Friday, November 04, 2016

Criminal Malarkey

As in previous years, the BBC's annual charity fundraising evening for Children In Need will feature an item relating to the forthcoming Doctor Who Christmas Special. This year this will take the form of an exclusive clip from The Return Of Doctor Mysterio. This year's Children in Need takes place on Friday 18 November.
National heartthrob yer actual David Tennant is to return to the West End next year to play the title role in Patrick Marber's Don Juan in Soho. The play is a loose adaptation of Moliere's Seventeenth Century tragi-comedy Don Juan which transports the legendary womaniser to contemporary London. The production, which Marber will direct, will run at the Wyndham's Theatre from 17 March to 10 June. The original 2006 production starred Rhys Ifans in the title role and was directed by Michael Grandage. The play drew a good review from the Torygraph's Charles Spencer, who described it as 'savagely funny, disturbingly dark and disgracefully sexy.' David previously performed at the Wyndham's in 2011, playing Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing. He recently played the title role in Richard II with the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Barbican, moving to New York with the production earlier this year. The former Doctor Who actor played another famous womaniser, Casanova, in a highly-regarded 2005 BBC series.
David's successor in the TARDIS Matt Smith was the top pick to play Prince Philip in Netflix's new drama The Crown - but was originally hesitant about signing up for two series. The plan is for Smudger his very self to star in the first two years of the series, at which point he and co-star Claire Foy (Queen Elizabeth) will be replaced by older actors. But, series producer Andrew Eaton has revealed that, after a three-year plus stint on Doctor Who, Matt wasn't sure about signing up for another long-running TV commitment. 'He came in quite early, we saw quite a few actors to play Philip but it was clear from the auditions that he was the only person who could do it,' Eaton insisted. 'But he wasn't sure, because he'd done Doctor Who for so long. He was wary about committing to a show that would take up quite a lot of his time and restrict him from doing other things.' In the end, Smudger signed the contract and Eaton thinks he made the right decision, insisting that the actor's role in The Crown will 'change his profile. Doctor Who has put us all in the wrong direction - he's got so much more to him,' Eaton added. 'People will think about him in a different way [after seeing this].' Which is, frankly, a bit of an arrogant and snooty assessment of Smudger's superb three series as The Doctor. And pretty much exactly what you'd expect from Eaton who already has considerable form in making sneering comments about the hard work of other TV industry professionals.
Smudger's former TARDIS companion, yer actual Karen Gillan is to make her feature directorial debut with a self-penned film that will begin shooting in January in her native Scotland. Kazza described the film, called Tupperware Party, as 'a visceral piece that may be tough to swallow without a strong chaser.' Gillan told her followers on social media that she was 'so excited to finally share this with you all.' The twenty eight-year-old, who has directed three shorts, will also appear in the film. According to Deadline, Tupperware Party will be produced by Mt Hollywood Films, a new production company 'focused on working with female and minority roles.' Gillan, best known for playing Amy Pond in Doctor Who, will be seen next year reprising her villainous Nebula role in Guardians Of The Galaxy Volume Two. She will also appear alongside Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart and Jack Black in the upcoming reboot of Jumanji.
The BBC have announced that a colour version of the animated Doctor Who story The Power Of The Daleks is to be released at the end of the year. The monochrome version is being released this weekend on BBC Store, with a DVD release following on 21 November. It has now been confirmed that a colour version will be released on BBC Store on 31 December followed by a Special Edition Bluray, containing both the Black and White and Colour versions, from 6 February 2017. So, you know, why buy something once when you can buy it four times? Somebody's taking the piss here, clearly. BBC America is screening the Black and White version weekly from 19 November and will make the colour version available exclusively on their digital platforms towards the end of November. From 24 January 2017 both versions of the story will be available on a Region 1 DVD, exclusively at Barnes & Noble.
There's a fascinating interview with Anneke Wills at the BBC News website about working with the late Patrick Troughton to tie-in with the release of the animated The Power Of The Daleks. Speaking at a screening of the first two episodes, Anneke recalled how various actors - including Michael Hordern - auditioned for the role of The Doctor. 'We all knew Bill [Hartnell] was going to leave at the end of the summer season and then there were discussions about is that the end of the show or shall we have another actor?' she said. 'When we heard it was Patrick, we knew that we had a chance. But we still didn't know if the audience would accept it and accept that The Doctor could change his body. And, it was entirely up to Patrick that the audience did. In the animation you see how adorable he was, you couldn't resist him. And they didn't resist him. So luckily it was him and we're all here talking about it.'
Doctor Who writer and historian (and yer actual Keith Telly Topping's former publisher) David Howe has launched a project to raise money for the establishment of a Doctor Who Merchandise Museum. Since the seventies, David has been collecting merchandise, magazines, original costumes, artwork and props and now arguably holds the biggest collection of Doctor Who merchandise and memorabilia in the world. Trust me, dear blog reader, yer actual Keith telly Topping has stayed at his house, he's got loads of it. His dream is to launch a museum in which to display and share his collection. David already has premises just outside Sleaford in Lincolnshire, but now needs to raise money via an Indiegogo fundraiser to equip and display the items in the museum. 'Since I was young, I've always wanted to be able to display and share my collection with others,' David said. 'And a couple of years ago, we got the opportunity to buy the premises, which was always the sticking point where to house the items! Now we have that, we need to pay for the floor, walls, ceiling and electrics to be sorted out, as well as some groundworks outside, security and fixtures and fittings. There's a lot to do, but hopefully, with everyone's help we'll be able to get it done!' David aims to be able to launch the Museum in the summer of 2018. 'It's a private museum, so people can't just turn up unannounced. But we intend to hold open days, and special events where folks can book to come and see the collection. We may also be able to accommodate pre-booked showings as well. If this all goes well, then who knows what opportunities might be afforded going forward. I'd love to see merchandise launches taking place at the Museum, and talks by the people who produce the toys and games, there's all sorts of things we could do.' The Indiegogo runs until the end of the year, and full details can be found online here.
The BBC has announced details of Mary Berry's first show since leaving The Great British Bake Off. She will sample the culinary histories of stately homes and create new recipes inspired by her visits in Mary Berry's Secrets From Britain's Great Houses. In September, Berry announced that she would not remain as a judge on Bake Off when it moves from the BBC to Channel Four. In a statement, she said that she was 'so excited' to be doing the new six-part series with the BBC. 'I have always had an enquiring mind so I know I will be inspired by the great houses we visit,' she said. The BBC's director of content, Charlotte Moore, said: 'This series will be a real treat for BBC1 viewers to go behind the scenes with Mary Berry and explore Britain's great houses through her love of cooking.' Berry will reveal the workings of the houses and visit the kitchens, gardens and private rooms - as well as meeting the current custodians - in each thirty-minute episode.
TV Comedy Moment Of The Week: Number one - the end of Thursday night's Newsnight in response to rent-a-quote gobshite Tory MP for Romford Andrew Rosindell what had called on BBC1 to play 'God Save The Queen' at the end of each day's programming to 'send out a message that Britain is back' after Brexit. Somebody's probably going to get spanked by the Daily Scum Mail over that but, jeez, it was funny. Rosindell, needless to say, wasn't impressed. Good. Humourless Tory scumbag. Next ...
