Thursday, September 20, 2012

Girl I'm Just A Vampire For Your Love. And I'm Gonna Suck Ya!

Yer actual Matt Smith has confirmed that he knows what The Lord Thy God Steven Moffat his very self is 'planning' for the fiftieth anniversary of Doctor Who. The actor told the Waikato Times that he has begun discussing the November 2013 celebration with showrunner Moffat. 'He was pitching the fiftieth anniversary at the end of this series and what everything was going to be about and it was very exciting,' said Smudger. 'No doubt he'll come up with something brilliant because that's the sort of man he is. I hope that we mark it in the best way possible and we honour the people that have been in the show before us and we make it as grand and brilliant and inventive and as much an occasion as possible. What [he's planning], I may have an idea, but I can't tell you, I'm afraid.' The twenty nine-year-old refused to confirm or deny speculation surrounding a possible special episode reuniting multiple Doctors. 'Who knows?' he said. Well, I'm suspecting The Lord Thy God Steven Moffat does, Smudge. And, chances are, if he does, then you do to. 'I think it's an exciting idea. Whether it would be possible, or whether it could ever happen I just don't know, but whatever we can do to mark that fiftieth anniversary will be spectacular, that much I do know. Nothing's set in stone. I imagine there will be a script knocking around about Christmas and there we will develop further and shoot it next spring.' Smith also spoke to dismiss tabloid rumours - based on pretty much nothing - that he will quit Doctor Who in the near future. 'Everyone leaves eventually [but] no, I'm not leaving any time soon," he insisted. I am coming back for the fiftieth anniversary. To suggest I am quitting now is wrong.'

Now some top news from the US of A, dear blog reader. Bones is back for the start of its eighth series after last year's shortened (thirteen episode) season. And, it's back with something of a cracker, The Future In The Past tying up most - though, satisfyingly, not all - of the loose ends from last year. It's great to have it back.
Best Possible Taste: The Kenny Everett Story has been given an official broadcast date. The biopic of the late broadcaster and comedian will be shown on Wednesday 3 October at 9pm on BBC4. Oliver Lansley and ex-Coronation Street star Katherine Kelly play Everett and his wife Lee Middleton in the ninety-minute drama. Tim Whitnall's drama follows the 'unconventional love story' of Everett and his wife Lee, who were married for thirteen years between 1966 and 1979. The story will be told using some of Everett's famous characters, including Cupid Stunt and Quentin Pose, and centres on his career and personal life. Freddie Mercury will be played by James Floyd, while Simon Callow will portray Richard Attenborough and Jonathan Kerrigan plays John Alkin.

