BROADCAST: 12 Jan 1959


Script by Spike Milligan


Peter Sellers was indisposed for this broadcast.


GREENSLADE: This is the BBC light programme.

MILLIGAN:[1] (Venerable) Pray say your fertuffs quietly folks as here is a high fidelity recording of John Snagge.

GRAMS: (Recording) JOHN SNAGGE: This is the Satyricon of Petronius [2] service of the Baa Bee See. We apologise for the audience who attended the Goon Show on Sunday the twenty-eighth of December. It has been discovered that these people had actually written in for tickets to see a broadcast of Swedish drill by the Luton Girls Male Choir. The actual Goon Show audience were misdirected to a gramophone recital of Jackson Pollock paintings on clubbed leather. We apologise to all concerned. I will now kill myself. [3]

GRAMS: Pistol shot. Groan. Thud of body.

GREENSLADE: (Weeping) Ohh Master Snagge!

SECOMBE: Don’t cry Wal. He remembered you in his will.


SECOMBE: Oh, no money. He just said, “I remember Wal Greenslade”.


SINGES: Pardon me sir, but the Goon Show has broken out.

SECOMBE: Singes! We must volunteer for it at once. Forward!

SINGES: Good luck sir!


GRAMS: Army boots briskly marching away with Secombe and Milligan singing “Give me Some Men who are Stout Hearted Men” over. Gradually speed up and fade.

GREENSLADE: I too will volunteer for the Goon Show by announcing this announcement. We present ‘The Spy’ or –

GRAMS: (Recording – slightly faster) GREENSLADE: The Spy orrrrrrrrrrr… (Even faster) The Spy orrrrrrrrrrr…(Faster again) The Spy orrrrrrrrrrr… (Yet faster) The Spy orrrrrrrrrrr… (Fastest) The Spy orrrrrrrrrrr…

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic introduction.

GREENSLADE: Meantime in a deserted lock-keepers lock, the remains of French Aristocracy is steaming.

GRAMS: Fade in boiling pot.

MORIARTY: (Sings – to the tune “Sur les Toits de Paris.”)

Yada baan,  

Yaga bouin

Yagaba da doiun doaw…

(Changes tune suddenly)

Shine through my silent thoughts again…[4]

GRYTPYPE:[5] I say, that smells good Moriarty. What is it?

MORIARTY: Me, (remind) – I’m using Perfume de Sewers Devine on my knees.

GRYTPYPE: You erotic fool! You know full well that knee perfumes were the cause of Louis Cans downfall.[6]

MORIARTY: Correlate! – sapristi noodle. Caramba le Ponk! – you insult the knees of mon King, mon Roi de France. I challenge you to a steaming duel. Name your weapon!

GRYTPYPE: I name my weapon BASIL! Now, you name yours.

MORIARTY: I choose that magnificent melody divine – the Miserere, at ten paces.

SECOMBE: (Announcer) My Lords, ladies and gentlemen! This is a ten round…

GRAMS: Jelly splosh.


GRYTPYPE: Right in the old dinner disposer.

MORIARTY: Now then, back to the back. Ten paces and sing…

ORCHESTRA: Piano accompaniment.

GRYTPYPE: (Sings) In yon gloomy tower…

FX: Single stroke on bell.

MORIARTY: (Sings - distant) Miserere.

GRYTPYPE: Where death now is gleaming…

BELL: Single stroke.

MORIARTY: Miserere.

GRYTPYPE: When death we shall meet no more.

BELL: Single stroke.

MORIARTY: Miserere.

GRYTPYPE: On a cold winters day…

BELL: Single stroke.

MORIARTY: (Raving) Miserere. Miserere. Miserere. Miserere!

GRYTPYPE: And now to the… (Effort) HUHAAAAARGH!!

GRAMS: Jelly splosh.

MORIARTY: (Spluttering) Argh! Argh! Ppth. You swine! You tried to hit me with an unsigned sock full of grit. I’ll not give in. Anything you can do, I can do better!

