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Goon cartoons

Updated: Oct 19, 2021

On 13 May 1952, listeners to the BBC Home Service at 9:30pm were treated to episode 16 of the second series of the Goon Show. Find it in the Radio Times here.

The Goons went far beyond the realms of radio. In 1982, publishing house Michael Joseph (now part of Penguin Random House) brought out The Goon Cartoons, in which Peter Clarke illustrated four scripts: ‘The Last Goon Show of All’, ‘The Affair of the Lone Banana’, ‘The Scarlet Capsule’, and ‘The Pevensey Bay Disaster’. More Goon Cartoons, in the same vein, was published three years later.

There are several cartoonists who made some wonderful contributions to the Goons’ oeuvre, through illustrations in books or – more often – by providing cover art for LPs.

Hunt Emerson's artwork, recoloured by Roger Langridge

Hunt Emerson is perhaps best known for his LP covers, which are wonderfully detailed depictions of scenes from the episodes ‘The Whistling Spy Enigma’ and ‘Nineteen-Eighty-Five’. The website has images and more detail on Emerson’s work, which included providing special illustrations for the Goon Show Preservation Society.

Roger Langridge is a New Zealand-born artist who has illustrated many comics, including for Marvel and The Muppet Show. He masquerades as @hotelfred on Twitter (a Goon Show reference) and his blog of the same name features a wonderful illustrated story of Spike’s life, and this fantastic depiction of Neddie Seagoon, Bluebottle, Eccles, and Major Bloodnok.

Greenslade: Listeners, as you all know so well, where the Calle de Carla meets the Prada in the Plaza de Madrid, stands the Hotel Fred.

(from ‘The Spanish Suitcase’, Series 5 Episode 11, broadcast 7 December 1954)

I particularly enjoy this Langridge creation, featuring all the principal Goon Show characters:

Bill Titcombe, who died earlier this year, illustrated comics designed to tie in with the Telegoons TV series. Several are also shown on the website.

And finally, a random finding from the DeviantArt website – Captain Neddie Seagoon, by Brendan Mockridge.

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