GOODIES COR COMICS SYNOPSIS #17
(by Linda Kay)
(from C&G 88 – April 2003)
28 April, 1973 No. 40
It was always entertaining when the Goodies set foot in another country. Of course with the restrictions of a television budget often times various locales around London would have to substitute as a foreign country (and really, are the beaches in France and the beaches in Britain all that different? Don't answer that!).
In the comics, characters can go anywhere, anytime (the Goodies slogan!) without any monetary (or physical) restrictions whatsoever. So a jaunt to the Sahara was not only a possibility but an inevitability! And that's exactly where our heroes are headed in this month's Cor!! comic up for review.
COVER ARTWORK: The Goodies are featured in a large panel to the left of a short Gus Gorilla comic (running vertically on the right side). The rather odd pronouncement of "The Goodies Get the Hump" is blazoned above the cartoon Goodies who are astride a running camel. Tim looks startled as he tries to steer in front, Bill is squashed between not only Tim and Graeme but the two humps in the middle and Graeme seems to be enjoying the ride in the back. A startled Egyptian is watching them pass and a pyramid and the Sphinx are visible in the background. SEE STORY - INSIDE is written at the bottom.
Header: THE GOODIES GO ON A MISSION IN THE SAHARA - YOU'VE GOT TO "SAND" IT TO THEM!
A large housewife has entered the Goodies' office and is holding out a plate of sausages piled atop ... something ... toward Graeme, who is looking rather ill at the sight. Tim watches with interest from behind a desk as Bill starts to inspect a globe with a magnifying glass.
HOUSEWIFE: My husband, Dr. Livingrock, disappeared in the Sahara Desert 25 years ago! I want you to find him - his dinner's getting cold!
GRAEME: We'll leave no grain of sand unturned!
The Goodies don pith helmets and explorer's gear and ride their trandem to the airport. Bill, whose been left carrying all of their provisions on the back, is weighing down the tail end of the bike so that they are doing a wheelie the entire way. A little biplane is seen puttering above the airport.
TIM: Sahara, here we come!
BILL: I don't know why we had to bring all this stuff! A bucket and spade is quite enough!
We next see the plane the Goodies are taking to the Sahara soaring in the air ... it is an airplane with two humps on the back.
UNKNOWN GOODIE: Why couldn't we have gone by jumbo jet - this thing's giving me the hump!
ANOTHER UNKNOWN GOODIE: Don't be silly, *camels* go to the desert, not jumbos!
THE GOODIES ARRIVED IN AFRICA ...
We see Bill and Graeme struggling to climb what appears to be a steep, jagged mountain. A vulture flies near them menacingly as Bill struggles to pull them up (Graeme is hanging onto the rope tied to Bill for dear life).
GRAEME: See, we needed all that gear to climb the foothills to the desert!
BILL: I still - puff - think we should have gone round them!
A wider shot of the scene shows they are actually climbing the side of the Great Pyramid (we also see Graeme has an anchor trailing behind him on a rope). Tim is reclined on top of the Sphinx in the foreground casually sipping on a soda (although the Sphinx looks rather annoyed to have Tim sitting on his head).
TIM: I 'sphinx' Bill's right!
THE GOODIES GOT TO THE SAHARA ...
We see our heroes crawling along in the sand, weary and gasping. In actuality they're barely out of town, which we see in the background (a bus is heading there). A litter basket to one side bears the sign "Keep the Sahara Tidy" (apparently someone couldn't be bothered because a discarded soda bottle is also in plain sight). The vulture is now sitting on Tim's back.
TIM: Ten whole minutes under the blazing sun - I can't go on!
BILL: Water! Water!
Tim and Graeme spot an ice cream truck parked near a pleasant little oasis and struggle to their feet, heading for it. The discouraged vulture flies off. Bill makes no move to follow them.
GRAEME: An oasis! We're saved!
BILL: Huh, it's not really there - it's only a MIRAGE!
Bill finally gets up and follows when Graeme and Tim are getting their ice cream cones from the truck (which offers such delights as Cleopatra's Special, King Tut Kornet and Sheba Sherbert).
BILL: It's all imagination! You're seeing things!
GRAEME: My imagination's strawberry flavour!