GRAMS: (Pre-recording) GRYTPYPE: (Low) No you can’t!

                              MORIARTY: Yes I can!

(Gradually wind up the speed)  

                              GRYTPYPE: No you can’t!

                              MORIARTY: Yes I can!

                              GRYTPYPE: No you can’t!

                              MORIARTY: Yes I can!

                              GRYTPYPE: No you can’t! No, you can’t! No, you can’t!

                              MORIARTY: (Extremely high) YES I CANNNNNNNNN!

                              FX: Slapstick.

                              MORIARTY: AAARH!

GRAMS: Body into water. Continued splashing.

MORIARTY: (Distant) HELP! I can’t swim in water.

SECOMBE: Here, grab this copy of Bukharin’s confession.  

MORIARTY: Will it save me?

SECOMBE: It saved him. Now slide this piece of dry land under you.

GRAMS: Sound of pushing a grand piano on castors over a wooden floor, the castors being a bit squeaky to give the sound of traction.        



GRYTPYPE: Yes. Now Ned, for saving the Steam Count we charge a fee of three shillings.

FX: Till

GRYTPYPE: Thank you.

SECOMBE: Could you play that again?

FX: Till

SECOMBE: What a lovely tune.

GRYTPYPE: Like it? It’s the national anthem of America. All the shops are playing it. Now…

SECOMBE: Good heavens! Then it’s time for World War one. On your marks…

FX: Pistol shot.

GRAMS: Great rush away of many boots, with a military bugle call over the top.

GELDRAY: That only leaves old Max ‘Conks’ Geldray, boys!


MAX GELDRAY – “It Don’t Mean a Thing” [7]


GREENSLADE: Meantime in Whitehall… plee pla plippy ploh ploo!

MILLIGAN: Excuse me Colonel Chinstrap, but Captain Seagoon’s bed has just pulled up outside, sir.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP:[8] Oh. By Jove, he must be a late riser. Just a minute.

GRAMS: Cork popping. Liquid pouring.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: I don’t mind if I do. (Calls) Come in Seagoon!

GRAMS: Distant door opening. Couple of pairs of boots running across wooden flooring.

SEAGOON: Hello Colonel Chipstrap.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: How d’you do. I say, sit down my dear fellow and let me take some of your surplus legs from under your surplus.

SEAGOON: Ha ha ha! Thank you. Mind if I play a violin?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: As long as it’s one of ours.

SEAGOON: Care for one?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: Well, just this once.

GRAMS: Two violins tuning up in a very amateurish way.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: By Jove – delicious. Now Seagoon, do you know we’re at war with naughty Germany?

SEAGOON: Well, I heard shouting…

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: Lieutenant Jympton – tell him all!

COLONEL JIM:[9] Well, we need you sir, for counter espionage sir.

SEAGOON: Ha ha! I suppose it means certain death?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: And a pension – a perfect combination.

SEAGOON: Well – it’s for the old country. Ha ha ha! Seagoons have never flinched from death.

ORCHESTRA: Bring in muted trumpet at sunset effect. Play behind.

SEAGOON: (Over) I can see it all now. I’ll fight till my ammunition’s gone. I’ll say to the other men, “Lads, make your way back as best you can… Me? I’ll stay on – I’ll fight ‘em barehanded until I’m overpowered and then I’ll swallow my secret code.” They’ll torture me – I won’t speak. It’ll mean the firing squad. Ha ha ha! So what. They’ll say, “Any last requests?” I’ll say, “Yes, damn you! I want evening dress.” I’ll take my time and put it on with my full miniatures. “Blind fold?” they’ll say. Ha ha ha! (Blindfold!) The rifles will come up; the click of the cartridges ram home; they’re taking aim… Ha ha ha! I’ll be smiling that… that carefree daredevil smile. The officer will raise his sword… The volley will ring out and… I’ll slump smiling to the floor – dead.



