» #12 Nov 1996
THE GOODIES CLARION AND GLOBE
THE OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF 'THE GOODIES RULE - OK' FAN CLUB
Issue No. 12 12th November 1996
Welcome to this, our 1 year anniversary edition of The Goodies Fan Club Clarion and Globe. For a club that started with 16 members and no homepage, we’ve done remarkably well in our first year. We currently number 327 members in 9 countries and we’re getting more members every day. It’s nice to have such a huge number of people in the club and I’d like to thank you all for joining and for bringing with you your enthusiasm and love of The Goodies. Without the numerous contributions to this newsletter and the homepages from so many of you, there’d be no point in us existing. Special thanks should go to Nik Whitehead for maintaining the homepages, looking after UK members and for her numerous contributions to this newsletter and Marf Shopmyer for looking after members in the US.
This month we also celebrate the 26th Anniversary of the first episode of The Goodies. Last year we watched as the 25th Anniversary flew by, virtually un-marked. Let’s hope that in 4 years time, the 30th Anniversary will not pass us by. Four years is ample time to organise something and I’m proposing some kind of event; where I’m not sure, but I have in mind some kind of convention or celebration of some sort, perhaps we could even get all three Goodies to attend? Your thoughts would be appreciated <email@example.com>.
But now, on with the newsletter...
1. THE BILL ODDIE INTERVIEW
2. BOFFO IDEAS
4. THE GOODIES VS. THE ABC - PART 2 by Vanessa Meachan.
5. GOODIES TRIVIA QUIZ by David McAnally.
6. DID YOU KNOW?
1. THE BILL ODDIE INTERVIEW
Several people e-mailed their reaction to the transcript of Bill Oddie’s appearance on “40 Years of TV Stars”. Here again is the transcript:
BILL: Our motto, as it were, in the programme, was ‘We Do Anything, Anytime’ and that was the beauty of the programme. You could just take The Goodies approach to absolutely anything.
DON: Bill Oddie has now taken The Goodies approach to bird watching.
BILL: It’s been my hobby since I was a kid, I never really intended to make it work.
DON: A string of books and documentaries has kept Bill in the public eye.
BILL: People think of me now as the bird man, in the this country.
DON: Bill’s stand out memory of The Goodies is the collaboration of three comic geniuses, well two out of three he reckons.
BILL: Graeme and I wrote it with Tim’s pen, basically. And we used to pay him a certain amount of money to keep out of the way and, um, he had a few ideas, though we said ‘Well that’s it, thank you very much, you go away and play golf’.
So was Bill being bitchy to Tim? Here’s what several members thought:
from David McAnally <firstname.lastname@example.org>
With regard to the comment that the Goodies episodes were 'written with Tim's pen', Tim made the comment, in "From Fringe to Flying Circus" (pages: 167 to 168) that he is slower at writing than Graeme and Bill - and, therefore, in some of the later series of "The Goodies", left the writing of the episodes mostly to them. Another reason was given by Graeme - also in "From Fringe to Flying Circus" (page 160) - where Graeme commented that he and Tim got on very well together, and tended to spend a lot of time chatting with each other when they were supposed to be writing!
I don't think that Bill intended to be insulting to Tim - I think it was a joke on his part which, for some reason, came out the wrong way. Maybe Bill was referring to the funny credits given for the writers of their episode "The Goodies and the Beanstalk" where it is very noticeable that the credits for the writing for the episode says: "Graeme Garden and Bill Oddie" - and then the words, "with Tim Brooke-Taylor's biro" appears on the screen. That time, it would appear that the joke worked, as it was greeted with laughter by the studio audience. Unfortunately, a lot of people watching the "40 Years" program might not know the Goodies and so I would assume that Bill's joke would have gone 'over their heads' and not been understood by them, which is a great pity.
from Linda Kay <email@example.com>
I didn't think Bill's comments about Tim in the Australian interview were to be taken in a bad way. It's hard to judge without hearing the inflection of the way he said it, but it seems typical of their humour in general, in that Tim seemed to often by the brunt of jokes. Also in my opinion, I guess I always considered Tim more of an actor and the others as writers, but of *course* I have no doubt Tim was very funny in his own right and contributed just as much to the show as the other two. The show just wouldn't have been the same without Tim, of course! I suspect it was probably a joke taken wrong.
