Arthur Chappell

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BOOK REVIEW – BILL TIDY – THE FOSDYKE SAGA #12 1983 DAILY MIRROR BOOKS

Twelth collection in the outstanding and zany Fosdyke Saga, inspired by John Galsworthy’s The Forsyth Saga.

The Fosdykes are the wealthiest of Lancashire tripe barons, and constantly seeking new ways to extend their business & increase their wealth.  One Fosdyke son is sent on endless quests for tripe artefacts with which to fill the Fosdyke tripe museum, including a  tripe brick from the Great Wall Of China and a rare tripe egg, guarded by the Mafia’s ornithology society.

Another Fosdyke has a series of hair-brained get-rich quick stunts, including the Lady Godiva men’s nude marathon (which ends in disaster when the police send in the dogs to search for stolen goods). Another scheme he launches is the tripe beer hunt, which leads to competitors digging up half of Manchester.

Finding out that his clapped out horse puts on a good burst of speed when fed on tripe, the Fosdyke family leader enters the poor beast in a cart and piano dragging  horse race and plans to have it swimming the English Channel too.

The third thread covered in the collection is concerned with the efforts of Roger Ditchley, the villainous cowardly cad, to destroy the Fosdykes in revenge for them securing the tripe industry from his father. Ditcley’s doomed plans include the use of super-strong house flies and a psychotic destructive child called Violent Carson, named as a pun on Violet Carson, a TV soap opera actress of the 1960’s & 70’s, who may or may not be the child’s mother.

Laugh out loud funny – the series ran for three more years in the Daily Mirror before being dumped because the new editor, Robert Maxwell, didn’t get the joke. He’s probably the only one who didn’t. 

 © Copyright. Arthur Chappell                                                   

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