1ST BROADCAST: 14 Dec. 1954


by Spike Milligan and Eric Sykes



GREENSLADE: This is the BBC Home Service.

OMNES: (Singing – to the tune “Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight.”)

                              Ta ra ra, da da da da da da dah;

                              Ta ra ra, da da da da da da dah;

                              Ta ra ra, da da da da da da dah;

                              da dah, da da dah da daa-a-ah!

GREENSLADE: Here is a police notice. A van load of musical instruments was stolen this afternoon. It is believed to be having repercussions.

SECOMBE: Fear not, dear unlicensed listeners – it will not stop the highly under-paid Goon Show.

GRAMS: Old fashioned gramophone recording. (Jack Hylton Orchestra – “Just Like a Thief.”)

SECOMBE: You see? – there are always foreign musicians who will do the job. (Laughs) Ha ha. Thank you Maurice Winnick and his Scottish Highlanders.

ELLINGTON: Somebody called?

SECOMBE: Silence Colonel Nasser – back to your harem in Highgate. Mister Mouldy Greenslade, stop that disgusting habit and make your usual hash of the announcement.

GREENSLADE: Loodies and gentlepoglum – we give you a story specially wrotten for the wireless type of radio set.

SECOMBE: Ahem. Yes – a story entitled “Dishonoured.” It was written by Mrs Bessie Braddock, better known for her work as Don Cockle. All parts will be played by human beings.[1]

ECCLES: Well, goodnight folks. A-ha!

GRAMS: (Fade in.) Ripple of water on river bank.

SELLERS: Ooooh, “Dishonoured” part one. The scene – the Limehouse water front.

GRAMS: Distant foghorns.

SELLERS: Enter a ragged idiot. Oooooh!

SEAGOON: Aaaaah! – alas, ‘tis Christmas eve and still no offers to pantomime. Not a penny have I – not a penny towards a plate of vitals for my poor, weak, half-starved seventeen stone body, so I’ll lay my poor twenty stone head down upon this bench.

GRAMS: Footsteps on gravel.

CONSTABLE: Come along you two, move along there now.

SEAGOON: But Constabule, ‘tis the time of goodwill towards men. ‘Tis… ‘tis Christmas!

CONSTABLE: Strewth! – so it is. (Kindly) A merry Christmas to you sir.

SEAGOON: And a merry Christmas to you Constabule.

CONSTABLE: Right, now move along before I belt you round the ear’ole.

MORIARTY: A moment – please!

SEAGOON: (Narration) The voice came from a tall, dark, fully dressed male nude. He emerged from the darkness and walked into the gas-light.

FX: Heavy clank on metal.

MORIARTY: Oooh! Curse! Now then Constable, how would you like to join the River Police?

CONSTABLE: Ooh, very much sir!

GRAMS: Body into water.

CONSTABLE: (Distant) Thank you very much sir. A merry Christmas to you, sir!

MORIARTY: (Calls) Bon Noël!


MORIARTY: Right. Now lad, I’ve come to help – vous!

SEAGOON: He meant me. He glanced down at my feet wrapped in coal sacks; my thrice turned World War One overcoat; my brown paper shirt with the inked in buttons, and my six month growth of beard.

MORIARTY: Down on your luck?

SEAGOON: Whatever makes you think that, sir?

MORIARTY: Your disguise didn’t fool me.

SEAGOON: It should do – it’s genuine. But why should you be interested in me?

MORIARTY: I run a rag-and-bone shop.

SEAGOON: You want a manager?

MORIARTY: No, I want stock.

SEAGOON: Well – I need a job.

MORIARTY: You want to WORK??


MORIARTY: You must be desperate!

SEAGOON: I hung on as long as I could.

MORIARTY: Well said! I have a very good friend, Hercules Grytpype-Thynne – (and this is where the story really starts.) This friend is in a bonk, or as you say in England, a bank. Now, how are you at mathematics?

SEAGOON: I speak it like a native.

