Well, Della and I had a very unpleasant experience today. We were in bed having an afternoon snooze when we were awoken by a loud banging on the door, and the next thing we knew a S.W.A.T. team from the Met Police were looming over us. Apparently a concerned member of the public, horrified at what he had seen on the Christmas Special, had felt it was his civic duty to report us for first degree murder! (Technically just me, actually, Della was only charged with being an accessory).
Well, there was no deferring them to Interpol this time. We tried to explain it was all done for a gag, but the boys in blue were having none of it. They raided the flat, and seized Mr Bonky’s head as evidence. They even took our hard drives. Fortunately everything was backed up on Della’s laptop in the car, hence we are still able to communicate with the outside world (well unless our bail is revoked). That said, we were only released from custody around midnight, and even had to face the indignity of getting a nightbus home. Della was mad, I can tell you that. No Monken Hadley tantrums for her. She’s made of much sterner stuff. I think the Police were glad to get rid of her after they had questioned us separately for 8 hours. But as you shall see, we were soon in good spirits again, once we’d dried off in front of the fire (it’s been pouring in North London this evening). She was determined as soon as we got back indoors (after pouring me a whisky for the shock) to assemble this short film, to show the Police, and some misguided members of the general public, that no one REALLY got decapitated – or probed for that matter, and that we are innocent of all charges.
We hope you enjoy this little collection of rehearsals, outtakes and bloopers, and spare a thought for poor Mr Bonky’s head, stuffed into an evidence bag, most likely in a cold dark cupboard somewhere. And please, don’t have nightmares. After all, in the words of Terrence McNally – ‘It’s only a play.’ Or should that be “The play’s the thing… wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the ‘king’”…?
Well Its all been happening. The aftermath of the great Christmas festival I suppose. As I said before, Della and myself were working most of the way through it, and didn’t have much time to give – or even notice – the normal Christmas frivolities. That is not really a contradiction because we were working on the completion of our much demanded film for the Christmas Special which can be viewed here:
We have had quite a bit of feedback following its final release after midnight on Christmas Day; mostly directly and on Facebook – it seems some fans are being sensible about being stalked by Mr Bonky’s head should they post their appreciation on Youtube! I suppose I can’t really blame them; that said apparently he likes it so much himself he has even kindly put up a link to the video on one of the fan sites he has taken it upon himself to dedicate to me. I should point out that I do not endorse any of these, but I suppose they are flattering in their own way, and show his appreciation for some of my numerous followers! I mean, imagine the hours and hours of thankless effort he must put into them…
Anyway, he has done, and in doing so has given me a weird form of unsought fan adoration from the rest of the world. Some might even say cult status. On that subject I have recently received a flurry of emails from people who had never contacted me before but were asking about ordering books, and copies of the film. I’m sorry to any of you who are reading this who I have not managed to get back to yet, but I will definitely answer all your queries. I am after all only human, and its been such a hectic time. So I’ll say it again, “Cheers, Bonky!” and I hope you had a happy Christmas, even being somewhat ‘off your head’.
But seriously, there has been a lot of appreciation for the Christmas Special, and all the work was well worth it, and thank you all for your support.
On to other more mundane matters, we were just taking it easy tonight and showing the film to a few visitors. Also just catching up on a few odds and ends that have gone amiss while our time has been so preoccupied with the film. As I write, for example, Della is just relaxing by getting up to speed with her darning. I ripped a hole in my pullover the other night during the filming (accidentally) and she insisted the pullover was too good to just chuck away when a small half inch tear could be easily fixed with a bit of invisible stitching. I didn’t argue as she does enjoy sewing. She had also cooked a very delicious free-range corn-fed chicken earlier this evening, served up with Jersey potatoes, garnished with homemade garlic bread, duck eggs and asparagus, as we were having such a lazy day. Sometimes the simple pleasures in life can be the most delicious; and certainly take much less work.
Thought you might like to see a still picture from the Christmas Special, so have posted one above. It shows Gareth, myself and the mysterious Alien. But I’ll just have to leave you all to guess who’s really playing him! (I can’t say even if I wanted to, as we are bound by contractual terms and film rights at the moment).
At last, the Christmas Special is up on YouTube. Della and I have had all sorts of hang ups, both technical and involving a cocktail party in Hampstead which it would have been rude to not attend. But we did, and still managed to get the film out on schedule – albeit a few hours late. But here is the link, everyone, to make it easy for you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xYUr15UwO7A&feature=youtu.be
And all we can say is enjoy, and just ‘watch away’ (and we hope you do not suffer any serious brain damage from watching our little seasonal offering).
Comments would be welcome; but if you’re too embarrassed to even comment, we will understand!
