“Hello, hello” marked with a warning for potentially “objectionable” content
It’s about the stereotypes and sexually suggestive jokes that helped make the series a British comedy classic.
Anyone wishing to watch or review “Hello, hello” in the UK right now will be warned of the potentially “offensive” content of the series. The decision was made by BritBox, a streaming platform that brings together content from the UK’s BBC and ITV.
Originally released in 1982, “Alô, Alô” was shown for nine seasons. At 85 episodes, it became one of the most iconic series in British comedy and was a hit in other countries, including where it was shown in Portugal.
At the center of the story is René (Gordon Kaye), the owner of a café in France during the Nazi occupation, in the middle of World War II. Nazis walk through René’s café, including elements of the dreaded Gestapo, Allied and French soldiers, including members of the resistance.
At the origin of the warning that the British press recognizes are the jokes about sexual insinuations, but above all the stereotypes, especially those of the French and Germans, who were one of the humorous engines of the series. In René’s café, customers are ignorant and despite his poor espionage skills, the character and his wife Edith (Carmen Silvera) survive there.
The BritBox warning now accompanying the series states that “this classic comedy contains language and attitudes of its time that may offend some viewers”. The channel stresses that warnings have been the policy of the house since the service was developed to facilitate service subscriber choice.
Movies and series that have been around for decades have returned to spark debate for that type of warning. In the past year, the classic “E Tudo o Vento Levou” was withdrawn from HBO at some point in order to be made available with a warning of the “ethnic and racial prejudice” it was promoting.