2. BOFFO IDEAS
You might have noticed that I haven’t updated the homepages recently. For this I apologise, like many people I’ve had all those end of year assignments to hand in. But don’t worry, as soon as I’ve finished uni for the year, I’ll start updating everything and we’ll have better than ever homepages in January, when we move to a new web site. I can promise you that there will be several pictures (thanks to David McAnally <firstname.lastname@example.org>), some automated pages where you can join the club, put up your member’s profiles and sign the petition on-line (thanks to Helen Challans <email@example.com>) and an intellectual page with actual academic analysis of The Goodies (well, a few old uni assignments from Nick McCarthy < firstname.lastname@example.org> and myself). So that’s definitely something to look forward to.
The petition to get The Goodies re-screened on ABC TV is going very well, with plenty of new members getting involved, as well as some positive feedback from non-members. Remember you can sign the petition or get a copy of the official petition form and cover letter by e-mailing me <email@example.com>.
I also received e-mail recently from Matthew Randall <firstname.lastname@example.org> who is Publicity & Publications Officer (1997) for the University of Tasmania. He has promised an article about our re-screening campaign in the student newspaper ‘Togatus’, early next year. So look out for it and thanks Matthew!
LETTER TO THE GOODIES
My apologies for not sending you all a draft letter to The Goodies telling them about the club etc. I promise I’ll do it this month, after uni’s finished. If you have any suggestions or comments regarding the letter, send them in: <email@example.com>.
EVERYTHING YOU WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT ‘ASTRONAUTS’
from Ben Evans <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Astronauts was a short lived sitcom written by Graeme Garden and Bill Oddie. The following is a extract taken from The Encyclopedia of TV Science Fiction by Roger Fulton:
* Astronauts *
Two-thirds of The Goodies, Bill Oddie and Graeme Garden, wrote this four-handed 1980s ITV sitcom about the first British space mission - a claustrophobic affair consisting of two men, one woman and Bimbo the dog.
The astronauts - all temperamentally incompatible - were locked together in a two-roomed skylab for several months. Constantly under surveillance, their only contact with the ground was an abrasive, unsympathetic American mission controller.
Given such a situation, there was no opportunity to, as Bill Oddie put it, 'bring in the funny plumber when things got dull'. Astronauts relied on the interaction between the Skylab trio - Commander Malcolm Mattocks, an ex-RAF type who was lousy at handling people, posh woman doctor Gentian Foster, and truculent technical officer David Ackroyd - and the Controller, Col. Beadle. There were gags about the jargon (Skylab was 'Pooh', mission control 'Piglet'), the tedious routine, going to the loo, homesickness, mysterious messages and space madness with Mattocks assuring the rest of the crew that 'God is my co-pilot'.
Astronauts was not a giant leap for TV comedy, and despite a networked peak-time run on Monday nights, its success was only moderate.
* Main Cast *
Cmdr. Malcolm Mattocks - Christopher Godwin
Dr Gentian Foster - Carmen Du Satoy
David Ackroyd - Barrie Rutter
Col. Beadle - Bruce Boa
Writers: Graeme Garden, Bill Oddie
Director: Douglas Argent
Producers: Tony Charles, Douglas Argent
Executive Producer: Allen McKeown
Designer: John Hickson
Developed for television by Witzend Productions/ATV Network Productions
Six colour 13-minute episodes
26 October-7 December 1981
R.I.P. MRS CARTHORSE
British actress Beryl Reid died on Saturday 13th October 1996, aged 76. She played Mrs Desiree Carthorse in The Goodies episode ‘Sex and Violence’ (#18).
I’M SORRY I HAVEN’T A CLUE
Thanks to Nik Whitehead <email@example.com> for letting me know that ISIHAC is back on BBC Radio 4 at 12.30pm on Saturdays. All you lucky Brits, make sure you tune in and let us know how it’s going. ISIHAC is an improvised game show chaired by Humphrey Lyttelton and featuring the teams of Tim Brooke-Taylor and Willie Rushton and Graeme Garden and Barry Cryer. The two teams are called on to make up limericks, sing one song to the tune of another and announce the late arrivals at a load of balls.