TV Comedy Moment Of The Week: Number two, the divine Victoria Coren Mitchell, guest-hosting a superb episode of Have I Got News For You: 'This is the news that America might be about to elect the worst President in history. Unless, of course, they elect a worse one!' 'Hopefully, humanity will dodge a bullet on Tuesday,' Andy Hamilton added. 'Hopefully Trump won't dodge the bullet,' said Paul Merton before mock-lambasting the audience for applauding the concept of political assassination. Or, at least, gun accidents in a country where widespread gun ownership and clumsiness are both national sports.  
TV Comedy Moment Of The Week: Number three, Sandi Toksvig headbanging to Slipknot on Qi. You had to be there, dear blog reader.
TV Comedy Moment Of The Week: Number four, Jeff Stelling observing on Soccer Saturday: 'The dictionary definition of the word "bleak" is "bare, barren, depressing and without hope." And, we'll be talking more about Sunderland after the break!' Harsh, perhaps, but probably fair. And then, someone on the production staff ran a clip of a bunch of images of disconsolate and miserable-looking fans at The Stadium Of Plight with a soundtrack of The Smiths' miserablist masterpiece 'Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want.'
The final and consolidated ratings figures for the Top Twenty Six programmes, week-ending Sunday 30 October 2016:-
1 The Great British Bake Off - Wed BBC1 - 15.90m
2 Strictly Come Dancing - Sat BBC1 - 11.22m
3 Coronation Street - Mon ITV - 8.20m
4 The Apprentice - Thurs BBC1 - 7.65m
5 Emmerdale - Mon ITV - 7.43m
6 EastEnders - Tues BBC1 - 7.03m
7 The Missing - Wed BBC1 - 6.75m
8 The X Factor - Sun ITV - 6.71m
9 Poldark - Sun BBC1 - 6.70m
10 Countryfile - Sun BBC1 - 6.58m
11 Cold Feet - Mon ITV - 6.46m
12 Antiques Roadshow - Sun BBC1 - 5.80m
13 Casualty - Sat BBC1 - 5.54m
14 Have I Got News For You - Fri BBC1 - 4.96
15 Six O'Clock News - Mon BBC1 - 4.91m
16 Pointless Z-List Celebrities - Sat BBC1 - 4.84m
17 Ordinary Lies - Tues BBC1 - 4.83m
18 Holby City - Tues BBC1 - 4.71m
19 BBC News - Sun BBC1 - 4.62m
20 Paul O'Grady: For The Love Of Dogs - Thurs ITV - 4.45m
21 The Great British Bake Off: Class Of 2016 - Thurs BBC1 - 4.28m
22 The National Lottery: Who Dares Wins - Sat BBC1 - 4.22m
23 Ten O'Clock News - Wed BBC1 - 4.20m
24 Gogglebox - Fri C4 - 4.12m
25 Match Of The Day - Sat BBC1 - 3.99m
26 Would I Live To You? - Fri BBC - 3.92m
These consolidated figures include all viewers who watched programmes live and on catch-up during the seven days after initial broadcast, but do not include those who watched on BBC's iPlayer or ITV Player via their computers. Don't blame this blogger, he doesn't make the rules. The Bake Off final attracted the largest audience from any TV show in 2016 thus far. In fact, it is the highest TV audience in Britain since the London Olympics Closing Ceremony and England's game against Italy in Euro 2012. If sporting events are excluded, it is the highest since 17.7 million watched Matt Cardle win The X Factor in 2010. A total of 15.9 million people saw Candice Brown win the contest eight hundred and fifty thousand more than saw Nadiya Hussain win last year's final. One wonders exactly how many of those fifteen million plus punters will be watching the next series on Channel Four. Strictly Come Dancing's Sunday night results episode attracted 9.93 million punters. The X Factor's programme on the same evening had but 5.10 million, one of the lowest final and consolidated audiences the series has ever attracted. Even the inclusion of ITV+1 viewers only takes the total up to 5.39 million. Big trouble for Wee Shughie, it would appear. Big-budget drama Tutankhamun continued to shed viewers at a rate of knots, pulling in but 3.45 million for its third episode. On BBC2, Thursday's penultimate episode of The Fall drew 3.42 million whilst Friday's series finale had 3.08 million. Monday evening's opening episode of Atumnwatch was seen by 3.10 million - which almost made it worthwhile for BBC2 to go through a week without two of their regular big-hitters, University Challenge and Only Connect. All four of the week's Autumnwatch episodes drew audiences above two million. The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice ... Of Greed attracted 2.90 million viewers and Great British Menu was watched by 2.40 million. The Victorian Slum was seen by 2.38 million and Great Continental Railway Journeys With Mister Portaloo by 2.26 million. Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two drew 2.14 million, The Apprentice: You're Fired! had 2.11 million, Mastermind, 1.96 million and Operation Gold Rush With Dan Snow, 1.66 million viewers. The second episode of the new series of Qi was watched by 1.55 million. Hideous and wretchedly unfunny Morgana Robinson's The Agency attracted an audience of somewhat less than 1.20 million punters and, for the fourth week running, didn't make BBC2's top thirty list for the week. Which again rather restores ones faith in the general viewing public knowing a turd when they're presented with one. Aside from Gogglebox, Channel Four's next highest-rated broadcast of the week was for the return of cult drama Humans (3.40 million), followed by F1: Mexican Grand Prix Live coverage (3.06 million) and Grand Designs (2.49 million). SAS: Who Dares Wins was seen by 2.42 million viewers, whilst The Last Leg With Adam Hills had 2.25 million, Hunted drew 2.19 million whilst Married At First Sight, was watched by 2.04 million. Eight Out Of Ten Cats Does Countdown attracted 1.41 million whilst the fifth episode of Damned had 1.09 million punters. Channel Five's top performer was, The Peter Kay Story with 2.31 million, ahead of Can't Pay, We'll Take It Away! (2.05 million), The Yorkshire Vet (1.76 million), Ben Fogle: New Lives In The Wild (1.67 million punters) and The Comedy Store (1.50 million). The Sky Sports channels got their shit into gear this week and actually bothered to send in their figures to BARB. Well, for most of them (though, curiously, not Sky Sports 2). Thus, on Sky Sports 1, Live EFL Cup coverage of the Manchester derby between The Scum and Sheikh Yer Man City was watched by 1.32 million punters. Southampton's Premier League visit to Burnley attracted 1.13 million viewers. Tuesday's coverage of The Liverpool Alabama Yee-Haws versus Stottingtot Hotshots had 1.10 million whilst The Arse giving Blunderland a good hiding drew seven hundred and fifty eight thousand. Live Mexican Grand Prix coverage was watched by seven hundred and fifty five thousand viewers on Sky Sports F1 and two hundred and sixty nine thousand on Sky Sports 1. Gillette Soccer Saturday was also - as usual - simultcast across two channels, being seen by four hundred and seventy two thousand on Sky Sports News HQ and a further five hundred and sixteen thousand on Sky Sports 1. Lewis was ITV3's top-rated drama (eight hundred and eighty six thousand viewers). Midsomer Murders was seen by eight hundred and sixty five thousand, Doc Martin by six hundred and eighty seven thousand and Heathrow: Britain's Busiest Airport by five hundred and ninety two thousand. Coverage of Darts: European Championship Lie headed ITV4's weekly list with four hundred and eighteen thousand viewers whilst MotoGp Highlights followed with four hundred and six thousand. The James Bond movie You Only Live Twice attracted three hundred and forty nine thousand. Benidorm had three hundred and nineteen thousand. Once again ITV2's most-watched broadcast was that disgraceful and worthless shower of rancid festering diarrhoea Celebrity Juice (watched by a properly tragic 2.12 million people, every single one of whom should be bloody well ashamed to show their faces in public after viewing a solitary second of this odious, smug nonsense). The movie Hotel Transylvania drew eight hundred and sixty two thousand viewers. Family Guy, six hundred and eighty two thousand viewers and The Xtra Factor, six hundred and nine thousand. Downton Abbey headed ITV Encore's top ten with ninety one thousand viewers, ahead of DCI Banks (fifty four thousand). BBC4's list was topped by Rome's Invisible City (five hundred and ninety three thousand viewers), followed by The Incredible Human Journey (five hundred and fifty six thousand), Timeshift: