Sweep is a grey glove puppet dog with long black ears who joined The Sooty Show in 1957, as a friend to fellow puppet Sooty. His general dim-witted behaviour and penchant for bones and sausages has made him an endearing, entertaining character that children still love to this day. Probably his most unusual characteristic is his method of communication. It consists of a loud high pitched squeak that gains its inflection from normal speech and its rhythm from the syllables in each word. The rest of the cast (namely Soo and the presenter) could understand Sweep perfectly, and would indirectly translate for the viewer. The original puppeteer (Harry Corbett's brother, Leslie) achieved the sound of Sweep's voice using a saxophone reed. Versions of the puppet later sold as toys had an integral squeaker connected to an air bulb that was squeezed by hand.
It is known that, unusually for a glove puppet, Sweep wore wellingtons as several of the more slapstick routines involved his getting upended, leaving his wellies flailing helplessly in the air.
Sweep's family first appeared on the Sooty Show in an episode called Sweep's Family. He has his mother and father, a twin brother Swoop, two cousins Swipe and Swap and another seven brothers in the litter (all of whom look exactly like him, except that they each wear different coloured collars to tell each other apart). However Swipe and Swap are stated to be Sweep's brothers in the Sooty Heights episode the Hounds of Music.
Sweep appeared in a music video dancing and squeaking along to Lady Gaga's "Poker Face".
- Leslie Corbett - The Sooty Show
- Brian Sandford - The Sooty Show, Sooty & Co., Sooty Heights, Sooty
- Rob Rackstraw - Sooty's Amazing Adventures
- Francis Wright - Sooty
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