Wonders In Letterland Episode 9: Debbie In The Land Of E

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UK Air Date30/05/1985, 4.20pm
Repeat ScreeningN/A
Copyright YearMCMLXXXV (1985)
VTR Date14/02/1985
Fremantle Archive Ref31220
Runtime00:20:04:05
Consecutive Episode Number9
IMDB LinkEpisode page

T. Bag (Tallulah Bag)Elizabeth Estensen
T. ShirtJohn Hasler
DebbieJennie Stallwood
Eric The EnvoyJim Norton
The EmperorTerence Conoley

CastingSonia Higgins
Make UpGillian Wakeford
Costume DesignerRaymond Childe
Graphic DesignerAlex Forbes
Stage ManagerBobby Webber
Production AssistantPat Lees
Song ByTerry Trower
Written ByLee Pressman
Grant Cathro
DesignerJohn Plant
Executive ProducerMarjorie Sigley
ProducersCharles Warren
Leon Thau
DirectorLeon Thau

Debbie and T-Shirt arrive in the final land of the board game, the Land of E, where there is a competition to make the Emperor laugh as he is a melancholy person who never laughs, Debbie and T-Shirt plan their act to make the Emperor laugh to claim his chain with all the Golden Letter Es as their prize.
The High-T Website synopsis

If you would like to contribute your favourite/funniest etc quotes from this episode please contact me.

What do you get if you cross a goldfish with an elephant?

Emperor: Oh, oh get up, do get up. 'Ello.
Debbie: E's.
Emperor: What are you staring at?
Debbie: Oh sorry, I was just admiring your chain.
Emperor: What about it?
Debbie: It's beautiful.
Emperor: Beautiful, huh! Chains, rings, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, I've got bucket-loads of them, but what's the point of it all when you can't even so much as laugh?
Debbie: Have you tried?
Emperor: Who is this girl? Of course I've flaming well tried. I've been trying to laugh for years, nothing! Young lady, you make me laugh and this chain which you admire so much is yours.
Debbie: Oh really, oh T-Shirt we must enter this competition and win it, we must get the chain with the E's. Will you help me please?
T-Shirt: Anything for you Debs.
Debbie: Great.
Emperor: Eric.
Eric: Sir.
Emperor: Take their names, we'll start in eleven minutes and eighteen seconds.
(The Emperor leaves).
Eric: Right then.
T-Shirt: There's just one problem, how do we make him laugh?
Debbie: Well, I know a few jokes.
Eric: Oh, jolly good.
T-Shirt: Let's hear one.
Debbie: I say, I say, I say, what do you get if you cross a goldfish with an elephant?
Eric and T-Shirt: We don't know, what do you get if you cross a goldfish with an elephant?
Debbie: Swimming trunks. Don't you get it? A goldfish (mimics swimming), and an elephant (mimics an elephant's trunk), swimming trunks.
T-Shirt: That's terrible.
Eric: Oh dear, oh dear, oh no. You'll have to do a lot better than that my girl. Swimming trunks, elephants and goldfish (he tuts). Oh, wait a mo-no, elephants, I think I might just be able to help you there.
Debbie: Oh if you could.
Eric: Yes I think I've got the answer. You see when I was a little lad my father showed me a very clever way to make an elephant. And if it will help make the Emporer laugh I will show you how he done it.
T-Shirt: That's nothing. If you want an elephant I could whip one up for you easily.
Eric: Don't mess around with me young man, we've got no time for such frivolity.
T-Shirt: But I really could...
Eric: Please, we have serious business ahead of us, just listen to me.
T-Shirt: Yes Sir.
Eric: Now as I remember the first thing we require is a cardboard box. Now where can I get a cardboard box? (T-Shirt uses magic and a box appears over Eric's head) Oi, why's it gone dark all of a sudden? Where did that come from? That's very strange, it's exactly what we require, this will do for the Elephant's head. And now we require something for the Elephant's trunk. What does a trunk look like lad, a trunk looks like a hose. we require a hose, now where can we get some hose? (T-Shirt uses his magic and some hose appears). I thank you, now follow me and we will prepare for the big event.

Added: 04/04/2017

Where did that scrawny little urchin get to?