Bridging The Gap - How The Severn Bridge Was Built (four hundred and seventy six thousand) and two other episodes of Timeshift, A Very British Map (four hundred and thirty three thousand) and Sailors, Ships & Stevedores (four hundred and twenty eight thousand). Horizon drew four hundred and fifteen thousand and Sleuths, Spies & Sorcerers: Andrew Marr's Paperback Heroes, three hundred and eighty three thousand. Top Of The Pops 1982 was watched by three hundred and eighty thousand, The Code, three hundred and sixty two thousand and The Kate Bush Story: Running Up That Hill three hundred and forty seven thousand. Sky1's weekly top-ten was headed by The Flash (1.43 million). Arrow was seen by eight hundred and forty four thousand, Supergirl by seven hundred and fifty eight thousand and Hooten & The Lady by seven hundred and eleven thousand. Unfunny, full-of-its-own-importance spew A League Of Their Own was watched by six hundred and fifty two thousand, a figure which, even though it's far lower than new episodes normally achieved, still makes this blogger angry. Sky Atlantic's list was topped by the fourth episode of Westworld (1.19 million). The much-trailed The Young Pope debuted with four hundred and fifty three thousand whilst the Sarah Jessica Parker vehicle Divorce was seen by two hundred and ninety thousand and Last Week Tonight With John Oliver drew two hundred and eight thousand. The latest Game Of Thrones repeat had ninety nine thousand. On Sky Living, Criminal Minds drew 1.03 million, Chicago Fire attracted five hundred and forty five thousand, Nashville, three hundred and two thousand and The Biggest Loser USA, one hundred and ninety two thousand viewers. Sky Arts' Landscape Artist Of The Year was watched by two hundred and eighty one thousand viewers - more than triple the usual slot average - whilst Carole King: Tapestry Live From Hyde Park had seventy seven thousand and Simply Red: Live At Sydney Opera House, sixty three thousand. 5USA's Chicago PD was seen by five hundred and eighty four thousand viewers. NCIS: Los Angeles attracted five hundred and fifty five thousand, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behaviour, four hundred and twenty thousand, Castle, three hundred and eighty six thousand and NCIS, two hundred and fifty thousand. NCIS also topped CBS Action's list (one hundred and fifty two thousand) and featured in the top-tens of FOX (one hundred and sixteen thousand) and The Universal Channel (one hundred and twenty five thousand). FOX's other most watched programmes were The Walking Dead (1.08 million), the latter drama's spin-off Talking Dead (five hundred and forty four thousand) and American Horror Story (three hundred and sixty five thousand). The Universal Channel's weekly list was headed by Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (three hundred and seventy four thousand), Chicago Med (three hundred and sixty four thousand), Major Crimes (two hundred and sixty one thousand) and Private Eyes (one hundred and seventy seven thousand). On Dave, the eleventh series of Red Dwarf continued with 1.10 million viewers. Taskmaster was - inexplicably - the second highest-rated programme with eight hundred and sixty five thousand punters. No, this blogger has no idea why either. That was followed by laughless sitcom Zapped (six hundred and seven thousand), Dara O Briain's Go Eight Bit (four hundred and fifty six thousand), Top Gear (three hundred and seven thousand) and Qi XL (two hundred and seventy eight thousand). The latest episode of Drama's repeat run of New Tricks was watched by four hundred and eighty four thousand viewers. Rebus had four hundred and forty eight thousand, followed by Death In Paradise (three hundred and eighty five thousand), Murdoch Mysteries (three hundred and seventy four thousand), Father Brown (three hundred and fifty seven thousand) and Silent Witness (three hundred and forty four thousand). Alibi's highest-rated programmes were Rizzoli & Isles (four hundred and forty eight thousand), Crossing Lines (two hundred and eighty three thousand), Rosewood (two hundred and sixty five thousand) and Death In Paradise (one hundred and fifty four thousand). On The Sony Channel, Ghost Hunters was watched by fifty five thousand, [spooks] by fifty one thousand, Saving Hope by forty four thousand and Hustle by thirty six thousand. Yesterday's Open All Hours repeat run attracted two hundred and eighty nine thousand. On the Discovery Channel, Gold Rush's latest series continued with five hundred and seventy four thousand viewers. Fast N' Loud drew three hundred and twenty seven thousand whilst Deadliest Catch was seen by one hundred and fourteen thousand, Alaska: The Last Frontier by one hundred thousand and Marooned With Ed Stafford by ninety two thousand punters. Discovery History's Hidden History Of Egypt topped the weekly-list with thirty two thousand. Weapons of War had twenty five thousand and both The Krays: The Prison Years and Time Team both attracted twenty two thousand. On Discovery Science, How It's Made was seen by fifty one thousand viewers. Discovery Turbo's most-watched programme was, as usual, Wheeler Dealers with fifty one thousand. Fifth Gear had thirty two thousand and Biketacular thirty thousand viewers. National Geographic's list was headed by Air Crash Investigation which had one hundred and eighty four thousand viewers and Wicked Tuna (eighty thousand). Doomsday Earth was watched by sixty two thousand. The History Channel's top-ten list was topped by Ice Road Truckers (one hundred and thirty two thousand). Mountain Men was seen by one hundred and fifteen thousand and Ozzy & Jack's World Detour attracted an audience of one hundred thousand. On Military History, Ancient Aliens was watched by thirty nine thousand as was Dogfights. A Crime To Remember, Ghost Asylum and The FBI Files were ID's top-rated programmes of the week (with sixty thousand viewers, forty four thousand and forty three thousand murder-lovers respectively). Robbie Coltrane's Critical Evidence, Homicide Hunter and The Jail: Sixty Days In headed CI's list (ninety five thousand, seventy three thousand and fifty eight thousand). Crimes That Shook Britain drew forty nine thousand. GOLD's repeat of Mrs Brown's Boys attracted three hundred and thirty thousand. Comedy Central's largest audience of the week was for South Park (three hundred and twenty nine thousand). Your TV's Crime Files: The Homefront was seen by seventy one thousand. On More4, Grand Designs was the highest-rated programme with four hundred and thirty nine thousand. Sarah Beeny's Four Rooms attracted four hundred and thirteen thousand punters, Homes By The Sea, three hundred and eighty three thousand, Come Dine With Me, three hundred and sixty seven thousand and Four In A Bed, three hundred and fifty thousand. E4's the return for a new series of the massively popular The Big Bang Theory drew 2.13 million viewers, by a distance the largest multi-channels audience of the week. Hollyoaks had 1.03 million. The Horror Channel's broadcast of Haunter attracted one hundred and eighty seven thousand. Their top-ten list for the week also included I Spit On Your Grave (one hundred and twenty seven thousand), The Mist (one hundred and six thousand), The Devil Rides Out (seventy seven two thousand), Tales From The Darkside (seventy thousand) and Quatermass & The Pit (sixty five thousand). The Exorcist, headed Syfy's top-ten with two hundred and forty six thousand whilst Bitten had one hundred and forty two thousand. Could We Survive Mega-Tsunami? and Lions On The Move were watched by forty three thousand and forty one thousand respectively on Eden. Tanked was the Animal Planet's most-watched programme with forty six thousand. On W, The Strain attracted three hundred and forty three thousand punters. The movie The Last Stand was watched by two hundred and five thousand and The X-Files drew one hundred and seventy thousand on Spike. Cake Boss was seen by two hundred and six thousand people on TLC. The Vault's Michelle Heaton: My Career In Really Dreadful Music drew seventeen thousand punters. The Foster& Allen Show attracted an audience of twenty seven thousand on Irish TV. Shed & Buried was seen by one hundred and six thousand on the Travel Channel.

