Green’s Dictionary of Slang

charlie n.4

also charley
[rhy. sl.; charlie hunt = cunt n. (4); given the popularity of the term among otherwise ‘clean’ radio and TV comedians, one must assume their (and their audiences’) ignorance of the ety.]

a fool; esp. in phr. proper charlie, right charlie; note earlier charley-boy n.

[Aus]Truth (Melbourne) 12 Dec. 6/6: This same German sausage Charley / As was living down the street.
[US] ‘Sl. of Maladjustment’ in AS XXI:3 Oct. 238/1: charlie. One who cannot understand orders and so makes foolish mistakes.
[UK]J. Osborne Look Back in Anger Act III: But make me some tea first, you madcap little Charlie.
[UK]Galton & Simpson ‘The Poetry Society’ Hancock’s Half-Hour [radio script] He thinks Bertrand Russell’s a bit of a charlie.
[UK]D. Abse House of Cowards (1967) 44: They made a proper charlie out of us.
[UK]H. Livings Nil Carborundum (1963) Act III: Are you trying to make a charlie out of Neville?
[UK]R. Rendell Best Man To Die (1981) 25: You and me, we look a pair of right Charlies.
[UK]C. Dexter Service of all the Dead (1980) 251: Made me look like a proper Charley, if you ask me.
[US]H. Rawson Dict. of Invective (1991) 14: The insulting connotations usually come through most clearly when the familiar form of a name is used, as in Chico, Charlie, Heinie, Hymie, Jack, Mick, Paddy.
[UK]Observer Rev. 24 Oct. 2: I do feel a bit of a Charlie.
[UK]Guardian Guide 1–7 Apr. 93: A ‘proper’ Charlie, so to speak.