Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Separated From The Past

As predicted in yesterday's blog, the circus surrounding the casting of next Doctor continues apace with all manner of arsehole glakery being acted out in public for the benefit of the cameras. To wit: Simon Pegg has, apparently, ruled himself out of the running to be the next Doctor. Not that anybody with half-a-brain in their bloody skull thought for a single second that a busy movie actor like Simon would be under consideration for the role in the first place; the fact that the BBC's popular long-running family SF drama requires a ten-month-a-year commitment and the additional fact that the BBC haven't got a pot to piss in moneywise and, therefore, couldn't afford someone of Pegg's stature being, you know, just a couple of the many stumbling blocks to such an unlikely scenario. Expect plenty more of these frigging nonsensical bell-end 'exclusives' over the next few months until yer actual Moffat finally announces who has got the part. Nevertheless, for further exciting adventures in 'Who else isn't going to be the next Doctor', tune in tomorrow, dear blog reader.

Meanwhile, the Mirra seem to have nailed their flag firmly to the mast and, confidently, predicted that thirty five year old Rory Kinnear will be the next Doctor (terrific choice, if accurate by the way ... though, almost certainly not accurate). Or, perhaps it'll be Ben Daniels, according to Wales Online. Yeah. Whatever. Wake me up when Moffat's said something vaguely quotable.
The Voice topped Sunday night's ratings for BBC1, overnight data has revealed. However, the second of the knock-out round episodes fell further week-on-week to a new season low of 5.57 million viewers on average from 7.15pm. Jason Isaacs's Case Histories gained back over two hundred thousand viewers for its third episode with an overnight of 3.69m at 8.30pm. The final Matt Lucas Awards (hopefully ever) was watched by 1.62m at 10.30pm. On BBC2, new series Peter Jones Meets... was seen by 1.05m at 7pm, followed by Ice Ace Giants with 1.74m at 8pm. Australia with Simon Reeve brought in 2.42m at 9pm. ITV's usual piss-poor coverage of England's 2-2 draw with Brazil scored 5.44m from 7.30pm. The final Catchphrase of the season was seen by 3.25m at 6.45pm. On Channel Four,the documentary Spying on Hitler's Army had an audience of nine hundred and twenty nine thousand punters at 8pm.

Here's the final and consolidated ratings for the Top Twenty Five shows week-ending 26 May 2013:-
1 Coronation Street - Mon ITV - 9.24m
2 Britain's Got Toilets - Sun ITV - 9.22m
3 EastEnders - Mon BBC1 - 7.71m
4 The Apprentice - Wed BBC1 - 7.69m
5 The Voice - Sat BBC1 - 6.95m
6 Emmerdale - Mon ITV - 6.76m*
7 Scott & Bailey - Thurs ITV - 6.48m
8 Ten O'Clock News - Wed BBC1 - 5.53m
9 Have I Got News For You - Fri BBC1 - 5.18m
10 Casualty - Sat BBC1 - 5.11m
11 Paul O'Grady: For The Love Of Dogs - Thurs ITV - 5.08m*
12 Frankie - Tues BBC1 - 4.76m
13 Countryfile - Sun BBC1 - 4.68m
14 Holby City - Tues BBC1 - 4.64m
15 Six O'Clock News - THurs BBc1 - 4.63m
16 The Graham Norton Show - Fri BBC1 - 4.55m
17 The ONE Show - Mon BBC1 - 4.30m
18 Watchdog - Wed BBC1 - 4.29m
19 Not Going Out - Fri BBC1 - 4.22m
20 The National Lottery: Saturday Draws - Sat BBC1 - 4.19m
21 The Fall - Mon BBC2 - 4.16m
22 Case Histories - Sun BBC1 - 4.15m
23 Celebrity Catchphrase - Sun ITV - 4.07m*
24 BBC News - Sun BBC1 - 3.89m
25 The Last Days Of Anne Boleyn - Thurs BBC2 - 3.71m
Programmers marked '*' do not include HD figures.

