Fans in Viet­nam love Craiglang’s kings of com­edy

The Sunday Post (Inverness) - - Exclusive - By Bill Gibb bgibb@sun­day­post.com

STILL GAME has gone from Scots sen­sa­tion to a Far East favourite.

The small- screen adventures of Jack, Vic­tor and the rest of the Craiglang gang have proved a sur­prise smash in Viet­nam.

The first five se­ries of the BBC Scot­land show are avail­able on Net­flix there and the stars be­lieve its pop­u­lar­ity is down to more older peo­ple liv­ing with their fam­i­lies. Ford Kier­nan, 55, who plays perky pensioner Jack Jarvis, said: “We heard that fam­i­lies there look af­ter the el­derly in the home as there wasn’t the same pen­sion sys­tem. So they get the idea of pen­sion­ers be­ing wily and hav­ing some sort of value to so­ci­ety.”

It’s a way of life that still ex­ists, but is now chang­ing.

“This was def­i­nitely the old way,” said Lien Chan, man­ager of Nams Viet­namese restau­rant in East Kil­bride. “You weren’t put into a care home but would be looked af­ter by the fam­ily. I still have that cul­ture and my fa­ther stays with me. It’s not so much the way with younger gen­er­a­tions, though.”

The sit­com fol­low­ing the pen­sion­ers and their pals in a fic­tional Glasgow hous­ing es­tate is far from the first Scot­tish show to win a world­wide audience.

Monarch of the Glen was es­sen­tial Sun­day night view­ing be­tween 2000 and 2005 but the se­ries, set in the Highlands, won huge au­di­ences in English-speak­ing coun­tries as well as Viet­nam and Dubai.

Hamish Mac­beth, filmed in Plock­ton, also won ac­claim abroad and, af­ter at­tract­ing 11 mil­lion view­ers for three sea­sons be­tween 1995 and 1997, the vil­lage bobby, played by Trainspot­ting star Robert Car­lyle, proved a huge hit in Aus­tralia.

Greg Hem­phill and Ford Kier­nan’s sit­com has proved en­dear­ing in a coun­try where fam­ily cul­ture re­volves around old folk.

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