The new director general of the BBC has vowed to place more female presenters on the news following criticism by news presenter Fiona Bruce that going grey was 'off-limits' for women on screen. George Entwistle said he was 'sorry that she feels that she has to say that' and that he would make sure that women, including older women 'get the right opportunities and are given the space they deserve. The key here is to take every opportunity that arises, whenever there is a possibility of putting in a new female presenter in to do jobs in the news, we should look for it and take it if we can,' he told Radio 4's Today programme. But newsreaders such as Huw Edwards or George Alagiah have nothing to fear from a new wave of positive discrimination as Entwistle said he wasn't going to 'remedy one inequity by indulging in another, turfing out a whole load of blokes who might be doing their job brilliantly with a view to getting women in.' He was responding to remarks made by Bruce in an interview in Reader's Digest this week, in which she admitted that she dyes her hair. 'Age is definitely an issue for women in TV. So far, it hasn't been for me, but I know I need to make the best of myself. For instance, I have a few grey hairs. I dye them. I don't let my grey hair show when I'm reading the news,' said Bruce. 'Of course, we wouldn't even be having this conversation if I was a forty eight-year-old man. I used to get cross about that, but what's the point? I'm never going to change things on my own. If age does become an issue, I'll deal with it,' she added. Entwistle, who began in his new role as director general this week, argued that the BBC was 'taking steps' to redress the imbalance and pointed to Mary Beard, the Cambridge academic who presented BBC2's Meet the Romans as a shining example of the BBC's efforts to find jobs for older women. Beard has been attacked by TV critic and odious sour-faced scum AA Gill who said she 'really should be kept away from the cameras altogether.' The BBC director general told Today's John Humphrys: 'She is delightfully unbothered, as indeed are we, about the colour of her hair. The truth about the BBC in this question of making sure that women, all women and older women, get the right opportunities and are given the space they deserve to have,' he said. 'We are in the process, everybody in the BBC is thinking about this and trying to move in the right direction,' he said. In the same interview, Entwistle apologised about the BBC's much-criticised diamond jubilee pageant, which prompted thousand of complaints from Daily Scum Mail readers. 'It was disappointing and I would he happy to add my apologies to those already articulated by BBC people, particularly about the factual mistakes. We were genuinely thrown out of our stride by the weather. We had hoped of course to spend more time among the boats on the river. We had lost touch with audio feeds and camera feeds at times and that meant the balance of the show changed and the tone went wrong. I agree with that – I would be the first to admit it.' Entwistle also admitted that BBC executive pay had gone out of control. 'BBC executive pay got too high. My salary for the job I've just started is markedly lower than my predecessors. It's not far off half what my predecessor's was at its height,' he said, referring to Mark Thompson who at one point was earning over six hundred grand a year. 'The best of what we produce today is as good as, or better than, it’s ever been. I’ve talked about the truly exceptional standard of our Olympic coverage. Many other things this year have inspired me: Sherlock, Call The Midwife and Luther on BBC1, Radio 1's programme of coverage and outreach surrounding the Hackney Big Weekend, BBC News’s reporting of events in Syria, another brilliant Proms across radio and TV, the return of the documentary series Our War on BBC3, the exceptional filmed Shakespeare plays of The Hollow Crown on BBC Two, Radio 4's magisterial New Elizabethans, the sheer eccentricity of The Great British Bake-off and the sublime writing and bravura acting we're currently seeing unfold in Parade’s End. Over the next couple of years, a combination of events we're creating ourselves and events we know we'll be covering will give us the chance to take the Olympics formula and make it work again. In 2013 – the fiftieth Anniversary of Doctor Who, a TV and radio focus on music, including Glastonbury, BBC2's Year of Invention, Wimbledon with our new grandslammer Andy Murray and a possible Natural History Unit Summer of Wildlife. In 2014 – the output we're already planning for the one hundredth anniversary of the start of the First World War, the football World Cup in Brazil, the Winter Olympics in Sochi and the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Every one of these – to a greater or lesser extent – is an opportunity to apply the lessons we learned from the Olympics about how to work with one another – and not place the narrow interests of programme, channel or service ahead of those of the audience.'

Media regulator Ofcom has decided Sky is a 'fit and proper' company to hold a broadcasting licence. Ofcom was investigating the satellite broadcaster in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal which engulfed Rupert Murdoch's News Corp media empire. News Corp owns thirty nine per cent of BSkyB, and James Murdoch the small, Rupert's son, was chairman until he stepped down in April. Sky welcomed the decision, saying 'our track record of compliance in broadcasting is good.' In a statement, Ofcom said: 'In July 2011, in light of the public debate about phone-hacking and other allegations, Ofcom confirmed that it had a duty to consider whether Sky was fit and proper to continue to hold its broadcast licences. Ofcom considers that, on the evidence currently available and having taken into account all the relevant factors, Sky is fit and proper to hold its broadcast licences.' Ofcom said, however, that 'should further evidence become available' it would look at the issue further. Sky said: 'Ofcom is right to conclude that Sky is a fit and proper broadcaster. As a company, we are committed to high standards of governance and we take our regulatory obligations extremely seriously.' Last May, the Commons media committee concluded that Rupert Murdoch himself was 'not a fit person' to run a major international business. However, four of the ten committee members disagreed, as the MPs split on party lines.

More than five million punters watched Sheikh Yer Man City's last-minute 3-2 defeat by Rich Madrid in the Champions League on ITV. Champions League Live had an average of 4.7 million viewers between 7.30pm and 10pm on Tuesday. Live coverage of the match itself, which kicked off at 7.45pm, averaged 5.2 million viewers over about two hours with a fifteen-minute peak of six million. The live football was beaten by BBC1's EastEnders, watched by 7.3 million viewers between 7.30pm and 8pm, but had the better of Holby City, watched by 4.5 million viewers between 8pm and 9pm. Holby City only just beat BBC2's The Great British Bake Off, which again drew extraordinary overnight figures, 4.4 million viewers, also between 8pm and 9pm, including two hundred and seventy seven thousand punters on BBC HD. The Great British Bake Off easily beat Channel Four's Sarah Beeny property show, Double Your House for Half the Money, which failed to scale the heights of her earlier hit, Property Ladder, with just 1.5 million viewers between 8pm and 9pm. Derren Brown returned to Channel Four with Svengali, his 2012 Olivier award-winning live show, watched by 2.3 million viewers between 9pm and 10.35pm. Brown saw off BBC2's Scottish Neil Oliver (and his lovely hair) documentary, Vikings, which attracted a decent two million viewers and the final outing for the third series of The Rob Brydon Show, also on BBC2, which drew 1.3 million viewers, between 10pm and 10.30pm. Overall, BBC1 topped primetime with 20.7 per cent of the audience share, beating ITV's nineteen per cent.