David Walliams has been announced as the host of this year's Royal Variety Performance. So, that should be worth avoiding like the plague. Balding ex-milkman from Waalsend, the loathsome Sting, Robbie Williams and Emeli Sande are among the acts who will be performing in front of the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. Another three very good reasons to find something else to watch that evening (particularly the first one). The show takes place at the Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith on 6 December and will be broadcast on ITV. Walliams said that he was 'very honoured and excited' to be hosting the show for a second time. 'I was lucky enough to host back in 2012 so will be looking forward to another fabulous evening with huge talent.' This year's line up includes Sheridan Smith, Barry Gibb, One Republic, DNCE and Gary Barlow. More good reasons to give it a miss, there. There will be performances from Barlow's musical The Girls, An American In Paris and Dreamgirls, as well as the cast of Cirque Du Soleil's The Be-Atles Love show. The Be-Atles themselves - a popular beat combo from the 1960s, you might've heard of them - will not be appearing to reprise their set from the 1963 Royal Variety Performance. Because two of them are dead and the other two are 'very busy.' Actually, it's just that Macca and Ringo don't want to be seen on the same stage as Sting, dear blog reader. And, who can blame them? They've got some dignity after all. Also performing on the night will be this year's Britain's Got Talent winner, magician Richard Jones, and dance troupe Diversity, who previously won the show. McFly singer Tom Fletcher will read from his book The Christmasaurus and comedians Joe Lycett, Alan Davies and Rob Beckett are also on the line-up. The horror. The show is staged annually in aid of the Royal Variety Charity, which helps people from the world of entertainment in need of care and assistance. And, to bore the tits off whichever unfortunate members of the royal family draw the short straw and have to rock up and sleep through the thing.
Meanwhile, balding ex-milkman from Waalsend the loathsome Sting is to reopen the Bataclan in Paris the day before the first anniversary of the terrorist attack which killed ninety concertgoers. As if those poor people of Paris haven't suffered enough already. The former Police frontman and, full-of-his-own-importance bellend will perform there on Saturday 12 November. Sting said that he wanted to 'remember and honour those who lost their lives' and 'to celebrate the life and the music that this historic theatre represents.' Plus, you know, remind everybody that he, personally, is the saviour of the planet (well, with a bit of help from his mate Mister Bonio out of The U2 Group). The venue has been shut since Islamist gunmen stormed a gig by US rock band Eagles Of Death Metal last November. Three heavily armed gunmen wearing suicide vests were part of co-ordinated attacks around Paris on 13 November that killed one hundred and thirty people. Sting claimed that all revenue from his show would be donated to Life For Paris and 13 Novembre: Fraternite Verite.
The Grand Tour is hitting another stop on its worldwide travels, this time in Scotland. Amazon has announced that Jezza Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May will head up North to the banks of the Loch Ness, so there could be a spot of monster-hunting in that particular episode.
Eighty years ago this very week, on 2 November 1936, the BBC began regular TV broadcasts. Initially, two different broadcasting systems were tested on alternate weeks. John Logie Baird's two hundred and forty-line mechanical system was deemed inferior and was dropped after three months, leaving the four hundred and five-line Marconi-EMI format as the permanent system (used until the mid-1960s). The opening day's festivities were restricted to just two hours which included a variety show featuring Adele Dixon. There was also the debut of the BBC Television Orchestra and the opening episode of Picture Page.
Ian Lavender is to return to EastEnders later this month for a festive storyline. The actor will reprise his role as Derek Harkinson, who was last seen in Albert Square in 2005. Lavender, who is still best known for playing Frank Pike in Dad's Army, has already filmed his scenes for the soap. He said: 'It was brilliant to work with some old friends again, especially those who I only briefly got to work with before.' Previously in EastEnders, Wendy Richard's character Pauline Fowler attempted to initiate a relationship with Harkinson but she was turned down when he revealed that he was gay. The character remained in the square, becoming something of a father figure to Pauline's son, Martin. His return to Walford will see him reunited with Martin, now played by James Bye, but producers are keeping details of the storyline a secret. They will only say that Derek 'will be seen in a number of episodes over the festive season as part of a storyline involving a number of the residents.' Lavender said of filming his scenes: 'It was a lovely surprise to be back and I had a great time.'
