Fawlty Towers (1975–1979)
8.5/10
1,489
5 user 1 critic

The Builders 

Over his wife's objections, Basil hires his usual firm of incompetents (O'Reilly's) to do some carpentry work in the hotel lobby. With both Basil and Sybil out for the afternoon, they leave... See full summary »

Director:

John Howard Davies (uncredited)

Writers:

John Cleese (by), Connie Booth (by)
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
John Cleese ... Basil Fawlty
Prunella Scales ... Sybil Fawlty
Andrew Sachs ... Manuel
Connie Booth ... Polly Sherman
Ballard Berkeley ... Major Gowen
David Kelly ... O'Reilly
Gilly Flower Gilly Flower ... Miss Agatha Tibbs
Renee Roberts Renee Roberts ... Miss Ursula Gatsby
James Appleby James Appleby ... Stubbs
George Lee George Lee ... Delivery Man
Michael Cronin Michael Cronin ... Lurphy - Workman #1
Michael Halsey ... Jones - Workman #2
Barney Dorman Barney Dorman ... Kerr - Workman #3
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Storyline

Over his wife's objections, Basil hires his usual firm of incompetents (O'Reilly's) to do some carpentry work in the hotel lobby. With both Basil and Sybil out for the afternoon, they leave Polly in charge. She decides to have a nap, leaving the English-challenged Manuel in charge. When Basil returns, he finds a solid wall where once stood doors to the dining room and still no door to the kitchen per his work order. Sybil takes an I-told-you-so attitude and insists he hire a qualified builder to fix the mess, but Basil decides to get O'Reilly back to right the wrong, but he still makes a mess of it as well. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hotel | builder | wall | worker | telephone | See All (14) »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 September 1975 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Lee, who plays Bennion the deliveryman, also appears as a deliveryman in Fawlty Towers: Communication Problems (1979). See more »

Goofs

When Basil is arguing with Polly and eventually decides to call O'Reilly, he trips over the gnome. However, when Basil comes out from behind the desk, he takes the gnome out of a side gap in the desk, perfectly out of reach of tripping over it. See more »

Quotes

Sybil Fawlty: [exasperated] O'Reilly, I have seen more intelligent creatures than you lying on their backs at the bottom of ponds! I've seen better organized creatures than you running 'round farmyards with their heads cut off! Now collect your things and GET OUT!
[Strikes O'Riley on his rear with her umbrella, prompting him into crawling away from her]
Sybil Fawlty: I never want to see you or any of your men in my hotel again!
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Crazy Credits

The "L" of the Fawlty Towers sign is displaced. See more »

Connections

Referenced in That Mitchell and Webb Look (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy
(uncredited)
Composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
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User Reviews

 
An Aesop's Fable!
15 May 2006 | by oceanaveSee all my reviews

Hire the cheapest contractor, and (usually) get even less than what you hoped for. Basil and Sybil decide to block off a couple doors and put in a couple new doors instead - the notoriously bad construction company in town, run by airhead Mr. O'Reilly, is hired by Basil because they work for cheap. All hell breaks loose when the Fawltys go away for the weekend, during which time O'Reilly's men do great damage to the hotel lobby. The incomparable (and always underweight!) David Kelly does splendidly as unscrupulous O'Reilly, who has about as much knowledge of construction as a garden gnome. This episode shows Sybil at her most caustic, "nest of vipers" self - Basil and O'Reilly don't stand a chance against her when she catches a glimpse of the remodel. John Cleese has stated that this episode is probably the weakest of the series - but there really is no weakness. The situation itself was perhaps not one that would evoke much comedy, but it has its great moments, such as the bit where Manuel gets attacked by Basil when he can't figure out how to get into the dining room because the door is missing...then, as usual, the Major comes in and puts the icing on the situation, wondering what's going on. BASIL: "Well, I was silly enough to leave the hotel for a few minutes."


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