Friday, 21 August 2009

Benny Does The Birdie Dance...

1980 provided some real treats for all the family...

When Benny wasn't working at the Crossroads Motel Garage, nipping into the Tiswas studio next door, fetching a spanner and vanishing for months on end, or appearing in panto, he was making records like this.

It was all too, too tragic.

Paul Henry recalled a story about the 1982 Falklands War in a 1990s Crossroads anniversary TV programme. UK armed forces had apparently nicknamed the Falkland Islanders "Bennys". When Top Brass got to hear about it, an order went out that this offensive practise must stop immediately.

So, the soldiers re-nicknamed the Islanders "Stills".

When one of the soldiers was asked why, he replied, "Because they're still Bennys!"

Charming, what?!

Christmas 1981 - and Benny joins in that year's big dance craze at the Staff Christmas Party. Yep, It's The Birdie Dance...

Poor old Benny - after all his past traumas, the 1980s were turning weird on him. First there were the bizarre glimmerings of ESP, then a more down-to-earth encounter with a King's Oak hooligan, and finally the death of his elderly landlady, Mrs Price in 1983. And Benny KNEW something was going to happen before she died. Now, with Benny alone in the old guest house, the strange noises begin - and then the lights go out...

According to legend, Benny, who was last spotted on-screen just before Christmas 1987 and then never seen or mentioned again (the show ended in April 1988), finally disappeared up a Christmas tree.

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