Sunday, July 26, 2020

Michael Bentine - The Bumblies: Cowboys and Indians (1954)

"Michael Bentine's first appearances on television were as presenter on a 13-part children's series featuring remote controlled puppets, The Bumblies, which he also devised, designed and wrote. These were three small creatures from outer space who slept on "Professor Bentine's" ceiling and who had come to Earth to learn the ways of Earthling children. Angelo de Calferta modelled the puppets from Bentine's designs and Richard Dendy moulded them in latex rubber. He sold the series to the BBC for less than they had cost to make" - Wiki

This is the later series I remember from childhood: Michael Bentine's Potty Time.

"Michael Bentine lost the power of speech for 13 years as a child but recovered in time to attend Eton. Following his education and wartime service during WWll, he decided he wanted to be a comedian and auditioned at London’s famous Windmill Theatre. It was here that he met fellow ex-services entertainer Harry Secombe. Secombe introduced Bentine to his friends Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers, and the group would often meet up at a pub run by Secombe’s writer and agent Jimmy Grafton. From those meetings at the Grafton Arms, the quartet developed the idea for The Goon Show, which went on to become the most famous British radio show of all time.

"Bentine left after the second series to continue touring in his own show and in 1954 was offered a TV series by the BBC – A children’s puppet series called The Bumblies. Following numerous appearances on other shows and another series, After Hours (1958-59), he made his best-remembered series It’s A Square World. Potty Time saw Bentine return to his Children’s TV roots, with puppets made by Joan and Stan Griffiths and operated by The Barry Smith Theatre Of Puppets.

"When promoting his new Potty Time show in 1974, Bentine described ‘Potties’ thusly: “they are really Bumblies with clothes and hair on. They live in their own Potty world and have their own Potty history”. The cast included 26 Potties, about ten of which were used in each programme."
                                                - Nostalgia Central

No comments:

Post a Comment