Often referred to as Ab Fab by its fans the show stars Jennifer Saunders (French & Saunders) and Joanna Lumley the show portraits the life of two wealthy woman indulging in drugs, alcohol and sex, aspiring to attain perennial youth by living a rock'n'roll lifestyle.
The character Edina Monsoon played by Saunders is named after the film Eddie Monsoon: A Life? by her husband Adrian Edmondson (The Young Ones, Filthy, Rich and Catflap, Bottom), who also performs the title song of the show, together with Julie Driscoll: This Wheel's on Fire by Bob Dylan and Rick Danko. For legal reasons the song is replaced with an instrumental version on some Region 1 DVD releases.
Joanna Lumley plays Edina's equally irresponsible friend Patsy Stone. Both women often clash with Saffron (nicknamed Saffy, played by Julia Sawalha), Edina's daughter who tries (mostly unsuccessful) to talk some sense into them and make them behave like adults.
The show is notable for a vast number of cameos, including appearances of Helena Bonham Carter, Jo Brand, Emma Bunton, Naomi Campbell, Minnie Driver, Britt Ekland, Marianne Faithfull, Dawn French (The Vicar of Dibley, French & Saunders), Mariella Frostrup (Coupling), Jean-Paul Gaultier, Whoopi Goldberg, Germaine Greer, Debbie Harry, Miranda Hart (Hyperdrive), Tom Hollander (Rev), Elton John, Kate Moss, Suzi Quatro, Zandra Rhodes, Miranda Richardson (Blackadder), Twiggy, Ruby Wax and many others more.
Running originally in three series form 1992 to 1995 followed by a two part TV film The Last Shout (1996), the show continued with a fourth series in 2001, which was followed by a special (2002), a fifth series (2003) and again two specials in 2004 and 2005. A twentieth anniversary special consisting of four episodes was aired 2011/2012.