The movie version of Mrs Brown's Boys has been given a 3.6 million smackers budget by Universal Pictures. It has also been revealed that filming on the project – which has the working title Mrs Brown D – will begin in Dublin in September 2013. 'It's Dublin humour so you're going to need Dublin actors and technicians to get it right for the big screen,' said a spokesman for creator Brendan O'Carroll. In May, the Chortle website reported how O'Carroll had been given an undisclosed amount of money to develop the film. Meanwhile, his character has filmed a pilot of Mrs Brown's Celeb Quiz, intended as a prime-time BBC1 show. Described as being similar to Blankety Blank, the pilot featured Jason Byrne alongside astrologer Russell Grant, and footballer Robbie Savage. A third series of his sitcom is also in the pipeline.
Police probing alleged corrupt payments to public officials have arrested a serving officer and two Sun journalists, including the paper's West Country correspondent. Scotland Yard said it had detained three individuals in dawn raids, including a fifty one-year-old journalist who was arrested at his home in Bristol on suspicion of conspiracy to corrupt and conspiracy to cause misconduct in a public office. It is understood this is John Coles, the Sun's West Country correspondent. The second journalist is a thirty two-year-old working for the tabloid who was held at his house in London by officers working on Operation Elveden, the Metropolitan police's inquiry into payments to police, prison officers and other public officials in exchange for stories. The third person arrested is a thirty nine-year-old serving police officer working in Wiltshire, the Met said in a statement. A spokesman said Wednesday's arrests were the result of information provided to police by News Corporation's management and standards committee. 'They relate to suspected payments to a public official and suspected disclosure of confidential information by a police officer and are not about seeking journalists to reveal confidential sources in relation to information that has been obtained legitimately,' the spokesman added. The arrests bring the number of people arrested in Operation Elveden to fifty.

The attorney general has warned the media to 'be careful' in their reporting in the wake of the arrest of Dale Cregan, who was arrested on suspicion of murdering two unarmed women police officers in Manchester on Tuesday. Dominic Grieve's office issued a note to the press and broadcasters late on Tuesday after what it described as 'intense media coverage over the shootings of PC Nicola Hughes and PC Fiona Bone' in the immediate aftermath of their murder. At that point several broadcasters and newspapers were reporting emotional allegations made by the Manchester chief constable about the alleged circumstances of the two officers' deaths and similar remarks by made by David Cameron. Nevertheless, some newspapers carried the quotes in their print editions on Wednesday. The attorney general's office warned that Cregan has now been arrested on suspicion of the murders and the earlier deaths of two others and that newspapers should be minded of 'the risks in publishing material that risks interfering with the administration of justice.' Such advisory notices are normally confidential to the media, but the attorney general's office agreed that its existence could be made public when asked to by one of the papers it issued the note to. Can you guess which one, dear blog reader? Reporting of alleged crimes and their perpetrators is restricted from the moment an arrest is made and proceedings are 'active' under the Contempt of Court Act 1981. The Sun, the Daily Mirra, the Gruniad Morning Star and the Daily Scum Mail, were among those printing a series of comments made by the Manchester chief constable, Sir Peter Fahy, and by the prime minister. However, a more circumspect The Times reported only that it had contacted Grieve's office on Tuesday evening and 'was given advice that constrained the newspaper from reporting the full comments of both the prime minister and Sir Peter' because they had both made 'direct allegations about an individual.' A spokeswoman for the attorney general's office said it would not be providing any comment on Wednesday's press coverage of the killings and that it was keeping 'a watching brief.' But the senior government lawyer's office indicated that it did not provide an specific guidance to The Times, over and above what was sent to all media.

