Sunday, November 27, 2016

Oh Come, All Ye Faithful, Hippies Are Disgraceful

The latest edition of the Radio Times, out this week, features an interview with yer actual Peter Capaldi in the lead up to this year's Doctor Who Christmas Special, The Return Of Doctor Mysterio. The interview covers a variety of Peter's views, including those on being an 'older' Doctor and how he sees the progression of the character. Commenting about how some waste-of-space glakes of no importance allege - with no supporting evidence other than their own stupidity - that the show has now become 'too complicated' for younger viewers, Peter said: 'The thing about Doctor Who is the constitution of the audience. It covers a huge age range, so you have to entertain little kids and you have to entertain hipsters and students, and middle-aged men who should know better. So sometimes there is a kind of metaphysical and intellectual aspect to it, which is more to the fore than other times. But generally we just blow up monsters. There are some moments when you feel, that's a little bit silly, or that's a bit mawkish or whatever, but then you realise, that's for children. You would be a fool not to play to them, because it's their show.'
The magazine also features a competition to win a specially commissioned piece of artwork, taken from their Capaldi photoshoot; readers will need to answer four questions, with the first appearing in this week's issue and the rest over the next threw consecutive issues.
Canada has joined Australia and the United States as Cineplex Cinemas announced this week that they will show The Return Of Doctor Mysterio in selected cinemas across the country on both the 26 and 28 December. As with the other countries, the eighty minute presentation will include A New Kind Of Superhero and Doctor Who Extra.
Daniel Nettheim, the Australian-born director, whose other credits include Humans, Line Of Duty and the Willem Dafoe movie The Hunter, has revealed on social media that he will be working of Doctor Who in its tenth series which is currently in production. The director posted a picture of the TARDIS to his Instagram on Thursday, with the caption: 'Shoot Day #1.' Nettheim previously directed the series nine two-parter The Zygon Invasion and The Zygon Inversion.
TV Comedy Line Of The Week, number one: From Friday night's Qi and the divine Goddess that is Victoria Coren Mitchell's response to Sandi Toksvig telling Alan Davies how one should answer questions which include double-negatives: 'I'm extremely concerned, Sandi, that you - a role model for women everywhere - should, in fleshing out the double-negative, come out with a statement broadly "yes is better than no." That's not what I'll be telling my daughter!'
TV Comedy Line Of The Week, number two: From the same episode of Qi and almost certainly the first mention of the Tyne & Wear village of Kibblesworth (near Birtley) on the BBC, probably ever. Sandi noting that according to the book The Meaning Of Liff (co-written, of course, by the late Douglas Adams and Qi creator John Lloyd), 'Kibblesworth' is the word given to 'a footling amount of money by which a price is less than a sensible number.' Uses it extravagantly the next time you buy something for six pounds and ninety nine pee and get your penny change. 'Thanks for the Kibblesworth, mate!'
Really Very Naughty Indeed TV Comedy Moment Of The Week: Good old Mad-As-Toast Gregg Wallace on Tuesday night's episode of MasterChef: The Professionals: 'I'm desperate to dip my pork into something wet.' Filth, dear blog reader. Total filth.
The final and consolidated ratings figures for the Top Twenty Five programmes, week-ending Sunday 20 November 2016 are as follows:-
1 Strictly Come Dancing: The Results - Sat BBC1 - 12.24m
2 Planet Earth II - Sun BBC1 - 11.60m
3 I'm A Z-List Former Celebrity Desperate To Get My Boat-Race Back On TV ... Please Vote For Me To Stay Here As Long As Possible (I'll Even Eat Worms If You Want) - Mon ITV - 10.84m
4 Coronation Street - Mon ITV - 8.00m
5 Emmerdale - Mon ITV - 7.09m
6 The X Factor - Sat ITV - 6.88m
7 Michael McIntyre's Not Very Funny Show - Sat BBC1 - 6.4m
8 EastEnders - Mon BBC1 - 6.81m
9 Countryfile - Sun BBC1 - 6.69m
10 The Apprentice - Thurs BBC1 - 6.60m
11 The Missing - Wed BBC1 - 6.59m
12 Children In Need - Fri BBC1 - 6.56m
13 Casualty - Sat BBC1 - 5.66m
14 Six O'Clock News - Mon BBC1 - 5.47m
15 England Friendlies: England Versus Spain - Tues ITV - 5.18m
16 BBC News - Sun BBC1 - 5.09m
17 My Mother & Other Strangers - Sun BBC1 - 4.76m
18 Watchdog - Wed BBC1 - 4.47m
19 The ONE Show - Fri BBC1 - 4.45m
20 Holby City - Tues BBC1 - 4.28m
21 DIY SOS: The Big Build - Thurs BBC1 - 4.24m
22 Pointless Z-List Celebrities - Sat BBC1 - 4.22m
23 Ordinary Lies - Tues BBC1 - 4.19m
24 Ten O'Clock News - Mon BBC1 - 4.17m
25 Match Of The Day - Sat BBC1 - 4.00m
