Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Get Yourself On The Right Track

The Fall topped Monday evening's overnight ratings outside of soaps for BBC2. The Gillian Anderson crime drama came to the end of its first series by gaining three hundred and fifty thousand punters from the previous week to gain an overnight total of 3.59 million viewers at 9pm. Earlier, Springwatch continued with 2.51m at 8pm - in which Chris Packham, tragically, seemed to acknowledge that Cut The Crap is a part of The Clash's discography (which it really shouldn't be) by alluding to the song 'This Is England' - while the documentary clip-show What A Load Of Buzzcocks brought in nine hundred and eighty one thousand viewers at 10pm. It was a dreadful night for BBC1 with Panorama watched by 2.11m at 8.30pm, followed by the second D-Day: The Last Heroes with 2.64m at 9pm. Helicopter Rescue secured 2.14m at 10.45pm. ITV didn't have it much better, The Dales with risible oaf Adrian Edmondson attracted 3.13m at 8pm. The final episode of Vicious climbed, slightly, to 2.77m at 9pm, while The Job Lot ended with 1.91m at 9.30pm. On Channel Four, the new drama Dates brought in 1.54m at 9pm. Big Fat Gypsy Weddings entertained 2.79m at 8pm. Channel Five's The Gadget Show rose from the previous week's opener to seven hundred and ninety one thousand viewers at 8pm. NCIS's feature-length episode Legend was seen by 1.25m at 9.15pm. On BBC4, Victoria Coren-Mitchell's Only Connect had an audience of six hundred and four thousand at 8.30pm. Game of Thrones' season three finale pulled in seven hundred and thirty six thousand viewers at 9pm on Sky Atlantic.

Yer actual Robert Lindsay has reportedly quit his role on Line of Duty after just two days on set. The actor signed up to star in the second series of the acclaimed BBC2 police drama in April, alongside Keeley Hawes and Jessica Raine. The Citizen Smith star has now left the show, reportedly after 'disagreements over his character', Deputy Chief Constable Mike Dryden, according to the Sun. Executive producer Simon Heath said: 'It was a mutual decision. Sometimes you have different views of the part and you agree to disagree. Once we made a decision we needed to find someone else. But because of the nature of the show there were other scenes we could film in the meantime.' The BBC has blamed 'creative differences' for Lindsay's departure and he will reportedly still be paid his full fee for the project - estimated to be fifty grand - despite his short time on set. This will also, of course, give Robert more time to make some of those embarrassingly arse-licking promo adverts for Sky with Ruth Jones concerning his, ahem, 'actor friend'. Casualty actor Mark Bonnar will take over the part, with an alleged BBC 'insider' allegedly claiming that the switchover 'will not cause too much disruption' to filming as it is 'not a starring role.' They - allegedly - said: 'The DCC role is an important role but it's more of a cameo. The starring role is Keeley Hawes.'

Cherie Lunghi and Barbara Flynn have reportedly been cast as the leads in ITV’s new six-part comedy series Cabbage and Pat, about a divorcee and a widower who 'find a new lust for life.' The website TV Wise suggests that production on the show is currently under way.
Former Doctor Who star Arthur Darvill has backed Dame Helen Mirren to be cast as the next Doctor according to the website Anglophenia, a story which is likely to be picked up by at least one or two newspapers somewhere. But, she's not going to be - for a variety of reasons, not least of which is the BBC couldn't afford her even if she wanted the part - so, effectively, printing such a story is nothing but a colossal waste of trees. Next ...

Plot details for the third season of Luther have been released by the BBC. Idris Elba returns to the detective series this summer for four sixty-minute episodes, which will also star Warren Brown and Ruth Wilson. The BBC has confirmed that the first two-parter of series three will feature John Luther (Elba) tackling a 'twisted fetishist', who appears to be a copycat killer of an unsolved case from the 1980s. However, the detective's priorities will be torn between that case and another, which involves a 'malicious Internet tormentor' found dead at his home. The episode description reveals: 'With so many people wanting the tormentor dead, Luther needs to apply brute force to a key witness for more information, unaware that every move he makes is being watched.' The first episode will also see the introduction of Sienna Guillory as Mary Day, a new love interest for Luther.

