WARNING: This post contains video material some may find racially offensive

The Jewel In The Crown, 1985

The Jewel In The Crown that wasn’t quite The Jewel In The Crown.  A Pilot episode for a BBC sitcom that never made it off the starting blocks.

Whilst apart from the opening few lines, if you allow for Milligan blacking up again there is little really to be offended over.  However, taking into account the time: 1985, this was not the 1970’s and with all the controversy that went with sitcoms such as Till Death Us Do Part, Mind Your Language and the like it’s surprising the pilot was ever made.

The Jewel In The Crown was never aired and whilst Sykes and Milligan are masters of their craft this is perhaps not their finest hour.


Eric Sykes and Spike Milligan play themselves as failed businessmen operating from a run down shop.

From upstairs Eric runs Sykes International a failed talent agency whilst in the shop Spike Milligan decides to black up and run a Pakistani restaurant: “The Jewel In The Crown”.

Spike reasons that for years they have been coming and stealing our jobs so now he is blacking up and stealing theirs.  Eric points out some vital flaws in his plan most importantly there is no kitchen and that his picture of Ghandi is Indian not Pakistani.

Spike seems determined to press on, but how is he going to cope with a booking for 60 guests?







Eric Sykes – Himself
Spike Milligan – Himself
Josephine Tewson – Mrs Corbett
Keith Smith – The VAT Man
Denise Distel – The Girl
Peter Russell – Customer


Channel: BBC
Written By: Johnny Speight
Original Transmission Date: Untransmitted

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