Sunday, July 18, 2010

Don't Mock The Pieman

Saturday was an appalling night for TV ratings across the board. BBC1 scored the top six rated shows but the fact that Casualty was the most watched of them, with an audience of just 4.7m should tell you just how astonishingly low figures generally were. Tonight's the Night returned with a just-about average 4.2m but, after that it starts to become a case of diminishing returns. The wretched 101 Ways to Leave a Gameshow scored 3.9m followed by three other BBC1 slots, the BBC News (3.5m), a repeat of Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow (3.4m) and the film Toy Story 2 (also 3.4). If it was a below-average night for the Beeb it was a shocking one for ITV. Their best effort before Thirty Years of An Audience With... at 21:00 which was viewed by just three million viewers. Yes, that's right, the highest audience of the day on ITV was three million. Earlier You've Been Framed! Kids Special also got a fraction under three million whilst the networks two highly trailed new game shows, Odd One In and Magic Numbers scored 2.9m and 2.7m respectively, the latter not even making the top ten most viewed programmes of the day. BBC2's coverage of the British Open Golf Championship, meanwhile, was watched by 2.4m.

Regarding Odd One In last night, Jason Manford was asked on Twitter if the show gets any better. His reply might not be quite what the ITV Press Office would like: 'That was the best one!' Nice one Jase. It's going to be a long seven weeks for the third channel, it appears.

Eamonn Holmes could reportedly be taking over as host of BBC Breakfast. The show's current anchors Chris Hollins and Sian Williams are said to be 'unhappy' about the confirmed move to Salford Quays. Upset staff described the move as 'utter madness.' The Sun reports that This Morning hosts Holmes and his wife, Ruth Langsford, could take over after the 2012 move. 'Eamonn loves breakfast TV and the biggest show in town is BBC Breakfast,' an 'insider' supposedly told the paper. However, it has also been reported in other parts of the press that Holmes has called in lawyers over a BBC comedy show's jokes about his weight. Jon Culshaw mimicked the lard-bucket host in a number of sketches on the first series of The Impressions Show. So, hopefully, if the BBC were considering making the full-of-his-own-importance fatty an offer to host one of their shows they'll now have swiftly withdrawn it when they've discovered what a po-faced individual he may, or may not, be. Whilst viewers might have enjoyed Culshaw's catchphrase - 'I was fierce hungry, so I was' - it has been suggested that good old po-faced, pie-loving, Scumchester United supporting Eamonn himself was so annoyed that he - allegedly - got his lawyers to write in a letter of complaint to the Corporation. In one sketch the producer asks 'Eamonn' what's happened to the studio's sofa. In a thick Ulster accent, Culshaw points to the space where the couch was and replies: 'I wouldn't know, I was eating that cake, so I was.' BBC bosses were 'stunned' - according to the News of the World, anyway - to get the legal note. Not, necessarily because they thought Eamonn liked the show but rather because they couldn't believe somebody would be so thin-skinned that they'd actually get bloody lawyers involved in a such an utterly trivial matter. The newspaper claims that a 'source' told them: 'Staff were surprised because initially Eamonn seemed to find the funny side. He has spoken about having no willpower to diet and being overweight so it didn't seem a big deal.' Holmes' spokesman meanwhile was quoted by the Daily Telegraph as saying 'Eamonn has got the highest regard for Jon Culshaw but he felt that in this instance it was a joke that went too far. It was just playing to a stereotype.' Yes, mate. That's how impressions generally work. Last night a BBC 'source' - we're presuming a different one if, indeed, either actually exist - revealed Eamonn's character will not feature in the new series of The Impressions Show, which is currently being filmed, but insisted that the decision was not linked to the complaint. Considering the personal nature of some of the comments that Mr Holmes himself has made about others in the past on the various formats he has presented he would appear to be something of a staggering hypocrite if this story is true. Which, of course, it may not be given the source of it. Though, it should be noted that this blogger always had a feeling that Eamonn Holmes had a very selective sense of humour and I say that as a fully fledged porker myself. You're fat, Eamonn, so are lots of other people myself included. Generally, when they have that pointed out to them - on a virtual daily basis - they don't send the lawyers in. Albeit, in a back-handed way, you've really got to admire someone doing so much to keep Britain's hard-pressed bakeries in business during these tough financial times. We salute you, Eamonn. Have a Gregg's pastie on us.

Penny Smith has revealed the reason behind her departure from GMTV earlier this year. The host, who had spent seventeen years on the programme, admitted that she was unhappy with the reduced role she was given as part of the revamp. Speaking to the Mirror, she said: 'It's true I felt ready for a change but I was also very disappointed when I heard they were ditching News Hour, that part of the show between six and seven that I co-presented with John Stapleton. I loved the combination of news and current affairs with a laugh along the way. And working with John was a joy. If I'd stayed I would still have had the news to read but that would not have been challenging enough.'

