Mr Badger, star of the hit BBC children’s television show Bodger and Badger, has been remanded into custody as part of the ongoing badger cull and is awaiting trial for the endangering of the public good through the transmission of infectious diseases.
Last weekend, trained marksmen conducted a daring raid on the BBC Television Studio and emerged half an hour later escorting Mr Badger at gunpoint into a sealed containment vehicle. Mr Badger is accused of carrying and spreading bovine tuberculosis, an infectious disease of cattle caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium bovis. Should Mr Badger be found guilty, the sentence, under the new badger culling laws, is death.
The weekend raid marks the culmination of a month long search for Mr Badger. Mr Badger’s presence in the BBC Television Studio had been suspected for some time, with reports of sightings of him wandering down Wood Lane reaching official channels last week. Mr Badger, who has been living anonymously in the BBC studios since the end of Bodger and Badger in 1999, reputedly attempted to resist arrest, resulting in a ten-minute shoot-out with the authorities until tear gas canisters could be brought up.
“He was a tricky blighter to nab,” said Hugh Holk, nominal leader of the West London Badger Disposal Unit. “He’d set up anti-personnel mashed potato mines and proceeded to fire upon us with a custom-built mashed potato gun.” Mashed potato guns of course have been illegal since the 1993 Great Food Fight of London and so Mr Badger’s possession of an illicit firearm will likely harm his defence. “Upon searching the premises, we found packets of mashed potato hidden beneath the floorboards, along with a blender and several hypodermic syringes.”
Mr Badger insists that such potato was for personal use.
Mr Bodger, co-star of Bodger and Badger, said: “It was a well-known fact that Badger had some problems. I mean, the whole mashed potato thing: there were days when he’d just never turn up to filming, and then he’d come into the studio, absolutely off his face on the stuff. But it was the 90s, everyone was on something. But now, this TB accusation, well, I never thought it would go so far. The mashed potato was one thing, but this is something else entirely.”
When questioned if there were any plans for a resurrection of the show, Mr Bodger said: “No, there are no plans. I haven’t talked to Badger in six years. We did that tour back in 2006, but that was it. He was a different person, I hardly recognised, I don’t know if it was the mashed potato or the TB, but we agreed to go our separate ways. It was a mutual agreement and very civil.”
Readers may remember this “civil” agreement, which resulted in the Dartford Tunnel being closed for two months for repairs.