GRAMS: Single whoosh.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP:  I say! Stop him before he gets to the bus stop!

GRAMS: Single whoosh.

FX: Door opens.

OMNES: (Assorted heavy arm tactics.)

SEAGOON: (Over) Let go! I’m a professional coward I tell you. I don’t want to go to war.

MILLIGAN: I caught him in Glasgow sir, wearing a Jewish kilt, sir.

COLONEL CHINSTRAP:  My old regiment. Look Seagoon, there’s a thousand pounds in it. If you succeed in this mission it will shorten the war by three feet six inches.

SEAGOON: So wars are being worn shorter this year?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP:  Of course.[10]

SEAGOON: What’s the job?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP:  Well, a certain German spy has got the complete plans and measurements of the union jack. It’s our job to stop him before he builds a prototype.

SEAGOON: Will they stop at nothing! Who is this fiend incarnate?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: Jympton, tell him.

JYMPTON: Have you ever heard of a German spy called – (sings excerpt from Lohengrin.) “La da die dum, dum dum dum dum, lum die die dum?” Have you heard of him?[11]

SEAGOON: How do you spell it?

GRAMS: (Pre-recording) MILLIGAN: Series of strange sounds played at speed.

SEAGOON: I think I’d recognise him if I heard him.

JYMPTON: Jolly good.

SEAGOON: Right! I’m your man.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link.

GREENSLADE: A month has passed and we are now lumbered with a meeting of high military Freds.

SEAGOON: Gentlemen, tomorrow we start our great mission to recover those plans of the union jack. I have chosen you all for your intelligence.

ECCLES: (At back of room) You sure of dat?

SEAGOON: Ahem. (There may have been some slip-ups.) Tomorrow we leave for France. Now this is the secret password: “The wind is blowing through my grandmother’s knees.” The reply is: “Annie is waiting upstairs.”

ECCLES: (Lascivious) Ohh, ho ho ho!

DYALL: [12] I can see we’re going to have trouble with you.

FX: Slapstick.

ECCLES: Owwwww!

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link.

GRAMS: Distant roar of airship engines.


GREENSLADE: Dawn at Hendon Aerodrome; a freshly wallpapered airship is being shaved for active service.

GRAMS: Fast car approaching. Squeal of brakes.

SEAGOON: Good morning Commander.

COMMANDER NARK:[13] Good morning. Now Seagoon, these are the code names… (You know – I don’t feel strange in this programme at all! (Nose-laugh) Gny gny gny gny gny gny gny gny gny!) Here are the code names of our agents in France.

SEAGOON: Carry on – I’ll remember them.

COMMANDER NARK: There’s the Black Rabbit,[14] the Blue Pelican; (Sudden nasal congestion) gnnnnyy… and the Yellow Alligator.

SEAGOON: (Confident) Roger.

COMMANDER NARK: Then there’s the Octoroon Monkey,[15] the Pink Oboe[16] and the Purple Mosquito.

SEAGOON: (Getting worried) Yes, I think I’ll…

COMMANDER NARK: Then there’s the Vermilion Sock, the Vermilion Ponk, the Chocolate Speedway [17] and the White Bint.[18]

SEAGOON: Look, I… I think I’d better write this down.

COMMANDER NARK: No, please don’t. You’ll go colour blind!

STARK:[19] Excuse me sir – your airship is ready sir.

SEAGOON: Let me taste. (Nibbling) Mm hm hm hm! Delicious. Right, tell Eccles to get inside, run my bath and lay out a blonde mannequin.

STARK: Hooray for war!... Ha ha. (Going off) Hooray for war…

DYALL: I think we’re going to have trouble with him too, sir.

SEAGOON: Well, goodbye fellas, and…Hugh?

JYMPTON: Er, yes sir?

ORCHESTRA: Solo sax and piano – “Laura” a la film background music. Continue under.


JYMPTON: Yes sir?

SEAGOON: …say goodbye to Penelope for me.