The Director General of the BBC has been accused of 'failing to improve the "dire" representation of Welsh life' on the UK’s television screens. Whilst many popular and successful programmes such as Doctor Who, Sherlock and Casualty are made in Wales, there is 'concern' by several gobshite politicians that 'everyday Welsh life' is 'all but invisible' on much of the BBC. Appearing before Welsh assembly members in Cardiff, Tony Hall was strongly criticised for not solving a problem he acknowledged more than two years ago when he conceded that aspects of life in Wales were 'not sufficiently captured' by the BBC. Speaking to the culture and communications committee at the assembly, Lord Hall said that details of new funding for Wales programming to 'help address the situation' would be announced in March. But, the Labour assembly member Lee Waters, a former BBC journalist, accused him of acting too slowly. 'That will be almost three years after you first said there was a problem, that Wales wasn't being properly served, aspects of our national life were not being captured by the BBC,' he said. 'If the budgets aren't going to be announced until March, it will be a year, eighteen months, before anything hits the screens. That will be four, going on five years since you first identified the problem. You failed to deliver.' Waters also drew attention to an article in the October edition of Television magazine from the former BBC drama commissioner Jane Tranter, who said that Wales 'used to be considered a problem child' by the corporation. She argued that the BBC 'needed to treat it and other regions with more care and responsibility.' Waters told Hall: 'You've been making empathetic noises for some time now. You have been leading us to believe that you have got it and you are going to deliver. It's going to be five years before you deliver.' Hall said he 'understood the anxiety and frustration,' adding: 'But what I am saying to you is we are going to deliver, I do get it.' He insisted that the BBC was already delivering 'a huge amount' for Wales. He spoke of the corporation's coverage of the Aberfan disaster anniversary last month, which included a well-received documentary fronted by Huw Edwards and the film poem Aberfan: The Green Hollow, which gained the highest audience approval ratings for a BBC1 programme in almost five years. He also pointed to the development of the BBC studios in Roath Lock, Cardiff, and said that a drama commissioner for Wales would be appointed. 'We're making progress,' Hall said. Ahead of the committee meeting, the chair, Bethan Jenkins, also a Plaid Cymru member, wrote that she had heard time and again that not enough programmes on UK networks said anything about life in Wales. 'The BBC's Sherlock, Casualty and Doctor Who are all made in Cardiff, which is great news for the Welsh economy, but what do any of these say about Welsh life?' she asked.
Netflix's new drama series about the Queen's early life has drawn glowing reviews from American critics, with one calling it 'costume drama done right.' The Crown, wrote Daniel Fienberg in The Hollywood Reporter, 'should be a real awards player for performances and also in myriad technical categories.' Vanity Fair's critic described it as 'a stately success, alluring and easily digested.' Claire Foy plays the young Elizabeth in the ten-part series, while Matt Smith portrays Prince Philip. Other cast members include John Lithgow, whose performance as Winston Churchill was described as 'towering' and 'great throughout' by Fienberg. Peter Morgan's drama - available on Netflix from Friday - follows 2006 film The Queen which he wrote, and his 2013 stage play The Audience. Both pieces explored the monarch's relationships with the various Prime Ministers she has dealt with over the course of her sixty four-year reign.
Lynda La Plante is no longer involved in the Prime Suspect prequel currently being adapted by ITV. An ITV statement said that the writer had 'decided to step back' from Prime Suspect 1973. 'We are grateful to Lynda for allowing us to adapt her brilliant book,' it said, adding that ITV would 'continue to produce and broadcast' the series without her. No explanation has been given for the parting of the ways but there have been media reports that La Plante was allegedly 'unhappy' with how it the story was being adapted. According to the Daily Torygraph a representative for La Plante allegedly said that she was, allegedly, 'very sad' about the decision. The six-part series, based on La Plante's latest book, Tennison, will be broadcast in 2017. The book follows Jane Tennison, aged twenty two, as she starts her first police job in Hackney after training and becomes involved in her first murder case. The character of Tennison was made famous by Dame Helen Mirren who played the police chief for seven series on ITV from 1991 to 2006. When the prequel novel was announced in 2014, La Plante said: 'When you first meet [Tennison] in the early 1990s, she is a very complex character, but what made her so? Nobody knows what drove her to become a DCI or want to join the police force in the first place.' In July it was announced that Doctor Thorne actress Stefanie Martini had been cast as a young Tennison. The cast also includes Alun Armstrong, as the head of a crime family and Inbetweeners Blake Harrison as Tennison's sergeant. In 2010, La Plante made an utter fool of herself by alleging that the BBC would rather read scripts written by 'a little Muslim boy' than one she had written and was heavily criticised for her crass and ignorant comments.
A new play about Enoch Powell has been described as 'the most provocative theatre act in a decade' by one critic. Ian McDiarmid plays the late politician in What Shadows, which examines his infamous 1968 anti-immigration Rivers of Blood speech. The Torygraph's Dominic Cavendish wrote that it was 'chilling' to hear Powell's sentiments again 'as if newly minted.' The Birmingham Repertory Theatre should be 'applauded for opening the floodgates to serious debate,' he said. 'Does this re-enactment rank as the most provocative theatrical act of the decade? I'd say so,' Cavendish wrote in his four-star review. 'Given the current, high levels of concern about immigration and how long a shadow that speech has cast, [this was] a depressingly necessary evening.' The production is partly set in 1992 and sees Caribbean immigrant Rose Cruickshank confront the MP about his repatriationist views. The play also flashes back to 1960s to see the influences which shaped the two main characters. Ann Treneman of The Times also gave the show four stars, adding that McDiarmid 'gives a standout performance. This play does not mince words,' she wrote. 'Some are offensive, yet [writer] Chris Hannan isn't interested in political correctness but in getting to the core of a story. Not just about Powell but of England - what does it mean to be English and who exactly are we anyway?' The Financial Times described the play as 'compelling' in its four-star review, while The Stage said the production was 'timely and intelligent.' Michael Billington gave the production a less warm review in the Gruniad Morning Star, awarding it three stars. 'While Hannan makes it clear that we are still obsessed with immigration and the nature of Englishness, his play is much better at exploring the paradoxes of Powell than those of the surrounding culture,' he wrote. Referring to the two main characters, he added: 'Powell, whatever you think of him, is complex. His principal antagonist, Rose, is simply confusing.' The Whats On Stage website also gave the drama three stars. 'Hannan brings history back to life: a black and white photo recoloured. It sheds light on the present,' wrote Matt Trueman. 'Hannan's structure sets up eloquent and forceful head-to-heads, but in giving space to vital debates, each strand gives up its narrative drive.'
