Sunday, July 08, 2012

Week Twenty Nine: Written By Another Twenty Telepathic Men

The world premiere of Frozen Planet in Concert took place on Friday at The Hollywood Bowl, the legendary Los Angeles amphitheatre where everyone from Judy Garland to The Beatles have performed. The musical spectacular saw George Fenton conduct the resident orchestra the Los Angeles Philharmonic as they performed his score from BBC1's exploration of the polar regions. High definition images from the seven part documentary series, including footage of arctic wolves, polar bears, ice shelves and glaciers, played out on a giant screen. The pairing of evocative live music and HD visuals brought the audience closer than ever before to the experience of the programme makers, believes Alastair Fothergill, Frozen Planet's executive producer. 'If you go out into the natural world, it is a wonderfully big surround sound experience,' he said. 'And for the very first time in a concert hall you can give the public something of the very rich experience you have when you go on location.' Fothergill first worked with Fenton in 1990 on the Natural History Unit's Trials of Life. They went on to collaborate on the Earth trilogy - the BBC and Discovery Channel co-productions - with Fenton's score for Blue Planet winning an Ivor Novello, BAFTA and Emmy. The subsequent Blue Planet Live show was performed around the globe with some of the world's leading orchestras. The composer's score to Planet Earth, which won the BAFTA, was also the basis for Planet Earth Live. Frozen Planet in Concert enjoys a two night residency at The Hollywood Bowl, before spending a night in Chicago. There are plans to then take the show around the world.

And, on that penguin-related bombshell, here's yer actual Top Telly Tips, like:

Friday 13 July
Stand by for eight weeks of outstanding, world-class music from the Royal Albert Hall as The Proms starts tonight on BBC2. All seventy six concerts will be live on Radio 3 and, as usual, a good smattering (roughly three a week) on BBC2 and BBC4. For a third year, full-of-herself Katie Derham is the glamorous face of The Proms on BBC2, here hosting a First Night swollen with national pride. It almost sounds like a Last Night-lite. With the Olympics on the horizon, the hall is to get in a sporting mood. Four British conductors — in something approaching a relay race — pass on the baton, as it were, in a programme of works all by English composers. Roger Norrington, Mark Elder, Edward Gardner and Martyn Brabbins - to lead the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in music by Mark-Anthony Turnage, Delius, Tippett and Elgar. To launch this one hundred and eighteenth season, there's a new fanfare, Canon Fever from Mark-Anthony Turnage, promised to be 'mischievous.' London is celebrated in Elgar's Cockaigne Overture, while Bryn Terfel is star soloist for Delius's Sea Drift, an emotionally charged setting for the words of Walt Whitman. The second half doffs its hat to Her Majesty in her Diamond Jubilee year with Tippett's Suite for the Birthday of Prince Charles (composed in 1948, the year yer actual Chaz his very self was born); while a quartet of singers, including mezzo Sarah Connolly, close the night with Elgar's Coronation Ode.

The relationship between detectives Charlie Zailer and Simon Waterhouse is looking somewhat frayed in the second part of Case Sensitive - 9:00 ITV. What with Charlie's jealousy of a young female officer and all that. Angry, Charlie (the great Olivia Williams) casts around for a suspect in the murder of her pal Ruth's estranged husband. 'Why are you dreaming up theories and making the facts fit?' wonders Waterhouse (Darren Boyd). In the concluding part of this adaptation of Sophie Hannah's The Other Half Lives (robbed of much of its subtlety, having been crammed into two hours), the pair finally unearth a sad tale of obsession and tainted love. Simon and Charlie interview Ruth, who is forced to admit that she was with Jason when fingerprint evidence places her in his house. But she insists she didn't kill him, and only lied about being there because she was terrified of Aidan discovering her secret. Charlie begins to think they may have arrested the wrong person. But if Ruth isn't the killer, then who is? I dunno, it blog reader. It wasn't yer actual Keith Telly Topping if that's what you're thinking. And, even if I did know, I wouldn't grass. I'm not a dirty stinking Copper's Nark, me. Straight up.

