The Goodies are cruising along the road on their trandem and come across a man in a black uniform who is contemplating whether or not to jump off a bridge and end it all. He climbs to the brink then steps back indecisively several times over until Bill, true to the Goodies' 'anything, anytime' motto, gives him a helping hand and pushes him off the bridge into the river below. Bill grins, rubs his hands together and waves to the others (happy to have done his good deed for the day!), but a horrified Graeme and Tim do likewise to Bill and shove him off the bridge as the chap below yells for help. Graeme holds his hat over his heart and Tim straightens his jacket with due gravitas before they run to the river bank at the bottom of the bridge. Bill emerges from the water perched on the shoulders of the man that he initially pushed in, only to fall backwards with a huge splash much to the mirth of the others and after the chap brings Bill to shore and back to the office in his arms, the Goodies attempt to find out the reason why he wants to kill himself.
Initially he is too ashamed to tell them ("No I can't. Oh the shame, the shame!") but after Bill has fired him up by calling him an "absolute dismal failure" and a "disaster" (to which he snaps "Now hang on!" and dumps Bill on the floor), he eventually reveals that he is a successful zookeeper of 20 years standing who has already had problems filling the Snowdon Aviary; a bizarrely-shaped cage which "I gather (Lord Snowdon) knocked it up out of Viscount Linley's Meccano set!", (though Tim's flippant suggestion of turning it into "a giraffe house – one in each corner" is a good one!), but he now has an even bigger problem with Snowdon's newest creation. Consisting of a huge birdcage that towers over Big Ben in size with "a swimming pool 100ft long and 25ft deep" and a "300ft ladder leading up to a cast iron bell with a 2 ton clapper!"; the Lord Snowdon Monster House is proving impossible for the zookeeper to find a suitable exhibit for and with a royal grand opening rapidly looming, the Goodies eventually understand why the zookeeper has suicidal tendencies.
Tim fires up the gramophone and produces a stirring patriotic speech in which he promises that the Goodies will find a monster for the royal opening of the exhibit, spurred on by the lure of a possible OBE from the Queen! The zookeeper dutifully salutes and utters "Thank you!" (crushing Tim in a bearhug in the process), but Graeme is far less effusive in his praise: "You berk!" Tim naively believes that monsters still exist and can be bought at pet shops, but when the Goodies realise that the only "ruddy great big monster" still in existence is the famous monster of Loch Ness, they set off to 'Bonnie Scotland' tartan-clad on the trandem in search of a live catch.
The Goodies set up an all-round observation post at the loch where Tim survives a close encounter with the giant bagpipes spider, Graeme shoots a brace of haggis for supper ("It's alright, they're vermin.") and Bill feeds the ever-growing wild sporran population with a bowl of milk ("They're breeding like rabbits!"). However after a lengthy vigil of more than two months, there is still no sign of the monster so the Goodies pay a visit to the local office of the Scottish Tourist Board for some help. Not wanting anyone to know that they are English and have come to capture the monster, the Goodies make a rousing but unsuccessful attempt to prove their Scottish credentials and wind up paying over and over again for all sorts of equipment, identification guides, baits and permits to catch the monster – "A thoosand poonds" in total according to the delighted money-hungry tourism operator.
Bill spots a monster when he looks through the telescope that the Goodies have bought, but a cynical Graeme can only see open water ahead and soon realises that a cut-out of the monster has been stuck on the end of the lens (swinging the telescope around in disgust and knocking Bill out in the process). Tim's bait of dynamite only succeeds in blowing up the fish that he hooks, while both Graeme and Bill struggle to put on leaden diving masks, continually banging their heads on the ground as they try to get up. Tim's 'special monster bait' of sausages, cake and plonk quickly gets a rather big bite and despite having secured his chair firmly to the bank, he is rapidly dragged to the bottom of the loch, where he desperately holds his breath and clutches an umbrella.
Bill and Graeme (complete with glasses attached to his diving mask!) jump in to rescue Tim and they reach the bottom swiftly thanks to the extra-heavy helmets. They find a tourist trap run by the same tourism operator that had previously ripped them off and see that Tim has been conned into buying a 'genuine' monster egg as well as the umbrella to supposedly stop him from getting wet. However all attempts to quiz Tim on his dodgy purchases are immediately followed by a cry of "Don't answer that!", as he struggles to hold his breath underwater. Upon reaching the surface, the Goodies decide to finally pack it in, but find that they are riding on the back of the giant Loch Ness Monster and getting nowhere. They clobber the monster on the head with the fake egg, knocking it out, and carry it back to Cricklewood in a series of baskets on the back of the trandem, despite its furtive escape attempt into the men's loo (and back out through the ladies!) on the way; arriving back in style with the monster spread out across the roof racks of a motorcade of four sleek black cars rolling along side-by-side.