Grégory Fitoussi has spoken about his future on the hit French crime drama Spiral. The French actor - speaking at the Monte Carlo TV Festival - confirmed to the Digital Spy website that he will be shooting a fifth series 'at the end of the year.' However, Fitoussi also revealed that the next series could be his last as prosecutor Pierre Clément. 'Everything has to come to an end and a TV show has a period of life,' explained the thirty six-year-old actor. Fitoussi will next be seen opposite Brad Pitt in the movie World War Z, describing the experience of filming the zombie thriller as 'mind-blowing.' Spiral - known as Engrenages in its native France - is broadcast (to great acclaim) on BBC4 in the UK.
Yer actual Keith Telly Topping is indebted to his old mate Danny Blythe for the following observation: 'Not sure why the pictures of the new Big Brother house are showing books on the walls. What are they going to do with them?' It's a valid question, this blogger reckons.
The Britain's Got Toilets 'egg-throwing incident' may become the subject of a movie. But, it probably won't be so, again, we have a story that appears to purely exist to murder trees. Natalie Holt - who has already used the incident to get herself a writing gig with the Gruniad Morning Star - 'shocked and stunned' viewers (© the Daily Scum Mail) during the live final of the talent contest on Saturday, when she suddenly appeared on stage during Richard and Adam's performance, and proceeded to throw eggs at Wee Shughie McFee, the sour-faced Scottish chef off Crossroads. The violist's filmmaker boyfriend Chris Waitt has now expressed 'hopes' of 'developing a film version' of his partner's moment in the spotlight which, clearly, wasn't done for exactly this purpose. Oh no, perish the thought. 'It's a perfect scenario for a film script,' the BAFTA award-winning filmmaker is quoted as saying in the Sun. 'But we don't know how it will all finish yet so I haven't got my ending.' ITV deciding to press charges and Natalie getting six months in Holloway for 'being a ruddy plank' might, possibly, be one potential ending. Just a thought.

Sky1 has announced a new drama, starring Ray Winstone in the lead role. In which he will play exactly the same role as he has in the last fifty three things he's been in. Based on the classic John Meade Falkner novel of the same title, Moonfleet is a two-part thriller written by Life On Mars co-creator Ashley Pharoah. Winstone stars as Elzevir Block, the head of a gang of rough-tough smugglers in Eighteenth Century Dorset (on sincerely hopes they're not expecting Ray to do a west Country accent though it would, undeniably, be a sight to see), who recruit young John Trenchard, played by The White Queen's Aneurin Barnard. Together they go on a journey 'full of action, friendship and humour, and hunt for a fabled lost diamond.' Winsone said of the role: 'I'm incredibly excited to be working with Sky - I can't wait to start filming and it's a real honour to be bringing such an epic adventure story to life.' Cor blimey, gu'vnor, wot a West Ham an' no mistake. Et cetera. Omid Djalili plays diamond merchant Aldobrand and Mad Dogs' Ben Chaplin will play the town's anti-smuggling Magistrate. Inbetweeners actor Martin Trenaman, Silent Witness's Lorcan Cranitch, [spooks]' Anthony Ofoegbu and newcomer Sophie Cookson complete the cast. Filming for the project will begin in Dublin this summer and will be broadcast exclusively on Sky1 later this year.

