Long running British situation comedy with the vaguest of situations. The Goodies are a three man agency whose brief is to do 'anything, anytime'. This gave the series carte blanche to do ... See full summary »
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Cast

Complete series cast summary:
Tim Brooke-Taylor ...
 Tim Brooke-Taylor / ... (76 episodes, 1970-1982)
...
 Graeme Garden / ... (76 episodes, 1970-1982)
Bill Oddie ...
 Bill Oddie / ... (76 episodes, 1970-1982)
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Storyline

Long running British situation comedy with the vaguest of situations. The Goodies are a three man agency whose brief is to do 'anything, anytime'. This gave the series carte blanche to do whatsoever it pleased, with a cartoon-like surrealism and a heavy reliance on slapstick. Ran for ten years on BBC TV before removing for one final series to the commercial channel London Weekend Television. Written by D.Giddings <darren.giddings@newcastle.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Anytime, anyplace, anywhere.

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Comedy

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Release Date:

8 November 1970 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Narrow Your Mind  »

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(76 episodes)

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The running joke concerning "A Walk In The Black Forest" by Horst Janowski dates back to an episode in the first series, "Radio Goodies", in which the team set up a pirate radio station with only one record - Janowski's 1965 light-instrumental hit. See more »

Quotes

Bill: Be fair, I think the GPO have got a very difficult job to do.
Tim: Yes, that's why they do it so badly.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Night of a Thousand Shows (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Funny British comedy, doing anything, anywhere, anytime
4 January 2009 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

The Goodies was a very original comedy series in the 70's, which appealed to all of us who liked Monty Python. While Monty Python are built from sketches with no punchlines, instead flowing into each other, a Goodies episode is built from some kind of theme, but with a storyline that rarely goes the expected way. The unexpected turns is a common feature in both shows.

The series is clearly related to both Monty Python and Mighty Boosh. Actually, Mighty Boosh appears to be the closest one, also being built on surrealistic stories rather than sketches. The Boosh members have indeed mentioned The Goodies as a source of inspiration. Monty Python, on the other hand, appeared at the same time, and both teams have a common background, working together in previous projects (like "At last the 1948 show"). I think it is no coincidence that both Goodies and Monty Python left the conventional sketch-with-punchline shows for a more original form.

The series is a mostly lighthearted comedy, wild as a roller-coaster ride. Sometimes it is silly on Benny Hill's level, but even when at that level it is inventive and imaginative. Anything can happen, as they do "anything, anywhere, anytime". The stories are about absolutely everything, including sex (Gender Education), racism (South Africa), monsters (Kitten Kong, Scotland).

Note that it is not always lighthearted comedy. In particular, the episodes The End and Earthanasia are dark stories about life, death and survival. They are good too, but in a completely different way.

Is it dated? Not worse than Monty Python. The only thing that really feels dated is the laugh tracks and some references to then current celebrities. I have to live with that (and there is at least one laughter-free episode on the DVDs). Of course, everything looks like the 70's, not only Graeme's sideburns, but that's not a problem. The special effects vary from primitive (Loch Ness monster, Graeme in the lighthouse) to very impressive, incredible for a TV series (The Movies). Some themes, like South Africa, comment on events in the 70's, but often still works after a quick explanation for the young ones. Apartheid may be gone, but racism is not. So all in all, it has aged very well. Another example of racism, which is really anti-racism, is all the references to "The Black&White Minstrel Show", which they mocked the most in "Alternative Roots". Their statement is clear: They very much know that black-face humor is racist and they are clearly against it. (Incidentally, "The Black&White Minstrel Show" was canceled not long after "Alternative Roots".)

The mix of dialog-driven humor, often funny visuals, and silent slapstick is part of the concept. There is often a slapstick part in the middle (Radio Goodies, South Africa) which gives the shows variation. Children's show? Well, the kids love the slapstick parts, which are sometimes less amusing to adults. But there is more to it than slapstick! The dialog-driven parts and satire are often more adult-friendly. It says "Fun for all the family" in the title, and that is quite correct.

I would like to recommend the following favorite episodes: The movies, Hype Pressure, Snooze, Radio Goodies, Goodies in the nick, Gender education, Kitten Kong.


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