The zookeeper is utterly delighted with the monster, particularly as the royal opening of the Monster House exhibit is scheduled for tomorrow and doesn't even mind paying the "thoosand poonds" expenses bill for the monster hunt . However the suggestion of mating the Loch Ness Monster with Russian monster Pi Pi is enough to pipe up a wee Scottish voice, and the tourism operator emerges from a zip in the fake Nessie's nether regions, confirming that there never was a monster and the whole set-up was only done for the tourists (and the money, no doubt). The zookeeper is ruined and there is only one thing left for him to do, so the Goodies help him to jump from the same bridge again after shaking his hand. They prepare to heave the fake egg off the bridge as well, but there are a series of scratching sounds and the egg hatches unexpectedly. A little Nessie then menaces Graeme, which causes the Goodies to frantically yell "Come back!" to the drowning zookeeper!
* Tim (to zookeeper): "We'll be kind and considerate and help in any way we can, but if you don't tell us ... (what the problem is)"
Bill (bluntly): "We'll chuck you back in the river!"
* Zookeeper (regarding finding an exhibit for the Monster House): "I even tried dressing four elephants in a budgie skin, but it fooled no-one. You ever tried teaching four elephants to say 'Who's a pretty boy? Who's a pretty boy?'?"
* Graeme (dismissively, after Tim claims that he saw monsters on TV in an old film 'The Lost World'): "Oh those were prehistoric monsters. They died thousands of years ago."
Tim (surprised): "That was an old film."
* Graeme (to Tim): "It's the giant bagpipes spider. It's deadly! Keep absolutely still. One bite from that and you dance the Highland Fling until you drop dead!"
Bill (shocked): "What a horrible way to go!"
* Tourism Operator (selling them equipment): "...cameras with special lenses for taking fuzzy, out-of-focus pictures ..."
* Tourism Operator (to Tim): "You wouldn't pay 5 pounds for a fake (monster egg), would you?"
Graeme (condescendingly): "Oh yes he would. He only got O Level Biology!"
* Some nice subtle send-ups of Scottish culture as the tartan-clad Goodies ride the trandem across the border, including the intersection marking of 'Hoots' (which they duly do by blowing the trandem's horn before proceeding), roadside signs proclaiming 'Och Aye' and 'The Noo', folk dancing where the locals keep stepping on their swords and yelping in pain, and the caber thrower about to give a telegraph pole a toss.
* The giant bagpipes spider crawling menacingly over a terrified Tim before Graeme blasts the wind out of it with a shotgun.
* The Goodies' attempts to prove that they are Scottish to the Tourist Board operator, including all sorts of Scottish clichés (such as "Hoots Mon", "Noo for Auld Lang Syne" and "It's a braw bricht moonlicht nicht tonicht.") and a rousing rendition of Roamin' in the Gloamin' with a loud "MacHoots!" to finish. The poor chappie watches the routine with a thoroughly incredulous look on his face, then mutters "Ye must be English tourists, 'ey!?"
* Upon asking the tourism operator if he had ever seen Nessie, he dims the lights and scares the daylights out of the Goodies with a fearsome story about the huge monster with "slavering jaws" devouring its prey and "spitting out the bones like grape pips" right before his very eyes. He then puts the lights back on, picks his nose and remarks "Of course, I could have been mistaken!"
* When buying equipment, Tim not-so-bravely asks how to frighten Nessie away if she attacks them. The tourism operator tells them that it's no good shouting "BOO!" as she is stone deaf, so he holds up a big sign with "BOO!" written on it. And if that doesn't work, he turns the sign around to show a photo of Andy Stewart, which frightens the hell out of the Goodies and would surely do the same to any self-respecting monster too!
* Various cameos including Bill being left in just his undies and a red sporran after his diving suit explodes, Nessie almost devouring Graeme just before being captured and the signwriter changing his 'humps' sign to a monster sign as the Goodies ride past with Nessie in tow.
Stanley Baxter, Bernard Bresslaw
The One That Got Away
Beanz Meanz Heanz - "When I Grow Up"
Cheap Phone Calls
MY 2 CENTS WORTH
A good episode which gives a substantial serve to the Scottish language, dress, thriftiness and the mystery of the Loch Ness monster. Not as much classic dialogue as some other Goodies episodes, but some nice visual gags.
The Goodies try to save the zookeeper
Who's rescuing who?!
The scale model of the monster cage that the zookeeper has to fill
On their way to Loch Ness
Tim is menaced by the giant bagpipes spider
Graeme's all-round observation post
Roamin' in the Gloamin' at the Tourist Office
The bemused Scottish Tourism Officer
Fearsome tales of Nessie
How to frighten Nessie away (and everyone else too!)
A money-hungry Scotsman
Feeding the wild sporran population at Loch Ness
Bill after a little "diving accident"
Tim all set for some monster fishing
The tourist trap at the bottom of the loch
The monster takes a liking to Graeme
The captured Nessie being towed back to England
A rather unusual roadsign
Travelling to London in style
The zookeeper is happy ... for a little while!
A wee intruder in the tail-end of Nessie
Graeme finds that the monster egg isn't a fake after all!