The Red Fort

Series 8, Episode 7

Script by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens. Transcription by Duncan Gray, corrections by Kurt Adkins.

Greenslade:
This is the BBC Light Programme.

Secombe:
There should be a law against it.

Greenslade:
There is.

Secombe:
What’s it called?

Greenslade:
The Home Service.

Orchestra:
chord

Secombe:
And it’s that sort of material folks, that makes the BBC give in to ITV.

Greenslade:
It’s all right you running Auntie down, but you know which side your breads buttered mate.

Secombe:
Yeah, you do all right out of it as well mate. My life, eh, what.

Greenslade:
Oh?

Secombe:
I’ve seen you knocking back the gin at the old BBC cocktail parties there, Wal’. I’ve seen you staggering out reeking of whisky and your pockets full of cheese biscuits.

Greenslade:
This is outrageous.

Secombe:
You’ll get a muffin up your conk. Shut your big dinner grind and read that. Go on, read on there Wal’.

Greenslade:
I’ve a good mind to go back to the P and O. Hem. We start the all-leather Goon Show with a map of Delhi in 1857. Next, let us show you a contour map of Jane Mansfield showing the south col.

Secombe:
Give me back that family treasure. Where’s my speaking trumpet? Hello folks. Hello folks. Calling folks. Presenting to you, Captain Hugh Jampton to tell a tale of India.

Orchestra:
Bugle sounds “The Last Post”

Captain Hugh Jampton:
India, 1857. I’d just been gazetted to the First Offence Fusiliers. I shall never forget that 3rd of August. It was 130 degrees in the shade. Gad, the sun was hot. As I sat there in the sweltering heat, the perspiration poured off my dufta, ran down the fur on my topee, and sizzled on my hot steaming curry. Gad, I thought, I wonder what the folks at home are doing now.

Fred Bogg:
We weren’t doing anything actually.

Captain Hugh Jampton:
…and just across the road I could hear the old man signing documents in his office.

Orchestra:
Bloodnok theme.

Bloodnok:
Ohhh, ohhh, oh. Blast these flies. Dear Sir,…

Fx:
Quill on parchment

Bloodnok:
[writing] …the consignments of women arriving from England are not up to War Department standards. As it is, we are returning two crates of them which went off during the voyage. And as you know, we soldiers consider women to be a sacred animal. Please expedite.

Fx:
knock on door

Bloodnok:
Just a moment, I haven’t got my medals on…

Fx:
Jangle of medals

Bloodnok:
…and they’re all long service ones you know. Come in.

Seagoon:
Good morning Major. Ah, your medals are showing sir.

Bloodnok:
Oh, ho-ho. Dear oh dear. Captain Seagoon, what’s up now?

Seagoon:
Can your wife keep a secret?

Bloodnok:
Yes.

Seagoon:
Then I’m safe.

Bloodnok:
Yes, but I’m not married.

Seagoon:
Wait, then who was that lady in your house?

Bloodnok:
That was no lady, that was my batman.

Seagoon:
Aaaaaahhhhhh! It’s the heat sir, my eyes are going. I want a transfer.

Bloodnok:
Right, stick this on your arm.

Seagoon:
Gad, it’s a nude anchor on a g-string.

Bloodnok:
Yes, it belonged to my mother. She was a sailor.

Seagoon:
Ah ha-ha-ha-ha-aaa

Bloodnok:
Oh, you naughty man. What’s the matter with you this morning, Seagoon? Why have you got such a long face?

Seagoon:
Heavy dentures sir.

Bloodnok:
I see. Well, have you seen a doctor.

Seagoon:
Yes, I just saw one walking down the road.

Bloodnok:
Good, good, good, good, good. Then you must let nature take its course.

Seagoon:
Yes. That reminds me sir. There’s a native outside says he’s a better man than I am.

Bloodnok:
Gunga Din?

Seagoon:
That’s him.

Fx:
door opens.

Jim Spriggs:
Hello Jim. Hello Jeeeeeeem. Pardon me sir. There’s trouble in the old bazaar. Trouble iiiin the bazzzaaaaaar!

Bloodnok:
Stop raving and get on with it.

Jim Spriggs:
The devils are going around shouting “Down with the English”.

Seagoon:
What? I’ll send the Irish Guards to deal with them

Jim Spriggs:
It’s the Irish Guards who are shouting it.

