The first biography of comedian Terry-Thomas – considered by some to be the inspiration for Captain Britain villain Mad Jim Jaspers and who made frequent British comics appearances – has just been released in paperback by Aurum Press, also publishers of facsimile editions of The Broons and Oor Wullie.
One of Britain’s most beloved comics, Bounder! by Graham McCabb – also the author of Spike & Co., Dad’s Army and Morecambe & Wise – traces Terry’s life from his humble days in suburbia, to his dandy-like persona in Hollywood. With his sly little moustache, braod gap-toothed grin, garish waistcoats and ostentatious cigarette holder, Terry-Thomas certainly was an absolute bounder – both onscreen and off.
From an early age, Terry-Thomas set his sights on show business, making his television debut in 1949 in the groundbreaking How Do You View?. Cinema soon called and ith hit films such as School For Scoundrels and Those Magnificent Men In Their Flying Machines, he went on to form a long and lucrative celluloid career. America loved the gap-toothed, English cad.
Terry also featured in several comic strips, including strips featured in Film Fun, such as this one by George Wakefield from a 1957 edition.
Sadly, in the 1970’s, Parkinson’s disease eventually forced him out of the limelight and into comparative obscurity.
Well-received on its hardcover release last year, Bounder! taps into a widespread nostalgia for the golden age of British entertainment. Terry-Thomas has become a cult figure, cited as a key influence by contemporary comedians such as Paul Whitehouse and Vic Reeves.
Categories: British Comics - Books