Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Octobeard Day Twenty Seven: Today brought Keith Telly Topping the news that the judging as to which of us daft glakes taking part have actually won the Octobeard competition is to be handed over to somebody impartial. Dunno who, exactly, but it's somebody. And, they're impartial. Seemingly. Photos are to be taken in the studio on Thursday morning and we'll no doubt hear the outcome sometime thereafter. As Baron De Whatshisface noted, of course, it isn't the winning that is important, rather it's the taking part. But, I've always reckoned that the winning is pretty high up on the list of what's important as well.

Details on some of the forthcoming attractions from the Beeb have been revealed in this press release which includes the press packs for the next Doctor Who special, this year's Children in Need night, the new series of Gavin & Stacey, Miranda and others.

Despite the fact that many millions of viewers are watching both Strictly and The X-Factor each week, Keith Telly Topping has to note that he is yet to meet a single, solitary person who is 'furious' at being forced to choose between them, despite what various scum tabloids (and, indeed, various ITV press-releases) might imply. The huge viewing figures that both are able to attract – even when they are scheduled opposite each other – suggests that they have, by and large, different audiences. Which rather deflates the tabloids' (and ITV's) whole stupid argument that scheduling them in this way has been, in any way, negative.

Emily Deschanel has assured viewers that changes in the relationships on Bones will not ruin the show. The actress, who plays the title character Temperance Brennan, told London Lite that the season five storyline will not dissolve the atmosphere with David Boreanaz's Seeley Booth that keeps the forensic drama interesting. Deschanel said: 'Once you get Bones and Booth together, you risk losing the glue that holds it together. Namely the sexual tension. But we've managed to do it in such a way that doesn't destroy that tension. It's hard to explain without giving too much away and it's nothing shocking, though it could upset some people and excite others.'

Lisa Edelstein has revealed that the cast of House were somewhat upset over Jennifer Morrison's departure from the show. Last month, it was announced that Morrison, who plays Allison Cameron on the hit FOX medical drama, would be leaving the production in November. However, it was later reported that her future with the show is still uncertain after executive producers David Shore and Katie Jacobs insisted that stories of her exit being permanent were just rumours. 'I think [Cameron's departure] will tighten up the team a little bit,' Edelestein told E! Online. 'There will be a loss of that character, which is a great character. It will continue on its merry way. We were all sad. I don't think she's gone for good. They say she's going to be coming and going.'

And, speaking of revelations, Carlos Bernard has revealed that he was shocked - shocked, I tells ya - to discover George W Bush is obsessed with his TV show 24. Although, thinking about it, it's not that surprising. Except that Bush probably believes it's a documentary. The actor, who plays resurrected character Tony Almeida in the show, said that the ex-president asked him for upcoming plot secrets when they met. The Daily Express quotes Bernard as saying: 'He grabbed me at a baseball game in the US. A big guy came up to me and said, "Excuse me, the President would like to speak with you."' He continued: 'I went over, and it was George W Bush, and he said "Hey Carlos, when are you coming out of that coma?"' Bernard added: '[He said] "All I can do is watch that show of yours. Are you coming back?" I was like, "You don't have anything better to do?"' Err... no. Not really. Not better.

Robert Englund has admitted that the remake of V makes him 'feel pretty old.' The actor played an alien named Willie in the original mini-series and short-lived TV show during the 1980s on which the update is based. He also starred as Freddy Krueger in the Nightmare On Elm Street franchise, which is currently being rebooted as well. 'My two biggest hits are being remade so there's kind of a perfect storm right now,' he told TV Guide.

Maggie Grace is to return to Lost for the series' final season, reports TV Guide. Grace will head back to Oahu, Hawaii in November to reprise the role of Shannon Rutherford. The character was killed off in 2005. It is thought that Grace's scenes will be cut into an episode shot earlier this fall featuring Ian Somerhalder, who played Shannon's equally-now-dead step-brother Boone. The episode will air in 2010, when Lost returns to ABC for its final batch of episode.

Mad Men star Elisabeth Moss has married Saturday Night Live comedian Fred Armisen, reports Us Weekly. The actress, who plays Peggy Olson in the AMC drama, tied the knot with Armisen at The Foundry in Long Island on Sunday. A representative for Moss has confirmed that the ceremony was 'attended by friends and family' and that the bride wore a Claire Pettibone dress.

Strictly Come Dancing host Tess Daly has claimed that she cannot understand why Rockin' Ronnie Wood dumped his wife, Jo. The presenter revealed that she was impressed by the way Jo conducted herself during her recent six-week stint on the BBC1 ballroom show. Writing in the Mirror, Daly explained: 'Of course we were all sad to say goodbye to Jo Wood when she got voted off on Saturday. She's an inspiration to many women and really blossomed on Strictly. I can't help thinking her ex-Ronnie must be mad to leave someone like her.'