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. Strictly Come Dancing's Sunday night episode attracted 11.03 million punters. The X Factor's results programme on Sunday had 6.68 million. The top six programmes on ITV's weekly top thirty were episodes of I'm A Z-List Former Celebrity Desperate To Get My Boat-Race Back On TV ... Please Vote For Me To Stay Here As Long As Possible (I'll Even Eat Worms If You Want). Shame on you, Great Britain; first Brexit, now this. On BBC2, the top rated programme was University Challenge with 3.29 million punters. The three nightly episodes of MasterChef: The Professionals attracted 3.25 million, 3.17 million and 2.98 million followed by Tennis coverage (2.99 million), Only Connect (2.66 million) and BBC2's part of the Children In Need telethon (2.23 million). The second episode of Close To The Enemy drew 2.12 million whilst The Choir: Gareth's Best In Britain attracted 2.10 million viewers and Strictly Come Dancing: It Takes Two was also seen by 2.10 million. Z-List Celebrity Antiques Road Tripe was watched by 1.88 million. The Apprentice: You're Fired! had an audience of 1.82 million, Sold! Inside The World's Biggest Auction House drew 1.70 million and Dad's Army was seen by 1.62 million. The opening episode of the much-trailed drama NW had 1.53 million. As usual, Gogglebox was Channel Four's highest-rated broadcast of the week (3.14 million), follow by Married At First Sight (2.34 million), The Secret Life Of Four Year Olds (2.21 million) and The Supervet (also 2.21 million). Twenty Four Hours In A&E was seen by 1.96 million viewers, whilst Tricks Of The Restaurant Trade had 1.93 million as did Grand Designs, Human drew 1.90 million whilst The Secret Life Of The Zoo, was watched by 1.89 million. SAS: Who Dares Wins attracted 1.79 million and The Last Leg With Adam Hills had 1.77 million. A broadcast of Disney's The Aristocats - the first film that the then very small Keith Telly Topping was taken to see by his parents - drew 1.53 million. Channel Five's top performer was, The Freddie Mercury Story: Who Wants To Live Forever? with 1.99 million, ahead of Can't Pay? We'll Take It Away! (1.74 million), The Yorkshire Vet (1.73 million), Ben Fogle: New Lives In The Wild (1.69 million) and All New Traffic Cops (1.61 million). Chris Tarrant: Extreme Railways was watched by 1.37 million viewers. Coverage of the Premier League action between Middlesbrough Smog Monsters and Poor Bloody Watford Haven't Got A Bloody Hope on Sky Sports 1 was seen by 1.19 million punters. Saturday's lunch-time kick off between The Scum and The Arse drew 1.03 million and yer actual Keith Telly Topping's beloved (though unsellable) Magpies two-nil victory at Dirty Leeds had eight hundred and twenty six thousand. Another Championship clash - Brighton & Hove Albinos against Aston Villains - was seen by two hundred and eight thousand viewers. Sky Sports 2's coverage of Live Test Rugby: England Versus Fiji drew four hundred and ten thousand and the same day's Ireland against New Zealand match attracted two hundred and sixty three thousand. England's appallingly poor capitulation in Live Test Cricket and the second test in India was seen by one hundred and ninety six thousand. Live Tennis: World Tour Finals brought three hundred and sixty three thousand punters to Sky Sports 3. A repeat of Canadian Grand Prix: The Race was Sky Sports F1's most-watched broadcast with sixteen thousand. Gillette Soccer Saturday was - as usual - top of the pile on Sky Sports News HQ with four hundred and fifty two thousand punters and an additional four hundred and twenty one thousand watching the simultcast on Sky Sports 1. Lewis was ITV3's top-rated drama (eight hundred and forty thousand viewers). Endeavour was seen by six hundred and fifty nine thousand and Doc Martin by five hundred and one thousand. The movies Goldeneye and Rambo: First Blood headed ITV4's weekly list with three hundred and ninety three thousand viewers and three hundred and thirty two thousand respectively. Once again ITV2's most-watched broadcast was I'm A Z-List Former Celebrity Desperate To Get My Boat-Race Back On TV ... Please Vote For Me To Stay Here As Long As Possible (I'll Even Eat Worms If You Want): Extra Camp which drew nine hundred and eighty nine thousand viewers. For shame Great Britain, for shame. Family Guy attracted eight hundred and nine thousand. Downton Abbey headed ITV Encore's top ten with seventy eight thousand viewers, ahead of DCI Banks (fifty six thousand) and Joe Maddison's War (fifty three thousand). BBC4's list was topped by Henry VIII's Enforcer: The Rise & Fall Of Thomas Cromwell (six hundred and fifteen thousand), followed by Horizon (five hundred and sixty seven thousand), the latest two episodes of Deep Water (five hundred and twenty nine thousand and four hundred and eighty nine thousand) and a repeat of The Undiscovered Peter Cook (four hundred and fifty seven thousand). Elegance & Decadence: The Age Of The Regency drew four hundred and forty one thousand and Dangerous Earth, four hundred and thirty nine thousand. Timeshift: Penny Blacks & Twopenny Blues was watched by four hundred and nine thousand, Wild Burma: Nature's Lost Kingdom, three hundred and fifty two thousand and The Good Old Days three hundred and thirty four thousand. Sky1's weekly top-ten was headed by The Flash (1.01 million). Arrow was seen by six hundred and forty eighty thousand, DC's Legends Of Tomorrow by six hundred and eleven thousand and Supergirl by five hundred and eighty three thousand. Unfunny, full-of-its-own-importance spew Trollied drew five hundred and twenty nine thousand. Sky Atlantic's list was topped by Westworld (1.18 million). The much-trailed Divorce (two hundred and sixty three thousand) whilst the return for a new series of The Affair (two hundred and thirty six thousand) followed. Last Week Tonight With John Oliver had one hundred and ninety three thousand whilst The Young Pope was watched by one hundred and thirteen thousand. On Sky Living, Criminal Minds drew 1.01 million viewers, the latest episode of From The North favourite The Blacklist attracted eight hundred and thirty seven thousand, Blindspot, seven hundred and fifty five thousand and Greys Anatomy, five hundred and forty three thousand viewers. Conviction attracted four hundred and fifty thousand and Nashville, two hundred and twenty five thousand viewers. Sky Arts' Landscape Artist Of The Year was watched by two hundred and twenty five thousand viewers and The Hollies: Look Through Any Window by fifty thousand. 