Neil Forsyth: Bringing Dundee to the masses
Bob Servant is Back
This article is from 2012.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that Neil Forsyth has a vendetta against con men. Among his published works are a biography of teenage scam artist Elliot Castro, an exposé on fraudulent psychics and Delete This at Your Peril, a collection of email exchanges between internet spammers and a deadpan Dundonian tormentor called Bob Servant.
‘People keep saying that to me about the con man thing,’ says Forsyth. ‘Some people have suggested I was on some sort of Watchdog-type attack on them, but I’m not; it’s just a great comic premise working off spammers because you’ve got this endless supply of willing straight men.’
Servant has since evolved beyond print with BBC Radio Scotland transmitting The Bob Servant Emails in 2012, and a BBC Four TV series is due to air later this year. Native Dundonian Brian Cox plays Bob in both. ‘He’s just brilliant and knows the character inside out,’ says Forsyth of Cox. ‘Although I’d like to think these are universal themes, he’s a real Dundee character is Bob, and I think Brian and myself have a sort of innate understanding of that character bounding round the pubs of Broughty Ferry. He fits Brian like a glove; like a big, Dundonian glove.’
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