Carry On Matron (1972) *

Last and least-justifed of the medical Carry Ons, but also my favourite. Like Loving, it’s pure sitcom and doesn’t waste much time on plot development, though there’s loads going on: Sid in disguise as a crook trying to steal birth control pills (his gang are Kenneth Cope as his son, a wildly unsympathetic figure in At Your Convenience here made Dale-level loveable in drag, Bernard Bresslaw in a long wig and Bill Maynard: that’s a whole film’s fun just there), Williams as perhaps his most grotesque neurotic of all, obsessively hypochondriacal and at one point convinced by a chance comment that he might be changing sex, Scott as randy Dr Prodd trying to prod all the student nurses, and that resentment-charged waiting room for expectant fathers, where Kenneth Connor’s frustrated British Rail employee arrives every day for news of the baby that never arrives and Jack Douglas shuffles in for his one-joke walk-on series debut. Jacki Piper, alas, bids us adieu.