That's not my husband!

More criticism of Cook film

Peter Cook’s first wife is to publish her memoirs because she’s so angry with how her ex-husband is portrayed as a bitter, cruel drunk.

Wendy Cook says she felt compelled to put her side of the story after watching the Channel 4 film Not Only But Always about Cook’s turbulent relationship with Dudley Moore last week.

 'Everyone else has had their say and it seems to me I do have something different to contribute,' she told The Observer. 'We were a good team at the time he was at his most creative.

'I would like to write a book, partly as catharsis for me, but also to correct this false impression,' she said

 Mrs Cook, who was a teenage art student when she met Cambridge undergraduate Cook in the early Sixties, says the film ignored the warmth between Peter and Dudley, failed to make enough of the groundbreaking nature of Beyond The Fringe, and underplayed Cook’s intellectual strengths.

'It would have made it so much more interesting if they had tried to reflect Peter's fantastic knowledge of culture,' she said.

But she admits she left Cook, who she divorced in 1971, because his drinking made him unbearable and that ‘Peter probably was envious of Dudley going off to Hollywood’ – two of the main themes of Terry Johnson’s screenplay.

She is also annoyed by her own portrayal in the film.. Wendy, who is writing a ‘biodynamic’ cookbook and calls Peter a ‘clairsentient’ because he could ‘enter somebody’s personality’, said: ‘It was ridiculous to show me wafting about our home burning sage "for clarity" while he was working. I did not do things like that.'

Cook’s second wife Judy Huxtable, has also criticised the new film, but his widow Lin has been more positive – an opinion Wendy dismisses.

 'Lin is trying to rewrite his life,’ she said. ‘She could never have understood all the nuances and taboos of the upper-class, colonial background that made Peter what he was.'

Published: 2 Jan 2005

Today's comedy-on demand picks

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Tim Key headlines this night of comedy, music and poetry, fundraising in aid of the National Autistic Society tonight (Thursday) at 8.15pm, after the clap for carers.

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