Behind the Scenes - Captain Bedhead

The Chuck Hoskins character sent a lot of challenging projects to the art department in Season III and one of the funniest was Captain Bedhead. As the back-story goes, long before Chuck and Trixie moved to Robson Arms, Chuck was the host and central character of Captain Bedhead, a moderately successful children's television program in the southern US.

Originally we had hoped to call Chuck's television character Ranger Roger - so his Wallaby sidekick could answer Bedhead with the catchphrase "Roger, Ranger Roger." But when some research by the clearance department uncovered a Ranger Roger kids television show in Oklahoma City we went back to the name game. Finally we settled on, and more importantly cleared, Captain Bedhead a name suggested by Dave Righton the props master (a man with an impressive do himself).

For the art department, Captain Bedhead began as an illustration for a classic 1980s plastic lunchbox that belonged to Robson Arms resident geek & collector Fred Fochs, a long time Captain Bedhead fan. Neil Westlake the art department illustrator, created a caricature of a younger Dave Foley and wrapped it up in kids show dressing.

Before the season was out we had done a Captain Bedhead Best of Season I video case (we added a goatee to our Cap'n Behead illustration for the video case to reflect the goatee Dave Foley was sporting during shooting), a Captain Bedhead fan club photo (this one of a younger Dave Foley photo-shopped onto Captain Bedhead jammies) and an actual set for the Captain Bedhead kids show. Catch the two segments of Captain Bedhead we filmed for playback in episode 310.

The set was inspired by Pee Wee's Playhouse and Doctor Calagari's Cabinet. Grant originally designed a set which was big enough to shoot a 1/8 of a page scene. Later the scene grew to 2 pages, which was included as an appendage to the script and the design grew to accommodate the change. We used crazy colour combos never before seen on Robson Arms and cut vinyl wallpaper effects (designed by Grant's son Haley). The paint and construction departments pulled off a minor miracle by creating the set in 3 days.