The British public its very collective self, is, it would appear, up in arms at a young woman's breasts being used to sell foreign magazines. The Duchess of Cambridge's girly bits should not be gawped at, commentators point out. Well, not if she doesn't want them to be, certainly. Her privacy has been invaded in a shocking manner, pretty much everyone agrees. This blogger included. Even Richard Desmond – the former publisher of softcore pornographic title Asian Babes – says he is so 'furious' that the Irish Daily Lies dared to use the photos he may shut the whole paper down in a fit of pique and discombobulation. So does this mean that breasts will no longer take centre stage in a certain sort of newspaper, magazine or website? Well no, not exactly. Desmond's British Daily Lies title on Tuesday has a poignant headline about the royal scandal – Kate's smile hides the pain – but still fills up page three with a picture of a topless twenty two-year-old. Online it has a whole section devoted to boobies or, at it calls it, 'babes.' The Sun, too, sees absolutely no hypocrisy whatsoever in supporting the duke and duchess's bid to sue the photographer responsible for snapping Kate's chest in a Sun Says editorial – just a couple of pages after printing a picture of Kelly, twenty two, from Daventry with her own breasts well and truly exposed. And, very nice they are too, dear blog reader, just in case you were wondering. Online the newspaper has a host of scantily clad women for readers to pore over, such as Georgia Salpa in a bikini, Maria Fowler 'flashing her cleavage,' and Kelly Brook posing for a new calender. The People may not be printing pictures of Kate but they see no reason not to use photos of Helen Mirren, snapped by paparazzi on the beach in a bikini, to illustrate a story about the actor getting a facelift. Their centre spread feature is made up of images of former teenage sex worker Zahia Dehar in see-through lingerie. The Mirra's website implies that it is bored with printing pictures of Emma Watson's 'sideboob' but does so anyway – just as they published images last week showing part of her nipple, when her dress slipped. While on the front of their site they have a naked Jenny Thompson (in case you're wondering who she is, dear blog reader, she's a young woman who once slept with Wayne Rooney) covering her breasts and genitals with her hands. The Daily Scum Mail may be shocked and stunned at the treatment of our dear Duchess Kate but its notorious website sidebar is still crammed full of pictures drawing attention to celebrities' breasts – from Nicole Richie in a cleavage-exposing dress, to Halle Berry in a bikini and Amanda Bynes in a low cut top. The message it seems, is clear – it's fine to print pictures of half-naked young women, as long as they are not heading for the throne one day. Or, as Bill Bailey once said ... 

The police watchdog has received a referral from West Yorkshire Police Authority over the alleged conduct of its chief constable in the aftermath of the Hillsborough tragedy. Sir Norman Bettison was an off-duty inspector with South Yorkshire Police at the football game in 1989 and took part in an internal inquiry afterwards. He has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. The IPCC said it was conducting a 'detailed assessment' of the referral. The watchdog said it had received the referral following complaints from members of the public about Bettison allegedly being 'involved in the production and supply of misleading information for the various inquiries that have been undertaken into the Hillsborough disaster.' It said a second element of the referral related to a statement he made last week, following the report of the Hillsborough Independent Panel, in which he said the Liverpool fans' behaviour made policing at the tragedy 'harder than it needed to be.' The IPCC said it was looking at the referral closely to work out how it should be investigated. In a statement, it said: 'This assessment is being conducted in parallel with our ongoing review of the Hillsborough Independent Panel report and supporting documentation. The review is being undertaken to identify from the report what conduct, by named or unnamed police officers, may require referral and to clarify our jurisdiction.' West Yorkshire Police Authority's Special Committee agreed last week to record a complaint against Bettison and immediately refer it to the IPCC for investigation. Bettison said after the meeting he was 'pleased' to have the matter investigated. He was a chief inspector with South Yorkshire Police in 1989 but was off duty on 15 April and was a spectator at the match at Sheffield Wednesday's Hillsborough stadium in which ninety six Liverpool fans died. Last week Bettison issued a statement in which he denied any wrongdoing, but sparked fury with his comments, which led to calls for him to resign. In his original statement he said: 'Fans' behaviour, to the extent that it was relevant at all, made the job of the police, in the crush outside Leppings Lane turnstiles, harder than it needed to be.' He followed up the statement the following day with an apology, in which he said it was never his intent to 'besmirch' the fans, and added that the Liverpool supporters were 'in no way' to blame for the disaster. Yes, Sir Norman, we all know that and have done since 1989. The South Yorkshire Police were. The damning Hillsborough Independent Panel report revealed a cover-up took place to shift the blame on to the victims, and that forty one of the ninety six lives lost could have been saved. The panel found one hundred and sixty four police statements were altered, one hundred and sixteen of them to remove or alter 'unfavourable' comments about the policing of the match and the unfolding disaster.