MORIARTY: Splendid. You are the very type for the job – dead stupid. Tomorrow you start work at the ‘Slippery Bank Limited.’

SEAGOON: We shook hands. He doffed his cap and I acknowledged by raising my ex-RAF rubber dinghy. At last employment. My wife was overjoyed! Next day I started work as a clurk with every prospect of becoming a clerk. My wages were eight shillings a week, with three shillings for each of my children.

GRYTPYPE: This brought his money up to eighty pounds a week.[2]

SEAGOON: That was the manager, Mister Thynne – well known in concentric circles.

GRYTPYPE: Mister Seagoon, how long have you been with us?

SEAGOON: Twenty minutes.

GRYTPYPE: What a splendid record of devotion and honesty. Neddie – (and this is where the story really starts;) – Neddie, I’m putting you in a positions of trust. You’re in charge of the gold vault. Here is the key.


GRYTPYPE: I wonder if he’s the right man for the job?

SEAGOON: (Close) I decided to pinch the gold.

GRYTPYPE: Yes. This is the Charlie! I must tell friend Moriarty all is going to plan.

SEAGOON: Immediately I backed a large horse-drawn motor van up to the front entrance of the bank.

CONSTABLE: You can’t park that there, sir.

MORIARTY: Constable – how would you like to join the river police?

CONSTABLE: Very much sir.

GRAMS: Body into water.

CONSTABLE: (Distant) Thank you sir!

MORIARTY: Merry Christmas. Carry on Neddie.

SEAGOON: Right. Next, I carefully disguised myself as a Zulu warrior of the Matabele rising. [3] So cunning was my make-up, not even my own grandmother would have recognised me.

BANNISTER: Hello Neddie.

SEAGOON: Hello Grannie! In this inconspicuous disguise I took the gold from the vaults and loaded it onto the van. For three hours I toiled back and forth.

GRYTPYPE: Oh Neddie…

SEAGOON: (Close) Curses! I’m spotted.

GRYTPYPE: Why are you wearing that leopard skin?

SEAGOON: So that’s why I’m spotted!

GRYTPYPE: Neddie, where are you taking all that gold?

SEAGOON: I, er… (Aside) I shall have to think of a good excuse.

GRYTPYPE: You’re stealing it, aren’t you?

SEAGOON: (Aside) Curse! Why hadn’t I thought of that? (Aloud) Yes… yes I’m stealing it.

GRYTPYPE: I’m afraid we shall have to give you a week’s notice.

SEAGOON: Why?! What have I done?

GRYTPYPE: Oh, nothing – nothing. We’re just having to cut down on the staff you know. You see there’s been a robbery. Now, get that van started while I get my hat and coat.

SEAGOON: You coming too?

GRYTPYPE: No point in staying here. There’s more lolly in the van than there is in the bank.

SEAGOON: Very well, we’ll be partners.


SEAGOON: (Narration) I gave him my hand.

GRYTPYPE: I gave him my foot – it was a fair swap.

SEAGOON: Ying tong idle-i-poh.

GRYTPYPE: GOOD! Geldray? Take the wheel and drive us to ‘Dishonoured’ part two.



MAX GELDRAY – “A Sky Blue Shirt and a Rainbow Tie”


GREENSLADE: ‘Dishonoured’ – part two, (and this is where the story really starts.) With their new found wealth Ned Seagoon with Grytpype-Thynne and Moriarty paint the town red. Then one day, as Seagoon was in the bath, the first blow fell.

FX: Door opens.

SEAGOON: (Hums to self)

GRYTPYPE: Neddie! Neddie! Get out of that dustbin. Bad news! – the bank you stole the gold from told the police.

SEAGOON: What a rotten trick! Is nothing sacred?

GRYTPYPE: Give yourself up Neddie.

SEAGOON: Give myself up?

MORIARTY: Yes – the police want you lad.

SEAGOON: Nonsense! I’m much too short for the police.

