GOODIES COR!! COMICS SYNOPSIS #41
(by Linda Kay)
(from C&G 117 – August 2005)
13th October, 1973 No. 64
Man's desire to fly has been the subject of many classic comedy bits throughout the years (ever see Terry Gilliam's hilarious short film "The Miracle of Flight?"). This comic strip take on manned flight brings to mind that old stock footage of odd aircraft shown during silent movie spoofs or The Monkees' musical romps ... but does this Goodies Cor!! Comic entry manage to get off the ground?
Header: THE FUN'S FLYING HIGH WHEN THE GOODIES BECOME AVIATORS!
The Goodies are looking through a copy of Practical Aviator magazine as Graeme points out something within.
GRAEME: Hey! Some bloke here is offering a *thousand pounds* in prize money for flying the Channel on a *man-powered aeroplane!*
We see an intense close-up of Graeme's face.
GRAEME: I'll invent one *immediately!*
We're immediately transported to a field where Graeme is sitting in the pilot's seat of his invention, an odd-looking bi-plane with G-I written on the tail. Graeme clenches the steering stick with great enthusiasm as Bill jumps up and down on a large bellows set upon a soap box on wheels which makes up the front part of the contraption. Tim stands off to one side, pulling away a box of assorted chocolates.
BILL: *Puff! Cor!!* There must be an *easier* way to fly! *Gasp!*
TIM: Chocs away!
Graeme pulls out a whip and snaps it at Bill's posterior.
GRAEME: Harder, Bill! Pump *HARDER*! We're nearly off the ground!
Angrily, Bill slams down on the bellows with all his weight and the plane smashes into pieces.
BILL: How's that?
GRAEME: That's too haaaard!
Graeme leaps from the plane and lands hard on the ground with his face.
A useless parachute deploys and covers Graeme completely as he sits up in exasperation.
GRAEME: Ah, well ... *back to the drawing board!*
Graeme has invented another plane, this one with a large running wheel similar to the kind found in a hamster's cage at the front. The tail of this plane is marked G-II. Tim is inside the wheel running furiously as Graeme stands proudly in front. Bill stands to one side, watching the proceedings.
TIM: PUFF! GASP! WHEEZE!
GRAEME: That's it, Tim! Work up some steam!
Tim runs faster and faster inside the wheel, building up tremendous speed. Graeme jumps about in an animated fashion, cheering him on.
GRAEME: *FASTER,* Tim! Run *FASTER!*
The wheel suddenly dislodges from the plane with a CRUNCH! and a TEAR! and races forward, running right over Graeme and driving him into the ground. Bill remains standing to one side watching with interest.
A dazed Graeme pokes his head out of the ground, holding up two fingers.
GRAEME: End of phase two!
NEXT DAY ...
All three of the Goodies are aboard the G-III, which is simply the trandem with a helicopter blade above, wings on the side and a rudder in the back. The Goodies are wearing pilots helmets, goggles and jackets (Bill is wearing a crash helmet in the back).
GRAEME: Beginning of phase three ... the *GOODY COPTER!*
They pedal the trandem-copter up a ramp and take off into the sky, the helicopter blades spinning and the wings flapping.
GRAEME: We're on the move!
BILL: We have *lift off!*
As the Goodies fly off toward the English Channel, several birds eye them in confusion.
GRAEME: Which way is *France?*
BILL: Straight ahead for Dover then sharp right!
As they continue to fly, two jet planes fly by. The pilot of one of the jets looks startled.
PILOT: Good gracious! Another UFO, George! That's about the *nine hundredth* we've seen this week!
THE GOODIES FOUND FRANCE ... BUT WHEN THEY CAME IN TO LAND ...
The Goodies approach a large field in France (the Eiffel Tower can be seen in the background) which is literally *filled* with flying machines exactly like theirs . . . trandems with propellers and wings.
TIM: *Aargh!* I don't believe it!
The Goodies stand at the judge's booth where a man offers them a pound note, much to their frustration.
JUDGE: There were nine hundred and ninety-nine winning contestants ... here's your *one pound* prize money for being the *thousandth!*
TIM: It's not even enough for the *fare back! Sob!*
Sign-Off Line: Our TV Chuckle Champs Return in Next Monday's Issue!
RATING (using the BLACK PUDDING RATING SYSTEM):
III - Goody goody yum yum.
Okay, there's no doubt this comic is sorely lacking in jokes. In fact dialogue itself is kept to a minimum. The most notable line is the "chocs away" joke which refers to an old aviation phrase in which the "chocs" (which were placed next to the wheels to keep the plane in place while on the ground) were pulled away before take-off. The phrase was eventually used in a general "Let's go!" "Tally ho!" "Up and at 'em!" kind of way. A similar joke (using Toblerone instead of a box of chocolates) was also used in the Nick Park film "Chicken Run."
There's very little going on in the background as well. So why rate this comic a Goody Goody Yum Yum? It's mostly because the artwork is so impressive ... whoever worked on this comic had a LOT of fun inventing the planes and did them all in loving detail. Also the final joke is a real payoff ... the idea the Goodies would be the thousandth team to come up with a retrofit trandem is just too hilarious not to acknowledge. So while this comic could have been richer it is definitely not poor and deserves a fair rating.