Even funnier and better than I remember from 45 years ago
There is no need to be nostalgic about the Telegoons. All 26 episodes can be found in DVD sets advertised on a 'well known Internet auction site'. Someone in the UK sells them, legally I hope, for about £5. This is fantastic value for six and a half hours of wonderful entertainment.
Nothing like this will ever be made again. The show is in black and white. Some of the film quality is poor and there are occasional sound hisses, but it doesn't matter. Plenty of information about the Telegoons is easily found by anyone who can type nine letters into a reputable search engine.
Each episode is 15 minutes. Original radio Goon Show scripts were edited and re-voiced by Messrs Milligan, Sellers and Secombe. There are fewer sound effects and none of the musical interludes of the radio programmes.
Shows begin with introductions of about two minutes, usually unrelated to the story that follows. The makers have introduced some excellent visual gags. You see Eccles felling and whittling trees to become the world's worst pole-vaulter. Henry Crun totters downstairs in a lighthouse to answer a phone that stops ringing just as he arrives. And so on.
After the warm up, the main theme starts, be it Scradge, The Hastings Flyer, Napoleon's Piano, Fort Knight or whatever. The puppets are marvellous characterisations of Seagoon, Gritpype-Thynne, Moriarty, Eccles, Bluebottle, Bloodnok, Henry Crun, Minnie Bannister, etc. The radio Goon Shows were classics but the Telegoons were and are even better.
I haven't laughed so much for ages, partly in remembrance of times past but largely because of the surreal humour that remains fresh after almost half a century.
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