GRYTPYPE: Then you’ll have to go abroad – the Mediterranean.

SEAGOON: Very well! We sail at dawn, tonight!

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic Sea Saga link – a cappella.

GRAMS: Ship board sounds; lapping of waves. Creaking of timbers.

SEAGOON: Within a week we were on board a private yacht sailing west nor’ west south. I stood on the pilchard with the spanker blowing through my hair and the salty bloaters spinning before the giblets – it’s a man’s life I tell ‘ee! (Laughs) Ha ha ha! A man’s life I tell ‘ee! Ha ha ha ha!

GRYTPYPE: You silly, twisted boy you.

SEAGOON: Hello Captain Thynne. What’s our position?

GRYTPYPE: Desperate! Oh, er… I’ll enquire. (Calls) Oh Mister highly skilled navigator?

ECCLES: Hello.

GRYTPYPE: What is that object off the port beam?

ECCLES: Um.. yeah, um… what IS that object off the port beam?

SEAGOON: Good heavens! It’s the Albert Hall.

ECCLES: Oooo! You’ve been to sea before! What’s the Albert Hall doing off Beachy Head, and with no lights on?

GRYTPYPE: More to the point is what are we doing in Hyde Park?

ECCLES: Oh, er… the sea’s calmer here.

GRYTPYPE: Mister Navigator, we are four hundred miles from the sea. Explain!

ECCLES: Well, nobody’s perfect. Ha ha hum! (Has he gone?)

SEAGOON: What I want to know is are we off course?

ECCLES: Of course! According to my special calculations we should be in Shepherd’s Bush Market.


ECCLES: I’ve ordered a turkey.

CONSTABLE: I’m sorry about coming aboard sir, but you can’t park this yacht Monday to Friday – even dates, in Hyde Park.

MORIARTY: Ah, Constable, how would you like to join the Kensington round pond police?

CONSTABLE: There’s no such force.

GRAMS: Body into water.

MORIARTY: (Calls) You’re the first!

CONSTABLE: (Distant) Thank you sir.

MORIARTY: Full speed ahead… (self fade) to the Mediterranean.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic Sea Saga link – a cappella with trombone and bass drum.

GREENSLADE: We are happy to announce that one of the stolen instruments has been recovered. And so – ‘Dishonoured’ part three. In the Mediterranean, (and this is where the story really starts) – in the Med the second blow fell. One morning Neddie was called to the Kiptain’s Kubban.

GRYTPYPE: Ah Neddie! Neddie, when you came aboard I believe you deposited all the gold in the care of Moriarty.

SEAGOON: Yes. Why – isn’t it safe with him?

GRYTPYPE: Perfectly safe – wherever he and his rowing boat are.

SEAGOON: The gold I stole, stolen?! Which way did he go?

GRYTPYPE: That-a-way.

GRAMS: Boots running into distance. Sudden stop. Large splash.

MORIARTY: Has he gone?

GRYTPYPE: Yes, he’s gone. (Self fade) Let’s go down and divide the gold out now, Moriarty.

ORCHESTRA: Harp arpeggios.

GRAMS: Water splashing.

SEAGOON: Meantime I floundered alone in the Indian Ocean unable to speak a word of the language. I swam on my back, but I just couldn’t get off to sleep.

CONSTABLE: (Approaching) I must ask you to move along sir.

SEAGOON: Oh it’s you Constable! I thought you were in the river police.

CONSTABLE: That’s right sir.

SEAGOON: Then what are you doing in the ocean?

CONSTABLE: Been promoted sir.

SEAGOON: Congratulations.

CONSTABLE: Thank you very much sir.[4]

SEAGOON: Could you direct me to India?

CONSTABLE: Yes sir – you just follow the tram lines sir.

SEAGOON: Thank you and a merry Christmas!

CONSTABLE: (Going off) And the very same to you.

SEAGOON: And so saying I struck out for the shore. Ten miles I swam. The last three were agony – they were over land. Finally I fell in a heap on the ground. I’ve no idea who left it there.

