Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Dad's Army

Anyone living in the UK over the last week or so will know by now that the new film 'Dad's Army' is being released tomorrow, February 4th. It has been mentioned on numerous TV chat and magazine shows with the stars being interviewed collectively or singly until I bet they are heartily sick of answering the same questions.

This film is a revival of the old BBC series with a completely new cast (it had to be, most of the originals are no more) and has met with mixed reception from aficiondos of the series, which appears regularly on lists of Britain's best TV shows, and can be seen on a variety of channels at regular intervals. Many of the stock phrases have come into daily use (don't panic, stupid boy, they don't like it up 'em) and bring back cosy memories where we almost think of the cast as old friends.

The original Dads Army, as we all know, was formed as Local Defence Volunteers (later The Home Guard) early in the war, and was formed of men who were either too old to join the regular forces, were in reserved occupations and therefore exempt, or youngsters waiting for call up. Their main duties were the guarding of important installations, allowing regulars to be deployed more effectively, or as a secondary defence force in the event of an invasion. They were to slow down the enemy advance, though this was expected to be only for a matter of hours, while the regular troops deployed.

Note, these are not the same troops as the Auxiliary Units that were set up and intended to act as local resistance groups in the aftermath of an invasion. These groups were secret even up to the early 1960s, and many family members didn't know their fathers, brothers, husbands, were members until then!

Anyway, here, from my cabinet of curiosities, is my take on this brave band of old boys. A set of 54mm  kits available back in the 1980s, and painted by me when I could do a better job. I hope you recognise the various personalities.

Wikipedia has a long article on the Home Guard, which brings out one or two things I didn't know. Worth a read.


  1. We are going to see the film with trepidation , hope it's okay - has good reviews , Tony

  2. I do want the film to be good, but I fear the inevitable drawing of parallels will see it come off a pale imitation. That said, I shall undoubtedly add it to the DVD collection when it is finally released. Speaking of collections your 54mm models are superb!

  3. Love the TV show. I hadn't heard about the movie. I hope they release it in the U.S.

    The city of Haworth does a 1940s weekend each year. My wife and I saw a table and decorations that reminded me of the situations and era depicted in the TV show when we visited back in 2012.

    Nice figurines, BTW.

  4. Great figures but not sure I will go to the film,a tad fearful so to do...

  5. I will definitely see it as the series was one of my favorites and I still laugh at it. The characters were really unique and the viewer can identify with a variety of character types. Who was your favorite, Joppy?

    Were the figures meant to be the characters or are they your adaptations of regular figures? i really like them; I thought they might be adapted from Airfix Multipose.

    1. My favourite character? Sergeant Wilson; he had that laid back attitude that reminds me so much of myself!!
      The figures were actually a group of castings by, if I recall correctly, SSD Models, sometime at the end of the 90s, and did represent the characters quite well. They came individually packaged and I remember having trouble getting the arms in the right places. Unfortunately Jones' bayonet was very fragile and had to be replaced with a pin.

  6. A Most interesting Post on the Lovable- Dad's Army...Hope the NEW Film goes well- it is very hard to re-do something in film that attempts to break new ground- for so long the Original has been a real Iconic Show- and the characters, over time have built up a real following- Worldwide...very hard to introduce replacement actors and hope they go over well in the role. Doctor WHO can do it - as it's all part of the story - to re-generate!

  7. If it can work for Pride and Prejudice, War and Peace, Oliver Twist, and many of the other books that have been made in many incarnations, I see no reason why it can't work here. We only have to forget, for a couple of hours, the original players. We hope to see the film next week.