The Story of JOHNNY ROCKET - A 'read as you listen' guide...

Print these liner notes off to follow the uplifting Story of Johnny Rocket drama on side 2 of 'DAYTRIP to NARNIA' - 

(keep it with your albums or even tuck into your Limited Edition Narnia Box)

'The Story of Johnny Rocket', a young bespectacled child that knew no boundaries when it came to following his dreams... 

“I’ve seen the 'big cat in the sky', I wanna go and find it...” ( Johnny Riley - 6¼ yrs old)

United States of America... It was the 1960s - Johnny was an only child.  An ‘A-grade student’ but a loner, who was teased at school.  His only companion was a stuffy, old toy cat that he took everywhere.  Johnny was a dreamer, and he dreamed of Space.  Every clear night he would gaze up into the sky, making out the shapes of the star constellations - one of which he knew was the ‘Great Cat’.  When he wasn’t star-gazing, Johnny often spent his time alone acting out space stories in his bedroom with his hand-made pair of cardboard ‘space wings' that his Grandfather had kindly made him. His Grandfather urged him to study hard and sure enough his dreams would come true!  Armed with that encouragement Johnny was convinced he was going to be a Spaceman! (or so he told everyone who would listen) and one day he would fly to the stars... His peers all laughed at him and cruelly dubbed him ‘Johnny Rocket’!  


It was now the late 1970s and Johnny had worked his way through college and made it to ‘Space Camp’, a privilege reserved only for the elite.  He was finally going to be a spaceman and to celebrate before camp started, he reluctantly followed his fellow graduates to a DISCO in the city.  He hated everything about it, however as he was about to leave, he saw her - Twilight! - could the timing have been any worse?  


His new found love had to wait for him whilst he was immersed in the intense NASA training program.  The star-crossed lovers barely had any time for each other, although they did have the promise that, after his mission they could settle down and live happily ever after. 


Move forward to the 1980s, the ‘Space Race’ was hotting up, and growing tensions around the world meant that the U.S.A had to be number one.  Johnny was clearly entering a world of fakery, conspiracy and deceit.  Did man really land on The Moon or was it all just a ruse?

It was not long before Johnny and the crew were sworn to secrecy as the mission ‘had’ to end in disaster.  It was no more than an elaborate way of fooling the world, boosting TV ratings and putting America back at the top.  A national tragedy concocted to keep the country on-side and supportive.  After all everyone loves a disaster...

This heinous hoax was supposed to be a secret from everyone.  Johnny, however planned to send a letter to his beloved Twilight explaining that he had never really been in any Spaceships, he had in fact just been acting the part in a small TV studio and, after some time in a secret hideaway, he would eventually come home without celebration or acknowledgement.  


'The letter' to fiance Twilight for whatever reason, was delayed for many weeks. The disaster, as planned, was broadcast worldwide and Twilight’s heart was broken, along with a grieving nation.  It was on the day of the funeral for the fallen heroes that the letter finally turned up on the doormat.

So now, whilst the tears of sadness mixed with tears of joy, a relieved Twilight had to 'play along', acting as if Johnny was truly lost forever... 

(cue pt VI  ‘YESTERDAY’S NEWS’)  (cue handkerchief)

Time passed, and as planned, Johnny returned in secret. Tiptoeing back into the arms of his beloved.  With no time to spare he was transported to a ‘destination unknown’ to start life again, with his new bride-to-be and their new identity - no more Mr & Mrs Rocket, no more silly ideas about becoming a spaceman.  Just a normal life in USA suburbia with no aspirational hopes and dreams, just a ‘happy ever after’. 


To Be Continued  (somewhere on a stage... )


“Johnny didn’t ever go to space, so he never got the chance to find the Great Cat in the sky - but wherever he is, you can be sure that on every clear and moonlit night, he’ll be out there looking up at the skies,  just in case...”

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