ITV2 has ordered a second series of its wretched, terminally unfunny Ancient Roman sitcom Plebs. Which is as sick and sorry an indictment of the state of British TV in 2013 as any single statement one could possibly imagine. With the possible exception of 'Lenny Henry is still getting paid for the same act as he had in 1983.' it's a close run thing, dear blog reader. Filming on the new series is set to start in Bulgaria in the autumn, and is expected to be broadcast in the spring of next year.
Two serving prison officers have been arrested by police investigating 'inappropriate payments to public officials', Scotland Yard has said. The men - a fifty two-year-old and a twenty six-year-old - were held at their home in Kent in a dawn raid at six o'clock on Tuesday morning. They were both arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office, and other charges, and are at separate police stations. The total number of people arrested as part of Operation Elveden is sixty nine. Police said the fifty two-year-old was being held on conspiracy to commit misconduct in a public office and misconduct in a public office. The twenty six-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to cause misconduct in a public office and money laundering, and is currently being interviewed at a Kent police station. Operation Elveden is being conducted by the Metropolitan Police, under supervision by the Independent Police Complaints Commission. It is running alongside Operation Weeting, the Met's phone-hacking inquiry, and Operation Tuleta, an investigation into computer hacking and other nefarious privacy breaches. Those arrested in Operation Elveden so far include journalists, police officers, NHS staff and members of the armed forces.

A former Coronation Street actor has been cleared of four counts of indecently assaulting a fifteen-year-old boy. Andrew Watkinson, forty two, from Liverpool, had been on trial at Liverpool Crown Court accused of indecently assaulting a teenage boy in the 1990s. Watkinson, whose professional name is Andrew Lancel, played Frank Foster in the ITV soap. The jury took just twenty nine minutes to clear the actor of all charges. The judge had previously ruled he was not guilty of two other counts on Thursday. Judge Clement Goldstone QC directed the jury to find Watkinson not guilty on two of six counts he originally faced because the complainant said that he could not be sure the alleged abuse happened before he turned fifteen. Watkinson was charged in November of indecently assaulting the youngster in 1994 when the pair met at a theatre group. Watkinson, who appeared in Coronation Street between January 2011 and March 2012, denied any sexual contact ever took place and claimed he acted as a 'sort of mentor' to the boy. The actor, who also appeared in Cardiac Arrest, bit his lip and looked to the ceiling as his wife, Louise, burst into tears in the public gallery when the verdict was delivered.

The BBC has been accused of giving an uncritical platform to the leader of the English Defence League, who was interviewed on the Radio 4 Today programme on Tuesday morning. The interview was branded 'ludicrous' by critics on Twitter who questioned why Tommy Robinson, who is not an elected representative, was invited on the flagship programme at all. Personally, this blogger isn't so much bothered by that as to why the BBC gave time to someone so wretchedly inarticulate. If Robinson is the best that the EDL can come up with in terms of PR, they really should be looking at getting out of politics and into something else. Flower arranging, perhaps. Robinson admitted that the organisation has 'completely questionable' tactics and said 'the non-Muslim working class don't have a voice' and warned 'it's not going to end pretty [sic].' He also used the platform to deny his group was behind a blaze at an Islamic centre, which was daubed with the letters EDL, in London's Muswell Hill last week. He told the programme: 'If something was set on fire and someone wrote "David Cameron" on the side of it, does it mean he did it?' Robinson told the presenter, Sarah Montague, he wanted 'all aspects of sharia outlawed' in the UK and explained that the idea that EDL initials were written on a mosque by his members 'seems ridiculous.' The former Labour MP Denis McShane said the BBC's interview was misguided. 'Today provides non-critical platform for EDL. Has she [Montague] ever seen them close up? Heard their racist insults? Violence threats?' he asked on Twitter, adding: 'Sorry forgot EDL is a gentle, peace loving, outfit. Every time I saw fascist thugs screaming abuse at non white citizens it wasn't EDL.' Valid points, of course, and well worth voicing although quite why anyone should be particularly interested in the views of someone who resigned as an MP after the House of Commons Standards and Privileges Committee found that he had submitted nineteen false invoices 'plainly intended to deceive' the parliamentary expenses authority is a question, perhaps, best left for another day. Al-Jazeera presenter and Huffington Post political director Mehdi Hasan also took issue with the BBC's decision to give Robinson a platform without counterbalancing it with a discussion of his own background. 'EDL leader claims to be a peaceful protester on the Today programme,' he noted. 'No mention of his own history of violent behaviour on air.'