Legends: Roy Orbison, The Big O in Britain - 9:00 BBC4 - is the repeat of a rather fine documentary tracing the American singer's popularity among British audiences over three decades, from the early-1960s tour with The Beatles - when he, reportedly, wrote 'Pretty Woman' on the tour bus leading John and Paul to write 'From Me To You' in response - to his collaboration with George Harrison on The Travelling Wilburys project in the 1980s shortly before his death. Roy Orbison was the best singer in the world. That's what Elvis Presley reckoned, and he wasn't a bad judge. And, he wrote his own songs too. To mark the twentieth anniversary of Orbison's death, this programme celebrates the extraordinary talent of 'The Big O' and his enduring relationship with his most loyal fans, British musicians and the British public. Including interviews with Roy's widow and manager Barbara Orbison, along with Elvis Costello, yer actual Mr Bonio out of The U2 Group, The Stones' Bill Wyman, Bernie Taupin and the late Robin Gibb. Well, obviously, he wasn't 'the late' when this interview was done. Cos, that would be tacky.

Saturday 14 July
'Two stars keep not their motion in one sphere.' As an uprising against the ailing monarch gathers momentum, the Lord Chief Justice urges Prince Hal to leave London and support his father in The Hollow Crown - Henry IV, Part II - 9:00 BBC2. Meanwhile, the roguish Falstaff spots an opportunity to advance himself by recruiting troops for the royal forces. Tom Hiddleston and Simon Russell Beale star in this spectacular adaptation of Shakespeare's play about the last years of Henry IV's reign, with Alun Armstrong, Jeremy Irons, Geoffrey Palmer, Maxine Peake and Julie Walters. And, at least the tennis isn't around to screw up the start time this week.

A breakdown in communication during a domestic incident on a housing estate leaves a reformed ex-convict in a critical condition after responding officers use a stun gun on him in Casualty - 9:10 BBC1. As the man fights for his life, relations between the police and the ED staff become strained, not least for Jordan and his partner Yvonne. Meanwhile, Dylan and Sam remain in conflict, and when tensions reach fever pitch, a patient's chances of survival are threatened. Guest starring Natalie Gavin (from Prisoners' Wives). Postponed from July 7 due to some ruddy tennis match of other that nobody was in the slightest bit interested in.

Sunday 15 July
Two bodies are discovered on a life raft in Ystad harbour, the victims having been shot through the head and had their tongues burnt off with acid in the latest Wallander - 9:00 BBC1. The heavily tattooed corpses reveal links to the Russian mafia and are instrumental in proving the men originated from Latvia, so Major Karlis Liepa, an officer with the country's police department, is sent to work with Wallander. Oh, clash of cultures, eh? That's usually a good starting point for any crime drama. What's the betting that, by the end of the episode, Kurt and yer man Karlis will have developed into some kind of Beverley Hills Cops-style buddy duo? Nah, unlikely. Because, an anonymous phone call, a shooting and a break-in at the police HQ soon convince Wallander of a leak in the investigation - and he immediately suspects Liepa of being the dirty rat. Guest starring the excellent Søren Malling (Jan Meyer The Killing and Torben Friis in Borgen - and, no, the irony of a Dane turning up in an adaptation of a Swedish detective saga playing a Latvian in not lost on this blogger in the slightest). With, as always, Kenneth Branagh in his one-in-a-lifetime role as the world-weary detective in the latest fine adaptation of Henning Mankell's novels.