Seagoon:
Whatwhatwhatwhatwhatwhat. I’ll have their shamrock ration cut in half for this.

Jim Spriggs:
How painful for them. But there is terrible trouble sir. Terrible trouble seeeeiiiir. The control mound is in great danger. In great danjee-eer.

Seagoon:
Danger? Major, I want a transfer.

Fx:
transfer slapped on arm

Seagoon:
Gad, the cap badge of Hobsons Horse.

Bloodnok:
Yes, it belonged to my father.

Seagoon:
How long was he with the Hobsons Horse.

Bloodnok:
Until the day it died. Why are you asking all these questions Seagoon? You must be rather new out here.

Seagoon:
Yes sir, new out here, but old everywhere else.

Bloodnok:
Well gentlemen, we’ll have to face it. The natives are revolting.

Seagoon:
Oh I don’t know, some of them are nice chaps.

Bloodnok:
Where did you hear that?

Seagoon:
Take It From Here. 1952.

Grams:
Large disturbance outside

Bloodnok:
Listen, if that’s the right sound effect, it sounds like hostile natives.

Seagoon:
Don’t worry Sir. I’ll go outside and soothe them.

Fx:
Door opens and closes.

Seagoon:
[sings]…There’ll always be an England and England shall be free…..

Grams:
Jeers from the crowd

Fx:
Door opens and closes.

Seagoon:
…Unmusical swines. They’d have had to pay two guineas a time to hear that at the Palladium. My life.

Bloodnok:
Well let me quell them lad. Hand me my military violin.

Grams:
Goes out of door and plays violin. Lots of sounds including donkey braying, grunts, raspberries.

Bloodnok:
The filthy swines, look at my uniform. I’ll soon show them. I’ll give them the last turkey in the shop. [*1] Abdul, now then, hand me that magnifying glass.

Grams:
goes out door. Crowd draws in deep breath and flees. Door opens again.

Bloodnok:
There, that got rid of them. Oh ho ho.

Seagoon:
Major, what did you do?

Bloodnok:
I’m not going to say, but they’d never allow it on television. That’s all.

Seagoon:
Well anyhow, it’s given us breathing space to re-organise.

Bloodnok:
Yes yes yes. Haveldar Singiz Singh.

Singhiz Thingz :
Yes Sahib?

Bloodnok:
Why are the men mutinying?

Singhiz Thingz :
Indeed sir, there is a nasty rumour that the cartridges for their rifles are being greased with banana skins. [*2]

Seagoon:
Wellwellwellwellwellwellwellwellwellwell?

Singhiz Thingz :
Well sahib, the natives look upon the banana as a sacred animal.

Bloodnok:
What? Rattle me crowthers.

Seagoon:
Wooowoowoowoo.

Bloodnok:
Thank you. That’s a lot of superstitious nonsense. The banana is a non-sacred animal.

Seagoon:
Nevertheless sir the native troops are enflamed.

Bloodnok:
Well we all are. It’s the dohbi itch you know. Tell them to drink caster oil.

Seagoon:
Are you mad major?

Bloodnok:
What?

Seagoon:
The natives regard castor oil as a sacred animal. I’m only a simple Englishman and I know that.

Bloodnok:
You’re simpler than I thought.

Seagoon:
And so saying he pointed to a map of Dehli where Major Bloodnok was preparing to do battle.

Grams:
Rhubarb

Jim Spriggs:
Eyes front Jim, eyes front. Commanding Officer, atteeen…..shun.

Grams:
Parade comes to attention

Bloodnok:
As you were men. I assume you were men before you eh…well never mind about that. Now gentlemen, the Seefaris are up in arms and down in legs, under the leadership of the Red Bladder.

Seagoon:
What is the disposition of his troops?

Bloodnok:
They’re a lot of miserable… ah well, I believe that he and his mutineers are a thousand miles away

Seagoon:
Correction sir, we’ve just had news that they’re only half a mile away.

Bloodnok:
What, follow me.

Grams:
Parade speeds into the distance, then pause, then parade speeds back from the distance

Bloodnok:
All right, stop, stop. Well, now they’re a thousand miles away.

Seagoon:
They’re not, we are.

Bloodnok:
So, we’re the same distance from them as they are from us, the cunning devils.

