Camping is not the best of the Carry Ons; not by a long way, but it is the most typical. Sid is climbing over bodies to get at Babs. Meanwhile, Babs will take whatever she can get and if Sid is not quick enough, she will soon turn elsewhere. Bernie is the lovable idiot who wouldn’t know what to do with it even if he had the chance. Joan is well on the way to becoming the Carry On battle-axe, Hattie is a sexually frustrated grotesque while Kenneth is a sexually repressed one and nobody quite knows what Charlie is. Everything the Carry On films represents is here in a muddy field at Pinewood. It’s magnificent – there isn’t a single joke that isn’t milked (including the one about the bull) to within an inch of parody, not a stereotype is left un-poked.
It’s far from flawless, but there really is not much to criticise in the film itself. Everyone’s playing their most beloved Carry On stereotype and they all do it so well. The story is deliberately flimsy but Talbot Rothwell’s script is bursting with gags. While there’s not as much subtlety or word-play as, for example, Carry On Henry or Doctor there is plenty of physical comedy and some classic set pieces.
In Carry On terms, Camping is the perfect storm - a huge cast of regulars, a script that never lets up in its breathless pursuit of gags and a situation with which can all identify. It is all here and it is exhaustingly funny.