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KITTEN KONG - THE GOLDEN ROSE OF MONTREUX 1972
(from C&G #55 July 2000)
Among the incredible array of items which Tim Brooke-Taylor brought to Australia for the charity auction at Kitten Kon, there were a few copies of a small booklet which the BBC prepared for the entry of The Goodies episode "Kitten Kong" for "The Golden Rose of Montreux 1972". In addition to an excellent array of photographs, the booklet also contains some very interesting text about The Goodies itself, and Lisa Manekofsky (a proud owner of a copy of the booklet after her successful auction bid!) has kindly transcribed the text below for everyone's enjoyment:
THE GOODIES were first created by BBC TV in 1970. The format was simple: the three characters, the Goodies - as opposed to the Baddies, would do anything, any time. Especially for money. Tim Brooke-Taylor is the English public school boy, Graeme Garden the scientist and Bill Oddie the hippie. All exaggerations of their real characters.
THE GOODIES are in the television tradition of the BBC's 'It's a Square World', 'Marty', and 'Monty Python's Flying Circus'. The plots are outrageous and surrealistic. They are masters of visual humour and instead of relying on verbal gags, draw freely from cartoons in the use of zany effect and under-cranked film Furthermore, as Tim, Graeme and Bill are the show's writers as well as the stars, they go to work with tremendous gusto.
In this festival episode, the Goodies decide that fortunes are to be made from the wealthy owners of loony animals. They set up a clinic and all goes relatively well until they come across Twinkle, a tiny kitten with enormous strength. The Goodies decide she is too strong for her size and put her on a special diet to cure this.
Twinkle attains enormous proportions with an appetite to match. Let out for the night, she devours the whole of St. Paul's Cathedral plus the GPO Tower and licks her lips at the prospect of Buckingham Palace. The Goodies obviously have to do something about Twinkle. After some dangerous and hair-raising adventures they do succeed in bringing her back to normal size. But someone, or something has been eating the kitten's special food.
[a photo of each of the Goodies appears under the following descriptions of their characters]:
TIM BROOKE-TAYLOR - the respectable front-man, representative of the Establishment.
GRAEME GARDEN - the back-room boy who produces all the clever stuff.
BILL ODDIE - the aggressive one!
TIM BROOKE-TAYLOR, born Buxton, Derbyshire in 1940 was schooled at Winchester and graduated with an Economics and Law degree from Cambridge University. Now lives in London with his wife and two sons. Tim enjoys Buster Keaton films, roast lamb, ski-ing and travelling. He appeared in all the BBC TV 'Marty' programmes with Marty Feldman, and wrote and co-starred with Graeme and Bill in the BBC Television series 'Broaden Your Mind'.
GRAEME GARDEN, born Aberdeen, Scotland in 1943. Educated at Repton, Scotland and Cambridge University; qualified in Medicine at King's College, London. Graeme is married and has a little girl. In his spare time he likes painting and 'playing the banjo in private'. Co-writer with Bill Oddie of the 'Doctor in the House' series for London Weekend Television.
BILL ODDIE, born Rochdale, Lancashire in 1941. He went to school in Birmingham and then to Cambridge. Whilst at Cambridge he wrote scripts for BBC Television's 'That Was The Week That Was'. He has a wife and two children and lives in London. Bill is an enthusiastic bird-watcher; enjoys all sport, plays drums, saxophone and gramophone. Co-writer with Graeme of BBC TV's 'Twice a Fortnight' programme.
The team's 'togetherness' and timing stems from the fact that they have known each other for years - all three were Cambridge undergraduates and members of the famous Cambridge Footlights Club. After gaining individual fame as writers of tv comedy they came together in 1964 to write and perform in one of BBC Radio's most praised comedy series 'I'm Sorry I'll Read That Again' which speedily became cult listening.
JOHN HOWARD DAVIES had a successful career as a child-star and will always be remembered for his performance as 'Oliver' in the film Oliver Twist, directed by David Lean in 1948. After a public school education and National Service in the Royal Navy, John hitch-hiked to Australia where he acted in the theatre for four years. He joined the BBC in 1967 and has subsequently produced very many BBC Television hit comedy programmes including 'All Gas and Gaiters', 'Monty Python's Flying Circus' and two series of 'The Goodies'. He is currently producing 'Steptoe and Son' for BBC TV.