The High Life(1994)
The High Life was a Scottish situation comedy written by and starring Forbes Masson as Steve McCracken and Alan Cumming as Sebastian Flight. Cumming and Masson met at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and united after several solo projects, to create the theatrical BBC sitcom, The High Life. The two leads were based heavily on their famous Scottish comedy alter-egos, Victor and Barry.
The series followed the cabin crew at the fictional airline, Air Scotia, flying out of Prestwick Airport. The crew consisted of the camp, alcohol-loving, narcissistic and bitchy steward, Sebastian; his sex-obsessed colleague Steve; their up-tight, antagonistic chief stewardess, Shona Spurtle; and the eccentric pilot, Captain Hilary Duff.
Sebastian and Steve longed to be promoted to long-haul flights to see exotic locations, instead of the current short-haul trips with their superior Shona, played by Siobhan Redmond, whom they described as 'Hitler in tights', 'Mussolini in Micromesh' and 'Goebbels in a Gossard'. The deranged pilot, Captain Duff, played by Patrick Ryecart, would need to be frequently reminded who he was, where the cockpit was and where he was flying to.
The High Life was interspersed with surrealism, childish humour, sarcasm and theatrical song and dance numbers. It only ran for one series due to Cumming's increasingly successful film career; however during an interview, Masson claims that a second series was written, yet not acted upon. Despite its short run, it is remembered for Steve and Sebastian’s joint catchphrase: 'Oh deary me!' and for the opening sequence which featured the cast performing a spectacular dance routine to the title song. During an interview on BBC television, Cumming noted that he mimed a Hitler-style salute during the opening sequence.
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