The US sitcom The Big Bang Theory took home the most prizes from The Critics' Choice TV Awards in Los Angeles, scooping three awards. The show was named best comedy series, while its stars Simon Helberg and Kaley Cuoco picking up the best supporting actor and actress awards respectively. There was a tie for best drama, with Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad sharing the award. Bryan Cranston won best actor in a drama for his role in the series. It was the second consecutive year he took the honour for playing teacher-turned-drug-dealer Walter White. British actors Damian Lewis, Andrew Lincoln and Matthew Rhys were also nominated for their roles in Homeland, The Walking Dead and The Americans respectively. Tatiana Maslany was named best actress in a drama for her work in new BBC America show Orphan Black. Claire Danes, Julianna Margulies and Elisabeth Moss were also shortlisted for Homeland, The Good Wife and Mad Men respectively. Moss was successful in the best actress in a movie or mini-series category, however, winning for upcoming BBC drama Top of the Lake, the first trailer for which was broadcast on BBC1 on Monday after The Fall. Looks rather good. Michael Douglas won the equivalent best actor prize for his portrayal of Liberace in Behind the Candelabra, beating his co-star Matt Damon. Al Pacino also missed out for his role in HBO's Phil Spector, as did Benedict Cumberbatch for Parade's End, Toby Jones for The Girl and Dominic West for The Hour. Steven Soderbergh's Liberace film also collected the honour for best movie or mini-series. Louis CK was named best actor in a comedy series for his show Louie for the second consecutive year, while Julia Louis-Dreyfus was named best comedy actress for Veep. Jane Fonda, meanwhile, picked up an award for best guest performer in a drama for her turn in Aaron Sorkin's The Newsroom. Star Trek star Zachary Quinto and Sarah Paulson received best supporting actor awards for their parts in the mini-series American Horror Story: Asylum. Archer was named best animated series, The Voice won best competition reality series, while Tom Bergeron took the award for best reality host for Dancing with the Stars. House of Cards received two acting nominations at the awards - one for Kevin Spacey and another for co-star Corey Stoll. Although neither won, the Netflix drama's inclusion at an awards ceremony which had previously only recognised network and cable television shows was considered highly significant.

Several websites are reporting that BBC4's suffragette sitcom Up The Women is to get a second series – and is getting promoted to BBC2. The news of six new episodes comes days before BBC4 broadcasts the last of the three episodes it commissioned as a pilot run. Creator Jessica Hynes tweeted to co-stars Rebecca Front and Ryan Sampson: 'Have you heard we are going to BBC2? We did good.' The move means that the show joins an esteemed line of comedies to have been nurtured on BBC4 before moving to the terrestrial channel, including The Thick Of It, Twenty Twelve and Lead Balloon. Hynes originally came up with the idea after reading about a suffragette plot to assassinate the former Prime Minister Herbert Asquith. She initially pitched it as a film, but then recast it a sitcom. Made by Baby Cow, it was the last comedy to be recorded in at Television Centre before the West London studios closed for redevelopment. The BBC has not formally announced any news, but it is believed to be imminent.
Yer actual Hugh Laurie is to be a castaway on Desert Island Discs. Kirsty Young will ask him to name his favourite records as he discusses his career in comedy and acting on 23 June.

Nasty Nigel Lythgoe has reportedly been fired from American Idol after twelve years as a producer on the US show. The sixty three-year-old tweeted at the weekend to say that he would no longer be working on the programme. He said: 'Just had ten days in the Bahamas, rain everyday. I get back to the States and get fired. Sad! Monday we choose our top twenty. I'll smile again. It's not a personal thing they just feel Idol needs new leadership.' Lythgoe, who worked on shows like Blind Date and Gladiators in the 1990s, made his name as a judge on ITV talent show, Popstars, in 2000. The following year he was employed by Simon Fuller's Nineteen Entertainment to work on Pop Idol, which featured the TV debut of Wee Shughie McFee, the sour-faced Scottish chef off Crossroads. In 2002 Lythgoe launched American Idol in the US, with Wee Shughie McFee, the sour-faced Scottish chef off Crossroads one of the three judges along with Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul. Lythgoe was also a judge on the flop So You Think You Can Dance? American Idol's ratings fell to their lowest point in twelve years in its latest series with 14.2 million watching the season finale, which was won by Candice Glover. Three judges - Jackson, Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey - have now left the show with only Keith Urban still in place. In a statement, FOX and the companies behind American Idol thanked Lythgoe and fellow producer Ken Warwick, who is also leaving the show, for their work and said they looked forward to working with them on other projects. Swedish producer Per Blankens will be taking over from Lythgoe. He was most recently the executive producer of Idol, Sweden's version of the singing competition. Bankens will oversee the upcoming thirteenth season of American Idol, due to premiere in January 2014.