Yer actual Cliff Richard, Bruce Forsyth, Michael Crawford and Andrew Lloyd Webber are among the stars sharing the gossip, the glamour and the behind-the-scenes goings-on of one of the world's most famous theatres in a programme first shown in 2010 to mark its one hundredth birthday in One Hundred Years of the Palladium - 9:00 BBC4. If you don't fancy that, or any of the other Top Telly Tips for tonight, then there's always the first episode of three of what promised to be a groundbreaking watermark for quality TV infotainment, The Nation's Favourite Number One Single - 9:30 ITV. This is presented by thin-skinned but hugely talented Fearne Cotton. So remember, dear blog reader, if you do watch it and don't enjoy it, that means you're a bully and you must not, under any circumstances, venture forth the opinion that Fearne, actually, is not very good. After all, you're only licence fee payers, you know, those annoying little people who pay Fearne's massive wages. Failure to appreciate Fearne's oeuvre is, in fact, your fault, not hers. Sorry, but it's The Law.

Can Aaron Sorkin's much-anticipated but critically derided in the US series The Newsroom - 9:00 Sky Atlantic - really be as bad as some (right-wing) US reviewers would have us believe? Well, no, it isn't. It's actually pretty good, albeit cursed with one or two regular Sorkin flaws. And, this blogger says that as some who wrote two books about The West Wing and regards it as the single greatest TV series ever made (that doesn't have the words 'Doctor' and 'Who' in the title, anyway). And, I also was one of the four people in the world that thought Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was pretty decent as well. The Newsroom certainly lacks the believability of The West Wing, where you often felt as if you were eavesdropping in the pedaconferencing in the actual corridors of power. Here, in the nerve centre of Atlantis Cable News, characters exchange pithy one-liners and badger each other, but it never, quite, come alive. They all seem to exist to serve Sorkin's higher purpose, which is to show how the news agenda can be reclaimed from the clutches of innuendo. A valid point, perhaps, but one that sometimes comes over more as a lecture than a drama, something that Aaron's been guilty of in the past even in some of his best work. The plot: Will McAvoy (played, superbly, by Jeff Daniels) is the host of one of America's most popular TV news shows, and has mostly built his success on his ability to avoid offending people. However, his world is turned upside down when a public outburst reveals what he really thinks - and his boss decides to make the most of the increased publicity by transforming him into a crusading journalist. Also starring Emily Mortimer, Sam Waterston and Dev Patel. Give it a shot, but don't expect either balance or another West Wing and you'll probably be rewarded.

A broadcasting odd couple, lovely Sue Perkins and Big Fat Cuddly Liza Tarbuck drive along the Ho Chi Minh Trail, a network of roads and paths in Southeast Asia that was littered with unexploded bombs following the Vietnam War in World's Most Dangerous Roads - 9:00 BBC2. Their journey takes them through jungles and mountains to some of the least-explored corners of Laos and Vietnam, and proves to be a gruelling test of their bravery, motoring skills and senses of humour.

Monday 16 July
As Bevan's life hangs in the balance, Daniel digs deeper into the cover-up and finally learns more, leaving him facing a stark dilemma in the final episode of Blackout - 9:00 BBC1. But with his career, reputation and family on the line, will he ever truly pay for his sins as he claims that he wants to do? Meanwhile, Ruth makes some shocking discoveries of her own, and Sylvie is forced to face reality. Really rather decent psychological thriller, starring Christopher Eccleston, Dervla Kirwan, MyAnna Buring and Andrew Scott.
The chairman of the Professional Footballers Association, Clarke Carlisle, seems to be taking over Garth Crooks role of the BBC's 'lone intelligent footballer.' Which is good, frankly. Clarke explores the recent allegations of racism in the sport in Is Football Racist? - 9:00 BBC3. To which the obvious answer is that football, in and of itself, isn't per se. But, some of those involved in it - and I'll put it no higher than 'some' - both in the game and on the terraces undoubtedly are. As in life, sadly, some people are just scum. Despite believing such incidents are being addressed, Clarke faces a stark realisation, and hears some home truths from his father about the period when he was trying to become a professional player. Featuring interviews with former players John Barnes, Stan Collymore, plus celebrity fans including David Baddiel.