For those who’ve never heard ISIHAC, the third ISIHAC double cassette was released a few months ago and it’s just as good as the first two. So all those in the UK, get down to your local music store NOW! Everyone else will probably have to mail order it. You can order all three ISIHAC cassettes from:
Talking Tapes Direct
P.O. Box 190
It’s only #7.99 plus #5.50 for international postage.
Australians can get the first ISIHAC tape from their local ABC Shop or Centre for $19.95 (check out the ABC Shop online at http://www.abc.net.au/abcshop/ ) or you could contact the distributors, Allen & Unwin. As yet the other two tapes have not been released here.
Allen & Unwin
P.O. Box 8500
One particularly interesting and funny segment on the third ISIHAC tape is the new game “Celebrity Answerphones”. The teams have to come up with the answerphone message of famous people (obvious really isn’t it?). Humphrey Lyttleton, in his usual sarcastic manner, came up with one for Tim Brooke-Taylor.
“Hello, this is Tim Brooke-Taylor. I’m not in at the moment, but whatever it is, I’ll do it.”
Well, TBT has done some pretty bad sitcoms...
from Nik Whitehead <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Another 'spotted', or perhaps more accurately a 'heard'. TBT is currently hosting a show called 'Hoax' on BBC Radio 4. Three guests are asked to recount an amusing episode in their lives. One of the three is lying, and at the end of the show the audience and TBT have to decided who the hoaxer is.
It's all quite amusing really. Hoax is actually on at 12:30pm on Tuesdays (just before the lunchtime news) on U.K.s Radio 4.
I’M SORRY I’LL READ THAT AGAIN
For those in Australia, you can now tune into ABC Radio National and hear ISIRTA every Friday night at 9.30pm. ISIRTA is the classic radio sketch comedy show that was the first professional comedy work for Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden, Bill Oddie and John Cleese. The show also stared Jo Kendall (who was last seen in an episode of The Brittas Empire) and David Hatch (now head of BBC radio). The scripts were by Garden and Oddie, so it’s puns a plenty and very, very funny. You can also get three double cassettes of ISIRTA from the ABC Shop or through the above mail order address. For the frequency of Radio National in your area, visit their web site at http://www.abc.net.au/rn/ for more details and a nice summary of ISIRTA.
THE GOODIES ARE LOADED
Thanks to Daniel Frankham <email@example.com> who informed me that British Magazine, "Loaded" voted The Goodies "Greatest Living Englishmen No. 25" in their August issue. The article features a large picture and information about The Goodies. Get your newsagent to back order it now!
GOODIES BOOKS ON-LINE
Thanks to Jamie Evangelista <firstname.lastname@example.org> who told me about Amazon Books. Located at http://www.amazon.com/ Amazon Books is a bookstore on the internet with millions of titles available. Including Tim Brooke-Taylor’s Golf Bag and several books by Bill Oddie on birdwatching. I checked it out recently and found it very easy to use and fairly fast. It’s a highly recommended site, if you’re not worried about shopping on-line. If shopping on-line is a worry or you don’t have a credit card, you could try getting your local bookstore to order the books in for you. I believe Dymocks Books in Australia have an international book search service, so they might be worth a try.
Another good book search web site is BargainBot which enables you to search about 10 different on-line bookstores at once. I found several books by The Goodies at this well designed site. Check it out: http://www.ece.curtin.edu.au/~saounb/bargainbot/
4. THE GOODIES VS. THE ABC - PART 2
by Vanessa Meachen <email@example.com> with help from Rohan Byrnes.
Series Four of The Goodies appears to have been untouched by the scissors of the ABC censors - perhaps they were on holiday? (The one episode from this series which I'm unsure about is 'Goodies in the Nick' - since my ABC copy is incomplete, I can't be absolutely sure that there was nothing cut.) One interesting note is that an 'I'm knackered' was left intact in 'Invasion of the Moon Creatures', although the same phrase was regularly cut from previous (and following) series. One can only presume that this particular incident was overlooked.
Series Five, however, is a different matter. In my humble opinion this is the Goodies' finest series and many of the episodes were heavily censored, with large chunks being cut from several.
