Beloved children’s show Rainbow was a secret hotbed of sexual innuendo and lewd pranks, it has been revealed.
Puppeteer Ronnie Le Drew, 71, the handler of cheeky character Zippy has told The Sun newspaper how the cast and crew spent all their rehearsal time using the characters adored by kids watching the show to act out sexual positions and make rude jokes.
Le Drew revealed what went on beneath the sheets when Zippy and George were having a bedtime story.
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He said: “Several times during rehearsals Zippy smuggled a large carrot under the covers that poked up at opportune moments, and he also became very prone to masturbating.
“George would be reprimanded by Bungle for wetting the bed or leaving skid marks on the sheets, and when Geoffrey spoke straight to the camera, George and Zippy would often start humping in the background.”
He added: “It was our way of testing the director and producer to see if they would check.
“Most of the time they would notice and lightly tell us off.”
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Un-aired footage of a scene in which Rainbow singer Rod asked Jane: “Do you want to blow my pipe while I’m twanging away?” emerged on YouTube a few years ago - sullying the reputation of the classic kids show.
Le Drew revealed: “Rehearsals became even more innuendo-laden whenever musical instruments were involved, with Jane asking Zippy if he fancied playing with her maracas.
“Or Zippy and George chatting about plucking each other’s ‘twangers’ — the homemade instruments formed from shoe boxes and rubber bands that we sometimes used in the show.
“There were many times I caught myself watching Zippy and George copulating and thought to myself, ‘Oh, they are naughty’, before remembering that I was to blame.”