JYMPTON: Yes sir. (Calls) Goodbye Penelope.

SEAGOON: Not yet, you fool. When you see her, darling. When you see her, tell her… tell her…


SEAGOON: I can’t think of anything to tell her.

JYMPTON: Well, I’ll tell her that then sir.

SEAGOON: Gad, how we’ve loved. Yes! Passionate… by heavens she’s a hot little number.

JYMPTON: So I found out after I married her sir.

SEAGOON: Ha ha! Yes – well, fair shares for all. Ha ha ha! Ahem. Goodbye.

JYMPTON: (Calls) Goodbye sir.

OMNES: (Variously) Goodbye! Good luck on you

GRAMS: Propellers starting up; increasing in speed. Fading into distance.

SEAGOON: Who let go of the rope before I got in?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: I say Seagoon – that boy was doing his duty. We wanted you to miss that airship. That’s to be a decoy.

SEAGOON: How do I get to France then?

COLONEL CHINSTRAP: By this secret military tricycle.

SEAGOON: Gad! The war’s as good as won! So saying I hailed a taxi and cycled to Folkestone. There I caught a steam packet across the channel, and as I drove my velocipede up the gangplank, I saw another tricycle of foreign design upon my tail.

MILLIGAN: Gerblongen, geskeinen! Ich haben zich min die Edgeware Road three-and-nine standing room only. (Raves)

SEAGOON: It’s old Milligan doing his impression of a naughty German there.

GRAMS: Burst of machine gun fire. Fighter planes sweeping low in combat. Occasional machine gun burst.

MILLIGAN: (Into distance) Take that you swine!

SEAGOON: By turning my tricycle in a tight turn, I was on his tail and let him have a burst of steam.

GRAMS: Jet of steam.

MILLIGAN: Ich geschtiemen der heiser! (Raves)

GRAMS: Howl of doomed fighter being shot down.

MILLIGAN: (Distant) Ach – you schwine! You schwinehund!

SEAGOON: Got him right in his dorniers! Ha ha! And so folks I shot down my first German tricycle. Waiting to sail, ‘Old Man River’ Ellington played a merry shanty and I… I went for a BRANDYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!

GRAMS: Boots rushing into distance.




GREENSLADE: Part three – “The Spy,” pong pee telly tee!

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic sea link.

GRAMS: Ocean sound. Waves, distant seagulls.

CAST: (Nautical shouts over.)

SEAGOON: Well, so far so good.

GREENSLADE: (On tannoy) Hello all passengers. This is your Captain, ‘Merry Jim Greenslade’ speaking. Here is a warning; this ship will be passing through fish infested waters, many of them sympathetic to the Germans.[20] So therefore there must be no naked lights on board.

MR O’TOOLE: Ah! Did you hear that Mrs O’Toole? Now put some clothes on that match.

MRS O’TOOLE: Well, I can’t. I’m looking for my Dorothy bag darlin’. [21]

MR O’TOOLE: Oooh! That old bag.

MRS O’TOOLE: Well, I must find it cocky.

MR O’TOOLE: What’s in it? What’s in it ehi?

MRS O’TOOLE: You are – darling!

MR O’TOOLE: Ooh ‘ere! You naughty woman! You told me it was an overcoat sewn up at the bottom.

MRS O’TOOLE: Well, see we couldn’t afford the fare, darlin’.

MR O’TOOLE: You got me into your Dorothy bag under false pretences!  You darlin’ darlin’! You’re the darlin’…

MRS O’TOOLE: I’m the darlin’…


ORCHESTRA: Short corny link. End on tatty chord in C.

GRAMS: Airship engines. Then fade behind.

GREENSLADE: We join the pilotless airship, the plotless story with luckless Eccles.

GRAMS: Water running into bath. Fade behind.

ECCLES: (Singing) Doi doim doi doi… Major’s been havin’ a bath today. (Calls) Captain? The bath’s ready. Captain? (Calls) Captain? S’a funny thing folks… I’d better go and see…

FX: Door opens.