5USA's Chicago PD was seen by five hundred and twenty nine thousand viewers. NCIS: Los Angeles attracted four hundred and ninety thousand, Criminal Minds: Suspect Behaviour, four hundred and seventy one thousand and Castle, three hundred and seventy nine thousand. Walker Texas Ranger topped CBS Action's list (one hundred and one thousand). NCIS was seen by ninety four thousand. FOX's most watched programmes were The Walking Dead (1.70 million), American Horror Story (three hundred and eighty six thousand) and Talking Dead (two hundred and ninety two thousand). The Universal Channel's weekly list was headed by Chicago Med (four hundred and thirteen thousand), Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (three hundred and thirty seven thousand), Major Crimes (two hundred and seventy three thousand) and Pure Genius (two hundred and forty three thousand). On Dave, Dave Gorman: Modern Life Is Goodish was the highest-rated programme with six hundred and thirty seven thousand punters, followed Have I Got A Bit More News For You (three hundred and thirty seven thousand), the wretched Z-List Celebrity Storage Hunters (three hundred and six thousand), Would I Lie To You? (two hundred and ninety one thousand) and Qi XL (two hundred and ninety thousand). The latest episode of Drama's repeat run of Death In Paradise was watched by five hundred and twenty nine thousand viewers. Last Of The Summer Wine had three hundred and seventy five thousand, followed by Dalziel & Pascoe (three hundred and sixty thousand), The First Stone (three hundred and fifty eight thousand) and New Tricks (three hundred and forty eight thousand). Alibi's highest-rated programmes were Rizzoli & Isles (six hundred and sixty eight thousand), Crossing Lines (two hundred and thirty four thousand), Rosewood (two hundred and twenty eight thousand) and The Doctor Blake Mysteries (eighty three thousand). On The Sony Channel, XXX was watched by one hundred thousand thousand, Saving Hope by sixty one thousand, [spooks] by forty three thousand and Hustle by thirty one thousand. Yesterday's Porridge repeat run attracted two hundred and ninety five thousand. On the Discovery Channel, Gold Rush's latest series continued with five hundred and nineteen thousand viewers. From The North favourite Wheeler Dealers drew two hundred and forty thousand whilst Alaska: The Last Frontier was seen by one hundred and thirty eight thousand, Deadliest Catch by ninety one thousand and Street Outlaws by eighty four thousand punters. Discovery History's The Viet'nam War topped the weekly-list with sixty one thousand. The Man Who Cracked The Nazi Code had thirty five thousand and both Wartime Secrets With Harry Harris and Time Team both attracted twenty five thousand. On Discovery Science, How It's Made was seen by sixty eight thousand viewers. Discovery Turbo's most-watched programme was Wheeler Dealers with forty four thousand. National Geographic's list was headed by Mars which had three hundred and forty eight thousand viewers and Antarctica (seventy five thousand). Air Crash was watched by seventy two thousand. The History Channel's top-ten list was topped by The Curse Of Oak Island (one hundred and forty three thousand). Pawn Stars and American Pickers both attracted an audience of eighty thousand. On Military History, Ancient Aliens was watched by fifty thousand. Nightmare Next Door, British Police Murdered On Duty and Married With Secrets were ID's top-rated programmes of the week (with forty eight thousand viewers, forty six thousand and forty six thousand murder-lovers respectively). Robbie Coltrane's Critical Evidence, Homicide Hunters and Obsession: Dark Desires headed CI's list (one hundred and twenty six thousand, fifty eight thousand and fifty seven thousand). Britain's Darkest Taboos drew forty five thousand. GOLD's latest series of wretchedly unfunny alleged sitcom Marley's Ghosts attracted one hundred and seventy six thousand, whilst one of several Only Fools & Horses Christmas specials broadcast during the week - The Frog's Legacy - had one hundred and ninety six thousand. Comedy Central's largest audience of the week was for Impractical Jokers (three hundred and twenty six thousand). Your TV's Corrupt Crimes was seen by seventy seven thousand. On More4, Eight Out Of Ten Cats was the highest-rated programme with three hundred and fifty nine thousand. Car SOS attracted three hundred and fifty three thousand punters. E4's latest episode of the massively popular The Big Bang Theory drew 2.66 million viewers, by a distance the largest multi-channels audience of the week. Hollyoaks