Seagoon:
Major, it’s no good. We’ve got to attack the Red Fort. It’s the key to the whole of India.

Bloodnok:
All right then. I want three brave men and a coward.

Seagoon:
I’ll be the coward sir.

Bloodnok:
Too late, I’ve already volunteered. You’ll have to be the three brave men. You’re just the right size I think anyway. Now Seagoon, you three black up your faces, put on evening dress and muffle your banjos.

Seagoon:
Don’t be silly sir, the muffled banjo is considered a sacred animal.

Bloodnok:
Then you’ll have to attack unaccompanied. Now, you know what we want?

Seagoon:
Yes sir, the inside leg measurement of the key to the rebel fort.

Bloodnok:
Yes.

Seagoon:
Don’t worry sir, leave it to me. Yes sir, I will do it sir. I’ll see to it sir. Yes sir. You can rely on me absolutely to…..

Bloodnok:
Shut up, Shut up there.

Orchestra:
Link music

Greenslade:
Meantime, outside the tradesman’s entrance of the Red Fort, sounds are heard coming from a dustbin.

Fx:
Sounds of cutlery on plates and Moriarty eating and going “ow”

Grytpype:
Ah yes, Moriarty, when Grytpype-Thynne invites someone to dine, they dine in the style to which they’re accustomed. Here, have another fillet of fishbone.

Moriarty:
[swallows]

Grytpype:
Nourishment, that’s what you need, my dear Count, nourishment. Bring the roses back to your knees.

Moriarty:
Grytpype, this life of luxury in this dustbin, it’s too good to be true. What are you after? What do you want of me? What is it, what task do you want of me, what task?

Grytpype:
We’ve never had it so good, have we?

Moriarty:
Never had it so good.

Grytpype:
Well I’ll tell you. Now, I have a great plan Moriarty. Soon this dustbin will be resting inside the Red Fort, and then I have a certain idea.

Moriarty:
Owwww

Grytpype:
But shhh, someone is approaching downwind.

Moriarty:
Lucky for them.

Seagoon:
Yes, it’s me folks. Where’s my muffled speaking trumpet? Hello folks, haaaallo folks. I’m speaking through my muffled speaking trumpet from directly outside the main gate of the Red Fort. We’re disguised to look like Indian GPO engineers. Now to afford an entrance.

Willium:
I can afford an entrance captain, I just had me slate money.

Seagoon:
Right, well knock on the door with your slate.

Willium:
Right. Knock, knock, knock.

Fx:
door opens

Red Bladder:
Yimbum bullaboo, itchy kitchy coo, toolatoola yakadoola, and your father too. Now, what d’you want, blimey, knocking us up this time of night.

Seagoon:
We’re just testing a door knocker.

Red Bladder:
Did it work?

Willium:
We don’t know. We’re waiting to see if anyone answers.

Red Bladder:
Well I hope they hurry up. I can’t stand here all night with my door open. It’s bad enough standing here with it shut.

Willium:
All right, lets start again then. Knock, knock.

Red Bladder:
Who’s there?

Willium:
Cohen.

Red Bladder:
Cohen who?

Willium:
Cohen answer the door.

Red Bladder:
Ah, so your back.

Willium:
No, it’s me front mate.

Seagoon:
You’re not going to get any laughs. Let me try and be funny.

Willium:
That’s a laugh for a start, innit.

Seagoon:
Red Bladder, we’ve come to disconnect your phone.

Red Bladder:
I haven’t got one.

Seagoon:
Don’t worry, we’ve brought one with us.

Red Bladder:
All right little jokers, come in.

Seagoon:
Don’t bother to wait up, we’ll lock up for you.

Red Bladder:
OK, and don’t forget to put the cat out, he’s a British spy.

Bluebottle:
You rotten swine, you give me away now. My disguise was perfect until you said that. Points to mums old drawers painted to look like tabby cat.

Seagoon:
Gad, it’s secret agent Bluebottle.

Bluebottle:
Yee hee.

Seagoon:
Just the fellow. Give me a hand to remove the fort door and get it back to camp.

Bluebottle:
But if we take it away captain, they’ll notice it.

Seagoon:
Nonsense, if it’s not there, how can they notice it? If it was there they’d notice, but then there wouldn’t be anything to notice, would there? I mean if its not there they wouldn’t notice it. I mean, if it em…..hum.

