Biggles Hunts Big Game

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Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Jennifer » 24 May 2013, 13:18

I have been reading some comments on The Algy Chronicles about an incident in Biggles Hunts Big Game where Biggles, when he hears Bertie has been killed just says Well if Bertie has gone topsides there is nothing we can do about it and seems uncaring. I think one point here is that it says in Biggles Delivers the Goods about Algy being captured that he was far more upset than he was prepared to show the others and of course in Big Game Tug is there at the time. Possibly if he had been alone with Algy he would have said much more. Just a thought.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Tommy Smith » 24 May 2013, 18:13

I can't imaging anyone going through the thick of it in one world war let alone two without becoming used to grief. The whole upbringing of the era was one of keeping ones private matters to ones self and getting on with it much more than today. By the second war Biggles was telling someone (Johnny Crisp?) 'You don't booze, and you don't brood'. He found out the hard way but you become toughened to it after a while, just throw yourself into work etc, can't change anything. Probably seems callous to modern people.
I'm sure he must have thought about how it would be if any of them went. Personally I don't think he would have spoken much of it, preferring to stay off the subject. In fact I might even suggest the quieter he became, the more it was hurting him.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Spitfire666 » 24 May 2013, 18:22

Tommy Smith wrote:Personally I don't think he would have spoken much of it, preferring to stay off the subject. In fact I might even suggest the quieter he became, the more it was hurting him.

That is a very good point.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 24 May 2013, 18:43

Tommy Smith wrote:I can't imaging anyone going through the thick of it in one world war let alone two without becoming used to grief. The whole upbringing of the era was one of keeping ones private matters to ones self and getting on with it much more than today. By the second war Biggles was telling someone (Johnny Crisp?) 'You don't booze, and you don't brood'. He found out the hard way but you become toughened to it after a while, just throw yourself into work etc, can't change anything. Probably seems callous to modern people.
I'm sure he must have thought about how it would be if any of them went. Personally I don't think he would have spoken much of it, preferring to stay off the subject. In fact I might even suggest the quieter he became, the more it was hurting him.
My father, who fought in WWII said you never get used to grief. You simply get used to burying it and getting on with the job. In Delivers The Goods' there's a part where Biggles thinks about the possibility of either Algy or Ginger becoming a casualty. While he didn't dwell on it there was always a fear lurking in the background that if one of them went it would make a difference etc. I won't quote it all here but it did give a great insight into the way Biggles thought of the death of people close to him.
In Hunts Big Game Biggles was shaken to hear about Bertie, I'm sure, but he had Ginger to consider. As we discussed in 'The Algy Chronicles'. Grief on hold until the jobs done. Modern day soldiers would have to do that too, although these days they aren't expected to hide their feelings so much.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Jennifer » 28 May 2013, 10:14

I am so glad you quoted that piece from Delivers the Goods - I was going to do that today. I love that bit and also just afterwards Ginger comes back and Biggles dashes down to the landing ground and - tells him off :!: So typical. I always wonder what Ginger thought about it - did he understand how Biggles felt? Ginger had no trouble in showing Biggles how upset he was when he realised Algy had been captured. Ginger most definitely did not have a "stiff upper lip" as the saying goes.


The other thing that struck me about that bit in Delivers the Goods is that although it is late on in the war and Biggles had been in charge of 666 for about four years he still felt very much more for Algy and Ginger than he did for the others even at that time including Bertie.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby SaintedAunt » 28 May 2013, 10:30

Jennifer wrote:I am so glad you quoted that piece from Delivers the Goods - I was going to do that today. I love that bit and also just afterwards Ginger comes back and Biggles dashes down to the landing ground and - tells him off :!: So typical. I always wonder what Ginger thought about it - did he understand how Biggles felt? Ginger had no trouble in showing Biggles how upset he was when he realised Algy had been captured. Ginger most definitely did not have a "stiff upper lip" as the saying goes..

