Sybil is in the hospital waiting to have an operation for an ingrown toenail. While she is incapacitated it is up to Basil to run the hotel. One of his responsibilities is to hold a fire drill. Confusion and panic ensue when the drill becomes a real fire due to Manuel setting the kitchen on fire. In the mayhem Basil ends up getting knocked out and lands in hospital.
Basil sneaks back to the hotel where a group of German tourists are checking in. Due to the smack on the head Basil begins insulting the tourists and speaking in a German accent. He ends up goose stepping out of the dining room.
Basil tries to hang up a moose head.
Major Gowen thinks the moose head can talk.
This is the only episode that does not have a Fawlty Towers sign in it. Instead, a picture of a hospital is the establishing shot.
During the scene where Manuel sets fire to the kitchen, two chemicals were put on his clothes to create smoke. The chemicals ended up burning his skin and gave him second degree chemical burns on his arm and back. Andrew Sachs, who played Manuel, was a German Jew by birth. He was asked to dub his own lines for the German syndication. He had no problem with the language, but he did have an issue trying to speak German with a Spanish accent.
In this episode, Basil, while in a concussive stupor, quite often says “Don’t mention the war”. The phrase became popular, and Cleese turned it into a song for the 2006 FIFA World Cup titled “Don’t mention the war” AKA “Don’t mention the world cup”. The phrase has since become a Colloquialism. The episode has been controversial ever since it was televised and, from time to time, has been banned.
Don't Mention the War