Sunday, May 29, 2011

And Don't It Feel Good?

Craig Roberts has confirmed that he will return to Being Human for the show's upcoming fourth series. The Submarine actor appeared in one episode of the supernatural drama's third run as the teenage vampire Adam, and reprised the role in online spin-off Becoming Human. 'I believe I am going back for an episode,' he told SFX. '[But] they've not mentioned too much about Becoming Human. If that does get mentioned again I'm all for doing it because I thought it was a great thing.' The actor insisted that he is 'really happy' to be playing Adam again. 'It's a fantastic show,' he said. 'If Becoming Human wants to go again [too], I'm game. I love the character so much,' he insisted. 'I've never really played a character like that. I'm always playing the geek, so to play a kid who is very energetic when he wants to be, and who is always trying to get the girls, was really cool.' The fourth series of Being Human will begin filming next month and is expected to be broadcast on BBC3 in early 2012.

Torchwood creator Russell Davies has claimed that new ten-part series Miracle Day was 'written to clash.' The new run, a co-production between Starz and the BBC, will see Torchwood agents Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) and Gwen Cooper (Eve Myles) cross paths with CIA agent Rex (Mekhi Phifer). 'It's literally the same show, but [it] transplants itself to America,' Davies told SFX. 'It's absolutely based on the story, so we haven't had to relaunch it.' The former Doctor Who showrunner admitted that he initially had some concerns about the US move. 'I did wonder about that,' he confessed. '[I thought] "Is it gonna look strange when the rushes come in, is it gonna be this weird combination?" But it's written to clash. Rex is the most swaggering, confident, brilliant American, and Gwen is not a shrinking violet. Put those two together and it's just combustible!' Davies also claimed that Miracle Day's premise, in which no-one on Earth is able to die, will lead to 'some terrible things. By episode five, they start to categorise what life is, and once human beings are in charge of what life and death is, that's open to corruption,' he suggested.

Rob Lowe may be a Hollywood legend, but he showed his down-to-earth side as the celebrity highlight of the Hay Festival. The star of hit series The West Wing and Brothers and Sisters entertained a sold-out audience with tales of his hellraising past as a member of the so-called Brat Pack. He also spoke of his struggles with alcohol and time in rehab. But his sober life now included a fish and chips lunch outside Hay. Lowe, promoting his memoirs, Stories I Only Tell My Friends, was asked about his childhood, and spoke of his mother having had mental health issues. 'She struggled with depression,' he said. 'But she gave me a tremendous gift that I try to give to my boys today - that life is for the taking. I'm indebted to her for that. And she gave me a love of language.' Describing himself as 'a nerd,' Lowe admitted he had enjoyed playing the part of the 'cool kid.' But he added his decision to become an actor at the age of eight was 'an epiphany. I had a dream for what I wanted to be,' he said. 'My parents took me to a theatre production of Oliver! I knew then that's what I was going to devote my life to.' A video had emerged of him having sex with a girl, sixteen and underage, while attending a Democratic National Convention in 1988, which all but destroyed his film career. 'Everybody who has ever struggled with addiction or alcoholism has that moment where you think "I've got to stop doing this,"' he said. 'My mother was on the answering machine saying 'pick up the phone, your grandfather's had a heart attack. I was there not picking up. I thought "I'm going to finish all this tequila." I looked at myself in the mirror and knew it was over.' Lowe then spent a month at a rehabilitation centre. 'I had been carrying a card in my wallet for a year of an alcohol counsellor. I made the call and they shifted me off to rehab,' he said. 'I loved it because it gave me the tools to live the life I wanted to live.' Lowe, whose films included St Elmo's Fire, Masquerade and Bad Influence, found a new generation of fans as White House communications deputy Sam Seaborn in The West Wing. Asked by a fan if he had considered a career in politics like Seaborn, or become governor of California like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Lowe said he didn't know if he would become a politician, but has 'an interest in service. I don't know if it would ever be in politics in some way,' he said. 'But at some point in my life I would like to serve.' Lowe said his new focus was as a businessman, after buying Miramax film studios. He had started up his own film finance company and purchased Miramax but will continue to act. And in a mix of the star, and the down-to-earth guy, Lowe left Hay to watch the football - flying to London to support Manchester United in Wembley's Champions' League Final. But, despite Rob's support, The scum got a reet tasty hiding off Barca. Which was nice.