had nine hundred and eighty four thousand. The Horror Channel's broadcast of Book Of Blood attracted one hundred and eighteen thousand. Their top-ten list for the week also included The Shrine (one hundred and three thousand thousand), Nude Nuns With Big Guns (ninety seven thousand), an episode of the cult classic Land Of The Giants (eighty two thousand) and The Unfolding (seventy four thousand). The Exorcist, headed Syfy's top-ten with two hundred and twenty four thousand whilst Terminator II: Judgement Day had one hundred and thirty eight thousand. The Wonder Of Animals and Nature's Great Events were watched by forty five thousand and thirty thousand respectively on Eden. Bondi Vets was the Animal Planet's most-watched programme with fifty four thousand. On W, The Strain attracted three hundred and seventeen thousand punters. Police Interceptors was watched by one hundred and seventy four thousand and The X-Files drew one hundred and forty eight thousand on Spike. Cake Boss was seen by one hundred and two thousand people on TLC. The Vault's USA High drew twelve thousand punters. Ireland's Country attracted an audience of twenty six thousand on Irish TV.
The BBC has unveiled its Christmas TV highlights, with seasonal specials and the return of popular series set to dominate the festive period. The return of Sherlock, Call The Midwife and Still Open All Hours will all-but-guarantee large audiences, as will standalone specials for The Great British Bake Off, Strictly Come Dancing, Doctor Who, Citizen Khan, Last Tango In Halifax and Mrs Brown's Boys. The BBC dominated viewing last Christmas with eight of the ten most watched shows on Christmas Day and all ten on Boxing Day. Sherlock, Mrs Brown's Boys, Strictly and Call The Midwife all put in strong showings, as did the new Agatha Christie adaptation And Then There Were None. Other familiar highlights on BBC1 over Christmas include a festive version of Michael McIntyre's Big Show, a compilation of 'the best bits' from the first series of Tracy Ullman's comedy show and one-off returns for Jonathan Creek and Outnumbered, which was last on screens two years ago. 'We've pulled out all the stops this Christmas to bring the nation together with a sparkling line-up of family favourites, brand new treats and festive specials on BBC television,' said the BBC's director of content, Charlotte Moore. 'We are showcasing an unrivalled range of top quality comedy, drama, entertainment, factual and religious programmes across our channels that promise to deliver something for everyone.' While the schedule promises the eagerly anticipated return of many favourites, there are few new shows. Among the thirty five BBC1 programme highlights announced to fit in with the publication schedules of TV listings magazines, eight have not appeared on UK TV screens in some form before. Two of the most eye-catching new BBC1 programmes are animated features. Revolting Rhymes, a two-part animated adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'mischievous twist' on classic fairytales, will star big names including Dominic West, Tamsin Greig and David Walliams. The Snowman creator Raymond Briggs will also be returning with Ethel & Earnest, a feature-length story based on his 'award-winning graphic novel' (or, comic as most normal people who aren't Gruniad Morning Star readers call it) and voiced by Brenda Blethyn and Jim Broadbent. New drama comes in the form of To Walk Invisible, which tells the story of the Brontë sisters and is written and directed by Last Tango In Halifax creator Sally Wainwright. Agatha Christie adaptation Witness For The Prosecution, starring Toby Jones, Kim Cattrall and Andrea Riseborough, will hope to recreate the success of And Then There Were None without the help of Aidan Turner's naughty nakedness. As part of the BBC's 'commitment to community theatre', it is also showing live spoof production Peter Pan Goes Wrong, for which the team behind The Play That Goes Wrong will recreate an amateur performance of the JM Barrie classic. BBC2 has a greater proportion of new shows among its highlights, including a collaboration between Professor Brian Cox and Eric Idle called The Entire Universe and documentaries about Dame Judi Dench and Sir Lenny Henry (last funny, briefly, in 1983). Christmas specials for Mock The Week, Qi XL and the recently rebooted Robot Wars, as well as two special episodes of Dragon's Den (and, one uses the word 'special' quite wrongly) will provide more familiar programming on the channel. The full schedule for the Christmas period will not be released until next week with more new shows likely to appear. Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton return with another Inside Number Nine, while US jazz star Gregory Porter, singer Beverley Knight, Strictly's Bruno Tonioli and broadcaster Suzi Klein will present West Side Stories, a celebration of the musical ahead of its sixtieth anniversary. Christmas worship will include Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve from St Chad's Roman Catholic cathedral in Birmingham and the Christmas Day Service from Bristol Cathedral. Arts offerings include a look back at the career of Margot Fonteyn by Darcey Bussell, the Royal Ballet's Nutcracker and author Alan Bennett revealing his diaries in a new film about his life.
