The Benny Hill Show Wikia

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Bio

The Herd is a fictional British night time soap about a wealthy American family known as the Kirkdales in the style of "Dallas," "Dynasty" and "Falcon Crest" of the Eighties. It stars Susan Camshaft as Miss Kitty, Merwyn Cruddy as Chuck, Willie Tredder as Biff and Patty Bottom as Patricia. (All played by Benny Hill) They seem to have made their fortune off the cattle industry.
The episode starts with Chuck Kirkdale out on the golf course with two associates (Bob Todd and Henry McGee) as another golfer (Jon Jon Keefe) starts yelling "Duck!" He's unaware why he's yelling it until one comes falling out of the sky on top of him, apparently taken out by an errant golf ball.
At the local truck stop, Biff Kirkdale is having beers with a friend (Jon Jon Keefe) and trading insults with the waitress (Anna Dawson). They notice two girls (Tracy Smith and unknown) they consider taking out, but Biff remembers his grandfather's hundred and forty-fifth birthday which the family likes to celebrate long after his passing at fifty. He has to call the estate on a pay phone to check and see if a guest named Elly Mae will be attending and gets the maid (Emma Bryant) with the guest list. In the split screen, he borrows it to look at himself, but she needs to back to check for gate-crashers.
Back at the house, the butler (Bob Todd) passes Chuck Kirkdale's room and thinks he's hearing tomfoolery foot, but he's actually over-hearing him catching an unseen maid named Bessie wearing his clothes. Relieved, he goes off excited about the party, but when Mrs. Kitty hears about the party from a nurse (Alison Thomas), she's not happy that she wasn't invited. She shares her chocolates in a bowl by the bed with the maid, neglecting to tell her until afterward she always puts the ones she doesn't like back in the bowl.
At the party, Biff hits on a young lady (Alison Marsh) and Chuck shares drinks with an associate, Henry (Henry McGee), as the maid from earlier (Emma Bryant) shares hors d'euvres. Worried about getty drunk, Henry tells Chuck about breathalyzers, a device that tells how much alcohol one has drank. Chuck says they have the same thing, but he calls it a wife. Patricia meanwhile tries to put off an ardent admirer (Jon Jon Keefe) who responds to her with nick-names.
When Chuck gets a phone call that his herd has contracted HFMD (Hoof and Mouth Disease), he realizes he is now broke and quickly cancels the party, sending the guests home and pouring the champagne back into the bottles. When he tells the pianist (Ted Taylor), the pianist misunderstands and starts playing "The Party's Over," thinking it's a request. Chuck slams the lid down on his fingers. By now, Mrs. Cissy has started her way down to the party, noticed by the maid (Alison Thomas?). Chuck orders her back to bed, but she stumbles with the maid trying to catch her and falls down the stairs, sliding part of the way. Another maid (Anna Dawson) gives the bad news.
At her funeral, Chuck is surrounded by mourners (Louise English and Jo Thomas). As the preacher (Henry McGee) is covering the funeral rites, the grave-digger (Jon Jon Keefe) tries breaking the grave on the cold hard family estate, but he keeps hitting solid rock. When he finally cracks it, a geyser of crude oil erupts in the form of a geyser and the family dances around it realizing they're rich again.

Trivia

  • The Herd is the last extended sketch in the series with Benny as multiple characters, such as Hollywood Grates: Chubby Dodds, Tex Cymball or Big Poppa.
  • Jon Jon's caddie on the golf course seems to be Len Keyes, but he seems to be uncredited for the episode. He also appears in the party sequence, but he doesn't get a speaking part.
  • Henry McGee is another customer in the truck stop.
  • William Brown of "Benny's Place" revealed the split-screen gag had been previously used by cartoon director Tex Avery in the 1938 cartoon "The Bear's Tale." He also reveals that Benny also once sang "The Party's Over" when he was starting out and in a 1967 episode of "Spotlight" with Paul Anka.
  • Brown also revealed that the "Yes, Sir" bit with Bob Todd in the sketch is a reboot of the "Very Well, M'Lady" quickie that opened the January 27, 1971 episode.
  • The blonde actress in the party with Jon Jon Keefe is unidentified, but then several guests in the party scene seem to be unidentified extras.
  • Henry McGee goes by his own name in the party.
  • Sue Upton, Len Keyes, Alison Marsh, Rebecca Marsh, Alison Thomas, Tracy Smith play guests in the party.
  • When Benny as Chuck Kirkdale gets the phone call, there's a clear shot of Mike Mulloy as Benny's stand-in playing Patricia.
  • The sketch was filmed on videotape, but the interior with Miss Cissy falling down the stairs was done on film, possibly on location at the Claremount Fan School which features in the exteriors (but not the close-up with the "For Rent" sign).
  • Benny's musical associate Ted Taylor gets a speaking part and a brief comedy gag in the sketch.

Episode(s)

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