Monday, 29 July 2013


What is a fight?

Well, I'd define it as 'Awesome, it's all violent and fisty and sometimes there's pith. Aw man, I've not properly mourned my dog's death.'

You may have your own definition, but you are wrong.






Mr Gum is a foul smelling rotter with a beard that could kill baby mice. He hates “children, animals, fun and corn on the cob”, and plots the destruction of the town of Lamonic Bibber on a reasonably regular basis. Despite his persistent evil-doings, he has yet to be brought to justice by superheroes, because they're a selective bunch and Captain Britain totally hates being seen near poor people.

He can be found in the Mr Gum books by Andy Stanton, illustrated by Dave Tazzyman.

The Twits are a married couple who spend their time plotting to annoy each other, which is better than the alternative: they direct their fury and aggression on the outside world. Hideous, thorny, devious, terrible people, Mr and Mrs Twit would chew a slug in half just to hear it scream, and then spit bits of dead slug at each other.

They can be found in the Roald Dahl book The Twits, illustrated by Quentin Blake.


Mr Gum is more of a slow-burner. He doesn't just march on down into Lamonic Bibber town (often referred to by the more syntactically pleasing phrase 'the town of Lamonic Bibber') and start chucking whelks at people, oh no. He schemes and he gibbers and he dreams of people's suffering and he wakes in the morning and he turns his shower on. He doesn't get into the shower because he likes his musk, but it does him good to know he's wasted loads of water.

The Twits are more prone to lashing out with their sticks and their stones and their words, all of which will hurt you. Some of their words include 'I'm going to hit you with my stick', which I think we can all agree makes one feel painful just by thinking about it.


Mr Gum can count on his good friend Billy William the Third to not only have his back, but also the spines of many luckless animals who never wanted to have their marrow blasted from their lumber with a hose. Billy is a butcher by trade, and remained unaffected by the horse meat scandal. Sometimes, despite their friendship and shared enmity for the townsfolk of Lamonic Bibber, he and Mr Gum have punch ups.

The Twits have each other, and no other friends. It would be sad if it weren't for the human heart's capacity for hate.


Mr Gum's favourite TV show is Bag of Sticks.

The Twits enjoy home-baked cooking, such as bird pie. They catch the birds by putting glue on the branches of the big dead tree in the garden and waiting for birdies to come in to roost. They also have a monkey in the cage, making them no better than Justin Bieber (the pop star whose every mistake is scrutinised by several billion people and who has not had a real childhood for the last four years. Still, his music is awful).


Mr Gum and Billy William the Third are on the run after another one of their schemes has gone a-rye, after they were defeated by four rhombic tonnes of rye wheat was dropped on their dreams by a passing Belgian.

Stopping only to fry a girl called Peter's favourite skipping rope, they run into a run-down house on the edge of town. It is so dishevelled that it hurts their eyes to look at it.

'By the beard of the great horned scurvy demon, I'm not a fan of non-Euclidean geometry,' speaks Mr Gum.

Upon instruction from his comrade, Billy William approaches the door to the hovel and raps on it.

He received a walking stick through the letter box, right into his gut, and a cackling voice on the other side criticises him for his sub par flow. The door is kicked open, kerpowing Billy in the face and knocking three of his teeth out. Soothsayers and divinants would be able to tell Billy William the Third that the way they fell portends great woe and a dependence on straws in his future, but such folk are conspicuous by their absence.

Standing and then walking (slowly) over the prone, gum-troubled form of the butcher, Mrs Twit and her walking stick make their entrance to the rumble. Sighting the sight of Mr Gum, like a Mad Hatter enjoying an explosion at a glass bauble factory, Mrs Twit reckons this one to be a task for her lazy husband, while she sits on a wall drinking port from a unicorn's horn.

'Gideon!' she cries, and a beard with a scuzzflipper hanging off it finishes pouring whisky into his beard to kill off the ants that live there. Mr Twit sees what must be his nemesis, and roars for six or seven minutes until he is deaf with pleasure. Mrs Twit passes the time by beating a worm to death. Mr Gum's attention is distracted by the various bags of sticks he sees lying around the garden, but then he notices the fearsome sound coming from the raving bear-faced sticklefront ahead of him.

