Benidorm (tomorrow, ITV1, 9pm); Mumbai Calling (tonight, ITV1, 10pm)

MADGE is upset. Here she is on the beach in Benidorm in her wedding dress, but lacking one thing – a conscious bridegroom.

Why is she crying?, someone asks. “It might have something to do with the happiest day of her life ending with her husband-to-be drop-kicked by a flying Yorkshire pudding, potentially making her a widow before she got married,” suggests a guest at the wedding that never was.

Most brides in this situation would turn white. Not tanned Madge. Followers of Benidorm know that she’s the queen of the sunbeds. And a bit of a drag queen too, as a cigarette is never far from her lips.

As played by Sheila Reid – in real life a softly-spoken Scotswoman – she’s one of the stars of Benidorm, the series that put an end to the idea that ITV comedy series were no laughing matter.

The show, written by Derren Litten, has delivered good ratings and plenty of laughs with its observations of the British abroad on holiday. It was nominated for a British Comedy Award and won the National TV Award for best comedy on TV last year.

That success has ensured a one-hour special tomorrow to keep fans happy before the third series reaches the screen. It picks up where the last series ended, with the wedding on the beach of Madge and Mel, whose previous appearance poolside in a thong provided one of the series’ many memorably disgusting moments.

Mel has been knocked unconscious by rogue paraglider The Oracle (Johnny Vegas), who was last seen flying out to sea. He returns to dry land eventually – although nearly wiping out a family of Germans in the process – to join all the regulars pool-side.

The plot involves a hostage situation, which even manages a nod to the Oscarwinning movie No Country For Old Men.

Kidnapping Madge on her wedding day isn’t a good idea, as Enrique “The Rat”

Lopez discovers to his cost.

He’s on the receiving end of her sharp tongue. “We used to have a saying about your type during the war – those who think they’re summat will always amount to nowt come spring bank holiday,”

she tells him.

Back at the hotel, life continues as what passes for normal for the holiday makers. Swingers Donald and Jacqueline are off to the cinema to see “films for the broadminded” but can’t choose between Forrest Hump and Sleeping With The Enema.

Kate, who had the fling with the barman, thinks she might be pregnant, although the doctor isn’t so sure. “As Les Dennis said in Family Fortunes, ‘if it’s up there, I’ll give you the money myself’,” he says after examining her.

Mick is arrested and sent to prison.

Look on the bright side, wife Janice tells him, it can’t get any worse.

YES it can – he might have had to watch Mumbai Calling, ITV1’s new comedy series and one that’s definitely not the new Benidorm. Old rubbish, more like.

I fear I may be partly responsible for ITV commissioning the series. When the pilot episode was shown, I wrote in The Northern Echo: “It’s not cringe-makingly awful, so there’s hope. I’d suggest ITV give the go-ahead. They might just have another hit like Benidorm.”

Okay, I admit it. I was wrong. Mumbai Calling is embarrasingly, woefully unfunny.

The series is only notable for being filmed entirely in Mumbai. Nice scenery, shame about the script.

Sanjeev Bhaskar, one of several credited writers, plays Kenny Gupta, who’s sent to India to run a call centre run by Dev Rajah (Nitin Ganatra, on leave from playing Masoon Ahmed in EastEnders). Complication comes when Terri Johnson (Daisy Beaumont) is sent from London HQ to assess the business. Before she arrives, they think Terri is a man, which gives you an idea of the level of humour.

Although they sink lower with jokes about a blocked toilet. Which is where they should have flushed the script.