BBC2 has announced a new landmark film, David Bowie: The Last Five Years to be broadcast in January 2017, produced and directed by Francis Whately as a follow-up to his acclaimed David Bowie: Five Years which was shown on BBC2 in 2013. As with the first film, the new piece will feature a wealth of rare and previously unseen archive footage and audio interviews. These include the original vocal which Bowie recorded for Lazarus, his last release before his death from cancer in January this year. Additionally, BBC4 will broadcast a second Bowie At The BBC compilation, a programme of rarely seen archive material exploring The Grand Dame's incredible career as captured by the BBC from his very first appearance in 1964 to through to his death. BBC Radio 2 will broadcast a documentary, Life On Mars?, presented by Martin Kemp examining the legacy of the song which is widely regarded as Bowie's masterpiece. 6Music will be asking listeners to vote for their favourite Bowie LP (this blogger's is Hunky Dory if they're interested) and holding a Listening Party for the number one choice and Marc Riley will present a show in tribute to the singer. The programmes will be broadcast in January 2017, marking what would have been Bowie's seventieth birthday. David Bowie: The Last Five Years will focus on the three major projects of Bowie's last five years - the best-selling CDs, The Next Day and Blackstar, alongside the musical Lazarus which, following rave reviews and a sold out run off Broadway, is arriving in London this Autumn. With unprecedented access to Bowie's closest friends and collaborators this will be 'an unforgettable tribute to one of the greatest musical icons of modern times.' And for once such hyperbole is pretty much justified. It will also be an opportunity to experience some of Bowie's iconic songs which will illustrate the continuity of his later work with the rest of his career. Francis Whately says: 'I always hoped that I would make another film about Bowie as we were only able to scratch the surface in the first film, but I just didn't expect it to be this soon. However, looking at Bowie's extraordinary creativity during the last five years of his life has allowed me to re-examine his life's work and move beyond the simplistic view that his career was simply predicated on change - Bowie the chameleon. "Ch-ch-ch-changes" et cetera. Instead, I would like to show how the changes were often superficial, but the core themes in his work were entirely consistent - Alienation, Mortality and Fame.' The original band members of The Next Day will be reunited alongside Bowie's long-time producer Tony Visconti to recreate the production process for key songs on the CD. There will be interviews with the video directors and the stars of Bowie's last videos, including 'The Stars (Are Out Tonight)', exploring how the CD consolidated Bowie's back catalogue with thematic and musical references to his past, whilst at the same time being a triumphant return to form after a near ten year hiatus. For the CD, Blackstar, the film visits the famous Fifty Five Bar in New York where Bowie first encountered the jazz quartet who would become the musicians for this, one of his most innovative and original works. Whately explores how the record was to become Bowie's epitaph. The film features exclusive access to the writer, director and cast of Lazarus and will tell the story of the project from its inception through to the opening night, showing Bowie's unwavering commitment to the project right up to the very end of his life. Lazarus illustrates the connections between the play and David's own career and explores the extent to which it is possible to draw a comparison between the main character, Thomas Newton, first introduced in The Man Who Fell To Earth and Bowie himself. The play included a reworking of some of Bowie's best known songs including '"Heroes"', 'Life On Mars?' and 'Changes'. Whately was given access to film the rehearsals in London plus a complete performance. Bowie At The BBC is a compilation of clips from the BBC archive giving an overview of Bowie's extraordinary career from 1964 to 2016. It will feature legendary and rarely seen performances, interviews and insights into his many personas. From a seventeen-year-old David Jones interviewed by Cliff Michelmore in 1964 on Tonight, to 1972 when, as David Bowie, he gave his seminal Top Of The Pop's performance of 'Starman,' and to 2000 when he performed at the Glastonbury Fesitval. The programme includes other classic Top Of The Pops and The Old Grey Whistle Test performances of Bowie singing 'Queen Bitch', 'Oh! You Pretty Things' and 'The Jean Genie' and looks at Bowie the actor with interviews about his roles in The Elephant Man, Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence and Absolute Beginners. Bowie At The BBC will give an insight into the one of the most significant performers of the Seventies and beyond with interviews and performances showing just how innovative, funny, surprising and influential Bowie and his many personae were to generations. Life On Mars? (Monday 9 January at 10pm) sees the former Martin Kemp explore the 1971 song from Hunky Dory which is widely regarded as David's masterpiece. With access to exclusive unreleased music archive, the documentary examines how 'Life On Mars?' came into being and the significance of the lyrics. Kemp explores whether it could be seen as the musician's legacy song - the one for which he will be most remembered. The programme will feature never before broadcast archive recordings and Bowie's original piano demo and hears from those who worked closely with Bowie to create this memorable recording. These include original producer Ken Scott, former EMI A&R Tris Penna, Rick Wakeman (who played piano on the recording ... as he never stops reminding BBC4 viewers!), Mick Rock (who shot the video for the song) and archive interviews with The Grand Dame her very self. Produced by Sue Clark Productions. On BBC Radio 6Music, on what would have been David's seventieth birthday, Sunday 8 January, there will be a Now Playing special with presenter Tom Robinson. 6Music will also be asking listeners to vote for their favourite Bowie LP, from a Top Ten shortlist compiled by the station's presenters. On Monday 9 January, the number one LP will be played in full at 10pm in an episode of Listening Party presented by Gideon Coe. On Tuesday 10 January (the first anniversary of Bowie's death) Marc Riley will present a tribute show. 6Music will also broadcast again Iggy Pop's Bowie special in which Iggy devoted a whole show to his close friend and collaborator, playing his favourite Bowie songs and Talking, rather movingly, about the times their paths crossed over the years.
Glamour magazine has been criticised for naming Mister Bonio out of The U2 Group on its annual Women of the Year list. The magazine said that Mister Bonio out of The U2 Group was the first man to be included on the list because of his 'campaigning for women's rights.' Because, obviously, there aren't enough women doing that sort of thing for themselves. Apparently. Mister Bonio out of The U2 Group said that he was 'sure he didn't deserve it' but that the battle for gender equality couldn't be won 'unless men lead it along with women.' Misterr Bonio out of The U2 Group is on a list which also includes the singer Gwen Stefani, actress and campaigner Zendaya and Olympic gymnast Simone Biles. Mister Bonio out of The U2 Group said that he was 'grateful' for the honour and said men were 'largely responsible for the problem, so we have to be involved in the solutions.' The magazine's editor-in-chief Cindi Leive said they had 'talked for years' about 'including a man' but had always ruled it out. But, she said 'it started to seem that that might be an outdated way of looking at things. There are so many men who really are doing wonderful things for women these days. Some men get it and Bono is one of those guys,' she said. The magazine's decision has been heavily criticised on social media. And by squirrels. Probably.
The Simpsons is breaking another TV record with its latest two-series renewal. FOX announced on Friday that its thirty two-time EMMY-winning animated comedy will return for both twenty ninth and thirtieth series, making it 'the longest-running scripted TV series' in US TV history. Excluding several soaps, obviously (most notably Guiding Light which ran for fifty seven years until it was cancelled in 2009). The Simpsons is not, however, 'the longest running TV show ever' as this website ludicrously claims. Or anything even remotely like it. In fact, it appears that the actual category for the record The Simpsons is about to break is 'scripted US TV drama and/or comedy ... but not counting soap operas for some obscure reason that defies any obvious internal or external logic.' Now, if they'd said that in the first place, no-one couldn't really have argued with them (although someone, somewhere would probably have tried). The next two series will bring The Simpsons to six hundred and sixty nine episodes total, surpassing the total set by Gunsmoke, the six hundred and thirty fifth (and last) episode of which was broadcast in 1975. FOX TV chairmen Dana Walden and Gary Newman announced: 'This is yet another record-setting moment for what is truly a landmark series. The Simpsons has meant so much to the network, the studio and everyone at FOX and its continued cultural impact around the globe is a testament to the combined brilliance of [producers] Matt [Groening], Jim [Brooks] and Al [Jean]. Congratulations to everyone who works on this groundbreaking series - from the voice cast and producers to the writers and production team - you comprise one of the greatest collections of creative talent in the history of the medium. And to the millions of Simpsons fans around the world, thank you for watching all these years. We're happy to tell you there's lots more to come.'