'Shabba me whiskers,' he whispers, the ancient warfaring cry of the beard-wearer. Mr Twit recognises it well, for it has been the last thing many an over-confident fuzzy face has heard before he scratched their eyes ablaze with his facey facey foliage.

Leading with their chins, the two men run at each other, beards aloft, preparing to give their enemy a chafing. Novice beard fighters take note: a chafing is what you wish to supply, and not a chaffinch. Alas, after the coming together of beards, all that ensues is an almighty kerfuffle, as the sharp hooks of hair mesh and integrate, rending their owners as one.

Mrs Twit has killed all the worms in the garden, rolled up their squishy bodies into a ball, and then rolled it into an unwary cat's bum before she notices the two men embroiled in a hairy situation. Sighing, and rolling her ice, she goes into the shed to write a letter to her MP. When he writes back informing her that he is too busy building a naked lady out of bank notes to help, she gets the hacksaw out of the rickshaw, and sets about parting the errant follicles. It is an old, rusty blade, and it makes slow progress amidst much Eeking and Oohing.

'You're not doing it right!' shout Mr Twit and Mr Gum.
'You're not doing it right!' shouts Mrs Twit, 'And my arms getting sore. Is it my fault that your beards haven't been washed in so long that they have the strength of ten men made of steel, self-belief and guns?'
'Yes,' says Mr Twit.
'Well pah, I've done something constructive with my time. You two should move up and down while I hold the saw up, and then we'll swap.'
'No, we should spin around and around the saw,' said Mr Gum, 'Because then we'll feel like we've been a-huffing and a-puffin tripe fumes.'

And so they spun around the saw, like a post-industrial wasteland maypole dance, only to get their beards all tangled up in spirals around Mrs Twits' arm.

'Clods! Barksickles! Funicular runny sluices! You'll have to spin the other way or we'll never be free!' cries Mrs Twit. Wearily, the angry and violent gentlefolk do so, but to no avail. After three or four hours of spinning around and around, the have bore a hole in the Earth's crust, and it is starting to seep hotness all around them.

'Lorks' thinks Mr Gum, 'This is a rum-plum-sloe-gin do indeed. There's only one thing for it.'

While Mr and Mrs Twit continue to argue, and flick drops of magma down each other's shirts, Mr Gum starts to eat his own beard in a desperate bid for freedom. Apart from the fact that he punctures his alimentary canal in several places, it goes well until he gets to the hacksaw, which he has to wrap in several layers of hair with his tongue so he doesn't cut his belly open from the inside.

Burping, Mr Gum comes to terms with his skinny chin, and asks the Twits for some feedback on his new look. They are nowhere to be seen, but from his tum comes a rumbling and a grumbling.

'Oi. You manky git. You've gone and scarfed us down like we wuz pate de fox grass, which we aren't.'

It is true. Mr Gum has eaten the Twits, and is starting to feel a painful sensation in his front.

'We'll get out of here, you mark my words!' comes the cry, as the earth's crust is suddenly rent asunder beneath him, leaving one leg on one tectonic plate and one on another. Mr Gum screams as the hacksaw bursts through his pelvic parts and two leering faces peer out.

'Escape! Good and proper! We've got the better of you now you wretch!' shouts Mr Twit, before pushing out with his hands and levering himself free from the wound on Mr Gum's groin. He screams as he plummets into the fiery chasm below. Mrs Twit remains obstinately inside Mr Gum, who has no option but to contract his stomach muscles and force her out. With a grunt, and a grimace, and a tear in his eye, Mr Gum emits a Twit.

Mrs Twit attempts to claw her way back in, but Mr Gum's diet of tripe and offcuts has made the inside of his stomach a difficult place to get a grip on. She slides off, down into the rupture on the face of the Earth which is probably going to cause an even higher fatality rate in the foreseeable future.



He has survived, but doomed us all.

FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! will return in:


If you have any suggestions for who you'd like to see square go each other in future FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! articles, please mention them below.

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