Cheryl Cole's niece has spoken of her disappointment over not appearing on The X Factor. Melissa Armstrong auditioned for the show in Newcastle earlier this year, but her appearance was not screened on the show, which concluded its audition phase on Sunday. The twenty one-year-old said that she 'expected' to have her audition broadcast considering her family connection and link to the show. 'I have no idea what's going but it doesn't look like I am going to appear,' she told the Sun with a sense of entitlement that, frankly, staggers. Louis Walsh and Nicole Scherzinger reportedly put her through to the next round, but her performance of he auntie's single 'Promise This' did not impress Gary Barlow or Tulisa Contostavlos, and she did not progress any further. Armstrong said that she is disappointed after producers gave her the impression she would feature on the show. 'Everybody is angry that Melissa's audition has been scrapped,' one family friend said. Well, not everyone. This blogger, frankly, couldn't give a monkey's. 'We can't believe it,' the family member continued to whinge. 'She gave a really good performance and believed she would be featured in the audition shows. But after it was announced Cheryl was making her surprise comeback, it all went quiet. I wonder why that is? If anything, Melissa is a better singer than Cheryl. It's so unfair.' Yes. Tragic. Next.
Sky Sports have signed long-term deals to broadcast live Test cricket from Australia, South Africa and India, in the process guaranteeing the rights to six overseas England tours, including next year's Ashes. The deals cover Test cricket in Australia from 2012 to 2016, starting and ending with visits from England but also including tours from South Africa, Sri Lanka, West Indies, India and New Zealand, as well as the domestic Twenty20 Big Bash League. The South Africa deal runs until 2020, including England tours in 2015 and 2019, and also covers their domestic Twenty20 competition. The India deal runs until 2018, and will see Sky broadcast this winter's England tour, as well as their scheduled visit in 2016. Barney Francis, the managing director of Sky Sports, said: 'The Ashes is one of world sport's greatest events and we can now guarantee the next three series, home and away. Test cricket has always been core to Sky Sports and it continues this winter with the start of a six-year deal with India. Then, as England look to take the Test crown back from South Africa our viewers can see their next two series in South Africa. These deals give our viewers great live cricket guaranteed for years ahead. Sky Sports has never offered greater depth and breadth of coverage and this series of rights renewals gives us the strongest line up of live sport for our viewers to watch at home or on the move.'

Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh has said a new US stage play based on his 1993 novel has 'a very different feel.' Trainspotting USA sees the characters from his cult novel, and the subsequent 1996 movie version directed by Danny Boyle, relocated from Edinburgh to Kansas City. Welsh worked with award-winning director Tom Mullen to adapt the story of young heroin addicts Renton, Sick Boy and Spud and Spud's psychotic landlord Begbie. The play will have its world premiere at Chicago's Theatre Wit next month. Welsh revealed there had been some difficulties transferring the story to an American setting. 'Some characters like Renton and Sick Boy worked very well. Spud also went well,' said the author. '[But] Begbie was a difficult one because I think that the whole nature and culture of the way violence is expressed is very different in Scotland than in America. American psychopaths are very quiet, and for a Scottish psychopath it's difficult to make [that transition],' he told the Reuters. The play's script features additional new material written by Welsh. 'We tried to mould it to the culture's landscape,' he explained. 'They go down to Mexico and all that, have a drug deal down there with prescription drugs. To me it feels very American.' Trainspotting was initially adapted for the stage by Harry Gibson and won The Sunday Times award for best new play in 1995. Mullen's adaptation will run from 13 October to 2 December. Welsh's most recent novel Skagboys is a prequel to Trainspotting which explores how Renton and his friends first burst onto Edinburgh's heroin scene in the early 1980s. The author previously published Porno, a sequel to Trainspotting, in 2002.

On Thursday evening, all things being equal, yer actual Keith Telly Topping will be attending the opening event of the new season of Scunny Steve's The Record Player at the Tyneside. This week features yer actual Glam Slam, Electric Warrior versus Transformer.
A tough call as to which one yer actual Keith Telly Topping would take to a desert island with him (probably the former). But, ultimately, the only way to sort this out is through a fight for today's Keith Telly Topping's 45(s) of the Day. Marc in the blue corner.
Lou in the red.
Let the battle commence.

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