The Friday Goodies: Puppet Power

(Photo: BBC)
(Photo: BBC)

“Time for bed!”

Forget the last days of disco. As the list of Operation Yewtree celebrity arrests grows ever longer, the 1970s seem more and more like the last days of the Roman Empire.

So, it was with some trepidation that TVClaw revisited the 1970s BBC archive for The Friday Goodies this week.

But it was worth it. This week’s installment, “Puppet Power”, is pure slapstick.

The Goodies head to the Prime Minister’s country retreat, Chequers, to take on a secret puppet cabal headed by the evil geniuses known as Sooty and Sweep.

Yes, the puppets are running the country. And compared to what we now know was lurking behind the wings in the ’70s, they don’t seem as menacing as they did the first time around. (Apart from the giant Zebedee, obviously.)

If you’ve ever had nightmares about being chased by Dougall, or being attacked by a life-sized Andy Pandy, you might want to to look away now.

Follow me on Twitter: @TVClaw


The Friday Goodies: Beanz Meanz Heanz

(Photo: BBC)

“If I was a millionaire, and lived off private means, I’d still spend all my money on lovely, hot baked beans!”

Welcome back, Friday Goodies fans. Here are four minutes or so of nostalgia in the shape of Tim Brooke-Taylor’s Heanz Beanz Boy.

A perfect spoof of Heinz’ television adverts from the 1960s and ’70s, Beanz Boy is a nervous child actor who does his best to remember his lines. When he flubs them the director is very cross indeed.


And here’s one of the ads that inspired Beanz Boy.

The aspirational Heinz Beanz Boy was a chirpy cockney who used to breeze in and announce his grand ambitions, such as “I’m going to travel around the world.”

However, his plans were generally thwarted by his impossibly posh mother who stifled his attempts at greatness by plying him with platefuls of steaming hot baked beans.

Eat your beans, and you’ll never leave this house, darling!

The Friday Goodies: Ecky Thump

(Photo: BBC)

It’s a classic Kung Fu spoof, featuring Bill Oddie as the young grasshopper in search of enlightenment.

Who knew it could be found out the back of a fish and chip shop in Rochdale?

“Ecky Thump” has it all: beautiful maidens, flat caps, black pudding, tripe. It even boasts a Lancastrian version of Kwai Chang Caine’s blind mentor, the venerable Master Po.


Follow me on Twitter: @TVClaw

The Friday Goodies: Earthanasia

(Photo: BBC)

“What haven’t I done yet? Or what have I done that I enjoyed so much I want to do it again?

The Goodies freak out after they hear an announcement on the radio that the world will be blown up that night.

With less than half an hour to go, they scramble to work out what they want to do with the last few  minutes of their life. Cue regression therapies and fantasies about the Three Degrees.

Follow me on Twitter: @TVClaw

The Friday Goodies: Arthur C. Clarke

“A common or garden rhinoceros, floating upside down in the water, holding a French loaf in its mouth, balancing a tortoise … “

Yes, The Friday Goodies are back. This week, it’s their spot-on spoof of Arthur C. Clarke and his Mysterious World television series.

Or is it?

Follow me on Twitter: @TVClaw

The Friday Goodies: Kitten Kong

Last Friday I was at my friend Sandra’s funeral. Amidst the tears and the laughter and the sadness there was also some navel-gazing as I considered my own footprints in the sand.

I decided to make many changes — lose weight, spend more time with the kids, give up drinking — but a small one that has cheered me up immensely is The Friday Goodies.

As the summer inexorably gives way to autumn I’m trying to stave off the suffocating greyness of London winter with a weekly infusion of possibly my favourite-ever TV comedy series, The Goodies.

If you only know Bill Oddie as an irascible Twitcher, or Graeme Garden as the dad of the bloke from Scissor Sisters, or Tim Brooke-Taylor as that bloke from Radio 4, tune in for The Friday Goodies. You might learn something.

First up, vintage Goodies: “Kitten Kong.” Say hello, Twinkle.

Follow me on Twitter: @TVClaw