Meanwhile Jo Wood has claimed that Brendan Cole 'deserves a medal' for teaching her to dance. The fifty three-year-old exited the show on Saturday after losing the dance-off with Jade Johnson and Ian Waite. 'I can't believe I was in for six weeks. I want to thank everyone who voted for me and Brendan - I was surprised,' she told It Takes Two. 'I'm sure [Brendan's] really grateful that it's over. Trying to teach me to dance, you deserve a medal!' Speaking about working with Wood, series one winner Cole said: 'I had one of the best Strictly experiences you can ever imagine. Working with Jo has been a delight and I don't think I've been cranky once - well maybe once or twice. She is a joy to work with, I loved going to training, I loved being on the floor with her. We had one of those great Strictly relationships that not everyone has... We brought out the best in each other.'

Strictly fans will need to tune in early next month after BBC chiefs announced that the dance show will be brought forward to make way for coverage of a Remembrance Day event. The broadcaster will move the 7 November episode to 6.25pm in order to allow The Remembrance Festival to air in its traditional mid-evening slot.

Channel 4 is to recreate the aerial battles of World War One for a ninety-minute documentary from Darlow Smithson Productions. In Fighting The Red Barron, former RAF and Red Arrows pilots Andy Offer and Mark Cutmore will jump into period and replica planes to experience simulations of reconnaissance and a dogfight featuring camera guns. The film aims to document the birth of aerial warfare and show how, in just four years, flimsy flying machines were transformed into war planes. It will also include first-hand testimony from former pilots who risked their lives in planes ninety years ago. Julian Ware, who is executive producer on the doc, said: 'The original pilots were both the last knights of warfare and the new warriors in one of the greatest technological developments of modern history. Andy and Mark’s journey will chart these historical "big bang" moments of the race for aerial supremacy.'

Former BBC director general Greg Dyke and ex-GCap Media chairman Richard Eyre have emerged as names in the frame for the job of Channel 4 chairman. The list of candidates to replace Luke Johnson is being whittled down with a decision expected within the next two weeks. Interestingly, those being tipped for the job have heavyweight broadcasting experience. Sir Richard Attenborough was the last chairman to have worked in the industry. According to reports, others being considered for the position include Chorion chairman Waheed Alli. Both Dyke and Eyre also share something else in common - they've both used recent interviews to bad-mouth their former employer the BBC.

Coronation Street scriptwriter Damon Rochefort has expressed pride over the soap's handling of gay and transgender issues. Rochefort told the Independent that he is particularly pleased by the impact of long-standing transsexual character Hayley Cropper (Julie Hesmondhalgh), who has become a fan favourite since her introduction in 1998. He said: 'Julie does an amazing job and gets a lot of support from the transgender community - lots of quite moving letters.' The writer also praised the depiction of Gail Platt's (Helen Worth) father Ted Page, played by Michael Byrne, as a gay man who had left his wife and not had contact with his grandchildren.

Heather Mills has been pictured practising her skating skills following rumours that she is to appear on Dancing On Ice. The ex-wife of Sir Paul McCartney was spotted learning how to skate with an instructor at a rink close to her home in East Sussex. According to the Daily Mail, Mills was able to perform some moves on the ice within a few minutes and appeared to be pleased by her speedy progress. Mills was tipped to compete on the ITV show last month. Reports earlier this week suggested that she would be the highest-paid celebrity on the new series. A source has now said: 'Heather is a big fan of Dancing On Ice and she would be thrilled and delighted to take part. She will tackle it in the normal way, with hard work and determination.'

Simon Cowell reportedly lost his temper with X Factor judges Cheryl Cole and Dannii Minogue backstage on Sunday night. The music mogul accused the pair of not being committed enough to their acts and spending too much time on their outfits during a showdown behind the scenes, according to the Mirror. It is thought that the dispute occurred shortly after girl group Miss Frank were voted off following their sing-off with Cowell's protégé Danyl Johnson. An insider said: 'Simon could not believe his act Danyl - or Miss Frank for that matter - were in the sing-off and he was in a foul mood all evening. After the show he let rip at Cheryl and Dannii. They are always immaculately turned out and spend ages choosing their clothes and accessories, having their hair and make-up done and perfecting their look. But in no uncertain terms Simon told them it's a talent show, not a fashion show. He told the girls he wants them to spend less time in front of the mirror and in their dressing rooms and more time concentrating on their acts, song choices and criticisms.'