BBC4's fifty five million smackers commissioning budget faces a major squeeze, with the channel running more repeats and less original content, as part of the latest proposals to emerge from the BBC's Delivering Quality First initiative according to Broadcast. The - utterly stupid - idea was one of several discussed at a two-day meeting in Caversham on 12 and 13 May, during which proposals from all nine workstreams were put to director general Mark Thompson. While some ideas were rejected outright, others will be taken to the next stage. According to 'a source,' the emphasis was on 'minimising the headlines' and finding where cuts could be made that would have the least impact on viewers. However, the most far-reaching ideas still on the table are understood to include slimming down BBC4, the axing of BBC2 daytime and a reduction in resource allocated to the BBC News channel. The next step is to consider the ideas holistically to assess their impact on each other as well as ensuring the BBC still meets its public service licence obligations, despite the twenty per cent savings. The integrated proposals will then be presented to the executive board, and then to the BBC Trust in July. However, from next month, BBC directors will hold briefings to share emerging thinking with staff. Titled The World in 2016, it gives an outline of what audiences, technology and media rivals could look like in five years' time. In an e-mail to staff this week, Thompson said: 'Nothing has yet been formally proposed, let alone decided - which is why you should continue to take those alleged "leaks" with a big pinch of salt.' A total of ten thousand BBC staff have been involved in the recommendations by attending briefings, meeting with the workstreams or contributing to the Yammer site.

Coming of Age, How Not To Live Your Life and Lunch Monkeys have all been dropped by BBC3. Zai Bennett, the channel's controller, told Broadcast that the three comedy series will not be returning with new episodes. '[They were] good to the channel, but have had their time,' he explained. Although, I think you'll find that's the first time that anyone has used the words 'Coming of Age' and 'good' in the same sentence. When they weren't being ironic, anyway. A Christmas special of How Not To Live Your Life is still being planned, however. Meanwhile, Bennett has ordered a review of programming including Snog Marry Avoid and The Lock Up but refused to say whether those formats would also be axed. 'The whole point of a review is that we have identified there is an issue and we will work out what to do,' he explained. Although the sixth form comedy Coming Of Age was derided by critics for its base humour and general crapness, it proved relatively popular with its target audience. Glakes, basically. However office sitcom Lunch Monkeys never found a strong audience, with its first series averaging just three hundred and twenty five thousand viewers.

Lord Robert Winston has reportedly threatened to quit the BBC due to it resting his landmark documentary series Child Of Our Time. The seventy-year-old, who has fronted a number of the corporation's flagship science programmes, has accused bosses of abandoning the show and says that he is now 'looking at other outlets' to continue his presenting. Winston told the Independent: 'I was under the impression they had dropped the series. They have stopped filming as the children reach adolescence. I would have thought puberty was an important stage of development that would produce a valuable, public service programme, provided it's done with everyone's consent.' The Labour peer then added: 'Perhaps the BBC are preparing the way for someone else to front the programmes?' Child Of Our Time, which debuted in the year 2000, follows a group of twenty five children born at the start of the new millennium as they become adults. The children were last seen in a two-part special, The Big Personality Test, which was broadcast a year ago. The BBC hinted at such a move, telling the newspaper: 'It's a twenty-year project so there can be changes to the format. It's very much active and a team is working on it now and working closely with the families.' A spokesman added: 'All the children are facing big milestones - starting new schools, becoming teenagers, entering puberty - so we would like to give them some privacy. Some children may not wish to continue being placed under the television spotlight.'