CRUN: (Entering) Ah! I am Henry Crun, a tea planter in the Nilgari Hills. We are anxious to know if you need succour.

SEAGOON: Yes. Just what I need – a glass of succour.

CRUN: Why don’t you answer, sir?

BANNISTER: Hit him Henry.

SEAGOON: Are you both deaf? I told you I am weak from exhaustion. (To himself) Of course – that’s why they can’t hear me; I’m unconscious.

BANNISTER: Come on Henry. You heard what he said – he’s unconscious.

CRUN: Help me lift him up Min.

BANNISTER: Okay buddy.

CRUN: I’ll take his head and you… No, no, no. You go round the other side of his head.


GRAMS: Footsteps going off into the distance – for a long time.

BANNISTER: (Very far off.) Okay Henry. LIFT!

CRUN & BANNISTER: (Straining noises.)

GREENSLADE: (Over) While they are getting him off the ground, I Wallace Greenslade would like to take this opportunity of thanking the thousands of Wallace Greenslade Fan Clubs for their letters. Keep smiling Greensladers! – and keep those cheques rolling in to old Wallace. I will be with you again next week, so chickadee snitch! TWO, FOUR, SIX, EIGHT – WHO DO WE APPRECIATE? GREENSLADE! Ahem. Now, here is ‘Dishonoured’ part four. Tied to the back of Mister Crun’s car, Seagoon was towed back to Poona, but the rope broke and left him stranded in the Indian quarter of India.

SEAGOON: Yes. In the street of a thousand households there is a place where a man can drink and forget his sorrows. It was there I went.

FX: Knocking on wooden door. Door opens.

GRAMS: Indian music.

SELLERS: Ah, sahib! Welcome to the Barapao[5] Sewer Club. What does the dirt encrusted sahib desire? All the sensuous drinks of the Orient are yours – the Paan Bidi,[6] the scented Vishnu wine, the toddy juice, the aromatic Crab pani. Which do you desire, oh wicked one?

SEAGOON: (Daft) Pot of tea please.

SELLERS: Forbidden – but I fix it. Oh, wait!

MILLIGAN: (Indian MC – distant) Gentlemen and Bombay babies, take your partner for the European style fan dance.


RAY ELLINGTON  “Pampouday”


MILLIGAN: Thank you! Thank you and common patrons. (Everyone back to their own beds!) Now, the mysterious Bara bibi,[7] Oriental Queen, will do the Dance of the Seven Army Surplus Blankets.

GRAMS: Cor Anglais solo – eastern style.

SEAGOON: Into the middle of the floor sprang a creature that set my pulses racing. As one by one the blankets fell to the floor, the lights went down, and as the last blanket fell from the passionate creature, I moved to her side in the dark. (Breathing heavily) Oh desirable creature, what prompts you to dance in this den of vice?

ECCLES: I got to make a living too.

SEAGOON: Eccles! You’re not a woman! [8]

ECCLES: I know that! Here – but don’t tell the manager.

SEAGOON: Why not?

ECCLES: We’re engaged.

SEAGOON: However did you get here?

ECCLES: Well that Moriarty and Grytpype-Thynne fellows, they threw me in the sea!

SEAGOON: What a pity you can swim.

ECCLES: I was glad. Here, this is a question – (and this is where the story really starts,) what are we going to do now?

SEAGOON: I’m going to clear my name and get back my self respect. I’ll… I’ll join the Navy!

ORCHESTRA: Huge Naval link. All the top sea-going themes, double quick – “Rule Britannia”, “Hornpipe”, “A Life on the Ocean Waves”, “What Shall We Do with the Drunken Sailor?”, “All the Nice Girls Like a Sailor” – big finish with “Rule Britannia”.

SEAGOON: No! I’ll join the Army.


SEAGOON It’s too damned noisy in the Navy. Come Eccles – to the recruiting depot!