(The Emperor is playing with glove puppets).
Emperor: Who's a funny boy then? Not you, bah! Or you. When does this competition start then?
(T-Bag appears).
Emperor: Ah, at long last, the first competitor, you miserable one. Well go on, do your stuff.
T-Bag: Where did that scrawny little urchin get to?
Emperor: What did you say?
T-Bag: Where did that scrawny little urchin get to?
Emperor: Oh, where did that scrawny little urchin get to? I give in, well go on, what's the answer?
T-Bag: Who are you when you're at home?
Emperor: Another joke, oh I don't know, who am I when I'm at home?
T-Bag: What are you talking about?
Emperor: I give in.
T-Bag: Shortcake and sugar cubes.
Emperor: These jokes are terrible, they're not funny at all.
T-Bag: What jokes?
Emperor: Oh I thought you'd come to take part in the competition to make me laugh.
T-Bag: I haven't time to waste on you, I've urgent matters to attend to.
Emperor: Alright, go then, and if you see a little girl with red hair and a yellow dress tell her to hurry up.
T-Bag: Little girl! Yellow dress! Do you mean to tell me that accursed child is here?
Emperor: I promised her my chain if only she can make me laugh.
T-Bag: A golden chain, the letters E. So that's what she's after. That's her little game, we'll see about that.

Added: 04/04/2014

The Great Artiste

Debbie: T-Bag. Oh no.
T-Bag: Oh yes. So you thought you'd make old sour face here laugh and win the golden chain with the letters E, aye, I'll put an end to you.
Emperor: Quiet! Could we please start the competition?
T-Bag: With pleasure, stand back, make way for the great artiste.
(T-Bag disappears and reappears as a court jester).
T-Bag: I say, I say, I say, how do you do?
(T-Bag tries to make him laugh by conjuring up some flowers and some glasses with springy eyes).
Emperor: I thought you were going to make me laugh?
T-Bag: And so I shall. I haven't always been a joker you know.
Emperor: You haven't always been a joker?
T-Bag: Oh no, I used to be a human cannonball.
Emperor: You used to be a human cannonball, wer... what happened?
T-Bag: They fired me! (T-Bag laughs) Oh cheer up you miserable o... Do have a sweet.
Emperor: Oh thank you (He opens up the box T-Bag's given him and out fly streamers) Argh! You're supposed to be making me laugh not scaring me out of my wits. How dare you make an exhibition of the emperor of the land of E?
T-Bag: Alright, alright, keep your crown on.
Emperor: It is extremely essential to establish the equilibrium and eliminate the success of empty-headed extravagance.
T-Bag: So?
Emperor: So buzz off.
T-Bag: Give me a chance.
Emperor: You've had it. Next.
T-Bag: Huh.
Emperor: Let's hope you're funnier than the last one. I'm more depressed than ever now.

Added: 04/04/2017

She doesn't shout like I do

T-Bag: What was the big idea helping out that nasty horrible girl?
T-Shirt: She's not nasty, you're nasty, she's nice, you're not, she doesn't shout at me like you do.
T-Bag: So she doesn't shout like I do, I don't shout.
T-Shirt: You're shouting now.
T-Bag: Well I've got a right to shout, don't answer back. Make me a cup of tea, I shall dry up to dust if I don't get one soon. Oh, what a pleasure it is to know that's the end of that pesky Miss busybody.

Added: 04/04/2015

"Too Many Golden E's"
The Emporer's chain has nine golden letter E's on it - but there are only seven letter E's missing in the riddle on the chest back in the first square.

"E-Boom"
When T-Bag meets the Emporer, there is a boom-mic visible at the top of the screen in the centre between T-Bag and the Emporer.

"Stiff Upper Lip"
A number of times during the episode, including in the first scene and later when Debbie finally succeeds in making the Emperor laugh, Jim Norton's false moustache is reflecting the studio lights.

For more mistakes from other episodes, please see the Nitpicker's Guide

  • Terence Conoley, who played The Emperor, sadly passed away on 7th April 2016, aged 96.

  • The costume T-Bag wears as the Jester reappears in T. Bag and The Rings Of Olympus episode 9 worn by Georgina Hale as T-Bag, and I'm not joking!
    (T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus, Episode 9: Torture)
  • This is one of four episodes of this series to have an additional cast member.
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 2: Debbie In The Land Of B)
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 3: Debbie In The Land Of S)
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 7: Debbie In The Land Of V)
  • T-Bag's jester's hat can be seen in the curiosity shop hanging from one of the shelves in the background.
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 1: Arrival In Letterland)
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 10: Back To Square One)
  • At the start of T-Bag Strikes Again when Thomas is in the curiosity shop, he takes out some of the props used in Wonders in Letterland, including T-Bag's jester hat.
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 1: The Town Clock)