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Rocky received a letter from his aunt in Illinois and namesake, Miss Isabel Rockmetteller: she will pay Rocky an allowance, on the condition that he live in New York and write to her once a week about his experiences there so she can enjoy the city second-hand. She feels that she is not healthy enough to go to New York herself, though Rocky asserts that she is only being lazy.

Rocky hates the city, but is afraid of defying his aunt and being cut out of her will. Jeeves suggests getting someone else to spend time in New York and write notes for Rocky, who will then uses the notes to write letters to his aunt. Bertie proposes that Jeeves write the notes.

P. G. Wodehouse - Carry On, Jeeves. (Abridged) Martin Jarvis.

Jeeves happily obliges. He writes notes about evenings he spends at clubs with celebrities, and Rocky writes exciting letters, which please his aunt.

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Bertie says he is a friend of Rocky's, but she is clearly annoyed with Bertie's presence. Jeeves sends a telegram to bring Rocky to the flat. Meanwhile, Aunt Isabel plans to stay. She assumes Jeeves is Rocky's valet. Bertie goes to stay in a hotel, where he suffers without Jeeves, while Rocky endures going out to clubs with his aunt. He tells Bertie that the letters were so exciting that she believes she had some kind of faith cure, which allowed her to travel to New York. She ended Rocky's allowance since she is covering both their expenses. Rocky's aunt starts to brood, and Rocky thinks she is wondering where Rocky's celebrity friends are.

He asks Bertie to join them to distract her. Bertie does so, but Aunt Isabel still broods. The three of them return to the flat, where Aunt Isabel confesses that she now feels that the city is a vile place, after she heard the orator Jimmy Mundy speak against the evils of the city. She says that she heard him speak because Jeeves mistakenly brought her to the wrong venue, though she is glad he did. She implores Rocky to live in the country instead. Rocky enthusiastically agrees. The next day, Rocky and his aunt have left, and Bertie is back in his flat.

He praises Jeeves. Jeeves advises Bertie to discontinue wearing his green tie and to wear the blue with the red domino pattern instead. Bertie agrees. Wodehouse often has Bertie Wooster allude to a literary work he would have studied at school, though Bertie rarely quotes precisely, giving merely a sketchy version of the original work.

An example of this in "The Aunt and the Sluggard" occurs when Bertie is at the hotel missing Jeeves: "It was like what somebody or other wrote about the touch of a vanished hand" from Tennyson 's "The May Queen". Another example occurs when Aunt Isabel arrives unexpectedly at Bertie's apartment: "The situation floored me. I'm not denying it. Hamlet must have felt much as I did when his father's ghost bobbed up in the fairway".

The contrast in Jeeves's and Bertie's diction leads to what Wodehouse scholar Kristin Thompson terms the "translation device".


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Jeeves often says something that Bertie repeats in less formal language, either to make sure he understands or to translate for someone else. This device is used for comic effect in "The Aunt and the Sluggard", when Jeeves provides a long, formal, sophisticated description of his plan for Rocky to have someone else write letters about New York to his aunt.

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When Rocky is confused by Jeeves's complex speech, Bertie translates Jeeves's idea for Rocky in much fewer, simpler words. Pleasant Run Road, DeSoto. Homeschooled at African American Repertory Theater is a play about history and the force of ideas. But what really propels the action is the tangled history of the characters' emotional lives. A lesson about lynching threatens to disrupt the whole situation, but we soon learn that deeper problems are at the bottom of the disagreement. Fine performances anchor Jonathan Norton's nuanced study of race and gender.

Through Sept. Vickery Blvd. Stage West has amazing luck in sniffing out superior British twits.

Right Ho, Jeeves

The Fort Worth theater has produced another comedy adapted from P. Wodehouse's stories about the dumb-but-lovable English aristocrat Bertie Wooster and his wise and unflappable valet, Jeeves.

Thank You, Jeeves is the sixth such show there in a decade, and its Bertie, Mark Shum, is the fourth actor to take on the character. All have been excellent, but Shum gives the most relaxed and natural version of the character to date.

Jeeves Takes Charge

The constant element in the series is Jim Covault as Jeeves — a perfect role for Covault's calm, authoritative stage manner. We are currently revamping our comment system and it will return soon. Catch up on North Texas' vibrant arts and culture community, delivered every Monday. By signing up you agree to our privacy policy.

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