Citizen Khan – it’s the 1970s sitcom they forgot to make

Adil Ray's new BBC1 show boasts jokes that would've fitted in nicely on ITV back in the days of Bless This House, says Tom Cole

If your sense of humour’s more On the Buses than On the Hour, judging by this new trailer you’re going to love new BBC sitcom Citizen Khan.


The show, which kicks off on BBC1 on Monday evening, stars former BBC Asian Network presenter Adil Ray as Mr Khan, a middle-aged Pakistani community leader who lives with his family in Sparkhill, Birmingham and, as is the nature of these things, gets himself into all manner of scrapes.

Previewing the show’s first episode for Radio Times, David Butcher wrote: “To give you the flavour of this new comedy, at one stage Mr Khan drives to his local mosque and parks in a disabled space. As he gets out of the car passers-by shoot him a look, so he starts limping heavily.”

For anyone sneering, that joke’s timeless…

And another vintage comedy bit glimpsed in the trailer sees Khan warning his daughter about the differences between men and women. “Boys aren’t like girls,” he says, “They’ve only got one thing on their mind.” “What’s that?” she asks. “Cricket.” Cue the canned laughter!

Without a hint of sarcasm, I for one can’t wait for this show to hit our screens. Having missed the likes of Yus My Dear, Me and the Missus and Are You Being Served? when they were first aired, owing to the fact that I wasn’t alive in the 1970s, I’m chomping at the bit to see something this close to the ITV comedy shows of yesteryear make its debut.


Citizen Khan starts at 10:20pm on BBC1 on Monday. Whatever you do, don’t miss it.