Introduction | Judy | Baby | Punch&Judy | Constable | Joey | Crocodile | Doctor | Hangman | Devil/Ghost | Ending

Joey the Clown

 

The clown Joey, based on Joey Grimaldi, became a favourite character in Punch & Judy because of his popularity in the pantomime in the early years of the 19th century. While the script published by Mayhew has a close representation of the panto act Joey's role in the Punch play is to talk to the audience, dodge about so that Punch can't hit him and to provide Punch with a string of sausages.

 

 

De Hempsey: Punch is singing a song when Joey pops up behind him. The performer gets the audience to shout out when there is someone there. But Punch can't find Joey as he keeps hiding. Punch eventually goes downstairs and up comes Joey and gets the audience to shout out whenever Punch comes up looking for him. Punch creeps back with his stick and Joey dodges his blow, bobbing down and coming out under the playboard. "Hi! Mr Punch, you can't catch me!" He bobs up from various parts of the stage. He then says "If you put your stick down I'll come and have a little talk." Punch puts down his stick and up pops Joey and grabs it. Punch asks for it back. "Alright Mr. Punch, " says Joey, "Put out your hand and I'll give you your stick." Punch holds out his hand and Joey hits it. Then Joey offers to put his head on the stage and see if Punch can hit it on the count of three. Punch: "Alright Joey. One , two ..." Joey stands up "No, no! You must wait till I count three." This time Joey counts "One!" Punch: "That's a one-er." Joey: "two!" Punch: "That's a two-er" Punch takes aim. Joey: "Two and a half-er" Punch lifts his stick "That's a two and a half-er" Joey: "Now get ready Punch, THREE!" But Joey once again pulls away and Punch misses. Next Joey offers to get some sausages and so he pops down and gets a string of sausages, which he manages to wrap around Punch's head. He then goes off to look for the frying pan.

Tickner: Clown bobs up and says "Says you!" and immediately bobs down again. Punch looks around wondering who it was "Who said that?" Joey bobs up and says "Me!" and down again. Then he bobs up behind Punch and hits him on the head. There is a bit of this sort of business until Punch catches him and saying 1-2-3 he tries to hit Joey who ducks and Punch hits the side of the proscenium instead. Punch: "Did you move?" Joey: "No I did not move. " This is repeated and Joey suggests that Punch's stick is not long enough and that there's a longer one on the other side of the booth. Punch looks around saying "Where?" Joey hits Punch "There!" and vanishes. A bit more of  this dodging and then instead of Joey popping up the Crocodile comes up. Tickner also uses Joey in the counting routine and to dispose of Ketch's body.

Mayhew: This performer has Joey popping up and dodging about while Punch tries to hit him. At one point they stop and shake hands but Joey starts off again. This business can go on for as long as the showman wants to stretch it out. When he thinks the audience have had enough he has Punch finally hit Joey and takes him off.
There is in this script a routine that is a very typical representation of a pantomime routine that involves the theft of sausages and a red hot poker.

Edwin: Joey pops up and shouts "Yoooooh!" and pops down again. Then follows a bit of dodging about. Eventually Punch goes downstairs and Joey pops up to introduce himself to the children. He primes them to tell Punch that he's upstairs when Punch asks. This happens and when Punch is looking upwards Joey comes up and taps him on the head. After a bit of this they make up and shake hands he then tells Punch he has a "lovely bunch of squasages downstairs", distinctly mispronouncing the word sausages. Punch says "Squasages?" "Yes squasages" replies Joey "I can't say sausages" - pronouncing it correctly. "You just said it" says Punch - And invariably so do the children. (This reads really badly but does in fact work - surprisingly.) Joey: "Oh no I didn't, I can't say sausages. I'll go downstairs and get them right away." And Joey fetches the sausages, or squasages. He   brings them up and tells the children not to let Punch eat them while he goes to get the frying pan. Joey pops up a few more times to stop Punch eating the sausages, this establishes a rhythm until the audience begin to expect Joey to keep popping up.

Edwards: He uses the effect of Joey popping up again and again, having Joey say "Bye-bye" each time when he goes to fetch the sausages. Eventually he brings up the sausages and gives them to Punch. Edwards brings Joey back at the end of the show to say farewell to the audience. Joey is a good character with which to talk unswazzled (clearly) to the audience.