ROBERT LLEWELYN - "THIN HE WAS, AND FILTHY-HAIRED" (PENGUIN)
"Thin He Was, and Filthy Haired" is Robert "Kryten of 'Red Dwarf'" LLewelyn's third book. It is, in fact, an autobiography of his late adolescence, concentrating on substance abuse, sex, hippies, geodesic domes, sex, proud-breasted women, a dog called Cabbage, anarchy, sex and the odd flirtation with the world of crime. Never before has reading a book so changed my viewpoint of a person. Whereas I previously thought Llewelyn was at best a boring person who played an interesting character in "Red Dwarf", in fact his early life is so riddled with anecdotable facts that it borders on the incredulous. For me, it was a bit of a relief - albeit 15 years too late for yours truly - that an adolescent can safely be more than a trifle interested in anything sexual.
So Robert Llewelyn has had an interesting late teen-hood in the mid seventies. It makes for an interesting read, but only fairly so. Like "The Man in the Rubber Mask", the first half is interesting but after that it tends to get a bit repetitive. Nevertheless, the other day I saw the first episode of "Red Dwarf" series VIII and to me the Kryten character had, uncannily, acquired an extra depth.
Released 1996, ISBN 0-14-025082-4
Written February 1999
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