Cheryl Cole will not return to The X Factor UK, it has been reported. The singer was rumoured to be rejoining the show after being sacked from the American version earlier this week. Cole was given until midnight on Saturday to commit to the show ahead of Wednesday's auditions, but 'ignored Simon Cowell's calls' as the deadline approached, claims the News of the World. A 'source' allegedly said: 'The brutal truth is that no-one is bigger than the show - not Cheryl and not even Simon. We have bent over backwards for Cheryl and she hasn't engaged with us. She is out. That's showbusiness.' However, a 'close friend' of Cole's allegedly said: 'They set her a ridiculous deadline. They have basically done the same to Cheryl as they did to Dannii Minogue - given her an offer she couldn't accept.' Well, she could have. She just chose not to. Slight difference, matey. 'They did this because they knew Cheryl wasn't going to come back and they wanted it to appear that the decision was theirs. It wasn't - it was Cheryl's decision to go. There was a very slim chance she might have considered going back at a later date. But her heart wasn't in it. And once that deadline was set she was gone.' Manager is also said to be 'furious' with Cowell over the decision to replace Cole in the US with the show's co-host Nicole Scherzinger. Cowell, Paula Abdul and LA Reid remain as judges. Cole has reportedly told 'friends' that she never wanted to be a judge on The X Factor USA in the first place. She claims, allegedly, that Simon Cowell pushed her into the role and that she trusted his advice. Cole is quoted by the News of the World as saying: 'After what happened in my marriage I made it quite clear I found it impossible to trust another man. But I did trust Simon, I let myself believe he had my best interests at heart. Now he's done this to me. I never actually wanted to do the American show, I'm not a TV star. I had so many reservations. But he pushed me into doing it. He told me I'd be a star over there. And then he didn't even give me a chance to prove myself. I was gone after four days. I've been used. It's cruel. I have no idea what I'm going to do now. My life has been turned upside down. X Factor isn't my world. It's not the be-all or end-all of my career, and I have no desire to keep trying to break America. I actually like the fact I'm not that well-known over there and I can live more of a normal life when I'm there.' She apparently insisted that she had 'good banter' with the other judges and that she had 'chemistry' with Paula Abdul. Brushing off claims that she will be paid her full one million quid plus fee, Cole reportedly added that lawyers will decide the details of her contract termination.

Amanda Holden has admitted that she is unsure about her future on Britain's Got Talent. Holden, who remains the only original judge on the panel, confessed that she can't be certain Simon Cowell will invite her back to judge another series. She told the News of the World: 'Who knows what the line-up will be next year? I always said five years would do me and I've done that this series. If I can get more out of it then great, but Simon will know when it is time for me to go. I'd like the panel to stay as it is but if it doesn't then it doesn't - and whatever he decides to do, I've had a ball. I think Britain's Got Talent will go on and on. Every year I think people are going to run out or there will be a lack of imagination, but every year there's an act we've never seen or someone thinks outside the box. But a good change I would like to see is each judge to mentor people - like David Hasselhoff to look after nutty acts, Michael McIntyre the children and Simon the dancers. It would add a different dimension and I think there's room to improve and develop it.'

The IT Crowd creator Graham Linehan has suggested that the show could end after the next series. A fifth run of episodes has already been commissioned by Channel Four. Linehan has now told the Chortle website that he will try to write the episodes this year but suggested that the show would not continue with a sixth series. 'I think one more series to really say goodbye to the characters and the fans,' he said. 'I'm not rushing into it because I don't want it to be a zombie series where the show is dead but its body is still moving around.' The fourth series of The IT Crowd was broadcast last summer, finishing on a record high in the ratings.

Billy Connolly has broken his rib after crashing his trike on America's Route 66. You've heard of that, surely? It goes from St Louis, down to Well goes from St. Louie down to Missouri, Oklahoma City looks oh so pretty. Et cetera. The sixty eight-year-old comic skidded on gravel as he was making a TV documentary about the two thousand four hundred and eighty eight-mile highway this week. Although he wasn't traveling fast, he slipped off his seat, and the trike ran over him. A member of the production crew told the Sun: 'Billy was in severe pain and we were all worried because he couldn't get a breath due to his busted rib. An ambulance was called and he was rushed to hospital. But after treatment he checked into a hotel to rest until he was fit enough to get back on the road. That took three days.' Billy Connolly's Route 66, following his journey from Chicago to LA ('almost two thousand miles all the way'), is due to be shown on ITV later this year.

Emmerdale has undergone 'a major rebrand' as part of plans to modernise the ITV soap. ITV has unveiled a new logo and title sequence for the flagship drama, as well as a refreshed theme tune. Emmerdale's website has also been relaunched to reflect the new look. The rebrand was carried out by design agency Lambie-Nairn to build on the show's 'increasingly current content and to celebrate its enduring success.' Executive producer Steve November said: 'Our aim is to refresh perceptions of the programme. Emmerdale has a unique voice and we wanted to reinforce in that by giving it a fresher, more contemporary feel, to reflect the richness and diversity of its characters and storylines.' It follows the five million pound refurbishment of Emmerdale's Kirkstall Road studio in Leeds this year and the introduction of new series producer Stuart Blackburn.

