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world of spike

Whenever Spike Milligan’s name is mentioned, I’m reminded of my late father.

Let me explain.

My Dad loved comedy of all kinds. The late Frank Carson was the sort of gag master he revered.

But he also devoured wacky humour, the more madcap the better.

Tommy Cooper for certain. And another of his favourites was Mr.Milligan.

Not in his Goons incarnation, but in his very, very strange BBC tv series ‘Q.’

As children, we were made to sit and watch what at the time seemed very ‘odd’ half hour sketch shows.

Belly laughs, particularly in the later Q shows, were in very short supply.

Part of Dad’s loyalty to Spike was born out of a shared experience – fighting in World War 2 from beginning to end.

On reflection, I think my Dad (born 1919) identified with Milligan (born 1918) and his surreal view of the world because they had been called up as teenagers and lived to tell the tale.

Except my Dad didn’t really talk about his experience, and so perhaps looked to people like Milligan to give it comic form.

So he would love this morning’s ‘The Spike Show’ on BBC Radio 4 Extra where Milligan’s agent Norma Farnes will mark 10 years since his passing with a selection of special programmes.

‘He’s fallen in the water.’

The Spike Show – BBC iPlayer

The Goons – The Ying Tong Song

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