:34 PM   Subscribe

After 30 years, the final bell has rung and it's home time for Grange Hill...

Entertaining several generations of British kids, it depicted a typical north London school with for the time a revolutionary level of gritty realism and later gaining controversy with violence, racism, teenage pregnancy, drug addiction and er nudity stories. Though oddly it was only this scene that was cut from all future broadcasts.
It seems in recent years to have became a shadow of its former self and the ending a bit of a damp squib so perhaps it's better to remember those classic 'flying sausage' years...
The 15 Greatest Characters
Where Are They Now?
Lee ' Zammo' McDonald interview
posted by fearfulsymmetry (29 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Wow - it's the Degrassi of England! Awesome!
posted by GuyZero at 5:30 PM on September 18, 2008

I find it very, very pleasing that I am here reading this, while eating bangers and mash...
posted by Brockles at 5:39 PM on September 18, 2008

Grange Hill was still running?!

Jeez... I remember watching this as a kid. Tucker was the best character by far.

I can't believe it. Here I am, pushing forty with two kids of my own, and one of my old favourite TV shows is only now wrapping up.

I wonder what the current raft of story lines were?

One suspects that teen pregnancy, racism, drug use and violence has probably replaced playing tricks on the head master, raiding the tuck shop and ducking out of school to go mucking about on the heath?

posted by Mephisto at 5:52 PM on September 18, 2008

Just say no, Zammo!
posted by JustAsItSounds at 6:01 PM on September 18, 2008

Is there anything on the BBC that hasn't been running for 30 years? (Don't say "Who, me?", Doctor)
posted by wendell at 6:02 PM on September 18, 2008

Best Grange Hill story ever? The fact that when they were meeting Nancy Reagan to promote their 'Just Say No' campaign, Roland and the other sweet teen actors were smoking weed in the White House toilets.

Now we know why Roland was such a Hurf Durfist. The guy always had the munchies.

Also: bring back Gripper Stebson!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 6:11 PM on September 18, 2008

Is there anything on the BBC that hasn't been running for 30 years?

The Mighty Boosh, unfortunately.

I only just discovered this and I'm obsessed. Surrealism and British comedy, both at their best, combined. Any funnier, and this show would have had more chance of causing the end of the world than the LHC.

Oh, and Not the Nine O'Clock News only ran for three years; worse luck.

The only good US comedy is Curb Your Enthusiasm, Family Guy and Seinfeld.

Actually, that's quite a lot.
posted by Mephisto at 6:18 PM on September 18, 2008

Is there anything on the BBC that hasn't been running for 30 years?

Big Train
. Disappeared after two series, amazing television.
posted by fire&wings at 6:27 PM on September 18, 2008

I hope that they let them take games in on the last day of filming.
posted by mandal at 6:40 PM on September 18, 2008 [5 favorites]

So that´s what they were talking about on Spaced. For some reason I thought it was a show about gangsters.
posted by concrete at 6:43 PM on September 18, 2008

posted by forallmankind at 6:45 PM on September 18, 2008 [1 favorite]

But I want to help you, Ro-land!
posted by Brockles at 6:58 PM on September 18, 2008 [1 favorite]

I was in England for two years, the whole time I thought it was off the air. All the time I would hear about 'Grange Hill kids on crack...' I never once saw the show or even heard it mentioned as a recent concept.
posted by parmanparman at 7:09 PM on September 18, 2008

Mr. Bronson is a total shit. And Hitler. Five times.
posted by Artw at 9:10 PM on September 18, 2008

That race war clip is like something out of scum.
posted by Artw at 9:38 PM on September 18, 2008

Speaking as an ignorant American (tm) myself, the only time I had ever heard of this show was when it was referenced on The Young Ones:

SCHOOLBOY #1: So that's settled then! We organize a protest against school uniforms!
SCHOOLBOY #2: Great! We can use the banners left over from the last protest we organized, so that racism wouldn't be an issue in this school.
SCHOOLBOY #1: Good! Then that's what we'll do. I'll get Mucker, Trucker, Ducker, and Sucker. You get Spaz!
SCHOOLBOY #2: But I am Spaz!
SCHOOLBOY #1: Oh. Well, I'd better get Spaz as well then. But we've got to hurry. [They start running, but bump into a stern-looking man in a 3-piece suit]
SCHOOLBOY #2: Sorry, Mr. Liberal. We were in a hurry.
MR. LIBERAL: Hang on, you pair of young scruffy tearaways. Don't you realize the way you act is influencing millions of children to talk Cockney and be insubordinate?!
SCHOOLBOY #1: Come on, sir. Don't be silly! We're the only kids in Britain who never say fu....
posted by Palquito at 9:39 PM on September 18, 2008 [1 favorite]

Mr. Liberal sorts things out in the above mentioned race war clip.
posted by Artw at 9:40 PM on September 18, 2008

Darth Vader kills Mr. Bronson
posted by Artw at 9:56 PM on September 18, 2008

Mr. Bronson meets Indiana Jones
posted by Artw at 9:59 PM on September 18, 2008

Wa, wa ,wah, wowwwnng.
posted by popcassady at 12:33 AM on September 19, 2008

Awesomely someone spray painted 'Zammo chased the dragon and got smacked on the nose' on the side of my school gym - utter confusion among the teachers as to the meaning of this phrase.
posted by zemblamatic at 1:15 AM on September 19, 2008 [1 favorite]

Gonch only makes 14? I resign!
posted by nthdegx at 2:06 AM on September 19, 2008

I remember the Zammo on drugs storyline provoking a class discussion where we were asked to imagine what drove him to such depravity as to lick his coke off the toilet floor.

Class : "Too right! It's fifty fucking quid a gramme"

Not sure that was the answer they were looking for.
posted by fullerine at 4:16 AM on September 19, 2008 [1 favorite]

I remember visiting the BBC studios when Grange Hill was hitting its stride. The young panboi was taken aback by the fact that the classroom sets were open on one side.

It looked quite surreal to see a class of kids in that fashion and you were given the impression that the Grange Hill universe was actually real and that you were peering into it via a secret portal.
posted by panboi at 5:24 AM on September 19, 2008

The Ro-land comments cracked me up. When was Roland on GH? 1980 perhaps?
posted by schwa at 7:32 AM on September 19, 2008

Bronson's got to pay!
posted by Spatch at 9:34 AM on September 19, 2008 [1 favorite]

I always wanted Bronson as a teacher. I was bright, obedient, and academic. Would have been great to have some real discipline: I always enjoyed classes where I could learn.
posted by alasdair at 11:05 AM on September 19, 2008

Hitler I say! FIVE TIMES!
posted by Artw at 11:22 AM on September 19, 2008

Gordon Bennett!

I lived in the UK when Grange Hill started and the whole Mr. Liberal thing is true...everyone was mostly concerned with the fact that all the kids said "wiv" instead of "with." Seriously, we had a debate at our school in Hertford about whether Grange Hill was a good influence on elocution, and everyone on both sides of the issue spoke with exactly the same accents as the Grange Hill kids. It was hilarious hearing the "pro" side say: "Grange 'ill rep'resents a decline in Bri'ish elocution, right?" The audience descended into fits of laughter, after which the whole exercise was rendered far more than moot.
posted by salishsea at 3:03 PM on September 19, 2008

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