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A Collection Of Goodies Media Interviews
Goodies - Time Out - 2003 - Print Email PDF 
Posted by bretta 27/12/2009

Index

» Graeme - Radio Time...
» Goodies - Televisio...
» Tim - Radio Lancash...
» Bill - Goodies 30th...
» Tim - Interview wit...
» Goodies - Deadpan -...
» Bill & Graeme - Rec...
» Goodies - Time Out ...
» Goodies - Cult Time...
» Goodies - The Heral...
» Goodies - Various (...
» Goodies - Various (...
» Goodies - Daily Tel...
» Graeme - Radio Time...
» Goodies - 1994 Inte...
» Goodies - Guardian ...
» Tim & Graeme - Esse...
» Tim - Maidenhead Ad...
» Tim & Graeme - Linc...
» Graeme - Nottingham...
» Tim - Worcester New...
» Tim - The Express M...
» Graeme - Essex Chro...
» Graeme - Guardian M...
» Tim - Hull Daily Ma...
» Graeme - Scotsman A...
» Graeme - Mature Tim...
» Graeme - Independen...
» Bill - Sunday Star ...
» Graeme - Time Out S...
» Goodies - Daily Mai...
» Bill - Bristol Even...
» Graeme - Best Briti...
» Tim - Telegraph Int...
» Graeme - Cotswold L...
» Bill - Daily Mail 2...
» Bill - Varsity 2012
» Graeme - The Age (T...
» Graeme - TV Tonight...
» Tim - Daily Mail (A...

A FEW GOODIES MEN

(Alison Bean - Goodies-l - 3rd May)

 

(from C&G #89  May 2003)

 

from Time Out London, April 23-30 2003

 

A few Goodies men

 

Steven Spielberg wanted to make a film with them! They're still big in Australia!  The BBC has refused to repeat their shows for more than 20 years! They've been ripped off by three generations of comedians! We talked to three gods of British comedy - Bill Oddie, Graeme Garden and Tim Brooke-Taylor - in the shadow of what used to be the Post Office Tower.

Interview: John Lewis. Photography: Tony Gibson.*

 

Time Out: Watching the BBC videos that came out a few years ago, I was amazed at how fresh, innovative and hilarious they still are.

Bill: We did the audio commentary for this new DVD, they played a couple of shows to us and we couldn't remember half of them!

Graeme: (adopting an old man's voice) Who's that one? Is he on their side or our side?

Tim: A lot of people only remember giant cats or singing Dougals. They forget Bill and Grame's scripts, which were quite brilliant.

TO: They all seem quite technically complex.

BO: What was fairly unique was how we unified each BBC department. We had these huge meetings to discuss effects, costumes, wigs, special effects, animations, editing, sets, everything.

TBT: Then we had to cost each joke!

GG: You'd sit at these meetings and there'd be an elaborate effect which involved costume, make-up, special effects, pyrotechnics, special camera tricks. So that's a £500 joke (laughter). You can have that or you can have three £200 jokes (laughter). As time went on you found that very often the simpler ideas are actually much funnier.

TO: The first three series went out at around 10pm on BBC2...

BO: We were from this Oxbridge mafia background, so they assumed it was going to be fairly adult, clever, esoteric.

TBT: And we inherited an audience from 'Broaden Your Mind' and 'I'm Sorry I'll Read That Again' who were twenty- or thirtysomething.

BO: We knew at the start that it had family appeal, because it's mainly visual. After a few years, the BBC went the other way and labelled it a kid's show, putting us on really early! No! No! It's the same problem with 'The Simpsons'...

TBT: It was a few years before we got the right balance, which ideally was 9pm, BBC2, with a repeat just after 'Top Of The Pops'.

GG: Rhona Cameron said that bright kids were 'Goodies' fans because they got the jokes.

TBT: Did she say that? What a great woman!

TO: Do you see your influence on much comedy today?

BO: All the good programmes were influenced by us, of course! It would be really embarrassing if there was someone we really hated who said they really liked our show. Luckily, we like all of the performers who are 'Goodies' fans - 'The League Of Gentlemen', Simon Pegg, Vic and Bob, Stewart Lee...

GG: 'The Young Ones' were the student 'Goodies'...

TBT: Mike Myers said that 'The Goodies' were a very, very specific influence, which I was very happy about...

BO: There's that 'Big Train' sketch about pop stars in the wild which looked like, let's say, an homage to our safari episode...

GG: I watched that tribute to 'Last Of The Summer Wine', all exploding bikes and baths sliding down hills, and it was just a geriatric 'Goodies'!

TO: There's a huge 'Goodies' presence on the Internet...

GG: Bill's got a cyberstalker.

BO: It's f...ing weird. People on the internet will write 'Bill Oddie was in Regent's Park today looking at a sparrow.' Who's stalking me?

TBT: Maybe the website is run by sparrows.

TO: Bill, you co-wrote the series' very credible big band funk music with the Rhodesian avant-jazz arranger Michael Gibbs...

BO: I'm a big jazz freak, and was a huge fan of Mike's work with Gary Burton. We had a fantastic band, led by Mike and then his keyboard player Dave McRae from Matching Mole. It was heartbreaking for me to put it on film, 'cos they covered it up with sound effects and audience laughs. Don't laugh! There's good music going on there!

TO: Bill once played a black Muslim who rejected his 'slave name' of Bill and called himself Rastus P Watermelon...

BO: Sometimes I think: Oh no (head in hands) that's me, doing that ridiculous voice and everything... But none of my black friends have said they found it

offensive. The only people who have are white liberals.

TBT: A lot of black people loved 'The Goodies' because I was the British twit. You can't get more obvious than that...

BO: 'Rastus P Watermelon' is so blatently ridiculous that you can't really take offence...

GG: It's a good name, though, isn't it? (laughter)

BO: We specifically did several programmes about racial prejudice. There's one about South Africa which the BBC censored. I'll never forget them saying we'd been 'too hard' on the South African police!

GG: Watching these episodes again, we often had an undercurrent of social or political satire going on.

 

* The photograph accompanying this interview features Bill, Tim and Graeme standing in a street in London's Fitrovia, with the structure formerly known as the Post Office Tower in the background.

 




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