On the Buses


When the bus company finds itself short-staffed, it is Inspector Blake who comes up with the brilliant idea of employing women drivers. The company is delighted, but the bus crews are horrified and try to get rid of the women.

ACTORS: Reg Varney, Doris Hare, Michael Robbins


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On the Buses, Stan gets a little annoyed when his Mum and Sister keep buying expensive items on hire purchase, but the money he earns for overtime working as a bus driver means that he can afford it… just! His job is secure, as bus drivers are hard to come by, and his overtime prospects are good, until the bus company decide to revoke a long standing rule and employ women bus drivers. Aghast at the thought of no overtime and, therefore, less wages, he joins forces with his long time work colleague Jack to sabotage the new female employees

Delightfully un-PC.

On the Buses, Admittedly, the humour in On The Buses is far from sophisticated, relying on ‘nudge nudge wink wink’ suggestiveness and crazy slapstick. In today’s woke, politically correct, #MeToo climate, the innuendo and bawdiness in particular will be viewed by many as an embarrassment best swept under the cinematic carpet. However, those (like me) raised on a diet of Carry On films and ribald TV comedy (Dick Emery, Benny Hill, Are You Being Served?) and with a general appreciation of all things saucy from the ’70s (the Confessions movies and the Adventures of… series) should find enough to enjoy about this big-screen outing for the On The Buses team to make it worth a ride.

Reg Varney plays bus driver Stan and Bob Grant is Jack his conductor, the pair spending every spare minute trying to chat up any tasty totty that crosses their paths. Quite how the pair ever score is beyond me – neither bloke is Brad Pitt – but both get lucky with a variety of skirt, from a married woman on their bus route, to the sexy Irish lass working in the canteen, to their ‘clippie crumpet’ female colleagues. The shenanigans that ensue are fairly predictable, and, if truth be told, not all that funny, but I cannot help but enjoy the film regardless, partly thanks to the likeability of its cheeky chappies, partly thanks to the feeling of nostalgia it gives me, and just a little bit because I know it upsets the easily morally offended (who I believe are now termed ‘snowflakes’).

N.B. This was a major hit for Hammer Studios (best known for their horror films) and spawned two sequels, Mutiny on the Buses (1972) and Holiday on the Buses (1973). Also, look out for the Lamb’s Navy advert outside the bus depot, which features future Hammer glamour star and Bond babe Caroline Munro.

Out To Sea

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