[Home]The Goodies

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A surreal British television comedy series of the 1970's combining elements of sketch and situation comedy, starring [Graeme Garden]?, [Tim Brooke-Taylor]?, and Bill Oddie. The characters played up to certain stereotypes, but they were not necessarily based on the actor playing the character. This is not immediately obvious as there was no distinct character naming.

The series' basic structure revolved the trio offering themselves for hire (with the tagline "Anything, anywhere, anytime") to perform all sorts of ridiculous tasks. This simple device allowed the show to explore all sorts of off-the-wall scenarios for comedic potential. Sometimes these were thinly-disguised comments on current events (for example, a show where the government of the day implemented "apart-height", where short people were separated from the rest of society), where others were more abstractly philosophical (where the trio spend New Year's Eve together waiting for the world to be blown up by government edict).

The show featured extensive use of slapstick (often performed using stop-motion photography), contemporary pop music (in the loosest possible sense of the word) composed by Oddie (some of which went on to commercial success in the British charts, among them the dreaded hit single "Funky Gibbon", a staple of scout-hut discos of the period) as well as character-based comedy around the personas of Garden (a "mad scientist"), Brooke-Taylor (a conservative, sexually-repressed, Tory-voting, fan of the Royal Family), and Oddie (a scruffy, occasionally violent left-leaning anarchist).

In reality, Garden is a qualified doctor, Brooke-Taylor is not really conservative, and Oddie is a pacifist bird-lover.

The three "Goodies" met during the eight year production of the mid-to-late 1960's BBC radio show "I'm Sorry, I'll Read That Again", which also included John Cleese (who went on to become a founding member of Monty Python).

The show benefited greatly from the input of director [Bob Spiers]?, who later directed [Absolutely Fabulous]?, Press Gang, and Spiceworld?.

The show ran from the early 70's through to the early 1980's on BBC. The Goodies never had a formal contract with BBC, and when the BBC Light Entertainment budget for 1980(?) was consumed by the production of The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy TV series, The Goodies signed a contract with ITV. However, the show stopped soon afterwards.


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Last edited November 30, 2001 6:28 pm by ManningBartlett (diff)