Heil Honey I’m Home was so controversial that the series was canceled after just one episode in 1990. According to the April 1 issue of Entertainment Weekly, the opening scene of Episode 1 was a man striding into his apartment as he raised his right arm. He shouts at his wife, who seems to be busy in the kitchen and thoroughly annoyed that her husband was late for dinner again.
The man was Adolph Hitler. The British sitcom only aired one episode in 1990 before being canceled. The show was set in 1938 Berlin and depicted the Hitlers casually living next door to a Jewish couple, the Goldensteins. Neil McCaul played Adolph Hitler, and Denica Fairman played his wife, Eva Braun.
The series was canceled quickly, but the showrunner Geoff Atkinson, who produced HBO’s Getting On, claims he meant no harm and explains how he came up with the controversial plot.
Heil Honey I’m Home Showrunner and creator, Geoff Atkinson revealed that he had been writing comedy awhile and he had two vague ideas for a show. One was about Adolph Hitler, and the other centered around Jesus as a 16-year-old teenager. He decided to go with Hitler. In hindsight, he believes he should have gone with Jesus.
“I like big high-concept shows that take a risk. Paul Jackson went to the channel with Heil Honey I’m Home pitch and they said okay. It happened very quickly,” Atkinson explained.
Geoff said that his main goal was to laugh at bullies like Adolph. He noted that someone is probably writing a sitcom about Trump.
“I would love to write a sitcom about Trump.”
Atkinson believes the sitcom failed because people were sensitive to the fact that it was Hilter they were making fun of. He said that people weren’t open to see him in a humorous way.
Y porque la curiosidad me mataba…
— Israel Barrera (@israbarrera_007) February 21, 2017
“I was worried the argument would be that you can’t make fun of Hitler. But he cries out for it,” Geoff explained. “If you have a monster like that, no one wants to make fun of him, which makes him even more of a monster.”
“Everyone working on the series knew the sensitivities we were working with and the last thing they wanted to do is offend anyone. The channel wanted something fresh, and I still think we delivered something unique.”
Geoff said if he had to do it all over again he would have done some things differently. One thing he wished he would have done differently was to show the tension between the Hitlers and Goldensteins. The Goldensteins big dilemma was never fully addressed in the episode, and it was important.
“The Goldensteins’ big decision in 1938 is whether to leave Berlin. There was genuine tension between the families. I just don’t think we conveyed the point well.”
Atkinson said that he has never felt ashamed by the series. He knows that his motives were good and he wasn’t trying to make fun of the Holocaust survivors in any way.
Let's discuss that Britain had a tv show named Heil Honey I'm Home! pic.twitter.com/YXG7fuQSjM
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“If we were trying to make fun of the Holocaust survivors, we would deserve the hate,” Geoff explained.
“I never felt we were trying to belittle that in any way. It was fun but came at a price and I wished I could do it again. If Netflix called and told me that you can do six more episodes, I would be the happiest person on the planet.”
Have you seen the British sitcom called Heil Honey I’m Home?
Heil Honey I’m Home is available on YouTube.
[Featured Image by Hulton Archive/Getty Images]