Cult Channel Four sketch comedy Smack The Pony could be heading for a comeback. Sally Phillips, Doon Mackichan, and Fiona Allen are said to be close to pitching the idea of a reunion to Channel Four, more than ten years after the sketch show was last broadcast. Mackichan told the Radio Times: 'We will have to wait and see what happens and whether they will want to bring it out of the stable. But we would love to get the old nag out again. So much has happened to us all, as mothers and women, there's a lot that is funny about where we are now. There are years of pain to draw on.' Mackichan – who is about to star in BBC4's hairdressing salon Quick Cuts – added that a revival would require 'a lot of writing', as the team were determined not to 'tread over old ground.' The original show ran for three series and two specials between 1999 and 2003. The idea of a comeback has been mooted since 2009, when Mackichan told The Stage: 'We are back together and it is brilliant. It will be interesting to see us back on, having been through kids, husbands and life - with all the different experience.' In 2011, the trio all appeared together in Celebrity Autobiographies at the Leicester Comedy Festival, reading extracts from stars' genuine memoirs.

A man has been caught stealing flowers on live television. Andrzej Czapka, from Poland, had recently broken up with his girlfriend, and in an attempt to win her back, he planned to buy her some flowers. Czapka, however, didn't have any coin so, instead of getting some, he decided instead to steal roses from the local florist. At the same time as a local news broadcast was taking place outside the shop. What are the chances? Thousands of viewers watched as the thirty-year-old reached through an open window and picked up the flowers, before running across the background of the report. The man was later caught after numerous viewers called in and identified him as the tea-leaf. According to the Austrian Times, Czapka told police: 'I'd broken up with my girlfriend and I wanted to win her back with some flowers but I had no money.' Off to pris with him, judge and make it hard labour for his bad naughtiness.

The BBC World Service is to have its funding cut by £2.22m this financial year, the government has announced. BBC Trust chairman Lord Patten called the news 'disappointing', though the head of the World Service claimed that there would be 'no cuts to output.' Funding for the World Service will transfer from the Foreign Office to the BBC licence fee from next April. In response to the announcement, Lord Patten said the BBC would increase the service's funding to two hundred and forty five million quid in 2014. The figure is £6.5m more than the figure currently being provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. 'This is the fourth "one-off" funding cut in four years,' said a visibly terse Peter Horrocks, director of the World Service. The service, he continued, was 'determined that this unexpected cut should not damage existing services to audiences.' There would be 'no cuts to output nor reductions to staff or headcount as a result' of the cut, though it did mean that the service would 'not be able to invest in new programmes and platforms as planned.' Horrocks welcomed the Trust's confirmation of its 2014 budget, which he said would 'protect' the service. 'International broadcasting is a business that needs long-term strategy and consistent funding support,' he said. 'When it comes under licence fee funding from April next year, the BBC Trust will be able to give the World Service a far greater degree of financial security,' said Lord Patten. As a result, he continued, 'it can continue to provide its much-needed and valued services for audiences around the world.' The BBC said that it was also expecting the Foreign Office to fund an extra five hundred thousand smackers this financial year for new TV services in Afghanistan, Burma and Somalia. Speaking last year, Horrocks said 2012 had seen the World Service recover from 'very substantial cuts and drops in audience.' The operation lost an audience of around fourteen million following government cuts to its budget which resulted in five of its language services being dropped.

