by Andrew Host
Hi, I’m Andrew Host, married to Ros and I have a son, Daniel.
“Yes, What?” was an Australian radio comedy series, recorded in the late 1930s and early 1940s. It was originally known as “The Fourth Form at St Percy’s”.
It is set in a school and features Dr Percy Pym , the school master, who was easily flustered, and incapable of controlling his rowdy students.
The cast of ‘Yes, What?’ The class was improbably small, with only three students, aged fourteen: Bottomly, Standforth, and Greenbottle. Later in the series, after Greenbottle left, de Pledge joined the series. Later still, when Greenbottle returned, there were four students for a while.
The show received its name from the habit of Greenbottle to frequently say, “Yes,” to which Dr Pym would reply, “Yes, What?” from which Greenbottle would launch into some long explanation about something. The class never seemed to learn anything. There was always some distraction. Greenbottle was more often than not late.
Just as Dr Pym was starting to get the class under control, Greenbottle would arrive with some lengthy excuse to delay the proceedings even further.
Guests featured occasionally, such as Bottomly’s girlfriend Daphne, Mr Snootles the caretaker, a policeman, a charity worker, a school inspector, and various others.
The show was produced in the studios of radio station 5AD in Adelaide. The first thirty to fifty episodes were broadcast live to air, and were never recorded.
Journalist Ray Polkinghorne once wrote that Rex Dawe had written 786 episodes.
But recent research puts the number at 520. Radio syndication company, Grace Gibson Productions has 260 episodes in circulation, and another 50 or so are known to exist.