Call The Midwife is to have three more series which will keep the show on BBC1 until at least 2020. Charlotte Moore, the BBC's director of content, said that the three-series order 'underlines our commitment to Britain's most popular drama series.' Three Christmas specials have also been commissioned. A sixth series of the show, about nuns and midwives working in London's East End, has already been announced and will be broadcast in early 2017. The drama, created by Heidi Thomas and inspired by the memoirs of former nurse Jennifer Worth, was first shown on BBC1 in 2012. A Christmas special, partly set at a missionary hospital in South Africa, will be broadcast next month. The three new series will take the characters further into the 1960s - a time when Britain, according to Thomas, was 'fizzing with change and challenge. There is so much rich material - medical, social and emotional - to be explored,' she said in a statement. 'We have now delivered well over one hundred babies on screen and like those babies the stories keep on coming.'
Three British TV series have triumphed at the International EMMY awards, which have taken place in New York. BBC1 drama Capital, based on the novel by John Lanchester, won the prize for best TV movie or mini-series. Dustin Hoffman received the best actor award for his performance in the BBC1 movie Roald Dahl's Esio Trot. The comedy prize was won by Hoff The Record starring David Hasselhoff, which is produced in the UK and broadcast on Dave. The mockumentary-style series sees the former Baywatch actor playing a very fictionalised version of himself as he moves to the UK to get his career back on track and, actually, proves that The Hoff is rather a good sport and doesn't mind sending himself up. Elsewhere, the German thriller Deutschland Eighty Three, which was broadcast on Channel Four in the UK, won the best drama series award, while Shonda Rhimes, the producer of Scandal, Grey's Anatomy and How To Get Away With Murder, was presented with an honorary International EMMY. Other winners included Christiane Paul, who won best actress for her role in the German drama Unterm Radar (Under The Radar).
It's extremely official: Jezza Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May's The Grand Tour is an undisputed success. The former Top Gear trio's debut on Amazon Prime is now - 'officially' - the most-watched premiere in the streaming service's history, knocking down a previous record set by The Man In The High Castle. Amazon announced on Monday that 'millions of Prime members streaming the first episode in the US, UK, Germany, Austria and Japan' viewed The Grand Tour when it premiered on Friday 18 November. Although, in keeping with the company's policy of not releasing specific viewings figures, they didn't say how many 'millions'. There were also a record number of new Amazon Prime subscriptions on the day of release, topping all other days except the Prime Day super-sales. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced The Grand Tour's impressive new record saying: 'The guys are back, doing what they do best - the chemistry between Jeremy, Richard and James is what makes The Grand Tour so entertaining. Their creativity, along with the amazing production quality and 4K HDR streaming, has Prime members responding in a big way. Kudos and congrats to the whole team.' While Amazon Prime was reported to have invested one hundred and sixty million smackers into The Grand Tour, that figure might actually only be a fraction of the actual costs. Netflix boss Ted Sarandos - who bid on The Grand Tour - and, obviously, has no agenda to his comments whatsoever (no, siree, Bob) believes that Amazon will have spent nearly a hundred-million pounds more than has been reported. 'It was about a quarter-of-a-billion dollars,' Sarandos snitched (although how he knew that, he didn't elaborate). 'We'll be able to figure out later what it was that made the show the show. It'll be interesting with Grand Tour to see how much of that is the players, who in many cases are big personalities, but what elements of Top Gear will people miss?'