I rather think Ginger did understand Biggles quite well. More than once, WEJ has Ginger knowing better than to speak, knowing that Biggles is thinking, and also knowing when not to argue.

The other thing that struck me about that bit in Delivers the Goods is that although it is late on in the war and Biggles had been in charge of 666 for about four years he still felt very much more for Algy and Ginger than he did for the others even at that time including Bertie.

Well he would don't you think? it is one thing to be in charge of a squadron and know, respect and like your men, but another to be closely bound by sharing adventure, danger and companionship through a quarter of a century in the case of Algy, and nearly ten years in the case of Ginger, as well as having been responsible for Ginger while he was a minor.

At the beginning of Baltic, when war is declared, Biggles says he hopes the three of them will be able to stay together. They would always be close, and it must have taken a little while, post-war, for Bertie to come close to their closeness, if you follow me :)
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Spitfire666 » 28 May 2013, 10:50

SaintedAunt wrote:
Jennifer wrote:The other thing that struck me about that bit in Delivers the Goods is that although it is late on in the war and Biggles had been in charge of 666 for about four years he still felt very much more for Algy and Ginger than he did for the others even at that time including Bertie.

Well he would don't you think? it is one thing to be in charge of a squadron and know, respect and like your men, but another to be closely bound by sharing adventure, danger and companionship through a quarter of a century in the case of Algy, and nearly ten years in the case of Ginger, as well as having been responsible for Ginger while he was a minor.

One of the things I most love in WEJ's writing is that he shows the difference in friendships, he does not treat them all alike. I don't remember what I thought or felt about it when I read them as a child, but looking at them now it makes a big impact: I also think it must have been why they made such an impression on me as a child.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Jennifer » 28 May 2013, 11:40

I do agree that it is the relationships which make the books so good. Even the relationships between the other three are all different. I think this is what makes the books so interesting as an adult. I also think that Bertie was an excellent addition to the team - he has such a definite character and he has a very different relationship with Biggles.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 28 May 2013, 13:58

SaintedAunt wrote:

At the beginning of Baltic, when war is declared, Biggles says he hopes the three of them will be able to stay together. They would always be close, and it must have taken a little while, post-war, for Bertie to come close to their closeness, if you follow me :)


Yes, I follow you, SA. It is always difficult for someone new to enter a tight circle of friends, it is something that cannot be forced. All three of them must have been comfortable with Bertie for it to happen and I'd bet my boots that it wasn't discussed, it simply 'happened'. Of course, 'Fails to Return' is seen as the starting point for this.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 28 May 2013, 14:14

Jennifer wrote:I have been reading some comments on The Algy Chronicles about an incident in Biggles Hunts Big Game where Biggles, when he hears Bertie has been killed just says Well if Bertie has gone topsides there is nothing we can do about it and seems uncaring.

I've just read Hunts Big Game again and something suddenly struck me about what Biggles said about Bertie going topsides. Tug had broken the news to Biggles and it was a good few minutes before they returned to their hotel room. Tug then had to tell Biggles what happened. All this time Biggles must have been thinking, going over in his mind what had happened, summing up and thinking of the next best course of action. By the end of Tug's report he would have had time to compose himself and sorted out priorities. Hence his seemingly uncaring words.
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Jennifer » 28 May 2013, 14:28

That is a very good point Fairblue. I always feel sorry for Algy at that point. He would have had a nasty shock and Biggles has carried on to the next point in the conversation before he has had a chance to absorb the information. It also strikes me in Forms a Syndicate when Biggles and Algy go to look for Bertie and Ginger and it says that Biggles does not harp on it to Algy but he thinks there is very little chance of them still being alive. What does Algy think? Also when the arabs come racing towards Biggles and Algy and they think the end is nigh Biggles says my greatest regret is that we will never know what happened to Ginger - never mind that they are probably both about to be killed. I suppose WEJ could not go into every detail in each story.