The Welsh poet and presenter Ifor ap Glyn examines the social history and evolution of the lavatory in The Toilet: An Unspoken History - 9:00 BBC4. He starts his search for the truth about netties in Merida, Spain with a look at some of the earliest surviving Roman examples of the bog, before journeying around the world to witness toilets ranging from the beautiful to the bizarre. he should have a look at yer actual Keith Telly Topping's crapper, that'd give him plenty to talk about.
The Riots: In Their Own Words - 9:00 BBC2 - is the first of two documentaries reconstructing the events of August 2011, when riots broke out in some cities in England following a protest against police in Tottenham, that began peacefully but ended in violence. In this film, actors perform the words of those who participated in the rioting and looting, while little-seen footage is used to shed light on what took place during the disturbances.

Tuesday 17 July
Fleming resolves to salvage the anti-corruption investigation and goes to worrying lengths to earn Gates' trust while searching for evidence of his involvement in Jackie's crimes in Line of Duty - 9:00 BBC2.
However, her behaviour catches Morton's attention - and he begins to question her loyalty to the unit. Jed Mercurio's police drama, starring Vicky McClure, Lennie James and Neil Morrissey.

After six months working alongside inmates at Brixton Prison, Gordon Ramsay tries to ensure the bakery he set up in the institution will have a future by securing a deal with a chain of coffee shops to stock its products in the final episode of Gordon Behind Bars - 9:00 Channel Four. He also meets Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke to appeal for financial backing for the project, and two of the bakery's employees look ahead to life on the outside.

Investigators search for armed robbers who killed the groom at an Alice in Wonderland-themed wedding and discover links to a string of similar heists at ceremonies around Las Vegas in one of last series' most unusual (and, very funny) episodes of CSI - 9:00 Channel Five. Meanwhile, David Hodges receives an unexpected visit from his oft-mentioned but never previously seen - mother; and, because he hasn't been entirely truthful with her over his current position with regard to relationships, is forced to ask Morgan for an embarrassing favour. What's more surprising is that she actually agrees. Guest starring the legend that is Jaclyn Smith (Charlie's Angels) as Hodges' dear old mum. It's that sort of episode!

Can Anyone Beat Bolt? - 9:00 BBC3 - is, as the title might suggest, a profile of the Jamaican sprinter and Olympic champion Usain Bolt, the fastest man in the world. But, the documentary also looks at five of Usain's closest competitors who are aiming to beat him at London 2012. While the 2008 Olympic gold medallist will go into the Games as the overwhelming favourite to triumph again, he is expected to face a stern challenge from Asafa Powell, Christophe Lemaitre, Tyson Gay, Justin Gatlin and most notably Yohan Blake, who recently finished ahead of Bolt in the Jamaican Olympic trials while also recording the fastest time this year.

Wednesday 18 July
It's all Olympic profiles this week, it would seem. Well, for obvious reasons. In Victoria Pendleton: Cycling's Golden Girl - 9:00 BBC1 - we get an in-depth study of the world and Olympic champion sprint cyclist, who is hoping to win a second gold medal at the London Games to add to the one she picked up in Beijing in 2008. Yer actual Queen Victoria her very self offers some candid insights into the way her life has been consumed by the sacrifice and intensity required to succeed at such a high competitive level.
Gibbs (Mark Harmon) turns to his old mentor Mike Franks (Prison Break's Muse Watson) for guidance when the port-to-port killer chooses an NCIS agent as their next victim in NCIS - 9:00 Channel Five. A lead from Barrett's team reveals the CIA has also been tracking the serial murderer - and its findings suggest the culprit could be an even deadlier foe than anticipated.

Michael Buerk and Bettany Hughes present items thirty seven to twenty seven on the list of important historical artefacts unearthed by members of the public in Britain's Secret Treasures - 8:00 ITV. The delightful Bettany goes diving for Roman treasure, yer actual Michael Portillo investigates a two thousand-year-old double-headed coin which could reveal the first political coalition, and John McCarthy tells the tale of a jewel-encrusted cross. There is also a jar full of gold coins found in Hackney that uncovers a link to the Nazis and John Sergeant explores whether a hoard of French currency is genuine. Continues tomorrow.