“Christmas is coming and the goose is getting fat’ – or so goes the old saying. Actually, there’s a lot of literal truth in that old saying. Nothing at all meaningful or profound, but it just reminds you of the days when geese were a traditional meal at Christmas, rather than the multi manufactured market of frozen turkeys. How people can eat them en masse, I really don’t know. But they do. Tradition (rather modern tradition) seems to have taken precedence to taste, when the mindless masses consume platefuls of a meat so dry and juiceless that it is only disguised by varying amounts of gravy. People stuff themselves, nevertheless; and pretend to enjoy it. Though who knows? Perhaps they really do! Perhaps tradition has become so strong that acceptance of the food itself has been relegated to secondary importance.
Della and myself have decided to cook lamb for Christmas dinner. Now there’s a meat which at least retains most of its vital juices. And its versatile as well. So at least no pretence there when you’re eating it; except perhaps a realisation that it is not meant to be a part of the traditional Christmas meal. Who really cares anyway? I just don’t like turkey, that’s all!
On another matter, our Christmas Special film is on schedule and (like our recent Hoggy Hallowe’en film) will soon be released on DVD. That might be in the New Year, but then, it won’t really be out of date. ‘Christmas’ might well be in the title, but the plot is really applicable to most times of the year. It has a Christmas meaning, for sure; but its portrayed ghosts are real rather than seasonally intentional. Blame Charles Dickens for that!
Della has a long holiday from work after tomorrow. So I’ll have 10 days to lavish her ‘daytime affections’. Obviously can’t do that when she’s working, but I think she’s deserved a little holiday. We’ll probably just relax and do virtually nothing. Well, Christmas comes but once a year, and dear old Santa has got to have some seasonal pleasure, I suppose!
More Christmas news. I heard from one of the producers the other day, with news on their new film about the Highgate vampire and my life. The film is nearly finished, and I hope to be hosting a preview screening in the new year. Quite honestly I’ll be glad when this whole Christmas charade is over! Its not so much that I begrudge the festival for youngsters with their excitement and expectation of toys. After all we were all young once and probably all enjoyed it. I better not say any more or I’ll just be labelled asa ‘grinch’ – or at least as one of his followers. But I’ll still be glad when its over! That said, Della really enjoys it, so I suppose its not such a big sacrifice.
Other news? Well, a bit more than news, this is really a revelation. Della has just started her own Blog. She has been meaning to do this for sometime, but always stepped back from putting it into motion because of the worry of taking on more responsibility, as she is now a partner in her firm and has enough to manage as it is! I knew that the idea was there, but I never really pushed her for this reason as I wanted her to make her own decisions as and when she felt ready. She hasn’t finished the ‘About Me’ section yet, but she should have done before the weekend is out (filming permitting, and we have a LOT on tomorrow). It is beautifully laid out, and, I believe, gives a deep insight into her own thoughts and feelings. But I am not going to attempt to paraphrase her work, as it has just gone into the public domain, and any interested people can read it for themselves (and there seem to be a lot of those about!). The link is: www.dellafarrant.org. Her first 2 posts are already up, and I understand that the page she is working on, and lost some sleep over, will be really disclosing. So just keep watching that space (after you’ve watched this one, obviously!).
On another matter (but maybe not quite), there has been a lot of speculation recently about a marriage announcement that appeared online in the pages of the Ham and High. I am still not prepared to make any comment about that, despite pressure from quite a few people. All I can say is ‘Third time lucky’ – if you get my meaning! But seriously, that notification was put up by a well meaning friend, as what they thought of as a present. So in that sense it is no longer ‘secret’, but out in the public domain. But to those people, I am still saying “No Comment”. Why? Quite simply, its because its none of your Goddamn business! So I think we’ll drop that subject for now; but if anyone wants a new toaster, we’ve got about 5 of them spare, so do please get in touch! Mind you I can say that all this speculation about our private lives has given us both some cause for amusement!
Well just counting the days down now to the dreaded Christmas, although we have decided to retire from public life just for a day or two and take advantage of the holiday. Unless, of course, Della succeeds in her plan to direct and upload a short film of me giving a seasonal address to the nation on Christmas Day. I can’t really think of much to say, but as she thinks it is a good idea, and is bribing me with whiskey, I might just give it a try so my public do not think I have forgotten them completely!
Well everything’s still moving fast, everyone, and I suppose before we know it we will be into Christmas week. Ironically things should slow down a bit then as everybody will have the festive season on their minds. Slight bit of amusement recently though, concerning my old friend John Bradish, and a couple of enemies he had back in 1970 who are apparently still hassling him. One particular person is trying to maintain that I was running a ‘hate campaign’ against John in the late 1960s / early 1970s, having assumed quite wrongly (I should say deliberately) that ‘fun times’ between friends can’t take place without any sinister undercurrent. I have just been reminded elsewhere of one incident of this kind that could be described as amusing, which occurred in my flat in Highgate in 1968. John was staying at the flat with my ex-wife and myself while he was sorting out alternative accommodation with the local council.