BT Sport is to reunite veteran sports broadcasters Danny Baker and Danny Kelly to front a new Friday night football show on its TV service. The duo have worked together on football shows on numerous occasions over the past twenty years, most famously on BBC Radio 5Live, and will be reunited for Baker and Kelly's Sporting Phone Out. The live show will be broadcast on Friday evenings for forty weeks with the first episode set for 16 August, the day before the next Barclays Premier League season kicks off. BT Sport describes the hour-long show as 'original, unpredictable, football-themed entertainment with audience participation' using phone, text, e-mail and social media. 'We intend to make all other twisted opinion shows seem as dull as egg eating contests,' said Baker, who will continue to host his BBC Radio 5Live show on Saturday mornings. 'Baker and Kelly: the best at all that stuff. Sometimes right. Sometimes wrong. Always certain.' Kelly, who will continue to host the Kick Off radio show on UTV Media-owned TalkSport, said: 'We're delighted to have another crack at whatever it is that we do.' The series will be shot live at BT Sport's new studios in Queen Elizabeth park in Stratford, part of the former London 2012 Olympics complex. It is a co-production between BT Sport and Campbell Davison Media, the company behind Danny Baker's award-winning Saturday morning show on 5Live. 'Danny Baker and Danny Kelly are two of the country's best-known and admired football hosts,' said the head of BT Sport, Simon Green. 'Their off-the-wall observations and passionate, humorous and engaging style of debate will be a huge hit with our viewers as we try to build some fantastic and fun programmes around the incredible live rights we have secured.'

The Scum Mail on Sunday published one of the most intriguing splashes this weekend. On a day when the news agenda was dominated by cash-for-questions newspaper stings (in the Sunday Torygraph and The Sunday Times), the Scum Mail's story has tended to pass somewhat under the radar. But the mysterious tale, headlined No 10 rocked by secret love affair, appears to have the potential to add to the prime minister's many problems. It began: 'David Cameron has held crisis talks at Downing Street after being told of allegations of a sensational love affair which has potentially significant political implications for him. For legal reasons, the Mail on Sunday cannot disclose the identities of the people involved or any details of the relationship – even its duration – other than that they are middle-aged figures.' That's a somewhat odd description as, by definition, almost everyone working in politics is middle aged. The piece continued to claim that the affair 'has now concluded. But this newspaper can report that when aides told Mr Cameron the identities of the alleged lovers he was "stunned", and, according to sources, "immediately realised the importance of the story."' The story goes on to quote an alleged 'senior source' as allegedly saying: 'This revelation is dynamite. None of us could believe it when we first heard it' and added that the revelation had caused 'great personal distress to innocent parties.' A later part of the story states: 'If the affair is revealed, it is likely to cause as much public surprise as the disclosure of the relationship between John Major and Edwina Currie, which was kept secret for nearly two decades until 2002.' Quoted in the Daily Torygraph, one alleged source allegedly described the alleged affair as 'potentially very messy', adding: 'I'm glad I'm nowhere near that one. It'll be a bit of a nightmare if it comes out.' Of course, this could be nothing more than journalistic hype. What 'legal reasons' could prevent the public from knowing more? Is there an injunction or superinjunction in place? Most of the industry speculation is that the Scum Mail on Sunday's lawyers have advised those in the know to, as it were, say no more.

Odious lousy greed-bucket (and drag) Alesha Dixon and wretched, unfunny horrorshow (and, also, drag) Paddy McGuinness are to host a new ITV 'entertainment' series called Your Face Sounds Familiar. But, if you think that opening line is enough to put you off watching, trust me, it gets worse. The show 'challenges a regular cast of celebrities' to perform as 'different music icons' in front of judges Emma Bunton, Julian Clary and a special guest judge each week. Sounds like a massive dose of really painful piles. Horrorshow Dixon said: 'This show is going to be a lot of fun. I can't wait to see their transformations and spectacular performances. I know that Paddy and I are going to have our work cut out keeping them all in line.' The wretched McGuinness added: 'To be given a live show on Saturday night TV is a massive honour. Hairbrushes at the ready, for a proper good old Saturday night sing-along.' Endemol has already sold Your Face Sounds Familiar in twenty countries, including the USA where it is about to launch as Sing Your Face Off, hosted by John Barrowman. Actually, on second thoughts, maybe we in Britain are the lucky ones.

