French found the character of Rev Geraldine Granger just too damned nice to be in anyway amusing. A fair few folk would agree with her. Then again, it hasn't done Miranda Hart any harm; a certain demographic just love upper middle class women making t*ts out of themselves.
Speaking on Desert Island Discs, French said: "I thought, 'How on earth do you play a central character who's so blooming good?' I thought, 'Where are the flaws? Where is the monster in this woman?' That's what I understand comedy to be. Alice was a very funny character from the off. But anyway, he [sitcom creator Richard Curtis] wouldn't let me play it.
Despite her concerns, the show was a hit, running for a whopping 13 years. The final episode, broadcast on New Year's Day 2007, was watched by 12.8 million people.
Is it any wonder they're bringing it back...
Back in October, Chortle.co.uk reported: "French revealed on ITV's Daybreak that the sitcom set is still in storage, and could be retrieved if the show makes a comeback if her character Geraldine is promoted. She said writer Richard Curtis announced the end of the show only to stop speculation - but suggested he secretly had plans for a revival. French said: 'We had 13 happy years. When we got to the end I said to Richard, "You have to say it's finished because people keep asking about it." So he said, "OK, it’s finished." We had the wrap party, we had a few tears and on the way out, the producer said to me, "He’s asked us to store the set." I think he's probably waiting for women to be officially made bishops'."
We'll be waiting, so.