Ever Decreasing Clippings

For a sitcom that reunited Richard Briers with the writers of The Good Life, and one which had pretty good ratings from the off (later monster ones), Ever Decreasing Circles arrived on BBC screens in January of 1984 with surprisingly little fanfair.

In a packed page of previews in the Burton Daily Mail, the day before it hit screens, it got this little write up.

Click to enlarge

On the same day, the Liverpool Echo devoted exactly this much space to it, in the bottom right corner of a page.

The day after the first episode, Neil Clements had this to say about what he’d seen, writing in the Nottingham Evening Post.

It’s fair to say, I think, that the reception was … muted.

But the ratings were good, it was sitting in the top ten for the channel that week, pushing up towards ten million viewers, in spite of misleading previews like this, from the Lichfield Mercury, on Friday 3rd February.

Or this tiny paragraph in a sidebar in the Burton Daily Mail the following week.

Even the listings writers were getting a bit sniffy about the whole thing. Look at this, from the Saffron Walden Weekly News, on the 16th February.

The Liverpool Echo (23rd February) managed this interview with Briers.

But the show was working its way into the popular consciousness, as this piece demonstrates. It appeared months after the first series had ended, in a two page spread about modern marriage, in The Daily Mirror.

And all despite there apparently being only one publicity photo of the show, with Martin wearing that hat.

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