This episode is fucking gripping. It follows George in a race against time as he tries desperately to raise money for… wait, I’m getting ahead of myself. Some stuff happens first.
Geoffrey is doing his accounts:
The amount of paperwork and general crap all over the table suggests one of the following:
– Geoffrey hasn’t paid his bills for 6 years
– Geoffrey is Chancellor of the Exchequer
In reality, he’s probably just got to pay a gas bill and put some money aside to buy “Rainbow” brand products.
George: “What are you doing?”
Geoffrey: “Panicking. I’ve got no fucking money.”
Bungle comes in to help. He helps just by being there. Did Geoffrey really mean to put those trousers on?
Bungle wants to borrow 50p to buy a comic. A fiver says he wants to buy a Rainbow comic, which is pointless since the comic is about his life, and he could find out about his life by being alive.
George is a pushover. He lends Bungle the money without even making him act as a footstool for half an hour first. Bungle fucks off.
Enter Zippy, with the greatest and most prolonged display of passive aggressive hinting I’ve ever seen outside Facebook.
“Oh bloody hell George, what am I going to do? I’m a poor starving orphan and I don’t have enough money to buy this toy car I want. I mean, I only need one easy payment of 20p. (Cough). If only there was a way to get some money from one of my friends. If only one of my friends cared enough about my plight. (Cough cough).
George falls for this scam and wires 20p to Zippy’s bank account in Nigeria.
Bungle’s bought a Rainbow comic. Look at him, looking at pictures of himself like a big git. WHY HAS HE GOT THE FUCKING THING PRESSED AGAINST HIS FACE.
George calls in his debt and makes Bungle go to the shop for him like a servant. While he’s gone, Geoffrey starts crapping on about his “accounts”, and how a bank is better than a money box, because the bank won’t let him have his money, or something.
Later on, George is looking at a toy catalogue. He’s interested in the xylophone, but I’m more interested in why there’s a big green circle taking up half the other page.
George decides he’s going to buy the xylophone while it’s on special offer. Geoffrey tells him he has to send a £4.50 postal order too, on account of how the catalogue people aren’t just going to send him free stuff.
But oh no! George doesn’t have enough money! He’s £1.40 short!
“That’s what happens when you spend all your money like a twat George.”
George tots up his expenditure, and remembers that he just spent all his money on Bungle and Zippy’s scams, and on jelly babies.
What the fuck is he going to do? The xylophone is only on special offer for another few days and George’s chances of becoming an adult, getting a job, getting his first week’s wages and sending off for the xylophone are slim. George must think of a way to raise some money fast, because time is running out.
Yes I know it’s half 5 in the morning, I don’t give a fuck. They all get up at half 2 most days anyway.
Geoffrey offers George a lifeline. He tells George that he’ll pay him 10p for every job he does for him. This way, George gets his xylophone, and Geoffrey gets an illegal underpaid skivvy. Everyone wins.
George has no choice – he must agree to Geoffrey’s demands.
There follows a tense montage in which George tries desperately to complete Geoffrey’s allotted tasks before it becomes too late to go get the postal order. I’m on the edge of my fucking seat.
Yes I know time’s gone backwards.
After slaving away for six hours, George has earned a grand total of 40p. Stop being a dick Geoffrey, just give him a quid.
George starts to despair. He’s run out of ways to make money, and he still doesn’t have enough to get the xylophone. He’s going to have to start thinking seriously about selling a kidney.
But then an It’s A Wonderful Life-type miracle happens! Bungle remembers he had some money hidden up his arse, so gives George his 50p back.
Now George just needs 50p! The clock is ticking down! How the hell is he going to make 50 whole p by close of business today?
Something falls out of Bungle’s Rainbow comic. It’s another miracle!
A 50p voucher that just happens to be valid for that exact catalogue! Zippy immediately tries to swipe it, but Geoffrey and Bungle unleash their wrath on Zippy until he agrees to put it towards the xylophone fund.
That’s about it really. Geoffrey sends the postal order off, George gets his xylophone in the post, and then he learns to play a boring tune on it.
Looking back, this episode definitely has more parallels with It’s A Wonderful Life than 24. But fuck it, I’ve already done the pictures.