As far as Hunts Big Game is concerned I wonder why Ginger seemed to take charge when he and Bertie are under cover? Surely Bertie would be senior to Ginger. I love it towards the end when the sealed room is about to be submerged and Bertie just takes over :D
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 28 May 2013, 15:36

Jennifer wrote:
As far as Hunts Big Game is concerned I wonder why Ginger seemed to take charge when he and Bertie are under cover? Surely Bertie would be senior to Ginger. I love it towards the end when the sealed room is about to be submerged and Bertie just takes over :D


Well, we all know that Bertie, by his own admission, is never good at organizing. My guess, for what it's worth, is that Ginger saw the possibilities straight away. Bertie would have gone along with it because he knew that it was the best course of action. Seniority doesn't seem to come into it. It is whoever is the best man for whatever needs to be done.. And, as you say, at the end, Bertie takes over and Ginger follows his lead. They are all so used to working together as a team that they seem to follow the best plan. Of course, it goes without saying, that when Biggles is there no-one else gets a look in. :D
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Jennifer » 28 May 2013, 15:49

That is true although sometimes in the later books the others think he is being a bit slow to act and try and gee him up a bit. Biggles does seem to be very cautious in the later books. I like the relationship between Bertie and Ginger - they are so different and come from such different backgrounds and yet they get on very well together :)
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby SaintedAunt » 28 May 2013, 20:35

Jennifer wrote:That is true although sometimes in the later books the others think he is being a bit slow to act and try and gee him up a bit. Biggles does seem to be very cautious in the later books :)

Like WEJ, he was getting old :cry: And if he had any sense, he was looking forwards to a happy retirement with Algy, going round the world for fun :plane: :plane:
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Spitfire666 » 28 May 2013, 20:41

SaintedAunt wrote:Like WEJ, he was getting old :cry: And if he had any sense, he was looking forwards to a happy retirement with Algy, going round the world for fun :plane: :plane:

:cheers2: :merry:
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 29 May 2013, 08:15

Spitfire666 wrote:
SaintedAunt wrote:Like WEJ, he was getting old :cry: And if he had any sense, he was looking forwards to a happy retirement with Algy, going round the world for fun :plane: :plane:


I still don't like thinking of them getting old, though, But surely he must have been slowing down. It always makes me think in Looks Back that he was doing very well for a man of his age to climb the ivy. von Stahlein, too. He must have been older than Biggles (according to events in Flies East) but still manged to keep up with him. :D
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby SaintedAunt » 29 May 2013, 08:31

Fairblue wrote:I still don't like thinking of them getting old, though, But surely he must have been slowing down. It always makes me think in Looks Back that he was doing very well for a man of his age to climb the ivy. von Stahlein, too. He must have been older than Biggles (according to events in Flies East) but still manged to keep up with him. :D

At least, as a heavy smoker, Biggles probably wasn't very heavy :o I believe smokers get out of breath easily but perhaps can produce a short burst of determined energy... We know Biggles has tremendous willpower, and motivation is a great thing. No doubt evs wasn't going to be outdone - and maybe Biggles leaned down and gave him a helping hand :)
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 29 May 2013, 13:13

SaintedAunt wrote:
Fairblue wrote:I still don't like thinking of them getting old, though, But surely he must have been slowing down. It always makes me think in Looks Back that he was doing very well for a man of his age to climb the ivy. von Stahlein, too. He must have been older than Biggles (according to events in Flies East) but still manged to keep up with him. :D

At least, as a heavy smoker, Biggles probably wasn't very heavy :o I believe smokers get out of breath easily but perhaps can produce a short burst of determined energy... We know Biggles has tremendous willpower, and motivation is a great thing. No doubt evs wasn't going to be outdone - and maybe Biggles leaned down and gave him a helping hand :)

He climbed thirty feet and hauled himself over a parapet and you are right, SA, he gave von Stahlein a hand over the final obstacle (which I took to be the parapet). It really must be his tremendous willpower as you say. :D
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Re: Biggles Hunts Big Game

Postby SaintedAunt » 29 May 2013, 15:30

Fairblue wrote:He climbed thirty feet and hauled himself over a parapet and you are right, SA, he gave von Stahlein a hand over the final obstacle (which I took to be the parapet). It really must be his tremendous willpower as you say. :D


30 ft :o :shock: That's a tremendous height - I hadn't remembered it was so far. I think WEJ was doing a bit of optimistic fantasising there :D It must have been very tough ivy because didn't they go up and down it several times?