The late Jimmy Savile (well, obviously, he wasn't 'the late' back then ... oh, hang on, we've already done that one, haven't we?) introduces performances by artists including Dave Edmunds, The Stranglers, The Jacksons, Tony Etoria, Gary Glitter, Brotherhood of Man, Johnny Nash, Paul Nicholas and Carol Bayer Sager, plus, a Legs and Co dance sequence in the latest Top of the Pops 1977. Different night to usual, please note, it's normally on Thursday.

Thursday 19 July
In episode two of Alan Partridge's Mid Morning Matters - 9:00 Sky Atlantic - the host (Steve Coogan in his most famous role) asks his listeners to nominate Norfolk's greatest-ever resident, taking time to champion the claims of Bernard Matthews and mustard magnate Jeremiah Colman. And, he reminisces about a star-studded trip to a boat show in London. He also takes part in a wine-tasting session, and Simon discovers which species of animal the audience would like to make extinct. Spoof phone-in show, starring Coogan and Tim Key.

The Boss Is Back - 10:00 BBC2 - revisits firms featured in the TV series Back to the Floor, which aired between 1997 and 2002 and featured executives working alongside employees at the lowest levels of their companies. A sort of proto-Undercover Boss, if you like. Only, produced by the BBC and, therefore, better. Theo Paphitis, who has since become better known for his appearances in TV series including The Dragons' Den, featured in a December 2000 episode in which he experienced life as a grass-roots worker at Millwall FC, where he had just taken over as chairman. In this programme, he returns to the club to discover how life there has changed in the past twelve years. It's not all different though, Theo, Danny Baker's still there!

The Race That Shocked the World - 10:00 BBC4 - is a timely repeat of a classic documentary about the dramatic men's one hundred metres final at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, with all eight athletes who took part recalling how they came to compete in the event and revealing what has happened to them since. Just forty eight hours after being crowned victor and smashing the world record, Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson was found guilty of taking banned substances and stripped of his gold medal, and in the intervening years many of the other competitors have been implicated in drug scandals.

Friday 20 July
And so, dear blog reader, yer actual Olympic Games is almost upon us. And, 'Great Britain' (for which read England) are taking part in the football. Or, the 'so-cher' if you're an American dear blog reader.Tonight, therefore, there's Great Britain versus Brazil (kick-off 7.45pm). Gabby Logan presents coverage of today's second international friendly at the Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough, this time featuring men's teams. As with the women's squad, this is the only fixture Stuart Pearce's side will contest prior to the Games, and they have elected to face arguably the strongest nation set to feature at London 2012. While Team GB has only recently been put together, the Brazilians are a much more settled unit, and proved themselves to be formidable when winning the 2011 South American Youth Championship. With commentary by Jonathan Pearce and the ludicrous Mark Bright, analysis from the equally ludicrous Robbie Savage, and 'reports' from Garth Crooks (in which no one else will be able to get a word in edgeways, as usual). Oh God, what a line-up. Watch this one with the sound off if you know what's good for you, dear blog reader.

Legends - 9:55 BBC4 - is a documentary examining the work of musician Mark Knopfler, featuring an interview in which he discusses how his life and background have influenced his songwriting. The programme includes performance footage spanning the singer-guitarist's career, from his early days in the 1970s playing in pubs in Leeds, to the breakthrough success he achieved with Dire Straits, as well as covering his solo world tour.

And so to the news: Apparently, Cheryl Cole has been confirmed as releasing an official autobiography later this autumn. Presumably, it'll be written in crayon.

A small group of Pacific islands with the total population of a small town in Leicestershire has been named as the country with the highest consumption of beer and cannabis. Is that really true? The United Nations' 2012 World Drugs Report, published in June, contains at least one surprising number - the nation with the highest level of cannabis use among adults is Palau. This tiny island nation in the Western Pacific Ocean is home to just twenty one thousand people, where - according to the UN - a quarter of adults use cannabis. Not only are Palauans ahead of everyone else on this measure, they're ahead by a long way. The country with the next highest rate of cannabis use is Italy, where - the report says - some fifteen per cent of adults use the drug. If the idea that Palau is some sort of hedonist's retreat sounds familiar, that may be because the island topped a 2011 World Health Organisation chart examining another vice. According to the WHO's global status report on alcohol and health, Palauans drink more beer per capita than any other nation in the world. So what on earth is going on in Palau? Is it really an island of beer-swilling cannabis smokers? And, if it is, can I go and live there?

The main motorway link from London to Heathrow Airport has been closed to all traffic after a crack was found in a 'sensitive area' of the road structure. The M4 is shut between junctions one and three and is not expected to reopen until Thursday morning. Large vehicles were already banned from the elevated section, known as the Boston Manor Viaduct. The Highways Agency said it expects all work to be finished before the start of the Olympic Games later this month. The full closure of the motorway in both directions between Chiswick and Feltham began at eight o'clock on Friday. Restrictions on vehicles weighing more than seven and a half tonnes had been in place since March when hairline cracks were discovered in some of the steel beams. The agency said on Friday workers 'found a further crack in a sensitive location which requires us to keep the viaduct closed until the repair is complete.' Jon Caldwell from the Highways Agency warned there would be delays. Diversions have been put in place along the A312 and the A4, and the A40 is expected to be congested as well. 'The repair works that we need to do, to bolt the plates to the decking, needs to be done with no traffic on it,' Caldwell told the BBC. 'We need to do it now so that it's all completed ready for when the Olympic traffic starts to use the road in a few weeks' time.' The M4 is the main route between Heathrow Airport and Central London and will be vital for transporting visitors into the city for the Games. It is also the major road link from London to the West Country and Wales, as well as being a heavily-used commuter route. London Mayor Boris Johnson said it was vital the repairs were completed 'as speedily as possible.' Just before Christmas, the Hammersmith Flyover - part of the same route in and out of the capital - was closed for five months after defects were found with its structure.

England soundly thrashed Australia by eight wickets to wrap up a crushing series victory and extend their winning run in one-day cricket to a record nine matches. Steven Finn made best use of helpful conditions at a surprisingly dry Chester-le-Street (given the rain that was lashing down just twenty four hours previously) to claim four for thirty seven and limit Australia to two hundred for nine, of which Mike Hussey made a fine seventy. England openers Ian Bell (sixty nine) and Alastair Cook put on seventy to cement England's advantage, before Jonathan Trott (sixty four not out) and Ravi Bopara (thirty three not out) finished the job with thirteen balls to spare. It was a record ninth consecutive one-day victory for England, beating their previous best of eight, achieved on three occasions. Since going down five-nil in India in a series last October, Cook's men have won every match against Pakistan, West Indies and Australia to establish themselves as a real force in the fifty-over game. The dominance they have shown in three times dispatching their fiercest rivals can only bode well with The Ashes only a year away. In truth, the Australians were a sorry sight by the closing stages at a raucous Riverside, their body language that of a well beaten team. Their cause was not helped by injuries to bowlers Brett Lee and Shane Watson, who were forced off the field after bowling only 3.2 overs between them. The match got under way on time after a phenomenal effort from the groundstaff to drain away heavy overnight rain, and it was no surprise to see England captain Cook opting to bowl after winning the toss in damp, overcast conditions. With the ball zipping around off the seam, England were soon among the wickets as Finn trapped David Warner and Peter Forrest LBW with successive deliveries. Watson, often so destructive at the top of the order, took thirty six balls to find the boundary but was just beginning to find his rhythm when he played on to a ball from Tim Bresnan which jagged back sharply off the seam. Bopara kept England on top by removing George Bailey with a near-unplayable delivery that pitched on middle and seamed away to clip off stump, before Australia were plunged further into the mire by another brilliant burst from man of the match Finn. Skipper Michael Clarke, aiming across the line, was bowled for an eighty five-ball forty three and Matthew Wade was superbly caught behind off an inside edge by a diving Craig Kieswetter, who clung on to the ball the second attempt. Hussey helped the tourists avoid total ignominy with an accomplished counter-attacking innings which included nine fours. Aided by a typically gutsy twenty seven from Lee, Hussey brought up his fifty off sixty two balls with successive fours off Samit Patel before holing out to long-off in the final over to give Bresnan a second wicket. There were also two wickets for James Anderson, who became the second Englishman after Ian Botham to reach five hundred wickets in all forms of international cricket. Cook got the England reply motoring with eleven runs off three balls in Lee's second over and Bell followed his captain's lead by tucking into a pair of leg stump half-volleys from seamer James Pattinson. By the time Cook spooned a simple catch to cover, England had already sapped the tourists' resolve and a second-wicket stand of sixty six between Bell and Trott put the result beyond doubt. Bell struck nine fours - each with the conviction of a man at the top of his game - in his sixty nine runs, and looked on course for his third one-day century before he played on to the persevering Clint McKay. The dismissal merely paved the way for Trott and Bopara to see England home, the former batting in his usual unflustered manner to post his sixteenth one-day half-century and the latter tucking in to some dismal bowling from part-time spinner Hussey to further boost his case for selection in the upcoming South Africa Tests. With the series in the bag, England will be aiming to wrap up a four-nil victory at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

