- Audio CD
- Publisher: BBC Physical Audio; A&M edition (3 Nov. 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1445865114
- ISBN-13: 978-1445865119
- Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.4 x 14 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 289,881 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Dick Barton and the Smash and Grab Raiders (BBC Audio) Audio CD – Audiobook, CD, Unabridged
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Douglas Kelly stars as 'Dick Barton - Special Agent' in another thrilling adventure for radio's greatest hero.
About the Author
The original idea for Dick Barton came from Norman Collins, Head of the Light Programme. In January 1946, he sent a memo to an assistant asking him to investigate the possibility of a daily 'cloak-and-dagger soap opera'. Matters quickly progressed and soon the fictional hero of the serial had a name - Bill Barton (later changed to Dick). Barton's history was very thoroughly researched. It was decided that he had been born on Tuesday 10 December 1912 at 5pm. The BBC went so far as to ascertain from the Town Clerk of High Wycombe and the Air Ministry exactly what the weather conditions were at the time of Barton's birth! At the time the series started, Barton was thirty-five years old. He had enjoyed a 'good' war and, in November 1945, was wondering whether he could face going back to the dutiful daily grind of the pre-war years. Having established their hero, the BBC needed to find an actor to play Barton. Noël Johnson fitted the bill perfectly: not only did he look exactly how the producers imagined Barton to be, but he was a good actor who learnt scripts accurately and quickly. However, the early days of Britain’s first daily serial were inauspicious. Within two weeks, the Daily Worker had condemned the programme as being ‘so bad as to be almost beyond criticism’. But the listeners proved the critics wrong and soon some fifteen million were tuning in to hear the adventures of Dick Barton and his pals Snowey and Jock. Although the series had been originally conceived as a fast moving cartoon strip aimed mainly at adults, the BBC soon realised that children were abandoning their homework in their thousands in order to tune in, and it was decided that all references to alcohol or girlfriends should be cut out of the script. It was still considered too exciting for some, however, as this headline from the time shows: ‘Dick Barton – Too Thrilling for Girls? Headmistress says “Yes”!’ The newly cleaned-up Barton went on to enjoy hundreds of adventures that enthralled listeners for six years. Noël Johnson left the series in 1949, largely due to money disputes, and was replaced by ex-boxer Duncan Carse. In the final year Gordon Davies played the hero. The series was written by Edward J. Mason and Geoffrey Webb. They later went on to write The Archers, which was to displace Dick Barton on the Light Programme, much to many people’s dismay – Terry Wogan has said he has never been able to enjoy the goings-on in Ambridge because they took Dick Barton away from him!
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Top Customer Reviews
There I've admitted it.
I listened to my first CD set and was hooked.
Since then I've played quite a few and each and everyone has been wonderful entertainment- a real guilty pleasure but then dear reader I have confessed my guilty sins...
Right to the review.
If you have played and listened to other Dick Barton CD sets and enjoyed them then this edition will not be the exception- it is truly wonderful.
If you're new to Dick Barton and considering if this is worth a punt I can wholeheartedly say a yes and a big one at that.
You don't need to have listened to the others in the series first to be able to enjoy this story in all its glory.
My only advice if you are new to Dick Barton is to buy one of the cheapest editions first then I am sure that just like me you will seek out as many as the rest as you can and if you do I really envy your journey in listening to these wonderful recordings.
Now as a listener you really need to suspend your preconcieved Prejudiced views these shows were written when Britain ruled the waves and waived the rules.
Britain rather than English (for we have Jock a Scot to balance the upper class Dick with the working class Cockney- Cor Luv' a Duck Govnor' Snowie)
Johnny Foreigner was just that - exotic and deadly and well foreign!!
In this role we have the Fabulous Lolita a South American/Spanish sounding long haired beauty with a fabulous accent that even to day make my knees tremble with her Spanish Inflection!!.Read more ›
As you might expect from the title, this story is exactly what it says on the cover. However, the title itself gives no clue as to the devious, double-dealing robbers who, at the same time as trying to evade the snares set by Barton, are also continuously at odds with each other. The mutinous gang members are chased from one location to another and on this occasion include a vivacious young woman who is at least as scheming as the other gang members.
Barton and his pals are in almost constant danger of being shot at, hit over the head with blunt objects or of having their car rammed while giving chase to the villains - and that's only the start; in this story, the gang manage to stay one jump ahead of Barton more often than not!
This being my second purchase, I knew the format to expect: the CD is broken down into the original broadcast episodes with a recap at the end of each one and at the beginning of the next. The episodic format means that each segment must include overcoming the cliff-hanging situation from the previous episode and ending up in yet another before the end. Rather than becoming overly repetitive, this really adds to the enjoyment, especially as it includes the signature tune, too.
An added bonus is that towards the end, the story includes a fascinating insight into the art of voice impersonation. Overall, superb nostalgic fun from the old days of the valve radio!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Once again capturing the excitement of radio broadcasting without having to wait between episodes.Published 7 months ago by News Editor
I particularly like this story. The American guy's voice always makes me laugh.
Another one added to my collection.