Mind you, we have ivy like that in our garden, up our trees, up a patio support - thick tangled branches with lots of footholds, although I'm not sure I'd care to trust my wight to them (and I am lighter than Biggles :) )
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Hunts Big Game

Postby Inactive User 149 » 31 Jan 2014, 13:27

I am just reading this book (again) and I find it quite noticeable that when Bertie and Ginger are undercover Ginger is very much in the driving seat - I wonder why that is? Bertie of course is the expert on actual big game hunting - I do not think that Ginger ever hunted as such. In the early Air Police they are both more or less equal in rank although I think in some of the later books Algy and Bertie are Sergeants while Ginger is just a constable or police pilot.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby kylie_koyote » 31 Jan 2014, 13:44

Yet Ginger is refered to by one of the baddies as the "young un".
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby Inactive User 149 » 31 Jan 2014, 13:48

Yes that is true. It is surprising how often long sections of the books are told from Ginger's point of view even when the others are there. Black Raider is another example, it is not a particularly good book but I love it when Ginger has crashed and he is walking down the mountain. He sees a lot of the action in that book too.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 31 Jan 2014, 18:57

This book has a couple of good bits in it. Bertie wallowing in gore and the reaction of the others when they think Bertie has gone west. Not to mention Biggles reaction when Bertie climbs out of the power house. :D
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby kylie_koyote » 31 Jan 2014, 20:09

Fairblue wrote:This book has a couple of good bits in it. Bertie wallowing in gore and the reaction of the others when they think Bertie has gone west. Not to mention Biggles reaction when Bertie climbs out of the power house. :D


One of the few times that Biggles is absolutely at a loss for words. Love this scene.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 18 Apr 2014, 22:35

Someone please tell me this is a mistake. I simply can't believe how much this appears to be going for.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Johns-Capt-W- ... 3cdf9f74dd
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby kylie_koyote » 18 Apr 2014, 23:07

Fairblue wrote:Someone please tell me this is a mistake. I simply can't believe how much this appears to be going for.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Johns-Capt-W- ... 3cdf9f74dd


What the $&@#!
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby CaptWilks » 18 Apr 2014, 23:41

kylie_koyote wrote:
Fairblue wrote:Someone please tell me this is a mistake. I simply can't believe how much this appears to be going for.
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Johns-Capt-W- ... 3cdf9f74dd

What the $&@#!

That is seriously weird. It is this edition, I think:
http://www.biggles-online.com/book/biggles-hunts-big-game/editions/09/armada-books/

No, it is this edition:
http://yabs.isambard.com.au/edition-view.php?id=440

Published 1983. I have that edition, unless I am very mistaken (cover, publisher, date and ISBN all match), and bought it for the grand sum of...$3.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby Fairblue » 19 Apr 2014, 00:02

I've asked the seller what attributes warrants the price tag. I simply have to know as it does not appear to be anything special. Paperback, mass market binding etc. we shall see.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby CaptWilks » 19 Apr 2014, 01:13

Fairblue wrote:I've asked the seller what attributes warrants the price tag. I simply have to know as it does not appear to be anything special. Paperback, mass market binding etc. we shall see.

Will be interested if you get a reply. Seems extraordinary.
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Re: Hunts Big Game

Postby kylie_koyote » 19 Apr 2014, 01:18

CW, if people are willing to pay that you should sell yours too and go on your own safari holiday.
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