ECCLES: Oohh! Pardon me, Miss. Oaiwwww, um – you seen Captain Seagoon?

ENCHANTRESS: No I haven’t darling.

ECCLES: Ohohoiaww oiaww! I’m not that young. He he he!

ENCHANTRESS: Tell me – tell me, what’s your name?

ECCLES: My name? Eccles. NO! Um… Rock Hudson. That’s who I am. I’m Rock Hudson, buddy.

ENCHANTRESS: Well, you come and sit down here Rocky, you naughty, naughty boy.

ECCLES: Oooh! Hear, hear, hear, hear, hear! Oh hear, hear, hear, hear!

FX: Knock at door.

ECCLES: Oh, dere’s someone knocking at the airship door at forty thousand feet.

ENCHANTRESS: He must be very tall.

ECCLES: Anything you say. (Calls out) I’m coming!

FX: Door opens.

GRAMS: Howling wind.

ECCLES: Who’s that out there?

FLOWERDEW: I say, do help me Eccles. I’m balancing on a ladder – I’m being chased by a police ladder.

ECCLES: Come in then. (Effort) Huh…

FX: Door slams.

GRAMS: Wind stops.

FLOWERDEW: I say Eccles, you do look rather a decent type. Don’t you think you sort of better get at the steering wheel? I mean to say – nobody’s steering. I mean – isn’t that silly! (Manic) Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

ECCLES: (Close) We’d better watch this one.

FLOWERDEW: I say – well, I’ll take over then. By jove, fighting for England. Oh, if only my mother could see me now.

FX: Phone rings. Handset picked up.

FLOWERDEW: Hello? Is that you mother?

EIDELBURGER: (On phone) Is zat airship R. U. one two?

FLOWERDEW: Yes. R. U. one two.

EIDELBURGER: (On phone) Tell you pilot to put his hands, legs and teeth up, or I’ll fire, gerbang!

FLOWERDEW: Oh! Do you know him then?

EIDELBURGER: (On phone) This is Von (sings) Da da da daa da da da daa da da daa daa! Da da da daaa… (I don’t know any more!) I’m on your tail in a German fighter triplane.

FLOWERDEW: Well, I tell you – you see, he’s awfully busy. Can I sort of ring you back later, say about three?

EIDELBURGER: (On phone) Nein!

FLOWERDEW: Alright – nine then.

EIDELBURGER: (On phone) (Enraged German.)

ECCLES: Give me that phone. ‘Ere, listen naughty – HELLO! – I can’t drive this airship with my hands up!

GRAMS: Burst of machine gun fire.

ECCLES: (Over) Ahhhhoh…arghh..oaghh! I’m learning though.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link.

SEAGOON: When the ship docked in Paris, I was contacted by a mysterious man.

MYSTERIOUS MAN: Pssst…. Pssst.

SEAGOON: Psst… (&c)

MILLIGAN:[22] He’s got a puncture.

MYSTERIOUS MAN: Monsieur, follow me while I follow you.

GRAMS: Two pairs of boots running along.

SEAGOON: For an hour we ran in French, which I run fluently. At midnight we arrived at the old chateau in Ville de Fon de Foon.

SPRIGGS: Hello Jim. “The wind is blowing through my grandmothers knees.”

SEAGOON: “Annie is waiting upstairs.”

SPRIGGS: Good! (Sings) Good maa-aaannn! He’s one of us.

ENCHANTRESS: Good. Thank heavens he’s not one of them dear.

SPRIGGS: Silence Madame X.

SEAGOON: Can you tell me anything about (sings) Da da da daa dum da dum dum, dum dad um daa, la da da daa dum da da…

SPRIGGS: I know his whereabouts.

SEAGOON: Introduce me to them.

SPRIGGS: Very difficult Jim… (sings) Very diffficuuuuulluuit. But go to the lonely crossroads at the Rue de Postcards; there you will stand on one leg and whistle in English.

