Permission to speak, sir?
Sad news today of the death of the actor Clive Dunn, best known for his role as Lance Corporal Jones in the much-loved series, Dad’s Army. He has passed away at the age of 92 at his home in Portugal. Apparently in recent years he was struggling to see, but his mind was as sharp as ever. In an interview for this month’s edition of Oldie magazine, he was asked what it was like being 92. He replied simply: ‘It’s like being 91.’
I think it is widely known that the actor was actually only 48 when he began playing the doddery pensioner in the BBC comedy in 1968. The series ran until 1977, regularly attracting 18million viewers, and is still repeated to this day. Few know, however, the real wartime service of the man behind bungling Corporal Jones, who saw active service with the 4th Hussars during the Second World War and spent four years as a prisoner of war in Austria.
I grew up with Dad’s Army and Lance Corporal Jones was a favourite of mine – he had all the best lines and several catchphrases that never failed to make me laugh – “Don’t panic Mr Mainwaring, don’t panic”, “They don’t like it up ’em” and “Permission to speak, sir”, whilst always enjoying telling long rambling stories of his wartime heroics but often forgetting whether he was fighting ‘the Bosch’ or ‘the fuzzie-wuzzies’ in Sudan!
Above all, however, what never ceased to crack me up was his complete inability to stand to attention at the same time as the rest of the platoon – always just a beat behind the rest – so sit back and enjoy these clips of a very funny man – RIP Clive Dunn.
Posted on November 8, 2012, in Film & TV, Glasgow and tagged 4th Hussars, Austria, BBC, Bosch, Clive Dunn, comedy, Dad's Army, fuzzie-wuzzies, Lance Corporal Jones, Oldie, platoon, Portugal, prisoner of war, Second World War, Sudan, wartime. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.