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Greasy Food with Gonce (2014)

Project Status: Complete (July 2014)
Episodes: 6
Medium: Stopmotion animation with cel inserts
Technical Info: Shot on Nikon D80
Edited in Sony Vegas
HDV 720p25 16:9
Runtime: Approx 3 to 5 min per episode
Collaborators: Timothy Johnston (voices, guest writer, sound recordist)
Sarah Johnston (voice cameo)
Connections: Spin-off from The Murkum Show
Followed by The Lower Ranks

Jump to · Character Guide · Episode Guide · Screening Room · Wallpaper Gallery

As I approached the end of production on the second season of The Murkum Show, I started thinking it was a pity Gonce and his kitchen hadn't got a bit more of an airing (appearing in just 1 episode in the parent show) - so I decided that before I demolished the set, I'd give Gonce a spin-off, and Greasy Food with Gonce was born.

It took a few weeks to figure out the format of the show and to get the first few scripts written, and I invited my long-time collaborator Tim on board very early in the process; we ended up with a near-perfect 50:50 split of the writing credits between the two of us.  Once we'd nailed down the basic shape we wanted, the next stage of the process was somewhat mathematical: we made a list of the dishes Gonce should attempt, and a list of the Gammas who would make the funniest "Special Kitchen Helpers", and then tried to figure out which helper should be paired with which dish and what order they should appear in.  It soon became apparent that the spin-off's episodes were going to be significantly longer than those of its parent show - in fact, longer than those of any other episodic project I've worked on.

In the end, the first 3 instalments of the 6-part series came out of my own ideas (although Tim helped work out the details of Episode 1), following a loose structure of main course, pudding and drink, as Gonce points out in the preamble to Episode 3.  Episode 4 Chilli Beef was actually the first script finished (or at least one of the first two), but we knew it would have to air in the second half of the series in order for Eggs' remarks about the failings of past "Special Kitchen Helpers" to make any sense.  It was my idea to do an episode about vegetarianism, but Tim came up with the notion of turning it into a public-service warning video and putting Hansox in it, and wrote the script with very little further input from me.  Finally, the Banquet episode (which began life in Tim's head) was always intended to be the closing part of the series, and ended up being the last script completed, with the final draft only getting nailed down after I'd finished post-production on Episodes 1 to 3.

Greasy Food with Gonce will probably never return, as it was always intended to be a limited-time deal, but it was followed by another Murkum Show spin-off, The Lower Ranks, in autumn 2016.