Argentina's World Cup clash in Ecuador was marred by a bizarre incident when Javier Mascherano was sent off for kicking the driver of a medical cart. Which makes a nice change from his usual schtick of kicking opposing midfielders up-a-height. The twenty nine-year-old Barcelona player appeared to have water thrown at him as he was being taken off the pitch, after picking up a knock, and then kicked the medical staff member navigating the cart. really hard. Referee Enrique Caceres showed Argentina's captain a red card in the eighty sixth minute which led to angry scenes on the touchline. The match in Quito finished 1-1. Sheikh Yer Man City's Sergio Aguero opened the scoring from the penalty spot after four minutes before Segundo Castillo equalised thirteen minutes later. Argentina still lead the standings in the South America qualifying group on twenty six points, three ahead of second-placed Colombia.

The BBC Radio 4 announcer and newsreader Rory Morrison has died aged forty eight, the corporation has said. He had been suffering from a rare form of cancer. Rory joined the BBC in 1990, first working in local radio and later becoming a continuity announcer and newsreader on Radio 4. The station's controller Gwyneth Williams said Rory was respected for his intelligence, integrity and complete professionalism. She added he had been at the heart of Radio 4 for many years. During his time at the BBC, Morrison presented and reported an afternoon show at BBC Radio Leeds, as well as working at BBC Radio York and BBC Radio Cleveland. After leaving local radio, he worked for the British Forces Broadcasting Service before joining BBC Radio 4 as a continuity announcer. Morrison reported and presented a range of output - from working on the BBC's From Our Own Correspondent programme, to spending New Years Eve 1999 on stand-by in case the Millennium bug threatened the corporation's broadcasting. He eventually joined the newsreading team. In 2004 he was diagnosed with a rare type of Lymphoma.

The literary world has paid tribute to Iain Banks who died on Sunday aged fifty nine, two months after revealing he had terminal gall bladder cancer. Friend and fellow Scottish author Ian Rankin took to Twitter to toast his friend with a (virtual) whisky, with others following suit. 'Even the ones that didn't drink were putting a wee bottle of water or a soft drink in their pictures,' Rankin said. It was 'a lovely sort of communal thing to do to celebrate his life.' Another friend, the crime writer Val McDermid, was one of the authors who also tweeted a toast to Iain 'for all the hours of delight and provoked thought.' She said that she was 'grateful for what he left us, angry for what he'll miss and we'll miss.' Rankin told the BBC he believed Iain's best work could still have been ahead of him. 'The writing still excited him, the ideas still excited him, there was no shortage of ideas, he wasn't coming to the end of his time as a writer,' he said. He told BBC Radio Scotland of his shock at how suddenly Banks's death came. He said that Banks's wife, Adele, had e-mailed friends saying Iain had been told on Tuesday he had a few months left and then on Wednesday there was 'a deterioration.' 'On Tuesday he was thinking "Right I've still got a few months. I've got the book coming out, I've maybe got the Edinburgh Book Festival that I can go to." There were still plenty things to be doing and he was loving what life he had left.' Rankin also spoke to the Today programme about Iain Banks's political life. He told of how Banks's protest against the Iraq war did not go quite as planned. 'He was anti some of the stuff that Tony Blair did to such an extent that he cut up his passport and sent it to Downing Street in protest to the Iraq war - having forgotten he was supposed to be going on a tour of Australia a few weeks later,' Rankin said. But he added that however heated the political debate could get 'there was always humour at the back of it and always warmth and humanity.' Fellow author Neil Gaiman said that he shared debates with Iain in the bar after numerous writer conventions. He wrote on his website of his sadness at the passing of his friend, whom he met for the first time in the 1980s. Neil recalled a party that they both attended in 1987 in a hotel suite, at which it was discovered some jewellery had been stolen. 'A few minutes after the police arrived, so did Iain, on the balcony of the Metropole Hotel: he'd been climbing the building from the outside,' he said. 'The police had to be persuaded that this was a respectable author who liked climbing things from the outside and not an inept cat burglar returning to the scene of his crime.' Neil said that he had written to Iain when he heard the news of his terminal cancer, telling him how much he had loved knowing him. 'He wrote back and said good, comforting, sensible things. Goodbyes are few enough, and we take them where we can,' he said. 'If you've never read any of his books, read one of his books. Then read another. Even the bad ones were good, and the good ones were astonishing.'

