Mr Benn

I was recently asked this question:  If you were trapped in a cartoon world from your childhood, which one would I choose and why?  Well, it’s got to be Mr Benn, my favourite children’s animated programme of the 1970s. 

Mr Benn was an ordinary English gentleman, dressed in pin-stripe suite and bowler hat.  He lived at No. 52 Festive Road.  However, Mr Benn had a very surprising ‘other life’ in which he would often visit the Costume Shop in his town.  There, he would try on a different costume each time before walking through the second door in the changing room, “the door that always led to adventures”.   As he did so, he became the person from the costume and would have an adventure.  So, for example, when he tried on the space suit, he became a spaceman; when he tried on the Safari costume, he became a big-game hunter on safari and so on.  I loved this as a child.  How rich is the world of our imagination!

And for the writer that I am now, I can see why it entranced me so much back then.  For isn’t this what we do when we write or read?  Each time we open the cover of a book, it is leading us on an adventure, isn’t it?  And with each page that we turn, we enter a different world, another life.  We can be the characters in the book and live through their experiences with them. There are plenty of episodes of Mr Benn on YouTube.  One of my favourite episodes is Mr Benn Spaceman.

The above forms part of my Interview with the Authors on the fabulous Camilla Down’s blog, MeetingtheAuthors. I’m sure she won’t mind if I publish this teaser in advance of the full interview! So, who would you be if you were trapped in a cartoon world, and why? It’s a very interesting and revealing question! Have a great week. Much love, Anita.

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