Cabinet Minster Chris Huhne might already have enough scandal on his plate, but a comedian has revealed how he once placed a vice advertisement in a London magazine – while he was still a schoolboy. The famously ambitious Lib Dem decided to launch a capital-wide school magazine called The Free Press, but he didn't sell enough adverts and needed to fill the space. His friend, Charmian Hughes, now a stand-up comedian, told blogger John Fleming: 'His friends were all making up ads he could stick in. I was about fourteen or fifteen and I wanted to impress him like mad and I remember we were sitting in a Tube train when I suggested, "How about an advert for Madame Hughes, Maison de Plaisir with my mother's phone number? That would be good!" I forgot all about it until one day the phone rang. I picked it up and a husky male voice said: "Is that Madame Hughes?" My blood ran cold, my stomach sank. I was terrified my mother would hear me talking to the man on the phone and I whispered: "It's all a ghastly mistake. A joke. I'm a schoolgirl." The man was very understanding and rang off. My mother was and is a terrifying person with a terrible raging temper. The next phone call was from a tabloid newspaper reporter investigating "the schoolgirl brothel." My mother answered. I heard her Medusa-like voice shrieking and threatening and the reporter scampered away never to ring again. When I told her what we'd done, she summoned Chris round. "Are you going to sue me?" he asked in his most sophisticated timbre. "Sue you?" my mother sneered, "A silly stupid little arrogant schoolboy like you? You must be joking, but I’m going to speak to your parents!"'

Claudia Winkleman jokingly criticised her own talk show in front of a studio audience, a scum tabloid report has claims. According to the Sun, the Film 2011 presenter described her upcoming Channel Four series King Of... as 'absolutely the shittest show you will ever see.' She is quoted as saying: 'Thank you so much for coming, [but] I don't think it's going on telly. I think it's an elaborate home video,' before adding, 'I look like shit. If I go into labour, whatever, I think it's a pony.' Winkleman recently quit the Strictly Come Dancing spin-off It Takes Two due to her pregnancy, which she announced in March. Winkleman and husband Kris Thykier will welcome their third child later this year. The couple are already parents to eight-year-old Jake and four-year-old Matilda.

Al Gore has said that the treatment of Current TV in Italy by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation shows the potential impact of the company's proposed takeover of Sky. A dispute erupted last week after Gore claimed that Current TV had been dropped from News Corp's Sky Italia after the network hired left-leaning news anchor Keith Olbermann, who has often criticised Murdoch's media empire. News Corp hit back by saying that the decision was purely financial and accusing Current TV, which launched on Sky Italia in 2008, of demanding more money despite prime time viewing on the channel having fallen by forty per cent. Sky Italia said that Current TV had demanded double its carriage fee, but Current TV says that it had not made an offer before being informed of the cancellation last month. Current TV claims that Sky Italia offered to pay seventy per cent less than the carriage fees it paid under its original deal with Current. The company also denied that its viewing has declined in Italy, claiming that ratings had actually increased by five hundred and fifty per cent year-on-year in 2010. The decision to drop Current TV from Sky Italia has led to protests in Italy, including nearly forty thousand people joining a Facebook campaign to save the channel. Former US vice-president Gore, who flew to Rome last week to lend his support to the campaign, accused News Corp of an 'abuse of power' in the case. He also noted that the situation should raise more concerns over News Corp's bid to acquire the sixty one per cent of pay-TV satellite broadcaster Sky that it does not already own. The deal is widely expected to gain UK government approval next month via the vile and odious rascal Hunt. 'The larger question much bigger than Current is whether or not our democracies can thrive in the age of television when the increasing concentration of ownership by large corporate conglomerates with an ideological agenda and a quest for power, leads them to control access to the public square to the civic commons, to the conversation of democracy,' he said. 'In this time of rapid political, economic and social transition, the future of healthy democracies depends on independent journalism that is untethered and unafraid. We at Current have dedicated our international media platform to unleash truth tellers, and there is no more critical time for truth telling than in Italy right now.' Joel Hyatt, who founded Current TV with Gore six years ago, added: 'If regulators in the United Kingdom or the European Union are wondering what the impact will be of having a satellite system totally owned and controlled by News Corporation, they need only look to Italy. Sky Italia - in what can only be described as a flagrant abuse of its dominant market position - just kicked off the only independent news and information network on its platform without warning, and despite repeated assurances that Current's contract be renewed. It is ironic that Sky markets its satellite offering as being the 'Freedom Choice'."

