.....and it is Old Cock, gabby and vital, grumbling and conniving, who represents the underdog (""So long as he's got a hole...

READ REVIEW

OLD SOLDIERS NEVER DIE

.....and it is Old Cock, gabby and vital, grumbling and conniving, who represents the underdog (""So long as he's got a hole in his backside the working man always pays."") -- and the undefeated. The setting is a rubbish dump and an empty film studio; Old Cock's companion is Arp, who picks rubbish and tidies up the dump wordlessly, for he is a bombing casualty; Old Cock's job is night watchman and dependent on Inspector Bates, an untrustworthy bit of officialdom, not worthy of but tempting Old Cock's stratagems. The abandoned moving picture sets come to life when grandeur-dreaming Corst arrives to make a cheap, quick production and it is Old Cock's chance to ingratiate himself and cock a snook at Bates. But bankruptcy drives Corst out, Old Cock is fired and his resultant advance on compensation sends him into symbols of defiance -- a suit of armor, fortifying his Nissen hut and a charge against Bates and the police. This is a British bit -- which goes further along the line of A Kid for Two Farthings in its adulation of squalor and in which tapeworms and philosophy, the heights of World War I memories and the rebellious admission of everyday existence mingle with a fantastic, individual resistance to encroaching enslavements. Wordy and windy and not for placid readers.

Pub Date: Sept. 12, 1956

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Little, Brown-AMP

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1956