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TV TIMES, 19 October 1962

'Come Outside' Girl Joins Harpers West One

Blond hair just reaching her slim shoulders, and wearing a black sweater with grey pleated skirt, the little girl emerged from the huddle of people trooping out of the rehearsal room.

Blinking behind a pair of fashionably styled glasses, she made her way over to where I was waiting to be introduced.

Looking younger than her 19 years, the girl proffered a delicate hand in greeting and straightaway launched into an explanation to the effect that the trouble with Come Outside is that people are not taking her seriously enough.

The girl -- if you haven't already guessed -- was Wendy Richards [sic], who provided the asides for Mike Sarne's hit record Come Outside, and had everyone who listened to it asking: "Well, who is that girl?"

But more about that later. We are going to be hearing a lot more from Wendy. Today (Monday) she makes her first appearance in Harpers West One as Susan Sullivan, a new receptionist.

"It's only a small part," she said, blue eyes leveling a frank gaze. "But, I mean, you can't expect to run before you can walk, can you?" she added questioningly.

"I desperately want to be an actress, a comedienne and this is a beginning. As for the Come Outside thing, well, that's finished now."

Wendy made up the words herself for her part in the Mike Sarne recording.

"They just came to me," she said, as if still surprised. "All I was told was: 'You don't want to go outside with a boy. Now what would you say?'

"So I thought: What would a young girl say to get rid of a boy who is making a nuisance of himself . . . 'Belt up.' Why not? And then I thought of my boy friend and then I dreamed up the line" 'Coo, you don' 'arf need a shave.'

"I never dreamed the record would be a hit. I toured round the country appearing in shows and singing the song over and over again with Mike.

"It was wonderful fun. Then I realised I wasn't getting anything else to do. And the answer was simple. People were not taking me seriously enough. They would allow me to be the Come Outside girl for ever!"

She went on earnestly: "I mean, first of all I don't really talk like that. And everywhere I went people would start singing the song as a joke.

"Others would say in the same way: 'What did you do when you got outside?' I could scream, when they say these things."

Wendy, it turns out, is a strange blend of youth and sophistication, although the latter could possibly be mistaken for confidence, of which she undoubtedly has plenty.

Although born in Middlesbrough, she has lived in London practically all her life. Her mother, immensely proud of her daughter, owns a small hotel in London.

"I help mother quite a bit," she said. "I do a little waiting on guests and help out with the clerical side. It's not a big hotel, you know.

"Mother put me to drama school when I left day school. I was 17 then. I managed to get little parts in television but nothing really happened to me until Come Outside came along right out of the blue."

With a bemused shrug, she went on in quiet seriousness: "I'm a typical teenager, I suppose."

Then, with a smile: "But not so dumb, I hope, as the girl I'll be playing in Harpers.

"But the teenagers you see on television, in plays and things are not really typical, you know.

"How can you mistake a real teenager -- girls, I mean. They are terribly young and look their age, I think, although you can always tell that they're trying hard to be sophisticated.

"The teenagers in plays are always too old to be real."

"Do you try to be sophisticated?" I asked.

Shyly, she answered: "Yes."

If Wendy's way of life has changed noticeably since the success of the record, it is that the decided financial gain has enabled her to indulge in some extravagance on clothes buying.

"I've spent nearly all my money on clothes," she said.

Then she went off again to rehearsals, vanishing into the crowd to resume work on her first really big occasion.

Charles Bayne

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