No stranger to controversial marketing campaigns, Irish bookmaker Paddy Power has complained that several national newspapers refused to publish its latest advert featuring former Big Brother tart contestant Imogen Thomas, next to the strapline Blow Me! Tasteful. The reality TV regular was picked for the Paddy Power campaign after newspaper claims that she had an affair with the footballer Ryan Giggs. You might have read about it. Once an MP talked about it, that is. Because, before that, everybody was completely in the dark. The adverts were planned to coincide with Saturday's UEFA Champions League final at Wembley, when Giggs joined his Manchester United team mates to lose, miserably, to Barcelona for European football's biggest prize. The campaign, which featured Thomas in a Manchester United shirt, debuted on Thursday but without the new strapline. It has been running in Metro, the Sun, the Daily Lies, the Daily Record and The Times. A later advert featured Thomas holding a whistle, next to the words Blow Me!
A Paddy Power spokesman confirmed that a number of newspapers had rejected the wording, but said the company hoped to have a new version in time for Saturday's papers. 'When an ad gets pulled at the last minute it's all hands on deck,' he added. Thomas is said to have been paid a 'high five figure' sum for the endorsement. The bookmaker posted a video of the photoshoot on YouTube. Paddy Power is known for its controversial advertising campaigns – its TV commercial showing a cat being kicked into a tree by a blind football player was the most complained about UK advert of 2010.

Smug wanker Jack Whitehall - who did the almost-impossible this week are var nigh ruined an episode of Have I Got News For You - will star in a new Channel Four student sitcom created by Peep Show creators Jesse Armstrong and Sam Bain. So, that'll be worth avoiding.

Arqiva is to shut down its SeeSaw online TV venture after failing to secure an investment partner to keep the service going. The transmissions operator will close SeeSaw in June, just sixteen months after the video on-demand website launched offering catch-up and on-demand content from broadcasters such as the BBC, Channel Four and MTV. SeeSaw chief executive Pierre-Jean Sebert left the company in February this year after Arqiva merged its three divisions into two, meaning SeeSaw shifted to the broadcast and media unit, run by Nick Thompson. Arqiva appointed Ingenious Media to find an investment partner or buyer for SeeSaw, but the company informed the website's twenty eight staff last Friday that the search had been unsuccessful. SawSaw said in a blog post: 'We're sad to announce that next month will be the end of the road for SeeSaw. Launched in February last year, SeeSaw has become a great place to watch TV for millions of UK viewers. However, following a strategic review of its business activities Arqiva, our parent company, is no longer able to support the service. As it will soon be "goodbye" from SeeSaw, we'd like to take this opportunity to say a big 'thanks' for all your support, custom and loyalty over the last sixteen months. We're a small team but we hope we've made a big difference and that you've had fun watching TV with us.' Arqiva created SeeSaw after spending eight million pounds to acquire the technology developed for Project Kangaroo, the BBC Worldwide, ITV and Channel Four IPTV joint venture that was blocked by the Competition Commission. SeeSaw is expected to officially shut down around 20 June and costs related to the business will be included in Arqiva's current financial year.

The American actor Jeff Conaway, a star of the 1970s musical Grease, has died aged sixty. Conaway played the swaggering teenager Kenickie, alongside John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. He also played Bobby in the comedy series Taxi and appeared in the cult SF series Babylon 5. His family decided to switch off his life-support machine after he had spent several days in an induced coma. The actor had battled for years against drug and alcohol addiction, something that he blamed on pain from a lingering back injury. He spoke openly about his addiction on the Celebrity Rehab reality show in 2008, his last TV appearance. Conaway made his Broadway debut in 1960 at the age of ten in the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama All the Way Home. He got his big break with Grease in 1978, but also suffered a back injury during filming which led to an addiction to painkillers and other drugs. Interviewed by Reuters news agency this month, his manager Phil Brock said: 'Putting aside his demons, Jeff is the nicest, kindest, gentlest soul. He's a wonderful man, which makes it doubly sad that he is unable to conquer drugs. As a human being, he's the person who'd literally give the shirt off his back for someone.' Apart from Grease, he was perhaps best known for the role of taxi driver and struggling actor Bobby Wheeler in the 1978-1983 hit TV sitcom Taxi, which also starred Danny DeVito and Christopher Lloyd. His CV also included the 1992 movie Bikini Summer II which he directed.