The publisher of the Sun On Sunday has agreed to make a payment to a - nameless - celebrity who won the right to keep his name out of a 'kiss and tell' story. The celebrity, referred to merely as PJS, took legal action in May after allegations of an extra-marital relationship. News Group Newspapers is to pay 'a specified sum' to settle a claim for damages and costs. It also agreed not to use, disclose or publish any material identifying PJS, or republish certain existing articles. In May, PJS successfully appealed at the Supreme Court against a ruling lifting the ban on media in England and Wales publishing his name. The Sun On Sunday argued it should be able to run the story as PJS's name had been published in Scotland, in the US and on the Interweb. PJS had argued that he had 'a right to privacy.' He has young children with YMA - as his spouse is known in court documents - and both are described as 'well-known individuals in the entertainment business.' Legal proceedings had started earlier this year at the High Court when the Sunday tabloid wanted to publish a story about the celebrity's spouse, alleging that he had taken part in what the courts described as 'a three-way sexual encounter.' PJS sued NGN, claiming that publication of information about the alleged extra-marital activity would be 'a misuse of private information' and 'a breach of confidence.' Sitting at the High Court, Mr Justice Warby said that PJS and NGN had 'agreed' a final order in the action for breach of confidence and misuse of private information. The proceedings were 'stayed' on the basis that NGN pay 'a specified sum' in 'full and final settlement' of PJS's claim for damages and costs. NGN also agreed that it would not publish any information which identified or 'was liable to identify' PJS as a party to the action, including identifying his partner or the three other individuals allegedly involved in the alleged incident. The judge said: 'I accept the undertakings offered by the defendant, which are clear and plainly given on advice. I see no reason not to make an order for payment of the agreed sum. There is no reason not to allow the parties to keep the figure confidential.'
According to the Digital Spy website, Sinitta may - or may not - be planning to broadcast her vaginal surgery on YouTube.
A US Park Police officer was transported to hospital early on Thursday afternoon after he was attacked by a raccoon and accidentally shot himself in the foot while trying to fend off the animal, according to a police statement. The alleged encounter occurred about noon on Horse Stable Road in the upper part of Rock Creek Park. The officer was transported to the hospital with what were described as 'non-life-threatening injuries.' According to the Park Police statement, the raccoon was 'dispatched' by another officer at the scene. Which, obviously, is jolly bad news for the raccoon who might have been guilty of assaulting the officer but appears to be in the clear over the shooting due, in no small part, to its lack of opposable thumbs. Animal-control officials were then contacted to 'retrieve the carcass.' No explanation was given for what prompted the raccoon to attack the officer. The species, common in Rock Creek Park, is typically a nocturnal hunter, though according to the Humane Society of the United States, daytime activity is 'not necessarily a cause for alarm.' Although, if they do acquire access to weaponry, that might be the time to get worried.
Do you think squirrels are harmless, dear blog reader? We've already established on this blog previously that they're potential killers. Now, seemingly, they're at it again. One reportedly went on a rampage on Thursday at a 'senior citizens living facility' (that's an old people's home for those who don't speak American) in Florida, leaving three people 'injured and bleeding,' according to a panicky 911 call released by the Volusia County Sheriff's Office. 'We had a squirrel that entered our building, and it's in our activity room, and it's jumping on people and biting them and scratching them. So we need help,' said the female caller, adding that she ran into her office at Sterling Court apartments in Deltona to make the call. Delton is about thirty miles Northeast of Orlando. The frantic-sounding caller told the dispatcher, 'We need some care for people here. It's still in there and people are bleeding.' The caller told the 911 dispatcher that an ambulance was needed because 'at least three or four, possibly more' people had been bitten by the naughty squirrel. In the background, someone is heard saying 'the squirrel is still in here,' while another added 'I feel lightheaded! I don't feel good!' Well, you wouldn't would you? 'We need help for the people, it's not about the squirrel,' the caller added, helpfully. The dispatcher asked where the creature actually was, to which the caller responds, 'They told me they threw it out of the building.' Subsequently, according to the Orlando Sentinel, the injured were 'doing fine.' Unlike, one imagines, the squirrel.
Police say that a South Florida man was 'caught naked' driving slowly 'through a neighbourhood with children' and with electrical wires protruding from his penis. News outlets reported that fifty six-year-old Kurt Allen Jenkins faced 'lewd and lascivious exhibition,' 'exposure of sexual organs' and 'resisting a law enforcement officer without violence' charges. According to a Boynton Beach police report, a witness told officers on Monday that the naked man, later identified as Jenkins, drove by him, gesturing for him to look toward Jenkins' groinal area. That was when the witness saw 'an electronic device with wires' allegedly attached to Jenkins' penis. The witness said that Jenkins asked him to 'get inside,' but he declined and,instead, called police. Quite quickly, one imagines. Arriving, officers said that Jenkins 'refused to comply to police commands.' He was eventually 'taken to the ground' and handcuffed (and, by the look of his arrest photos, given a significant spanking into the bargain).
A woman breaking wind during an operation started a fire which resulted in her suffering serious burns. Japanese media - and the Metro - reported that the patient, in her thirties, was having 'a form of laser surgery on her cervix' at the Tokyo Medical University Hospital. But unfortunately, the woman let one rip during the operation – with the noxious fart gasses believed to have ignited the laser. The resulting fire left the woman 'with serious burns to much of her body.' The incident happened in the hospital's Shinjuku Ward in April, but the details have only emerged recently following an investigation into the incident. A 'committee of experts' (medical, one presumes, rather than on farting) 'examined the case' and released a detailed report. Their findings showed that 'no flammable materials' were in the operating theatre during the surgery. And, that the one what smelt it, dealt it. Probably. The report also stated that there was 'no fault' with the equipment being used. It read: 'When the patient's intestinal gas leaked into the space of the operation [room], it ignited with the irradiation of the laser and the burning spread, eventually reaching the surgical drape and causing the fire.'
A woman reported missing since August has been found alive this week after police in South Carolina said that they heard 'loud banging' coming from a metal storage container on a rural property. Acting on a tip, the Spartanburg County Sheriff's deputies discovered thirty-year-old Kala Brown 'chained inside the container like a dog,' Sheriff Chuck Wright told local NBC affiliate WYFF. The deputies were searching the grounds in Woodruff, South of Spartanburg, in relation to a tip about an alleged sex crime when they came across the storage container. Brown told authorities that she had been held captive for two months. 'It's all by God's grace that we found that little girl alive,' Wright told WYFF. The owner of the property — identified as Todd Kohlhepp, a registered sex offender — was extremely charged with kidnapping. Officials said other charges against him were also possible. 'It has been a blessing just having her, but it's great knowing that she's alive and I can go see her and hug her and tell her how much I love her,' Cassandra Ellen, a friend of Brown's, told WYFF. Charlie Carver, Brown's boyfriend, who disappeared around the same time, remains missing. Carver's vehicle was found on Kohlhepp's property during the search on Thursday, according to a sheriff's spokesman. Brown and a friend reportedly had dinner on the night of 29 August at Carver's apartment outside Anderson in South Carolina. The following day, several friends received texts from Brown. But the responses stopped coming on 31 August. The last images of Carver were on security video from his workplace showing him leaving that same day. Joanne Shiflet, Carver's mother, told Dateline that she and her son don't go a day without 'some type of communication.' But, after no word from her son in several days, Shiflet called the manager of the couple's apartment complex. The manager knocked on their door, but there was no answer, so she went inside. It appeared no one had been there for some time, Shiflet said. Romeo, Brown's Pomeranian dog, had been left without any food or water. 'That dog is her baby. She'd never leave him like that,' Brown's mother, Bonnie Newsom, told Dateline in early October. The case attracted national attention several weeks later when mysterious postings began to appear on Carver's Facebook page. The messages, which appeared after Carver and Brown were reported missing, included statements that the couple were fine and had simply left on their own. Both Brown and Carver's families believe his account had been hacked. Makenzie Durham, a friend of Carver's, told WYFF that the discovery of Brown alive gives her hope. 'It's a miracle. They were missing for two months and we found one person alive and well, so miracles do happen,' she said.