To cut a long story short, we had taken a photograph of him while he was having a bath through a faulty window. The photograph showed him sitting in the bath laughing (he just thought it was funny!). but soon after this my ex-wife Mary went away for a month or so to visit her parents who lived in Southampton. While she was away John had met a ‘wayward girl’ on his nightly travels. I was not home that particular night, but visiting a friend nearby in Highgate. Around 10 in the morning, a letter was pushed through her letterbox to the effect that I had an intruder in my flat. I thought it best to check it out, and sure enough I entered the flat to find a naked girl asleep on the sofa, with her clothes forming a trail from the front door to where she slept. I woke her up and asked what she was doing there, to which she replied the ‘owner of the flat’ had said it would be OK for her to stay there rent free until she got herself sorted out. I soon realised that it was John himself who had told her this. He’d made such a good job of it, that the girl refused to believe it was my own flat, and she even had the audacity to tell me I was trespassing! It was obviously all done as a joke. But to get ‘even’, I used some copies of the photograph we had taken of John in the bath and distributed them amongst John’s friends in the local community. He saw the funny side of it, when one of these people eventually showed him; although he wasn’t really angry, more ‘embarrassed’! So no, I was not having a hate campaign against my friend John. In fact I even invited him to my wedding reception in June 1979, and he had a really good time (see below).
Following this, both my second wife and myself would often be invited to his home for Christmas dinner, which continued on into the mid 1980s. In return both my ex wife and myself would invite him and his partner to our Muswell Hill flat, and in turn, cooked them dinner. I am publishing a picture (below) of one of their visits.
This was taken in 1982, and I am sure people will see from the expressions on our faces, there was no ‘ongoing hate campaign’!
So sorry to disappoint the Bonky One, but there really was no hate campaign involved, as he is now desperately trying to state on the Internet.
Christmas Special is going well (following “Hoggy Hallowe’en”) and should be released well in time for Christmas. So with that, I’ll ‘love you and leave you’ good people, and be back again very soon.
Hi all, just a brief post for now as Della and I are getting ready to go out to a party shortly. Just wanted to make time however to show you all this – a trailer for the new Christmas Special which will be released in a couple of weeks. We have had so much feedback from people about Hoggy Hallowe’en, requesting a sequel and further information, that we decided the numbers justified a further film for Christmas. Hoggy is still in it (see picture above) but he isn’t quite himself these days! Gareth is also in the film, see picture below, and other favourites such as the Yorkshire Dumpling and the Aliens who return to earth, and all the main characters from the Comic (and maybe even an appearance from the reclusive Della herself!). Auditions have now closed, but its not too late for anyone who would like a small supporting role to get into the festive spirit. If so, please let us know!
Well time presses on, and I have to go and make myself look beautiful for my public.
See you all soon,
A still from the film - Gareth J. Medway and myself
Its all been happening of late. The new DVD has been in great demand and I heard yesterday that a supplier in the USA has offered to supply these on demand to serious occult groups and students in America. This will help considerably in being able to satisfy the many queries and I have about the Highgate Vampire case from the USA and hopefully set the record straight for people who have been ‘misled’ by stories of a ‘blood-sucking vampire’ that has invariably been circulated by certain other sources. There is a lot of nonsense out there about the case; not least about my own central involvement in it back in the late 1960’s/early 1970’s, which needs to be clarified for a few whose only source of knowledge are the claims of some ‘crackpots’ or the lurid pages of pulp fiction. I have gone a long way in correcting much of this in the first two volumes of my autobiographies “David Farrant – In the Shadow of the Highgate Vampire” and its companion Volume “David Farrant – Out of the Shadows”, but more often than not, a visual interview is helpful to fill in the more sensational aspects of the Highgate case.
Indeed, that’s why the DVD was made earlier this year.
On another matter, I have had several enquiries about the Comic Book “The New Adventures of Bishop Bonkers”. This was the creation of Cecil Lamont-Dwiggins (and ‘no’, I don’t know his real name, that’s a closely guarded secret!), an American who has been ‘forced into hiding’ to escape the ravings of some vengeful ‘bishop’! Not that there is anything wrong with the comic – it is basically a satirical look at many of the false claims surrounding the Highgate saga: really, as I have already clarified above. The characters in the Comic are, of course, all fictional and bear no resemblance to living persons (with the exception of myself perhaps, by a character bearing my real name) but that did not prevent a malicious complaint being made to Stripgenerator who designed the original cartoon characters. It would have been the usual sort of thing naming myself as being the main perpetrator for the Comics construction.
Let me set the record straight here: I had nothing to do with the story-line in the Comic – absolutely NOTHING! That is not to say I do not find the whole thing entirely amusing, I do!
Another very late night last night. But I have yet another filming project coming up: a “Christmas Special” which we are trying to get completed in time for Christmas. It all takes work And lots of it!
Well I guess that’s about it for now: think I’m about due for a glass of wine!