It turns out that just when you thought 2016 couldn't, possibly, get any worse, it actually can. Leigh Francis's wretched unfunny as a puddle-of-piss character Keith Lemon and that professional Northern berk Paddy McGuinness are making a movie spoof sketch show for ITV. Oh, joy. Bet that'll be so funny. The Keith & Paddy Picture Show will feature the odious pair and z-list celebrity guests 'paying affectionate tribute to a famous film each week.' Scheduled for Saturday nights next year, the five thirty-minute episodes will 'mix film parodies and behind-the-scenes mockumentary footage.' Leigh Francis said: 'I'm so super excited to be working with one of my best pals Paddy McGuinness. Paddy and I spoke about doing this years ago, and the dream is finally becoming a reality. I've stopped eating bread, to make it easier for Paddy to do "the lift" when we recreate Dirty Dancing. I'm also excited to be eaten by a shark and be punched in't face by the Italian Stallion that is actually from Bolton. Word!' McGuinness added .... some utter trivial bollocks that nobody with half a brain in their head gives a monkeys about. The commission follows a 'successful', non-broadcast pilot earlier this year, which co-starred Kelly Brook. The series is spin-off of the regular Keith & Paddy's Film Bit' segment on the wretchedly unfunny The Keith Lemon Sketch Show. One film presumably not receiving an 'homage' will be Keith Lemon: The Film. Rightly savaged by critics, the 2012 picture, which also co-starred Brook, has the distinction of a zero per cent rating on aggregate review site Rotten Tomatoes, though Francis has said that a sequel script has been written. The series has been written -presumably, in crayon - by Francis and McGuinness with Francis's regular collaborators Dan Johnston and Jamie Deeks, who also produce and direct. It has been ordered by ITV's commissioning editor, comedy and entertainment, Saskia Schuster - so, for future reference, when this pile of stinking diarrhoea turns out to be the colossal, worthless turkey one expects, Ms Schuster her very self is the person to blame.
ITV is to move its News At Ten back to make room for a new daily entertainment programme. The Nightly Show will be launched next year and will be fronted by a different guest presenter every week. David Walliams will host the first week, with more presenters due to be announced soon. The show will go out at 10pm five nights a week, with the News At Ten pushed back to 10.30pm during The Nightly Show's initial eight-week run. The news will move back to its regular slot when The Nightly Show finishes its run. Earlier this year, ITV claimed it had 'no plans to permanently move the news from the 10pm slot.' Walliams said that he was 'thrilled to be the first host for this brand new show.' ITV said the series would feature 'a high tempo mixture of topical monologue, studio games, celebrity guests, experts and VTs [pre-recorded items].' Episodes will be recorded in London at 6pm on the evening they are broadcast. Peter Davey, ITV's head of comedy entertainment, said: 'We're really excited about launching this bold new show, and delighted that David will kick off what will be an eight-week entertainment treat for viewers.'
A Strictly Come Dancing professional dancer who was, allegedly, assaulted after last week's show is yet to make a formal complaint to police. Gorka Marquez reportedly required dental surgery after two of his lower jaw front teeth were badly chipped in the attack in Blackpool. The BBC said that he was attacked by 'a gang of youths' whilst reportedly walking to a nightclub with colleagues. The twenty six-year-old Spaniard was in the Lancashire resort for a live edition of from Blackpool Tower Ballroom. A Lancashire Police spokesperson said: 'We have checked CCTV and spoken to the club and inquiries continue. We have had no formal complaint from Mr Marquez.' After the attack, Marquez tweeted: 'Thanks for all your kind messages and support about Blackpool. It was a bad experience but I'm feeling better and just want to look forward to the show on Saturday!' The BBC said he had been 'sadly the victim of an unprovoked incident.' Marquez made his Strictly debut in this year's series and had been partnering EastEnders actress Tameka Empson. The pair were eliminated in the second round but Marquez has continued to appear in the programme as part of the weekly group routines.
The National Lottery draw will no longer be shown live on BBC1 from next year as part of a new deal between the broadcaster and operator Camelot. Viewers wishing to see the balls drawn live on Saturdays will have to visit the iPlayer from 7 January onwards. The Saturday draw has been a BBC fixture since 1994. Its Wednesday counterpart was dropped in 2012. The BBC said that the decision to move the show onto a digital platform 'reflected changes in viewers' behaviour.' Charlotte Moore, the director of BBC content, said that the new three-year deal would give audiences 'more ways to access the draw results across a range of platforms.' The National Lottery Awards, which recognises recipients of National Lottery Good Causes funding, will continue to be shown on BBC1.
Fans of DC's Legends Of Tomorrow were left puzzled when Rip Hunter vanished from the drama. Arthur Darvill's character was written out of the superhero series after the series two premiere, in a complicated plot involving time-travel and an atomic bomb. But, why did such a major character exit the series? It turns out that Arty took time off from Legends so he could reprise his role of Paul Coates in the third and final series of ITV's Broadchurch. 'They were very kind on Legends - Broadchurch is something that's been going on for a while, so they had to work around that,' From The North favourite Arthur told the Digital Spy website. 'I was so pleased to finish off that journey on Broadchurch.' And as for Rip's return? 'I do come back, in some way, to Legends Of Tomorrow,' he revealed. 'But I can't talk about that! I always work on shows that you're not allowed to bloody talk about.'