And speaking of utter horrorshow (and drag) malarkey, thoroughly obnoxious full-of-her-own-importance Myleene Klass has signed up to be a judge on a new CBBC reality show. Blue Peter - You Decide will see 'hopefuls battle it out' for the chance to join the long-running children's programme's current hosts Barney Harwood and Helen Skelton in the presenting line-up. Klass will sit on the panel alongside This Morning's big fat blubber of lard Eamonn Holmes and seventeen-year-old presenter Ceallach Spellman, when the talent show starts next month. And there, in that one sentence we have a perfect illustration of every single thing that is wrong with not only modern television, dear blog reader, but society in general. Yep, that one will definitely be worth missing as well.
Tulisa Contostavlos will, reportedly, be questioned over allegations that she arranged a drugs deal. The singer and former X Factor judge has been accused of 'linking up' an undercover reporter working for the Sun with a contact who could supply cocaine. An alleged Scotland Yard 'source' has allegedly since allegedly told the paper that officers from its Major Crimes Unit intend to speak to Contostavlos and a second individual about the allegations 'within days.' The undercover reporter alleges that following their initial meeting, Contostavlos allegedly passed on alleged details of someone allegedly described as a 'good friend' who could allegedly supply him with alleged cocaine. The newspaper then contacted the alleged dealer to place an allegedly fake order. A police spokesperson said of the claims on Sunday: 'We have received information concerning the alleged supply of illegal drugs at a central London location. We are considering the information.'

The BBC has admitted that it 'got it wrong' about a live quiz show which discussed 'curing' Clare Balding of homosexuality, on Radio 5Live. The - perfectly obscene - comments were made during a game called Defend The Indefensible as part of the show Fighting Talk, broadcast at 20:30 on Saturday. One panellist, the (alleged) comedian Bob Mills, although this blogger has always thought Mills is about as funny as cancer, suggested 'there is not a woman in the world who cannot be cured.' Christ. Unbelievable. The BBC has apologised for any offence the item may have caused. A spokeswoman said it had received five complaints about the segment, which has since been removed from the BBC iPlayer service. Five thousand people were in attendance at Liverpool's Echo Arena to watch the live broadcast of Fighting Talk as part of 5Live's Big Day Out. The live show was also broadcast on Radio 5Live and streamed online. Presenter Colin Murray introduced the round of the game, saying 'no matter what I say you have to defend the indefensible.' He went on to ask Mills, a regular Fighting Talk panellist, to comment on the statement: 'Give me twenty minutes with her and I'm sure I could turn around Clare Balding.' Mills stated that Balding, a sports presenter and former jockey was 'a horse woman,' adding: 'The one thing Clare appreciates is a bit of power between her thighs. All I am saying is, there is not a woman in the world who cannot be cured,' he added amid boss from members of the audience. In a statement, a BBC spokeswoman said: 'Fighting Talk is a live programme and on this occasion we got it wrong. The Defending the Indefensible item was inappropriate and as such we have removed this short section of the programme from iPlayer,' she added.

Ofcom has launched an investigation into Channel Four's documentary series Skint, which charts the lives of the long-term unemployed, after viewers complained about the use of the word 'fuck' sixteen times in the first fifteen minutes of the opening programme. That's one every fifty five seconds, if you're keeping count. The opening show in the series, which Channel Four calls 'a provocative and revealing documentary stories of how people survive without work', was broadcast on 13 May post watershed. The first episode featured former Scunthorpe steelworker Dean, his wife and their seven children and stepchidren and their life on an estate. Ofcom received eight complaints about the repeated use of offensive language in the opening quarter of an hour of the programme, and determined that the word 'fuck' was used sixteen times. According to Ofcom's rules, shows which air from the 9pm watershed are allowed to carry strong language and explicit scenes that may not be suitable for children. However broadcasters are cautioned about making sure there is not 'an unduly abrupt' transition from pre-9pm content designed to be suitable for kids and post-watershed material that is too obviously explicit. Ofcom has launched an investigation into Skint to see if Channel Four is in breach of the broadcasting code. ITV is also facing an investigation into its morning show Loose Women, for the use of a naughty bad swearword by the actor Rupert Everett during an interview.

David Suchet - a particular favourite actor of this blogger's late mother - is currently filming his final Poirot episode Dead Man's Folly. The film is one of the final five starring Suchet in his thirteenth series as author Agatha Christie's Belgian detective, alongside Elephants Can Remember (which will be broadcast on Sunday), Curtain: Poirot's Last Case, The Labours of Hercules and The Big Four. Zoë Wanamaker returns as Poirot's unwitting sidekick Ariadne Oliver and the pair are joined for the final episode by a cast which includes Sean Pertwee, Sinead Cusack, Tom Ellis, Martin Jarvis, Sam Kelly and Stephanie Leonidas. Dead Man's Folly is written by Nick Dear, directed by Tom Vaughan and produced by David Boutler. The novel was first published in 1956 and centres around a house inspired by Christie's former holiday home, Greenway, now a National Trust-owned property. While it has already been shot, the last episode to be shown will, of course, be Curtain. Suchet was cast as Poirot for ITV in 1987, shooting The Adventure of the Clapham Cook the following year.