ORCHESTRA: Bloodnok theme.

BLOODNOK: Aaaaargh. Aaaaahhhrgh! So, you two naughty men want to join the third Bombay Irish, ehi?

SEAGOON: Aye, aye, Jock.

BLOODNOK: Now, let us take the regimental oath. Open your wallets and say after me; “Help yourself.”

ECCLES:[9] Help yourself.

BLOODNOK: Next Seagoon – do you swear to be brave soldiers?


BLOODNOK: Never turn a back on the enemy?


BLOODNOK: Always speak well of a lady?


BLOODNOK: And respect the chastity of a woman?


BLOODNOK: Have we nothing in common!? Still we need recruits. You see – (and this is where the story really starts) the Red Bladder is raising the Pathan tribes. He’s got fresh consignments of automatic swords.

SEAGOON: Where did he get the finance?

BLOODNOK: Two international crooks smuggled him a ship load of gold.

SEAGOON: (Aside) Grytpype and Moriarty! So that’s their game. (Aloud) Sir, I have a score to settle. Let me go to the frontier.

BLOODNOK: Right. Sign this.

SEAGOON: (Writing) Neddie Seagoon. There, am I a soldier now?

BLOODNOK: I don’t know. I only collect autographs.

FX: Door opens.

ELLINGTON: Major Bloodnok sir – (and this is where the story really starts…)

BLOODNOK: What is it Muriel?

ELLINGTON: The Red Bladder is lighting fires all along the frontier.

ECCLES: Perhaps he’s cold.

BLOODNOK: Muriel, are the men to the teeth.

ELLINGTON: Impossible sir.

BLOODNOK: No arms?

ELLINGTON: No teeth.

BLOODNOK: Then we can’t fight. HURRAY!

SEAGOON: Sir, I want a chance to prove that I’m a man.

BLOODNOK: Report to the M.O!

SEAGOON: I’ll fight the Red Bladder, clear my name, recover the gold and capture Moriarty and Grytpype-Thynne. Who will ride with me?

BLUEBOTTLE: I heard you call me, my little Capitain – (and this is where the story really starts.) Enter Bluebottle. Where’s the sausages? Here they are.

SEAGOON: Little jug-headed bugler, blow the alarm.

BLUEBOTTLE: That’s what I say – blow the alarm. Let’s play another game.

SEAGOON: This is no game little drooping seat. Get mounted lads!

BLUEBOTTLE: Yes my Capitain, I am mounteded and ready for the ride. Wait a minute – what is this in the saddule bag?

SEAGOON: That’s dynamite my lad.

BLUEBOTTLE: He he he! Thinks; I know what this means for Bluebottle – the dreaded deading! I don’t like this game.

SEAGOON: Eccles, any wind of the native troops?
ECCLES: I don’t know. I’ve got a cold.

SEAGOON: We’ll soon know the valid truth. TO HORSE!

ECCLES: Can I come too?

BLUEBOTTLE: Tee hee! It’s about time you came to. (Laughs) He he he! I made a little jockule.

ECCLES: Here Bluebottle, do you know what I’m getting for Christmas?

BLUEBOTTLE: Ooo! What are you getting Eccles?

ECCLES: I’m getting a bow-wow.

BLUEBOTTLE: He he he! I’m not getting a browned-wow. I have got a junior smokers kit, complete with toffee ashtray and liquorice dog-ends.

ECCLES: I like liquorice. My mother says that liquorice gives you a good run for your money.

BLUEBOTTLE: Eccles, what colour is your bow-wow?

ECCLES: Well, it’s the same colour as…

BLUEBOTTLE: I’ve got a pussy cat named Ruffules.

BOTH: (&c. Talking over each other.)

SEAGOON: STOP! To the Khyber pass – FORWARD!

GRAMS: Horses galloping. Clink of bridles.


BLUEBOTTLE: Argh! Look my Capitain, lookey! Points finger at thousands of savage naughty men with Indian type bare chests.