SEAGOON: Gad! I’ll be whistling for England.

FRENCHMAN: Monsieur? First you must swallow this alarm clock.

GRAMS: Mix in alarm clock behind dialogue.

SEAGOON: (Swallows)

FRENCHMAN: When it rings, you will know where it is at the time.

SEAGOON: Brilliant. Farewell!

FRENCHMAN: C’est un Charlie.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link with German High Command Overtones.

ECCLES: Put me down! Let me go…

EIDELBURGER: For ze last time – tell me vere is British agent called ‘Knees Up Mudder Brown’ is hiding?

ECCLES: I don’t know where (sings) ‘Knees Up Mudder Brown’ is. (Raves)

EIDELBURGER: A likely story. Hier Davidson, tie zese men to a band of explosive saxophones.[23]

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic chords.

GRAMS: Distant wind. A pair of boots running closer. Stops in foreground.

SEAGOON: Argh. These are the crossroads. Now, stand on one leg and whistle.

(Whistles the theme from Lohengrin.)

GRAMS: Jelly splosh.

SEAGOON: Spuk…err…puook… yyyyrk. Who threw that enemy Christmas pudding?

GRYTPYPE: Quick, tie his teeth behind his back before he can eat it.

SEAGOON: You devils! You’ll hear from my solicitor about this…

GRAMS: Swell sound of alarm clock ticking.

MORIARTY: Sapristi nabolas! There’s something ticking inside his stomach.

GRYTPYPE: It must be a stomach bomb. Run for it!

GRAMS: (Pre-recording) Grytpype & Moriarty screaming at each other. Two pairs of boots running into distance. Speed up.

WILLIUM: ‘Ere, was that you whistling on one leg, mate?

SEAGOON: Yes. (Slowly) “The wind is whistling up my grandmothers knees.”

WILLIUM: Oh. She ought to wear long draws then mate. (Wheezes) Heheheheee…

SEAGOON: That was a secret code you nit. He wasn’t at rehearsals you know… had to get him in a hurry.

WILLIUM: I’m not with it yet.

SEAGOON: I don’t think we are either.

WILLIUM: An important word mate; “Annie is waiting upstairs.”

SEAGOON: Good Who are you?

WILLIUM: I’m Pink Oboe.

SEAGOON: Ted Ray’s grandad!

WILLIUM: And I can prove it. Now listen – Eccles is in danger.

SEAGOON: This is going to be a happy ending folks.

WILLIUM: Now get that wheel-barrow there and FOLLOW ME!

GRAMS: Trundling along of a single wheel. Pair of boots running along as if pushing a wheel-barrow.

ORCHESTRA: Brief dramatic link.

FX: Chains.

MILLIGAN: (German) In here agent ‘Knees Up Mother Brown!’ The war’s over for you.

SEAGOON: Let me go you German devil you!

FX: Iron door slams.

SEAGOON: Swines. (Sniffs) Funny smell in here. (Cheery) Bloodnok!

ECCLES: It’s…er… not him. It’s me over in the corner. I’m tied to this barrel of exploding saxophones.

SEAGOON: Let me…

GRAMS: Enormous explosion.

FX: Ticking of alarm clock.

ECCLES: Aww. Neddie? Neddie? Oh, that’s the sad story of agent Ned folks. All that’s left…

FX: Alarm goes off.

ECCLES: …is this clock he swallowed. Oh dear! Time for beddy-byes. Where’s my dolly?

ENCHANTRESS: Here I am darling.

ECCLES: Ha ha! I’m not that young folks!

ORCHESTRA: ‘Old Comrades March’ playout.




[1] P.S. says ‘Graham’ (Stark). It’s not – it’s Spike.


[2] Snagge slips up on the pronunciation. He clearly says ‘Pretonious’.