As in Part One, episode numbers and titles are from Matthew Sharp's program guide, and the cuts are shown within square brackets.
#36, Movies - 3 cuts.
BILL: Whose is this one then?
TIM: Jane, Ken or Bertrand?
[BILL: Let's hope it's the one with the big knockers, eh?
TIM: Yeah - Bertrand.]
TIM: Warhol, will you stop filming me when I'm talking? [Which brings me to the subject of sex, perversion and - Warhol, I shan't tell you again - and violence.] I simply will not - Warhol, give me that
GRAEME: Now look what you've done! It wasn't her fault - his fault!
BILL: No, it's yours! [Yours, in’it, you clapped-out old queen!
GRAEME: Well, thank you, thank you! At least I can act, which is more than I can say for some people present.
TIM: And what's that supposed to mean?
GRAEME: Well, let's face it, darling, you're no Glenda Jackson, are you?
TIM: Oh, you bitch!
BILL: Don't you speak to her like that!] She's one of the finest actresses I've ever had the pleasure to work with!
#39, Wacky Wales - 5 cuts
NB: Please excuse my imperfect transcription of Welsh rugby songs!
Amongst the pseudo-Welsh gibberish in the letter Graeme reads at the beginning of the episode are two cut phrases: 'Get stuffed' and 'indecent exposure'.
During the actual Eisteddfod, an action sequence is cut. Just after the fan-dancing girl turns into Tim, Bill comes onstage as a flasher in a dirty raincoat. He flashes at Tim, who runs away. Graeme then
enters dressed as a magician. Bill flashes at him, then turns to briefly flash at the audience. Graeme zaps Bill into a cloud of smoke and turns him into a pretty girl wearing Bill's raincoat.
REV. LLEWELLYN: Let's sing one verse of hymn no. 42, allright?
Song: 'If I were the marrying kind, which thank the Lord I'm not, The only girl that I would wed would be the goalman's daughter, And I'd play touch and she'd play touch and we'd both play touch
together [We'd be all right in the middle of the night]'
REV. LLEWELLYN: STOP!
(NB: I think this line may have been cut because Bill is shown making pumping 'up yours' gestures)
During one of the rugby matches, a small piece of footage was cut when Brother Ignatius breaks his vow of silence - we see him mouthing what looks suspiciously like 'You f***ing old cow!'
In the locker room, after they chant 'We are the holiest!', [the Druids start singing a song about 'four and twenty virgins'.
BILL: Shut up! Quiet! Please, that song, honestly! That's not holy!
REV. LLEWELLYN: Not holy? It's about flipping virgins, innit? You can't get much holier than that!]
#41, Scatty Safari - 1 cut
TIM: You don't hear Graeme complaining!
BILL: That's cause he's not here.
TIM: Well, if he was here you wouldn't hear him complaining.
GRAEME: [I'm knackered!]
#43, Lighthouse Keeping Loonies - 1 cut
NEWSREADER: Its speed was estimated by various witnesses to be somewhere between twenty and six thousand miles per hour. [These pictures were taken by a Swedish amateur photographer. (shot of nude girl)]
#45, Cunning Stunts - 5 cuts.
Tim is answering the phone.
TIM: Take that would you Bill? (Answers another phone) [Oh! That one's obscene! I'd better take it]
TIM: What've you got? I want a story with warmth, drama, human interest, [and enormous bosoms.
GRAEME: Get a load of this, Chief!]
TIM: Hit me with it!
GRAEME: OK, listen. Attractive 35-year-old pet shop owner Mona Briggs named in parrot feed scandal. Here's the picture.
TIM: It’s a a dog.
GRAEME: [Yeah, but look at the bosoms! Count the bosoms!]
TIM: Right, that's it then - what a headline! [Goodies Clarion and Globe Reporter Pulls High Class Crumpet!]
MILDRED: Well, you make me laugh, too, but I'm not going to marry you.
TIM: [Nice one, Mildred.
BILL: Oh, wait a minute, wait a minute! Yeah, I see it all now! That's what you wanted all along, eh? A bit of crumpet round the office, eh? Oh yeah, course it is. Yeah, a quick snog behind the filing cabinet, yeah, that's what you two are after, isn't it?
TIM: I'm sure Mildred is not that kind of girl.