A record-breaking supermoon will brighten the night sky later this month. The November full moon is not only the closest full moon of 2016, NASA said, but also the closest full moon since 1948. The moon reportedly will not come this close to Earth again until 25 November 2034, NASA added. By which time, yer actual Keith telly Topping will be seventy one and, probably, dead. The moon will look full and bright all night on 13 and 14 November as it rises in the East around sunset, climbs highest around midnight and then sets in the West. The moon will reach perigee – the closest point to Earth for this month – at some time during the morning of 14 November. A supermoon occurs when the moon is slightly closer to Earth than it typically is and the effect is most noticeable when it occurs around the same time as a full moon. It can appear fourteen per cent bigger and thirty per cent brighter than usual, according to NASA. The word supermoon itself was first coined in 1979 to describe a new or full moon that occurs when the moon is at or near its closest approach to Earth.
West Hamster United striker Andy Carroll was 'probably targeted' following claims that he was chased by armed motorcyclists after training on Wednesday. Police are investigating the alleged incident, which allegedly happened to the former England forward at about midday. 'I don't think it was a coincidence and he was chased for a long time,' said The Hamsters manager Slaven Bilic on Thursday. 'He was very brave and came back to the training ground. He is smiling today and is in a good environment now.' It is understood that police were called at 12:45 after Carroll returned to the club's Rush Green training ground. The former Newcastle and Liverpool forward is recovering from a knee injury, having not played in the Premier League since the opening weekend of the season. West Hamsters have reportedly 'increased security' at their training ground, but Bilic said that the incident should not stop players from continuing their normal routines. 'What can they do? He didn't go somewhere that it would be likely to come into those situations or problems - he just drove home from his work at the training ground to his house. He was stopped a couple of minutes from his house, so what can you do? What should they do? Live an isolated life or stop going to grocery stores or driving cars by themselves or have 10 bodyguards or whatever? To be fair, it's very good when the players want to be linked with normal people and the fans, to mix with them in pubs and all that after the games. The fans and the players love to feel that bond between themselves and if we lose that what's the point in playing football at all?' Bilic added that Carroll would continue his rehabilitation and expects him to be 'back on the pitch in two weeks.'
A North Korean goalkeeper has been fined and banned for a year for deliberately conceding a goal which helped his side get an easier cup tie. Jang Paek-ho was beaten by the opposition goalkeeper as North Korea lost three-one to Uzbekistan at the AFC Under-Sixteen Championship in September. The Asian Football Confederation also fined and banned the team's manager. It said Yung Jong-su and Paek-ho 'brought the game into disrepute' with 'the deliberate conceding of a goal.' Jong-su was fined four thousand smackers, Paek-ho was fined eight hundred knicker and North Korea's football association was fined sixteen grand. Paek-ho came rushing out of his area and appeared to duck underneath the Uzbekistan keeper's long kick forward. As the ball bounced towards his net, Paek-ho clearly still had a chance of preventing a goal, but he threw himself on the ground before he could reach it, allowing the opposition to take a one-nil lead. Uzbekistan's victory meant that they played the eventual group winners, Iraq, in the quarter-finals. By losing, North Korea finished second in their group behind Uzbekistan. They went on to beat Oman in the last eight before losing on penalties to Iran in the semi-finals. The four teams who made the last semi-finals all qualified for the Under-Seventeen World Cup, to be held in India in October 2017. The AFC will allow North Korea to compete - without Paek-ho and Jong-su - but said that they would ban the entire team from the 2018 Under Nineteen Championship if they 'engage in similar behaviour' during qualifying for the event.
Yer actual Keith Telly Topping's beloved (though unsellable) Newcastle United moved six points clear at the top of the Championship table with victory over Cardiff City at a rockin' St James' Park on Saturday. Slack defending allowed Christian Atsu to give The Magpies an early lead and Yoan Gouffran struck a second shortly before half-time watched by yet another near-capacity fifty one thousand crowd. Cardiff sparked brief hopes of a comeback when substitute Peter Whittingham scored with thirteen minutes left. But the hosts held firm for a seventh successive league win (eighth in all competitions), while Cardiff's second straight defeat means The Bluebirds stay twenty first in the Championship. Second-placed Brighton & Hove Albinos later cut Newcastle's lead at the summit back to three points with a win at Bristol City in Saturday's late kick-off. Newcastle kept the pressure on their rivals with a rampant start. They were ahead after less than three minutes as Aleksandar Mitrovic found space inside the Cardiff penalty area before teeing up the lively Atsu. Rafael Benitez's men had several chances to extend their advantage but Jonjo Shelvey's shot was blocked by Sol Bamba, while Cardiff goalkeeper Ben Amos denied both Paul Dummett and Ayoze Pérez. However, that was simply delaying the inevitable as, moments before half-time, Gouffran's low drive gave United the two-goal advantage that their domination warranted. Cardiff had some chances to cut their deficit in the second-half and gain their first point from visits to Newcastle since 1963, with Craig Noone, Rickie Lambert and Bamba all failing to hit the target from promising positions. Neil Warnock's side eventually struck courtesy of Whittingham's shot from the edge of the area as the home defence appealed for handball, but their late efforts to rescue a point were all in vain. The game was be preceded by a special display from Gallowgate Flags, honouring twelve Magpies legends from Newcastle's illustrious history: Colin Veitch, Billy McCracken, Hughie Gallacher, Stan Seymour, Jackie Milburn, Joe Harvey, Bob Moncur, Malcolm Macdonald, Kevin Keegan, Peter Beardsley, Alan Shearer and Sir Bobby Robson. Huddersfield's draw at home to Birmingham and Norwich's surprise defeat against Leeds at Carrow Road meant that the latter and Reading (who won three-nil at Wigan Not Very Athletic) have now joined the pack chasing The Magpies.
Uncle Scunthorpe's latest Record Player event at The Tyneside on Thursday of this week was one of the best ever, a terrific record - Pope Francis Albert's Songs For Swingin' Lovers - obviously and great company, obviously. All that goes without saying. But, it was fan-ruddy-tastic for yer actual Keith Telly Topping to see his old mate and sometime writing partner, the star of stage, screen (and Britain's Got Toilets) Alfie Joey his very self for the first time in about a year. Too long, mate, far far too long. Let's 'do lunch' sometime soon and make sure that doesn't happen again!

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