[3] It is likely Snagge recorded this message and the announcement at the end of the previous show “Ned’s Atomic Dustbin” on the same time. 28th December 1958 was indeed a Sunday. It was the date the Goons recorded “The Battle of Spion Kop” (9/9th). An exhibition of Jackson Pollock (1912-1956) paintings and drawings had just been held at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London, from November to December 1958. The Luton Girls’ Choir was one of the most loved and popular amateur choirs in Great Britain, founded  in 1936 by Arthur Davies, a local choirmaster in Luton. Their popularity was such that they sang at the funerals of Royalty, at the Olympic games, at Royal Command Variety performances and toured the Commonwealth. They broadcast regularly on the BBC.

[4] Moriarty starts with “Sur les toits de Paris” then moves onto singing …


[5] Played by Valentine Dyall.


[6] Louis Quinz.

[7] Duke Ellington’s 1931 composition (to the lyrics of Irving Mills) is one of the greatest jazz standards of all time. It is highly likely that it introduced the word “swing” into everyday language and in turn gave that whole era of jazz its epithet.


[8] Played by the radio and film actor Jack Train (1902-1966). Since Sellers was absent sick, Milligan furiously rewrote the part to suit the talents and popular reputation of Jack Train, known for his character  “Colonel Chinstrap” in the series ITMA. Train had appeared once before in the Goon Show – in “The Shifting Sands of Waziristan” (17/7th).


[9] Played by the English comic Kenneth Connor (1918-1993). The PS marks it as Colonel Jim and says it was played by Milligan. The voice is definitely Connor, though later Milligan does speak as Colonel Jympton. The previous August he had appeared in the first film of the fabulously successful “Carry On” series - “Carry On Sergeant.


[10] This was quite an up-to-date reference. The swinging sixties were just around the corner, and increasingly during the late 50’s, designers like Mary Quant, Plunket Greene and John Bates were selling dresses shorter and shorter.


[11] Milligan is singing a phrase from the Introduction to Act 3 of Lohengrin by Richard Wagner. The phrase occurs in the lower strings and horns starting in the 21st bar after  the commencement of the act.


[12] P.S. says this was to be done by Secombe.


[13] Played by Kenneth Connor.


[14] The black rabbit could be a slang term for a female vagina.


[15] Octoroon means one-eighth negro.


[16] Pink oboe means the act of fellatio.


[17] Slang for the anus, specifically implying anal intercourse.


[18] From the Arabic. As ‘bin’ means ‘son of’ - ‘bint’ means ‘daughter of’. The term was picked up by allied servicemen in Egypt during WWI when trying to seek prostitutes, as it was frequently used to indicate a “good-time girl”. Consequently the word entered slang vocabulary with a distinctly pejorative flavour. It is unclear what Spike was trying to achieve here. Many of the colourful terms he is using are extremely crude, while on the other hand some have little or no slang connection at all. Spikes’ understanding and experience of sex was actually quite limited (according to his sexual partners,) and much of the repertoire hinted at here were things he had probably never tried.


[19] Graham Stark (1922-2013), English actor, writer and director. He met Dick Emery, Tony Hancock and Peter Sellers during the War, after which he became a regular at Grafton’s pub in Westminster.

[20] Spike used this exact same gag in the first volume of the war memoirs.


[21] A Dorothy bag is a woman’s handbag fastened at the top with a drawstring.

[22] P.S. says this is Secombe. It is Milligan.

[23] He is referring to Jim Davidson (1902-1982), band leader, broadcaster and BBC producer, who had arrived from Australia a decade previously and become assistant head of Variety. He was known as a ‘blunt, tough Australian’, but with his military background and widespread theatre experience (both in the forces during the war and on the Australian Tivoli circuit,) he was a man who could deal with Spike on equal terms, and with whom Spike could identify. By the time Davidson retired, he estimated that he had produced 3,500 live shows on radio, including a historic Beatles concert in the Royal Albert Hall in April 1963. He was given a farewell concert there on his retirement from the Corporation in September 1964.