SEAGOON: The Red Bladder and his fifty thousand bladders. Gad! – we’re outnumbered twenty to one.

ECCLES: Twenty to one? Time for lunch.

SEAGOON: We’ve only one choon. Bluebottle, ride to the crest of that crag and signal Major Bloodnok. Off you go!

BLUEBOTTLE: I will do this, I will. Ride Vaquero!... He he he! Wait a minute. Capitain, in between me and that crag is a dirty big wide chasm with a forty foot thousand drop to the raging torrents below.

SEAGOON: Fear not, shivering nut – that Arab stallion will bound the chasm like… like a wingéd arrow.

BLUEBOTTLE: Yes it will! Gee-up wingéd arrow!

GRAMS: Horse gallops off into distance. Sudden stop.

ECCLES: (Hums to self)

GRAMS: Enormous splash in the distance.

BLUEBOTTLE: (Distant) You rotten swine type thing! Aoiigh! You did not do the wingéd arrow over the chasm thing, and I’ve been hurled into this dreaded canyon. Aeyhehei! Splat!… Thud!… Zowie!… Blun!…Thud!… and several other rock hitting nut sounds.

MORIARTY: Welcome to the Indian river police.

BLUEBOTTLE: I do… (Nervous) Tee hee hee! You are the forces of evil.

MORIARTY: Sapristy.

BLUEBOTTLE: Morinarty man. (Aside) Thinks; I know how to get rid of the dynamite. (Aloud) Mister Morinarntu, would you like a nice big, long, red cigar with a wick on the end to mark the ending?

MORIARTY: Ooh, thank you lad, thank you. That’s it, just light the end.

GRAMS: Single whoosh.

BLUEBOTTLE: (Distant) Is it nice?

MORIARTY: It’s gone out.

GRAMS: Whoosh.

BLUEBOTTLE: I’ll light it again for you, and then you’ll see…

GRAMS: Enormous explosion. Immediately cut to the theme from ‘The Third Man”.

MILLIGAN: Thought you’d like to hear it again.

GREENSLADE: “Dishonoured” – part the last. Neddie Seagoon gives his all in battle with the Red Bladder.

GRAMS: Battle sounds. Shouting, cannon fire, cavalry charge, distant bugle.

BLOODNOK: Oh how the battle raged. I heard it all on the wireless. Seagoon fought like a madman! – how else? But… but alas…

ORCHESTRA: Muted bugle playing ‘Retreat’.

GREENSLADE: (Over) On that spot is now a little white stone.

CRUN: Yes. Once a year Minnie lays flowers on it.

BANNISTER: That’s right. And the stone bears a simple inscription in Hindustani.

BLOODNOK: I haven’t the heart to tell her, but roughly translated it says – “Bombay, forty-nine miles.”

ORCHESTRA: End theme.

GREENSLADE: That was the Goon Show, a recorded programme featuring Peter Sellers, Harry Secombe and Spike Milligan, with the Ray Ellington Quartet and Max Geldray. The orchestra was conducted by Wally Stott, script by Spike Milligan and Eric Sykes, the announcer Wallace Greenslade, the programme produced by Peter Eton.


[1] Based on ‘The Adventures of Philip String’ a reworking of a three part serial which ran through the 7th, 8th and 9th parts of ‘Crazy People’ in July 1951.

[2] Roughly Seagoon had 530 children.

[4] There is an exchange here that is probably extemporised. Somebody seems to have lost their way.

               SEAGOON: Absolutely first class. Splendid.

               WILLIUM: Got a mouthful of fish then – and script.

               SEAGOON: Yes… Ha ha! (Giggles)

[5] BaRa paon means ‘big foot’ in Hindi.


[6] Paan bidi is a rolled up leaf of paan with condiments enclosed.


[7] BaRa bibi means ‘big wife’ in Hindi.


[8] I wonder what Wally Stott was thinking?


[9] Seagoon doesn’t answer. Probably in error.