For ITV sport, last week's thoroughly depressing England versus Ireland friendly (with the verdict on it that made all the papers coming not from its own - wretched - pundits, or odious nasty greed-bucket anchor Adrian Chiles, but of all people the BBC's Gary Lineker) was one more setback in a run of bad luck: no British side in the last eight of the Champions League, and now no British player surviving into the second round (let alone the second week) of tennis's French Open. An event which ITV eyebrow-raisingly gambled on covering every night at 10.35pm on the main channel as well as from dawn to dusk on ITV4. Still, when there aren't any Brits to cheer, there's at least less risk of viewers being angered by the trademark blunder of an advertising break timed just when something crucial happens.

Exciting news from Channel Four, which next weekend will interrupt the debut of its not-copying-BBC4-at-all Saturday night foreign-language drama The Returned (or, if you prefer, Les Revenants) with a one-off ad break made up entirely of subtitled adverts in French from companies such as the indubitably Gallic L'Oreal and Renault and (pourquoi?) the less convincing Emirates. The start of the sequence will include be a French voice-over also with subtitled translation, hopefully done live – recurring mishaps in the live subtitling of Channel Four News ('the fat Czech team' for the bulletin's 'fact check team' remains a particular favourite of many viewers who saw it) mean the channel has a reputation to live up to with connoisseurs of such cock-ups.

Graham Walker, founder of the comedy musical and impressions group The Grumbleweeds, has died at the age of sixty eight. He had been fighting cancer for two years. Walker started the group with Robin Colvill in Leeds in 1962. They toured the Northern club circuit before getting their big break five years later, when they appeared on the TV talent show Opportunity Knocks, by which time they had grown to a five-piece. But it was on BBC radio where they made their name, with an incredible fifteen series running on Radio 2 from 1979 to 1988. In 1998, Walker and Colville reformed as a two-piece. They had been due to tour later in the year, including a summer season in Skegness. Among those paying tribute on Twitter was Shane Ritchie, who said: 'Just heard the sad news. Funny, sweet and genuine[ly] gentle.' Fellow comic Billy Pearce, who is also from Leeds, added: 'I'm just getting my head round the fact that we've lost my great pal Graham Walker, I'm heartbroken. There's no one like him; he was so brave.' Mick Miller added: 'So sad to hear about the passing of Graham from The Grumbleweeds. He was one of the nice guys. A truly funny man.'

Ex-England winger Mark Chamberlain missed his son's goal against Brazil at the Maracana after falling asleep on Sunday evening. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain pulled England level after Fred's goal in Rio, before Wayne Rooney put Roy Hodgson's side into the lead, only for Paulinho to make it 2-2 late on. After the game Chamberlain, part of the last England side to win in Brazil in 1984, told Radio 5Live: 'I didn't see it. I was dropping his mother off at the airport at 6am this morning so I fell asleep.' But, he added: 'I've had loads of texts saying it was a fantastic goal. It was on tape so I'll watch it in a minute.' Ahead of England's draw in Rio, nineteen-year-old Oxlade-Chamberlain had spoken of his hope to emulate the 1984 side's victory, when Mark Hateley and that John Barnes wonder-strike gave the unfancied visitors a famous win. The Arsenal youngster went on to admit he had never seen footage of the 1984 game. Speaking after Sunday's match, he said: 'I'm sure my dad will be happy with that. I can't really remember [my goal]. Frank Lampard flicked it on, I got it back off Wayne Rooney and just hit it. I'm just glad I could make a contribution. We wanted to close the game out so we are disappointed we didn't but we showed great passion and fight. Brazil are a great side but we kept our shape.' Chamberlain said that he only realised his son had scored when the teenager's agent called him to tell him. He added: 'I was watching the game. It was a bit negative in the first half but England were more positive in the second half and Alex played well in the hole behind the strikers. He plays wide-right, but that's his third-best position; midfield or playing behind the striker is his best position.' Later, after hearing his father had missed the goal, Oxlade-Chamberlain said: 'Did he fall asleep? That sounds like him!'

Which brings us, nicely, to yer actual Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day. This one's for Mark and Alex. Dads, eh?

No comments: