1 9 7 2 – 1 9 7 3 (Australia)
13 x 30 minute episodes
The Aunty Jack Show was a bizarre Australian sketch comedy. Aunty Jack herself was a boxing glove wearing motorbike rider with a moustache. Her catchphrase was “I’ll rip yer bloody arms off”.
Grahame Bond had created the character of Aunty Jack for an ABC radio show in 1969.
The television programme introduced Narrator Neville (John Derum), Thin Arthur (Rory O’Donoghue) and sensual Flange Desire (Sandra McGregor), although Derum left after the first six episodes and was replaced by Garry McDonald as Kid Eager and “little Aussie bleeder” Norman Gunston – a character which took on a life of its own.
The 13 episodes featured sketches, songs and segments such as Colonel Henry Passionfruit’s Choreographed Battle Drill (for dealing with the seriously non-rhythmic enemy), Dried Elephant Arrangement for Beginners (in which Aunty Jack demonstrates how to dehydrate and arrange elephants and threatens to punch ‘Colin’, a fully grown bull elephant, warning him ‘I’ll rip your bloody trunk off!’) and the Rol Fol Tit Singers.
Memorable characters from the series include the meat artist Kev Kavanagh (Grahame Bond) and Neil and Errol the singing tramps (Grahame Bond and Rory O’Donoghue)
After the first episode was aired, the ABC switchboard received more than 1,000 calls of complaint, particularly about the drag queen element.
In many ways, The Aunty Jack Show was a lot like Monty Python’s Flying Circus (except Australian, obviously). Though it aired for just two short seasons in 1972 and 1973, the series is seen as quintessential Australian television comedy.
The Aunty Jack theme song (Farewell Aunty Jack) topped the Aussie music charts in 1974 and stayed in the Top 40 for over 20 weeks.
The cast went on to make other shows including Wollongong the Brave, Flash Nick from Jindavik, and The Off Show (later to drop an ‘f’ and become simply The Of Show). Norman Gunston went on to his own brand of super-stardom.
Goodbye me little lovelies!
The Aunty Jack Radio Show / The Aunty Jack War Show / The Aunty Jack Kulture Show / The Aunty Jack Anonymous Show / The Aunty Jack Family Show / The Aunty Jack Sex Show / The Aunty Jack Horror Show / The Channel 970 Show / The Iron Maiden Show / The Golden Glove Show / The Ear, Nose & Throat Show / The Little Lovelies’ Show / The R Certificate Show