Ying Tong (named after the deeply moving Goon ballad Ying Tong Yiddle I Po) begins with Spike Milligan planning a pyjama-clad escape from a mental institution in order to write the greatest ever episode of The Goon Show. After making an outlandish effort to reclaim his marbles from the British Museum, Milligan’s grip on reality loosens further as he threatens to kill Eccles, probably The Goon Show’s most iconic character.

Infused with finely-observed Goons-style comedy and featuring a magnificently convoluted plot, Ying Tong also explores the darker side of Milligan’s mind, which was famously beset with depression. It is well known that the pressures of writing The Goon Show placed much mental pressure on Milligan, a fact which lies at the heart of Ying Tong as he asks his fellow Goons whether producing marvellous new Goon Shows is worth sacrificing his sanity.

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