BBC Sport executives hoping that Sunday afternoon's Wimbledon final will break viewing records fear that their ambitions could be hobbled by competition from their own coverage of Formula 1's British Grand Prix according to a particularly nasty shit-stirring piece in the Gruniad Morning Star. Whether or not Andy Murray's meeting with Roger Federer will match the eleven million peak audience for Federer's defeat of Andy Roddick in 2009 depends on a number of variables, including the weather and the length of the encounter. BBC Sport, which has come under pressure after budget cuts, is faced with an embarrassment of riches because of the clash between two of its biggest remaining live sporting events. The build-up to the British Grand Prix from a rain-soaked Silverstone will begin on BBC1, then switch to BBC2 before the race starts. The race is expected to draw an audience of at least five million, potentially having an impact on viewing figures for the Murray match. The audience for Murray's defeat of Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in four sets on Friday peaked at 11.4 million viewers, the highest ratings for any of the four consecutive semi-finals that the Scot has reached since 2009. Alleged BBC 'insiders' allegedly doubt the audience will match the 13.8 million who tuned in to see Andre Agassi beat Goran Ivanisevic in 1992, but – if the match goes to five sets – then more viewers are expected to tune in, especially once the grand prix has finished. The highest ratings for a British player at Wimbledon remains the 13.1 million peak audience who watched watch Tim Henman beat the Swiss player Michel Kratochvil in a fourth-round match in 2002. The clash with the grand prix also complicates plans for the BBC to show the men's final in 3D. The broadcaster only has two high-definition channels and needs one of those for Silverstone. As such, it will start broadcasting the action in 3D from Centre Court only an hour or so into the match. Viewers with the requisite glasses and technology, who will be told when to switch over by commentators, will hope it is not all but over as a contest by that point. Yer actual Keith Telly Topping, incidentally, will be watching Lewis and Jenson and co. He hates tennis.

And so to yer actual Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day. Yer actual Keith Telly Topping has, recently, been re-reading his old mate Ian Abrahams' Hawkwind biography Sonic Assassins. A work of considerable brilliance if only for Lemmy's quote: 'We weren't the gentle sub-acid Moodies we were made out to be. We were a black fucking nightmare. A post-apocalypse horror sound-track. We wanted to make people's heads and sphincters explode!' Anyway, here's a deep frozen 'Wind classic from the Bob Calvert years.

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