Bill doesn't watch where he's walking and slams into a palm tree, with the result that several coconuts fall and bonk him on the head. Tim and Graeme watch this with some amusement as they enjoy their ice creams.
TIM: Ho, ho! Bill's trouble is NOT seeing things - but I bet he's seeing stars now!
Bill rubs his aching head (complete with lump) as Tim eyes a huge palm frond which has fallen from the tree. Graeme in turn eyes some picnic tables in an area marked "Official Picnic Site."
TIM: Look at the size of this leaf!
GRAEME: I've got an idea! We'll make a sand yacht!
We next see the Goodies sailing across the desert on the sand yacht Graeme has created by hooking up the palm frond like a sail (which takes up the whole front) and attaching wheels to the picnic table top upon which they are riding. Bill and Graeme are busy blowing into the frond to make them move while Tim guides the sail. An Egyptian is flying from the back of his camel, which apparently has been spooked by the strange sight.
BILL: This is great, Graeme - except we can't see where we're going!
TIM: That doesn't seem to matter! There's nothing to get in the way in the desert!
All at once they crash into a tent and are sent flying forward (Tim saluting and at attention as he goes). Bill crashes right through the tent's canvas roof with a THUMP!
TIM: Yikes! We've run out of desert!
Bill lands on his head onto the head of a man sitting on a cot and reading a book inside the tent.
BILL: Oof! Dr. Livingrock, I presume? We've come to rescue you!
DR. LIVINGROCK: Grough! I don't want to be rescued. I'm happy where I am!
Tim and Graeme peer into the tent through the hole Bill has made as Bill motions to the two poles holding up the tent. A cowering Dr. Livingrock attempts to hide under the covers on his cot.
DR. LIVINGROCK: I'm not budging from this tent!
BILL: You two are the tallest - take the place of those tent poles, I've an idea!
Graeme and Tim don the tent like a long gown, walking with the frustrated Dr. Livingrock between them, all three of their heads poking out through the top. Bill is leading them through the desert with a compass.
GRAEME: Come on, we'll be home soon!
TIM: Grrr, I know we're in-tent on doing a good job, but this is driving me up the pole!
BACK IN ENGLAND ...
The Goodies and Dr. Livingrock are making their way through hellish street traffic as they try to cross a road. Cars and buses are racing by on all sides and they cling to the center island for
DR. LIVINGROCK: Argh! I don't know how you get used to all this rush!
TIM: I've got news for you ... you DON'T!
They next attempt to board the Underground, all being pushed and jostled mercilessly by the commuter throng.
DR. LIVINGROCK: Groan, oh for my desert! Sand is so peaceful!
GRAEME: Oof! He's got something there!
BILL: (Thought balloon) IDEA
We see the Goodies relaxing inside a tent surrounded by sand, sharing sandwiches and looking quite cozy. A telephone outside starts to ring.
BILL: This is smashing - pass me a SANDwich!
TIM: I'd better see who's on the phone!
As Tim steps out of the tent to talk on the phone, we see they are actually inside their offices where mounds of sand has been piled and the tent pitched atop. Bill and Graeme munch on their sandwiches as Tim looks back at them.
TIM: (Into phone) All the sandpits in the children's playgrounds have disappeared, you say? Well, I'm afraid we've got rather a lot on our plate at the moment!
Sign-Off Line: The Goodies are "pitched" into another adventure next week!
Additional material from this issue:
The Goodies Kids' T-Shirt ad which appeared in the previous issue of Cor!! also appears in this one.
RATING (using the BLACK PUDDING RATING SYSTEM):
II - Fair-y punkmother.
Not quite as bad as the comic we reviewed last issue, but close. At least this time some of the settings and jokes were more amusing, but it's more the incidental bits which are appealing. The drawings of the Goodies riding their trandem in a wheelie, the sand yacht Graeme invented and their struggle through the desert (which they'd only been out in for about ten minutes) are all clever and cute. But the dialogue once again just isn't up to par ... the puns are fairly weak and don't pack a lot of punch, and there's just not enough humorous dialogue in this outing. We never do find out if Dr. Livingrock got back to his wife or not. The end is amusing but not boffo. The artwork really pulls this comic out of the basement, it's just a shame the story fell a bit flat. Considering all the things the Goodies *could* have done in Egypt, this is adventure is simply a bit of a disappointment.