Danyl Johnson has reportedly been accused of bullying his X Factor co-star Stacey Solomon by reading out negative press stories about her personal life. According to the Daily Star, the schoolteacher has left his rival contestant in tears at the show's house by 'thrusting' articles in her face and loudly repeating others. A source said: 'Stacey was adamant when she moved into the X Factor house that she did not want to read or hear any stories about herself. But Danyl has just ignored her wishes and he can't help blabbing when he sees an article about her in the paper. It upsets her and can put her off her performance.' Solomon has allegedly learned that some critics have labelled her a bad mother for competing on The X Factor when she has an eighteen-month-old son. Rumours about her sex life are also said to have been mentioned by Johnson at the house. Talk of tension between the pair first emerged at the weekend. Johnson has previously been accused of bullying axed girl group Kandy Rain.

Richard Hammond is in the running for a BAFTA after being nominated for his children's show Blast Lab. He faces competition from Steve Backshall, from Deadly 60, CBeebies presenter Andy Day, and Phil Gallagher, who presents Mister Maker, for the British Academy Children's Award. This year's drama nominations include Dustbin Baby, the story of a fourteen-year-old girl abandoned at birth who sets out on a journey of self discovery, S4C's Rhestr Nadolig Wil (Wil's Christmas List), Doctor Who spin-off Sarah Jane Interferes and the true story of German boy band US5. The awards will be hosted by comedians Dick and Dom, who are also in with a chance of winning an award in the entertainment category for their show, The Legend of Dick and Dom. The awards are billed as 'a celebration of the very best in children's media including television, film, video games and online.'

The television industry does not value older women as much as their male counterparts and women tend to get ahead by being young and pretty, comedian Sandi Toksvig has claimed. Toksvig who chairs the News Quiz on Radio 4, questioned whether former This Morning co-host Fern Britton would have landed the job if she were applying today, because of widespread ageism. 'Normally they like to pair an older man with a much younger woman. That's the standard thing,' she told Surrey Life magazine. 'When Fern Britton left This Morning for instance she was replaced by a much younger, pretty woman. Now I'm sure Holly Willoughby is very talented but put it this way – I question whether Fern would get the job if she was applying today.' Other presenting pairs include Bruce Forsyth and Tess Daly on Strictly Come Dancing, Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley on The ONE Show and Jeff Stelling and Rachel Riley on Countdown.

John Cleese has admitted that he was not paid by the BBC for his recent contribution to a Fawlty Towers DVD set. The seventy-year-old actor, who played calamity-prone Basil Fawlty on the seventies sitcom, recorded audio commentaries for all the episodes earlier this year. Cleese is quoted by the Daily Express as saying: 'The BBC said to me, "Would you like to put commentaries on them?" I said, "I think that might be interesting. What are you going to pay me?" Since I've discovered you need this stuff called money, because you exchange it for food and, you know, clothing. And they said, "Well, we can't pay you, but what we can do is give you a hotel for a few days." I said, "That's a good deal."'

Comedian Ricky Gervais is set to present the Golden Globe film awards, organisers have announced. That's one good reason not to watch them.

Joe Swash has admitted to smelling Pamela Anderson's underwear during filming of his new fly-on-the-wall show. The I'm A Celebrity... winner and former Baywatch actress visited each other's homes for the Living TV series, which begins next month. Speaking about his trip to Anderson's trailer park home, Swash told Closer magazine: 'As trailer parks go, this is the one! It's absolutely beautiful, with its own private beach. Pammy's living there while her mansion's being built. I had a good nosey around. I jumped on her bed when she wasn't looking, sniffed her knickers, all the things I wanted to do!'

Mad Frankie Boyle has claimed that television is becoming 'fucking boring.' The thirty seven-year-old comedian, who recently quit Mock The Week, said that tighter rules and regulations on what entertainers can say will lead to dull comedy output. The Mirror quotes him as saying: 'It's a question of how boring people want TV to be from now on. People aren't going to be happy until you boil it down to just cooking and fucking property shows. I don't think it's even PC. I think it's just dull people who want dull TV. Those jokes weren't that risqué anyway. There was no malice in them.' The comedian added that reality TV shows are like 'virtual drugs. You know when they play classical music to cattle before they go to the abattoir? That's what [X Factor and Strictly are] like. It's virtual drugs before they're led off.' When asked whether he would ever consider guesting on a reality TV series, he joked: 'Yes, one called Frankie Sources A Suitcase Nuke And Destroys Westminster.' Speaking about his upcoming plans for a Channel 4 series, he said: 'It's going to be some quite harsh stand-up and some quite harsh sketches and a series of skits that discuss the development of AIDS through the years. I'm filming it in December and it's being shown in January next year. I don't know what the title is yet, I've got one in mind but we'll see.'

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