BILL: Oh yes, she is.
TIM: Is she really? (Composes himself) I don't know how you can say that. Mildred is quite clearly ideally suited for the job on account of her long legs - experience, experience! She has extremely
impressive bosoms - breasts - um, qualifications. She has a splendidly pert cheeky pinchable little - little - little degree in economics and sociology, and a terrific bum - bottom - and I'm sure we will all enjoy groping her, working her, with her,] so kindly push off.
MILDRED: And then if you're not doing anything tonight, you can come and have a spot of dinner with me. [Then back to my place for a bit of way-hey-hey!]
#48, The End - 1 cut.
TIM: I've not been easy to live with.
BILL: No you haven't, that's absolutely correct, he hasn't you know.
TIM: Pay no attention to him. [He's pissed.
GRAEME: Has he?
It's interesting to note that in the fifth series several very large portions of dialogue were cut - and rather than removing small offending jokes that occur together, in some cases the censors appear to have made it easier for themselves by removing not only the jokes but the entire chunk of dialogue in between. In addition, the removal of some pieces blunts other jokes - for example, Mildred's sexual harassment of Tim is funnier when viewed in the light of his earlier comments about her.
Next month I'll be bringing you the cuts made to series Six, Seven and Eight of The Goodies, including the most-censored Goodies episode ever - see if you can guess which one it was!
5. GOODIES TRIVIA QUIZ
by David McAnally<firstname.lastname@example.org>
THIS MONTH’S QUESTIONS - THE GOODIES / MONTY PYTHON CONNECTION
1. Which Goody is mentioned in both of the following Monty Python books: "Monty Python's Big Red Book" and "The Brand New Monty Python Papperbok"?
2. Which Goody appeared in a trailer for "Monty Python and the Holy Grail"?
3. In which book, by a Monty Python member, was there a fictitious attempt by the Goodies to do their own version of "The Holy Grail"?
4. While at Cambridge University, which Goody swapped lecture notes with which Monty Python member?
ANSWERS TO LAST MONTH’S QUESTION
In 1975 The Goodies released their hit single “The Funky Gibbon”. What was the highest position it reached in the British charts?
ANSWER: Number 4. (Source: Comedy Review #1, March 1996.)
6. DID YOU KNOW?
Here’s a rather interesting Goodies story from Keith Topping <email@example.com>, who is co-writer of The Guinness Book of Comedy Television and maintainer of the Goody Goody Yum Yum site ( http://www.netlink.co.uk/users/humornet/goodies1.html ). A few years ago John Peel (British radio DJ) appeared on a BBC radio show talking about why he was a target for The Goodies. Here’s the story:
Peel was a big mate of Bill Oddie in the late 60s (Bill had made a record for Peelie's short-lived record label, Dandelion, in around 1970) and, of course, he appears (in a brilliant take off of Jimmy Savile OBE) in 'Superstar'. And then all of a sudden around the 1975 season of The Goodies he's in with Max Bygraves and Nicholas Parsons as 'targets' for the lads. He 'bores for Britain' in 'Daylight Robbery on the Orient Express', and there's a very unflattering caricature of him in 'Punkerella'. The reason for all of this was that he gave one of their singles a bit of a slagging in 'Sounds' magazine (probably 'Funky Gibbon'). One night Peel was at the Marquee Club in Charing Cross Road (that's a celebrity hang-out in London, for the uninitiated) and Graeme and Tim (who were both rather drunk) came up to him and started having a go at him. Peelie reckoned they were so out of it that there could have been some serious trouble, but fortunately for all concerned, Robert Plant (lead singer with Led Zeppelin) promptly appeared and told them to sod off and, as he was six foot two with muscles on his muscles, they did.
So there you have it, a bit of a gossipy one this month, but interesting because we now know why Peel was so often ridiculed by The Goodies.
That’s it for this 1st birthday edition of the C&G. Thanks to all the contributors for all the past newsletters and let’s hope there are many newsletters to come.
This is an archive newsletter of The Goodies Rule - OK! International Fan Club (copyright The Goodies Rule - OK! 1996). Some of the information in this newsletter may now be incorrect. Current information can be obtained from http://www.goodiesruleok.com.