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Private Baldrick

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Private S. Baldrick
Pte Bladrick
Nationality British
Occupation British Army Private
First appearance "Captain Cook"
Last appearance "Goodbyeee..."
Episode count 6 Episodes
Played by Tony Robinson

Private Baldrick is a private in a First World War trench, serving under Captain Blackadder and Lieutenant George, and he's the platoon's cook. His hero is Lord Flashheart.

BiographyEdit

Equal in foulness to the third Baldrick, Private Baldrick also matches his immediate predecessor in terms of stupidity. His "cunning plans" verge on those of an insane person. Examples include carving his name on a bullet, in relation to the old saying "a bullet with your name on it", his explanation being that if he owns the bullet, it won't ever kill him as he won't ever shoot himself ('shame' comments Captain Blackadder), and the chances of there being two bullets with "Baldrick" on them are "very small indeed". And he has also been known to eat cigarettes as seen in the last episode of the series.

He also is the only Baldrick to confront Blackadder after being hit; he does so on one occasion, and is very conscious of class divisions. While this briefly attracts him to the ideals of the Russian Revolution, he is just as willing to marry General Melchett if it allows him to escape his lower-class status.

In the first episode, "Captain Cook", he claims to be the first Baldrick in the entire family tree to have a brilliant plan, giving a speech saying: "Permission to write home immediately sir! This is the first brilliant plan a Baldrick's ever had. For centuries we've tried, and they've always turned out total pigswill! My mum will be pleased as Punch." This was after Blackadder said his plan to get out of the trenches through cookery was indeed a brilliant plan, but with the slight flaw that Baldrick was "the worst cook in the entire world".

Private Baldrick's hobbies include cookery, his specialties include:

  • Rat au Van (a rat that's been run over by a van),
  • Filet mignon in Sauce Bearnaise (dog turds covered in glue),
  • Plum duff (a mole hill decorated in rabbit droppings),
  • Cream custard (cat's vomit),
  • Coffee (hot mud), with milk (spit), sugar (dandruff) and rather dubious 'chocolate sprinkles' (try and guess what that one is) .
  • Apple crumble which contains fish
  • More rat; sautée, which involves:
    • taking the freshly shaved rat and marinading it in a puddle (When Blackadder asks how long it should be 'marinated' for, the reply is 'till it's drowned')
    • stretching it out under a hot lightbulb
    • getting within dashing distance of a latrine
    • scoffing it right down!
  • Rat fricassée, which is the same as above, but a slightly bigger rat.

This Baldrick is also a poet. His greatest poem is, without a doubt, 'The German Guns'. The words are:

Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom,
Boom, Boom, Boom,
Boom, Boom, Boom, Boom,
Boom, Boom, Boom

Baldrick was particularly surprised when Captain Blackadder guessed the final line.

This may actually be a reference to a genuine wartime song sung by soldiers in the trenches, sung to the tune of Auld Lang Syne;

We're here because we're here because
We're here because we're here.
We're here because we're here because
We're here because we're here.

During his time in the trenches, Baldrick also wrote a second poem; the words are as follows:

Hear the words I sing,
War's a horrid thing,
So I sing sing sing...
...ding-a-ling-a-ling.

Blackadder commented that "it started badly, it tailed off a little in the middle and the less said about the end the better — but apart from that it was excellent."

Baldrick also does a fantastic Charlie Chaplin impression (although some believe it to be a slug balancing act, and General Melchett mistook it for a feeble impression of Buster Keaton).

Apart from during Blackadder's demonstration of slapstick comedy in the same episode, Baldrick generally does not get physically abused by Blackadder, although Blackadder frequently insults Baldrick and his family.

This version of Baldrick seems to have Communist tendencies. In episode "Major Star" he openly supports the Russian Revolution. However, his mutinous attitude is qualmed by Blackadder ordering him to clean out the latrines. His hatred of the aristocracy is referenced later in the same episode.

The opening sequence to each episode of series 4 features a ceremonial parade in which the company led by Captain Blackadder marches past General Melchett on a reviewing stand. Baldrick appears as part of the regimental band, splendid in scarlet and blue full dress, but not only walking out of line but also playing that most unmartial of instruments: a triangle.

Despite his stupidity, Private Baldrick (however inadvertently) delivers the most profound speech of the lot. In preparation for the "final push", tension is high, and Baldrick demands, "Why can't we just stop sir? Why can't we just say 'no more killing, let's all go home'? Why would it be stupid just to pack it in, sir? Why?" Neither Captain Blackadder nor Lieutenant George are able to come up with a good answer. In the fourth series of Blackadder, the character of Baldrick does take on something of a deeper meaning, as an innocent victim of the terrible slaughter of the first world war.

Private Baldrick never got to tell the audience his final "cunning plan" to escape the trenches, as he is sent over the top before he can reveal it to Captain Blackadder, Lieutenant George and Captain Darling (although it might have involved a terrible splinter he noticed on a trench ladder; he observed "a bloke could hurt himself on that"). However, Baldrick stated that Captain Blackadder was correct in the final plan being "as cunning as a fox who's just been appointed Professor of Cunning at Oxford University". Private S. Baldrick may have been killed going "over the top" in 1917. He is the only Baldrick to have short hair.

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