Australia's opening batsman David Warner has been investigated over claims he attacked an England player, believed to be Joe Root. Warner, twenty six, has been dropped for Wednesday's Champions Trophy match against New Zealand. Cricket Australia said that Warner was, allegedly, involved in 'a physical altercation' hours after Saturday's forty eight-run defeat by England at Edgbaston. Sky Sports News have reported that Warner is alleged to have 'taken exception' to 'something which occurred in a bar' and 'slapped a member of the England team (believed to be Root) across the face.' The ECB have, reportedly, issued a statement describing the incident as 'an unprovoked attack.' Team management have, reportedly, 'stood down' Warner pending the outcome of a full hearing. The game in Birmingham between the countries was the start of a hectic schedule in which they will meet in home and away Ashes Test series, as well as Twenty20 and one-day international fixtures. Warner has been reported for 'unbecoming behaviour' after potentially breaching rule six of the governing body's code of conduct. It states that representative players or officials must 'not engage in conduct that could bring them or the game into disrepute or be harmful to the interests of cricket.' Cricket Australia says it will not make further comment until after a hearing, a time and date for which have yet to be confirmed. Warner struggled in his side's opening loss to England, scoring only nine runs in twenty one balls before he was caught by Jos Buttler off the bowling of Stuart Broad. He also failed to score in warm-up games against India and West Indies. In one-day internationals, Warner - at times one of the most destructive open batsmen in the world - averages 29.81 from thirty eight innings, with a strike rate of 80.58. It is the second time in three weeks he has been in trouble with authorities. Last month, he was fined over three grand for comments to journalists on his Twitter account. The tweets, some containing obscene language and for which Warner later apologised, appeared after a journalist criticised the Indian Premier League in an article which used a picture of Warner - who plays in the tournament. England will begin the defence of The Ashes at Trent Bridge on 10 July, with the second Test at Lord's next up from 18 July. Test cricket returns to Old Trafford for the third Test from 1 August, while Durham's Chester-le-Street hosts the penultimate match from 9 August. The series will end from 21 August at The Oval, where England have clinched the urn for the last two home series in 2005 and 2009.

A pair of Doctor Who fans will send a replica TARDIS into space to celebrate the show's fiftieth anniversary. Robert Doyle and his daughter Alex have raised thirty three thousand dollars in an online campaign to fund the project, the Daily Scum Express reports. They intend to send the replica into space with a camera on the outside, allowing pictures of the TARDIS in flight to be sent back to Earth. Doyle, from Florida, said: 'I was always a Doctor Who fan in school - I wore a Doctor Who scarf. Tom Baker was my favourite - he was always The Doctor to me. The bug caught on in an infectious way so we wanted to do something to celebrate the show we both enjoy so much. We mentioned putting a TARDIS into space and our first thought was that it was a ridiculous idea. But at the same time it was definitely appealing so we looked into it and saw we weren't going to be burdened with the cost.' He explained: 'Now we have exceeded our budget we can do things that we wouldn't have been able to do otherwise - make a bigger TARDIS, put a camera on the outside for "selfies" and so on.' The campaign finishes at the end of June, and Doyle will then make more definite plans once he has a decided budget to work with. A collection of messages from the project's website will be put inside the TARDIS for the flight. 'I just can't wait to see pictures of the TARDIS up in space it's so exciting - people have been so generous and we're really grateful we'll all be able to enjoy this together,' Doyle added. Cool idea, albeit, I have to say I can think of a lot of other things I'd do with thirty three grand. Still, in the spirit of the show that inspired the idea it shows that, if you reach for the stars you might, just, make it to orbit.

And so to yer actual Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day. And, this blogger is still very much in a Detroit mood this week so, with that in mind, here's The Velvelettes.

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