Strictly Come Dancing bosses have reportedly given four professional dancers an ultimatum to sign up for the show. According to the News of the World, the show's executives are losing patience with the dancers who have not yet confirmed a deal with the BBC to return for the upcoming eighth series. Ian Waite, Matthew Cutler, Lilia Kopylova and Darren Bennett are thought to be the names still to put pen to paper.

Good old mad-as-a-box-of-badgers Janet Street Porter, writing in - of all places - the Daily Mail, has given the cultural secretary that odious, smug little toad Jeremy Hunt a damned good trousers-down smacked bottom over his threatening noises towards the BBC. You go, girl! Incidentally, you can read the interview which caused all the fuss, Andrew Porter's disgracefully lick-spittle tongue-rimming of Hunt here. Though be warned in advance, dear blog reader, it contains brown-tongued sycophancy of quite vomit-inducing proportions.

Coronation Street's cast have allegedly been banned from using social networking sites like Twitter and threatened with disciplinary action. Bosses at the ITV soap are said to have blamed posts on the website for recent storyline leaks. Shobna Gulati and Antony Cotton are among some of the actors who regularly tweet. According to the Sunday Mirror, a letter sent to the cast said: 'Please consider the set a mobile and tweet-free zone. We realise that many of you use social media and networking sites and may wish to comment on your working lives - but we would prefer it if you didn't. Remember that any images can be accessed by the public. Disciplinary action may be taken against anyone who posts inappropriate pictures of yourself or any other members of the cast or anything that would portray The Street in a bad light.' A 'source' reportedly said: 'Anyone who is caught out tweeting anything embarrassing from now on is going to find themselves in very hot water.'

Rowan Atkinson has reportedly become embroiled in a planning permission row. According to the Press Association, the Mr Bean actor, who resides in rural Oxfordshire, has upset nearby residents by his plans for a 'glass-fronted house.' 'This application proposes an ultra-modern house which dominates the surrounding landscape. While the modern architecture may be appropriate in London, it is wholly inappropriate to the rural landscape,' said local resident Emma Hulbert. The local council has also vetoed Atkinson's plans, saying that the finished house will appear 'conspicuous and look out of character and place.' Atkinson had allegedly hired renowned architect Richard Meier for the work.

Richard Desmond, the newspaper proprietor, is understood to be close to clinching a deal to buy Five, the television channel. Desmond is thought to be in the process of putting the finishing touches to a one hundred million pound deal to take over the struggling broadcaster. However, sources close to the deal warned that it will probably take 'a couple of weeks' to secure the deal and cautioned that other bidders are still in the running. Desmond, who made most of his nine hundred and fifty million pound fortune selling mucky books, is understood to be significantly ahead of other challengers - said to include Time Warner and John de Mol, the Dutch media tycoon behind Big Brother producer Endemol. Last week Desmond held talks with Ofcom, the communications regulator, over his plans for the channel. It is thought that he plans to retain Five's public service licence commitments, which require the channel to show regular news bulletins. It is understood that Desmond's visits to Ofcom have been out of courtesy rather than necessity and 'no major obstacles' stand in the way of a deal. If he does buy the channel, Desmond will be prevented from using Five to promote his publishing empire, including the Daily Express and OK! magazine. But he will be able to use his publications to promote the channel in an attempt to drive up its six per cent audience share.

David Prowse has revealed that he is banned from attending any Star Wars events. The actor, who played the masked Darth Vader, is said to have annoyed creator George Lucas during the filming of the original trilogy by leaking film plots. Prowse has claimed that Lucas promised to show his face when Vader's mask was removed - but another actor was ultimately used. Writing on his website, he said that he is not allowed to attend an upcoming Star Wars convention - or 'any other Lucasfilm associated event.' He added: 'The only thing I've been told is I've burnt too many bridges between Lucasfilm and myself.' Quite why something that happened on a film set almost thirty years ago should, only now, have become an issue is not discussed leaving readers to presume that there's probably something a bit more to it than just that. A 'friend' of the actor said: 'Dave never received much money for his role and was always shoved to the side. He believes he's been an embarrassment or annoying to Lucas. But he lives for conventions. So to strip this from him too is heartbreaking.' Still, bright side, that'll probably mean he'll have more time to attend some Green Cross Code Adverts conventions. I'm sure they're very popular too.

1 comment:

Mietek Padowicz said...

Nice to see corrie become a spoiler free zone. Spent the better part of the Crowther era avoiding the red tabs for that very reason. imagine watching nearly a full year knowing Gail's husband was going to die, and yet try to get excited about his prospects? Can't be done.

As for the Pie man, it's satire, parody, get used to it.