Character Guide

Character photography by Sarah Johnston

Photo: Name: Rank: Role: First Appearance: Voice Actor:
Character mugshot: Gonce Gonce Mulfidd Beta-2.02 Chief Cook Episode 1: Fried Stuff Matthew Colclough
Gonce has served the Murk Army for almost as long as Bluey and Atkun, but comes nowhere near those two in the competence stakes.  His main contribution, for many years, has been to run the kitchens, churning out huge volumes of barely-edible sludge; these days he is aided by a Phyhene 'assistant' cook, Uduir, who is vastly better at cookery than he is, but is still his de jure junior due to the Murk Army's combination of xenophobia and general resistance to change.
Character mugshot: Mouldy "Mouldy" Tig Stennids Gamma-3.04 General-purpose goon Episode 1: Fried Stuff Timothy Johnston
One of the most annoying Gammas in the Murk Army, and the earliest remaining Gamma-3 demotee - knocked down from Gamma-2 on account of his tendency to shoot his superiors with his ancient shotgun every so often.
Character mugshot: Fass Twins Grammum & Glogmun Fass Gamma-3.61 & 3.62 Useless Episode 2: Cake Timothy Johnston
The Fass Twins are so identical, and so monumentally stupid, that even they can't remember which one of them is which.  The consequences are never pretty.
Character mugshot: Crad Crad Suttrall Gamma-2.25 General-purpose goon Episode 3: Home Brew Matthew Colclough
Crad's favourite occupation is attempting to suck up to Bluey, in the hope of getting promoted to Beta-2 - despite years of failure, he remains convinced that he is just one more helpful deed away from securing his promotion.
Character mugshot: Cobbic Cobbic Sneehack Beta-2.04 Roboticist Episode 4: Chilli Beef Timothy Johnston
Murkum and Bluey hired Cobbic on Besnia, after they found him performing a foul-mouthed puppet show to amuse the truckers at one of the spaceports.  He still sometimes puts on similar shows for his Murk Army colleagues, but his main job is to devise and build animatronic targets and similar equipment for weapons-training exercises.  Several of the Gamma agents are too dim to grasp the principles of mechanical engineering, and consequently still believe that Cobbic's contraptions work by magic.
Character mugshot: Captain Eggs Mos "Captain Eggs" Vondir Gamma-3.06 Low-ranking dimwit Episode 4: Chilli Beef Matthew Colclough
"Captain Eggs" is regarded as one of the Murk Army's most useless members, and was among the first to get demoted to Gamma-3.  His two worst characteristics are a compulsion to gamble at every possible opportunity, and a losing streak which has gone unbroken for a decade and a half, racking up total debts on the order of billions of pounds (although, fortunately for Eggs, nobody except Solter has managed to keep anything like an accurate record).
Character mugshot: Hansox Hansox Hysom Huntannekkar Gamma-2.73 Melee warrior Episode 5: Vegetarianism Matthew Colclough
Hansox is a Yopxian Heqli from the planet Panol - one of the least-known worlds in the civilised universe.  His Yopxian dialect is incomprehensible even to the Murk Army's handful of other Heqli agents, and his actions are entirely unpredictable - the one constant is his tendency to spread chaos and damage wherever he goes.  One of his strangest foibles is an apparent hatred for telephones.
Character mugshot: Letvob Letvob, Servant of Rosokiah Gamma-7.04 Work-shy dogsbody Episode 6: Banquet for the Alphas Timothy Johnston
Letvob was born the son of a servant couple in the Rosokiah household.  He has always been lazy and sulky, despite his parents' best efforts, and the problem has only got worse since he was orphaned somewhere around the age of 10.  He is now the direct responsibility the House's chief servant, Gokan.  Irrespective of who is giving him his orders, Letvob makes everything worse for himself by constantly procrastinating, or by doing a shoddy half-job of things and then needing to do it all again, instead of just getting things over and done with.

Episode Guide

P Block: Episode: Title: Featured Characters: Writer(s): Release Date:
GA 1 Fried Stuff Mouldy Stennids Matt Colclough & Tim Johnston 21 June 2014
The Murk Army's head chef has decided to educate the world in the art of proper (i.e. high-fat) cookery - be afraid for your waistlines
2 Cake The Fass Twins Matthew Colclough 28 June 2014
Everybody loves cake, right?  Gonce shows us how to make a nice cake of our very own, with the assistance of not one, but two Special Kitchen Helpers
3 Home Brew Crad Suttrall Matthew Colclough 5 July 2014
You can't eat without drink, so in the third instalment of his cookery show, Gonce demonstrates how to make moonshine
GB 4 Chilli Beef Cobbic Sneehack, Captain Eggs Timothy Johnston 12 July 2014
Gonce is sober again after last week's Home Brew fiasco, and shows us another of his favourite dishes: chilli beef
5 Vegetarianism Hansox Timothy Johnston 19 July 2014
This week, Gonce isn't giving us a recipe, he's giving us a warning: vegetables are out there, and they're terrible!  But don't worry, the episode features a helpful identification guide so you can spot the wretched things a mile off and avoid eating them
6 Banquet for the Alphas Murkum, Bluey, IRAM, Mephnar Sr, Letvob Matt Colclough & Tim Johnston 26 July 2014
Gonce rounds off his cookery show with an attempted feast to impress the Murk Army's leaders... but will they be all that impressed?

Screening Room

Wallpaper Gallery

Episode 1:
Fried Stuff
Episode 1
Widescreen · Fullframe
Episode 2:
Episode 2
Widescreen · Fullframe
Episode 3:
Home Brew
Episode 3
Widescreen · Fullframe
Episode 4:
Chilli Beef
Episode 4
Widescreen · Fullframe
Episode 5:
Episode 5
Widescreen · Fullframe
Episode 6:
Banquet for the Alphas
Episode 6
Widescreen · Fullframe