Billie The Piper has said she is 'annoyed' by the number of acting roles she is offered which involve sex scenes. The actress told ES Magazine that it was 'unusual' for her to be offered a part without at least one nude appearance. 'What's annoying is that they are fun roles, if you can remove the sex,' she claimed. 'It's the sex that makes it annoying. Otherwise they are interesting stories, interesting women with chequered pasts.' The thirty four-year-old, whose previous roles include a high-class escort Belle De Jour in ITV drama Secret Diary Of A Call Girl between 2007 and 2011, said that she was 'tired' of being sent 'hooker scripts.' Rowdy Billie Piper also revealed that she has reunited with Secret Diary's writer, Lucy Prebble, for a new television series, which the actress described as 'beautifully bleak.' And, presumably, includes no sex scenes. She told the magazine that the as yet unnamed series was about 'two London women in their thirties and everything that comes with that.' Except sex. The actress added: 'I would say, tonally, it's black comedy but it might just be black.'
The BBC's network coverage of news from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland has improved since 2008, a study published by the BBC Trust has found. But, the research from Cardiff University also suggested the corporation 'still faces challenges' posed by devolution. The study looked at the number of news stories devoted to the UK nations during certain periods in 2015 and 2016. It also examined the depth of the coverage and the clarity of reporting. The original BBC Trust report, published eight years ago, concluded that the corporation needed to improve the range, clarity and precision of its network news coverage of the different UK nations. A follow-up published in 2010 found there had been 'significant improvements' but added that some news reports still did not make clear which part of the UK a story referred to. The latest research looked at the way stories were covered on the BBC as well as on rival broadcasters. The study found that the BBC had 'got better' at letting audiences know which stories applied only to England or to England and Wales. It said the BBC made clear a story only applied to certain locations in seventy eight per cent of cases - which was 'a big improvement in recent years and puts the BBC well ahead of other broadcasters.' But the report added: 'Issues remained with the accuracy of the way stories were delineated and signalled to audiences.' The research also showed that, overall, since 2007 there had been an increase in the extent of BBC network news coverage of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. Stories from England - particularly Southern England - are still 'more likely to dominate' national bulletins, but the level of coverage from other areas was shown to be well above that of other broadcasters. In response, the BBC said it would continue to 'give high priority' to reporting the news from across the UK.
More people around the world will be able to listen to The Archers and Moral Maze as part of BBC plans to launch 'the Netflix of the spoken word' with its radio content. The corporation's Director General, Tony Hall, outlined plans in a speech on Wednesday to offer all of the BBC's audio content as well as World Service broadcast services to viewers and listeners outside the UK. No decision has yet been taken on whether to charge overseas users – who do not pay the licence fee – for the service. The proposals come as the BBC is facing increased competition from streaming services such as Netflix. Hall's plans also come a week after the World Service announced it would launch regular news programmes for North Korea and Russia as part of the biggest expansion of its journalism since the 1940s. 'The BBC makes the best radio in the world. It is one of our crown jewels, and we have an extraordinary wealth of audio riches at our disposal,' Hall told attendees of The Voice Of The Listener & Viewer conference in London. 'But, with the level of excellence we have, are we doing enough to push the fantastic drama, arts, comedy and entertainment we deliver on the world stage? With our world-class content, we could use our current output and the richness of our archive to create a Netflix of the spoken word.' The BBC believes that the expansion of its audio services, including access to archive footage that typically disappears after thirty days on the BBC iPlayer service, will allow listeners in China, for example, to hear content that is currently difficult to find. Hall has earmarked enhancing the BBC's audio 'offer' as 'one of the big challenges' facing his team. Audio sits alongside news, natural history, drama, education, science and the arts as areas in which the corporation believes it can lead the way globally. The BBC's ability to broadcast around the world has formed part of the last two licence fee settlements. The government agreed a two hundred and eighty nine million knicker funding boost for the World Service in 2015, five years after forcing the corporation to take on the two hundred and forty five million notes annual cost of the World Service, which had previously been funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The about-turn came after the BBC published its Future Of News report in 2015, which told the government that cuts to the World Service would reduce the UK's global 'soft power' in the face of the growth of rivals such as RT (formerly Russia Today) and al-Jazeera. In his speech, Hall said: 'It is one of the things that will help the BBC carry the full weight of Britain's culture and values, knowledge and know how to the world in the years ahead. And say something really important about modern Britain.' Further details of the proposals, including how the audio service would be funded, will be unveiled in the spring.