Seagoon:
and Bluebottle:
[singing] Rule Britannia, Britannia rules the waves, Britons never never never……

Orchestra:
Dramatic link

Bloodnok:
We must have that door of the fort. Any news of Seagoon and his blacked up raiding party?

Greenslade:
No sir, but we’ve captured three natives who say they’re Seagoon blacked up.

Bloodnok:
What? Send them in.

Seagoon:
Let me go. It’s all a mistake I tell you, let me go.

Bloodnok:
Right, now then who are you three people?

Seagoon:
We’re me, Seagoon. I’m not a native, look, I’ll roll my sleeves up.

Bloodnok:
So, a native with european arms.

Greenslade:
Seagoon took the door of the fort down to the locksmiths shop where even now they are making a duplicate key.

Fx:
locksmith working type noises, hammering on metal….

Lalkaka:
I don’t know what’s happening here, I don’t understand.

Lakagee:
Well in a minute you will understand

Lalkaka:
Using a tantamount of patience will bring it to a conclusion I say.

Lakagee:
This is a job for Hindustani

Lalkaka:
You realise the significance of getting this into….(muttering)….conjunction with certain….(muttering)

Lakagee:
I do I do, yes

Lalkaka:
Yes alright. Steady Mr Lackagee. Most imperative that we keep this in great perspective so we can condition right, you understand.

Lakagee:
I totally understand what you are saying.

Lalkaka:
Shabas

Lakagee:
One moment Mr Lalkaka, would it not be more advantageous if we stood the door in the upright position.

Lalkaka:
You are speaking line 3 and I haven’t spoken line 2 yet.

Lakagee:
Ah but I am wondering whether the line 1 you are saying was replaced with some other utterings

Lalkaka:
You are going back bengali babu, and in callicut long live. Missi give you three pints daily, but on Sunday

Lakagee:
I get none.

Lalkaka:
What will you do?

Lakagee:
I shall die.

Lalkaka:
Then your wife and children cry

Lakagee:
They will make a bonfire of me.

Lalkaka:
They will throw you in the sea.

Lakagee:
What will be the end of me?

Lalkaka:
I don’t know.

Lakagee:
Oh dear.

Lalkaka:
Now to test the key out in the door we have made for this important door. Mr Lackagee, will you please hold the end of the door in a position like so.

Lakagee:
I will, I will, but Mr Lalkaka, would it not be more advantageous if we stood the door in the upright position?

Lalkaka:
Indeed, indeed Mr Lackagee, that is a splendid idea, admitting. I will get Haveldar Singiz-Singh to hold the door upright against his face.

Lakagee:
Giving you credit for your intelligence, I do not see the point of having Haveldar Singh holding the door upright.

Lalkaka:
Please letting me explain the reason that it is, and simply the reason comes man. Now listen please.

Lakagee:
I am listening. I am listening.

Lalkaka:
Will you kindly remain in a condition of serenity and calm, and I will explain the whole principal of the idea. Toodle pip.

Lakagee:
Explain. Chin chin.

Lalkaka:
Chin chin. Now the natural position of the door is being upright, is that not right so?

Lakagee:
Indeed yes, indeed yes.

Lalkaka:
Hooray

Lakagee:
I am in complete accordment with the statement you have just vouchsafed.

Lalkaka:
Alright. Therefore in this position we are able to make the requisite preparation for the testing of the key.

Lakagee:
That is so, that is so.

Lalkaka:
Now then, HaveldarSingh.

Haveldar Singh:
I am standing by waiting immediately on your command.

Lakagee:
Well rest your little curry bag on the chair, and hold the door between yourself and us two persons on the opposite side.

Fx:
heavy object being moved

Lalkaka:
Excellent indeed, now then, we will insert the newly made key into the lock so.

Fx:
scratching of key in lock

Lakagee:
Oh dear dear

Lalkaka:
What is the trouble?

Lakagee:
It is not correctly fitting into the lock.

Lalkaka:
Haveldar Singh, a disaster has occurred for you, we fear you are locked in.

Seagoon:
There you are, gentlemen. How’s it going?

Lalkaka:
Sir, the key we made will not fit the Red Forts door.

Seagoon:
I must find how to unlock this door. It’s the only way we can get into the fort. Has anyone here got a hairpin?

