Punch is a character for our times

BREMERTON — By one name or another, the character Punch of “Punch and Judy” fame can be found in almost every country in the world, puppeteer Clay Martin said.

He’s “Polichinelle” in France, “Petrushka” in Russia, and “Kasper” or “Kasperle” in Germany. But whatever his name, the Punch character is all about the little guy outsmarting the big guy while being about as politically incorrect as he can be.

On Jan. 28, 55 children of all ages had a chance to watch Punch in action when Martin presented his (somewhat sanitized) “Punch and Pals” at the Olympic College Theater in Bremerton.

“These days, I do about 50 shows a year,” Martin said. “I adapt each show to the audience.”

The puppet play was one of the annual series of puppet productions sponsored by the nonprofit Valentinetti Puppet Museum, 257 Fourth St., Bremerton.

Martin has been a puppeteer for 30 years. He worked on the classic TV puppet show “Kukla, Fran and Ollie” and performed in Germany at the Rothenberg Obder Tauber.

Punch is a character for our times