US musician and poet Gil Scott-Heron has died aged sixty two. The cause of his death, in a New York hospital, is not clear. Scott-Heron's material spanned soul, jazz, blues and the spoken word and his 1970s work heavily influenced the US hip-hop and rap scenes. There was a strong political element to the Chicago-born artist's work; one of his most famous compositions was 'The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.' Scott-Heron's friend Doris Nolan said the musician had died at St Luke's Hospital on Friday afternoon, the Associated Press news agency reports. She said Scott-Heron had become sick upon returning from a European trip. Gil Scott-Heron was born in Chicago, but spent his early childhood in Jackson, Tennessee, the home of his maternal grandmother Lillie Scott. Gil's mother, Bobbie Scott-Heron, sang with the New York Oratorio Society. His Jamaican father, Gil Heron, nicknamed 'The Black Arrow', was a football player who, in the 1950s, became the first black athlete to play for Glasgow's Celtic. Scott-Heron's career began in 1970 with the LP Small Talk at 125th and Lenox which featured such ground-breaking compositions as 'Whitey on the Moon' and 'The revolution Will Not be televised.' He was often described as the godfather of rap. However, the artist himself rejected this title. 'If there was any individual initiative that I was responsible for it might have been that there was music in certain poems of mine, with complete progression and repeating "hooks," which made them more like songs than just recitations with percussion,' Scott-Heron wrote in the introduction to his 1990 Now and Then collection of poems. His most recent CD I'm New Here - released last year - was widely acclaimed and brought him to the attention of a new generation. Among the rappers immediately tweeting tributes were Talib Kweli and Chuck D of Public Enemy. The musician's publisher Jamie Byng remembered him as 'a giant of a man, a truly inspirational figure whom I loved like a father and a brother.' Scott-Heron infected people who encountered him with his 'singularity of vision, his charismatic personality, his moral beauty and his willingness to take his fellow travellers through the full range of emotions,' Byng wrote. 'Throughout a magnificent musical career, he helped people again and again, with his willingness and ability to articulate deep truths, through his eloquent attacks on injustices and by his enormous compassion for people's pain. Hundreds of thousands of people saw Gil perform live over the decades, always with remarkable bands, and few came away untouched by his magnetism, humility, biting wit and warmth of spirit.' Lemn Sissay, a friend of Scott-Heron's who produced a documentary on his work, told the BBC he was 'a polymath' who 'spoke crucially of the issues of his people. In the late 60 and early 70s, black poets were the news-givers, because their stories were not covered in truth in the mainstream media,' he said.

Flick Colby, the dancer and choreographer who helped make Top of the Pops troupe Pan's People a national institution, has died at the age of sixty five. Colby co-founded the group, who, in the days before music videos, accompanied hits on the weekly TV show when artists could not perform. Originally a member of the group - along with Babs Lord, Louise Clarke, Ruth Pearson, Andi Rutherford and Dee Dee Wilde, Colby gradually stood down from dancing duties towards the end of 1971 to concentrate full-time on choreographing the group's routines. Pan's People first appeared on the flagship BBC music show in 1968 and spent eight years as the resident dancers. Top of the Pops continued to use professional dancers until 1981, with Colby remaining as the show's choreographer through the entire period. Pan's People were followed by Ruby Flipper, which featured male and female dancers. However, there was pressure to return to the all-girl format, and after six months Legs and Co were created, and named after a viewer competition. Colby died of bronchial pneumonia at her home in Clinton, New York, on Thursday, the group's publicist said. She also worked on other television shows including Sez Les, The Two Ronnies, The Black and White Minstrels Show and The Goodies.

An octopus predicted that Manchester United would beat Barcelona in the UEFA Champion's League final at Wembley on Saturday. Cephalopod mollusc Iker chose to eat a sardine from a cylinder featuring the Manchester United crest, rather than one boasting Barcelona's. So, he got that one wrong, anyway.

For the latest Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day we have, I'm afraid to say, the happiest song ever recorded by anyone. Come on, be honest, you've got to be a professional misanthrope not to crack a smile when Katrina and her Waves start playing this one. And, yer actual Keith Telly Topping says that as a professional misanthrope himself, dear blog reader.

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