Flowerdew:
I’ve got one sir.

Seagoon:
It’s time you went on leave, isn’t it? Now, see if this hairpin opens it.

Fx:
Key scratching in lock and then door opens.

Seagoon:
There! Got it.

Red Bladder:
Here, I hope you put that cat out.

Seagoon:
The Red Bladder! Major Bloodnok.

Fx:
Horse runs up.

Bloodnok:
What is it?

Seagoon:
I’ve got The Red Bladder imprisoned behind this door.

Bloodnok:
What? Let’s look round the back. There’s nobody there.

Seagoon:
He’s escaped. Anyway major, you’ll be pleased to know we’ve got the door to open.

Bloodnok:
Let me try.

Red Bladder:
So Bloodnok, hands up

Bloodnok:
[screams], let me go.

Seagoon:
Good heavens, the Red Bladders captured Major Bloodnok. I’ll have to get this door back to the Red Fort at once and liberate Bloodnok. Fall in a volunteer for a dangerous job.

Grams:
Stampede of boots running away.

Eccles:
But dat only leaves me. [applause] Ta, ta, there’ll be a silver collection later, what.

Seagoon:
Splendid Eccles, I want you to guard that door with your life

Eccles:
Okay. [mutters leftrightleftright as he marches back and forward] There’s something funny going on here. I don’t know about you folks, but I think it’s silly guarding a door. Wait a minute, instead of me walking round it, I’ll open it and walk through. That way I’ll get to the other side quicker.

Grams:
Door opens. Immediate sounds of battle, lots of shooting etc.

Seagoon:
You fool Eccles, you’ve let all the mutineers out. Quick, after them.

Eccles:
Right

Fx:
running feet

Orchestra:
dramatic link

Captain Hugh Jampton:
Meanwhile, inside the Red Fort.

Red Bladder:
Come Bloodnok, sign this document giving India to us.

Bloodnok:
Codswaggle me dongolas, never, never. Torture me. Lock me in a dark room with six beautiful women. I’ll never sign.

Red Bladder:
Very well, I won’t lock you in a dark room with six beautiful women.

Bloodnok:
Thank heavens, saved.

Red Bladder:
Instead, me challenge you to a duel. Name your weapons.

Bloodnok:
One pair of clean underpants.

Red Bladder:
Cor blimey, what you mean mate?

Bloodnok:
I challenge you to a battle of wits, namely a nineteenth century underpant wearing contest. We stand back to back and the first man to wear out the seat of his pants dies, of exposure.

Red Bladder:
I accept.

Bloodnok:
Are you ready? Back to back. Now, forty eight thousand paces, quick march.

Fx:
Booted feet march into distance

Bloodnok:
Well, that got rid of him.

Red Bladder:
That’s what you think.

Bloodnok:
Aaaaah. You swine, you let your legs go without you.

Red Bladder:
Bloodnok, your time has come.

Bloodnok:
Aaaaaah

Red Bladder:
Stand up against the wall.

Bloodnok:
What?

Red Bladder:
Firing squad, load.

Narrator:
Meanwhile, Seagoons relief column approaches.

Fx:
Marching column

Seagoon:
We must hurry men. Left, left, left right left.

Narrator:
Back at the Fort.

Red Bladder:
Take aim.

Narrator:
Back at the Seagoon.

Seagoon:
Faster men, faster.

Fx:
faster marching

Narrator:
Back at the fort.

Red Bladder:
Any last requests Bloodnok.

Bloodnok:
Yes, don’t shoot me.

Narrator:
Back at the fort. Back at the Seagoon.

Seagoon:
Hurry men, faster.

Narrator:
While, back at the fort.

Red Bladder:
Fire.

Fx:
Firing squad fire.

Narrator:
Back at the Seagoon.

Seagoon:
Halt. Too late. Fall out lads, get your money. See you next week.

Greenslade:
It’s all in the mind you know.

Orchestra:
End theme – “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead”

Greenslade:
That was The Goon Show. A BBC recorded programme featuring Peter Sellers, Harry Secombe, and Spike Milligan; with the Ray Ellington Quartet, Max Geldray. The Orchestra was conducted by Wally Scott. Script by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens. Announcer Wallace Greenslade. The programmer produced by Roy Spear.

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