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The extended title reads: 'Boy Genius of the Stone Age and His Search for Soft Trousers'. Ug is ahead of his time: wondering about heating the cave, cooking, boats that float, balls that bounce and, above all, replacing his chilly stone trousers with something a little more comfortable. Briggs's text -- and herein lies the source of the rich humour of this picture book -- is also ahead of Ug's time to the extent that, time after time, footnotes acknowledge three or four anachronisms to the page. For example: 'Write: (anachronism) In the Stone Age people could not read or write. This is why Dug's spelling is so poor' -- so there is a joke inside a joke to be unpacked. Ug is always asking questions within a page layout familiar to lovers of Fungus, Father Christmas and The Bear: small strips broken up by full-page illustrations with speech balloons crammed with witty dialogue. Ug's Dad, Dug, is puzzled by his son's outlandish questions, but mostly patient in his responses. Ug's bare-bosomed Mum, Dugs, isn't patient at all ('Mark my words -- he'll end up painting animals on the walls' -- which he does, of course, dipping into his anachronistic paint-pot). Dug tries to defend Ug (to Dugs) as the parents lie beneath their stone duvet fretting over their offspring: 'It's called "Youth Culture", Dugs.' So Ug goes on his musing way, suggesting that hot dead animal bits might taste better than cold ones, pondering on 'bending' streams to bring water conveniently closer, proposing that stone (for Stone Age cricket, tennis and soccer) cannot be the best material for the ball. Eventually, Ug persuades his dad to see things his way and they cut out a couple of trouser shapes from a baby woolly mammoth skin the lad has found. Triumph! Until -- deep frustration -- how do you join them together? Vintage Briggs. Christmas cartoon material surely -- though a film-maker might choose to introduce a more visible narrative line for the medium.