Jokes about the Queen's sex life on David Baddiel's really very unfunny indeed Radio 4 show and FOX News host Sean Hannity's coverage of the US election have both been found to be in breach of UK broadcasting rules. The episode of Bladdibub's Don't Make Me Laugh, which was broadcast at 6.30pm on the Queen's ninetieth birthday, included the subject 'the Queen must have had sex at least four times'. Panelists included Russell Kane (very popular with students), Sara Pascoe, Omid Djalili, and Adam Hess, with Bladdibub his very self introducing the round. The regulator said that some of the jokes about the Queen and Prince Philip were 'not justified' by the context and were 'even more likely' to cause offence because listeners would have thought they were being 'deliberately broadcast' on the Queen's birthday. The programme was cleared by BBC executives before the broadcast date was known. The BBC Trust previously ruled that the segment breached its editorial guidelines and the show has since been very cancelled. Ofcom said: 'We considered that comments about the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were made in a mocking way, which would have been perceived by many listeners as humiliating and intrusive. Ofcom took into account that the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were public figures with wide exposure in the media. Nonetheless, we considered that the mocking and demeaning tone of these comments made them capable of causing offence. The potential for offence was increased by the fact that these remarks were broadcast on the Queen's ninetieth birthday.' Ofcom also censured FOX's Hannity show over its coverage of the US election in three broadcasts in early August, saying it 'presented an overwhelmingly one-sided view' in favour of Donald Trump's bid for the White House. The episodes of Hannity included segments on topics such as the investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private e-mail server – which have not resulted in any charges – and an interview with The Trump his very self. The regulator said that the programme 'did not follow due impartiality rules' requiring it to reflect arguments in favour of Clinton's bid, despite viewers expecting the show to present 'a more favourable view' of a Republican presidential candidate. Hannity has been criticised for his pro-Trump coverage and providing the then presidential candidate with 'free publicity.' His FOX colleague, Megyn Kelly, has implied that Hannity's show was 'a safe space for Trump' to appear. It is the first time Ofcom has found Hannity in breach of its rules, but FOX News has been censured five times over the past five years. Previous breaches include broadcasting pro-Brexit views on the day of the UK's referendum on EU membership and claims that Birmingham was 'a no-go zone' for non-Muslims.
From The North favourite yer actual Eddie Izzard was 'making a stand against transgender people being aggressively attacked' when he swore at a man who threatened him, a court heard. The comedian told Hammersmith Magistrates' Court that he 'attacked back with words' after one Jamie Penny threatened to 'do' Eddie's Pimlico home. Penny was found extremely guilty of two counts of using threatening and abusive words with intent to cause distress. He will be very sentenced on 30 November. Hopefully, to lots of jail. The court heard that Eddie was by his car minding his own business outside his home on 3 April when he was approached by two men, one of whom said that he wanted a lift. When he was refused, Penny told the comedian: 'Izzard, we are going to do your house when you are away,' the jury heard. Eddie told the court that he felt Penny was being 'totally aggressive' and was threatening to break into his house so he had sworn back at him. Which, to be perfectly honest, is a damn-sight less than most people would probably have done in a similar situation when confronted with abusive scum. Eddie said that he had responded because 'for hundreds of thousands of years transgender people have been aggressively attacked' and 'I just thought, "it is not going to happen."' Good on ya, Eddie. Give him both barrels; bullies are always big of the gob until someone stands up to them at which point the usually shat in their own pants and run a mile. The court heard that a month later, on 4 May, Penny had shouted at Eddie and called him 'a poofter' when he saw him in a nearby street. Which, of course, Eddie isn't, so not only is this clown aggressive and abusive, he's also inaccurate in the insults he throws out. As a result the comedian decided to go to the police and Penny was arrested and banged up in the cells. Giving evidence, Penny claimed that it was 'not him' but, rather, 'his friend' who had threatened Eddie, and said that the comedian had responded by 'talking to us like we are nothing.' Which, as it happens, you are, mate. On the second occasion, Penny claimed he saw Eddie 'harassing a black man' and had told him to leave him alone but had not called him 'a poofter.' The court, clearly, did not believe his allegations. He was ordered by magistrates not to contact Eddie and was bailed until sentencing at Westminster Magistrates' Court. Sadly, the judge did not also take the opportunity to advise him to get a new brain since the one he has is,seemingly, narrow and full of shit. An opportunity missed, some may suggest.
The actress Amber Heard is reportedly being sued by the producers of troubled film production London Fields. The dark thriller was due to debut at the Toronto Film Fesitval last year but was pulled after 'a legal wrangle' between the director and producers. According to Variety, producers Chris Hanley and Jordan Gertner are suing Heard for ten million bucks for allegedly 'sabotaging' the film. Heard's lawyer declined to comment. The film is based on Martin Amis's acclaimed - though, many felt, unfilmable - novel. The complaint against Heard filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Tuesday said: 'Heard participated in a concerted campaign of disinformation against the plaintiff and the picture, which has significantly damaged both.' According to the claim, the producers contend that Heard worked with director Mathew Cullen to remove some of the more 'provocative' sex scenes from the movie. The producers - who are, obviously, not fascinated by provocative sex scenes, oh no, very hot water - also say that the film being pulled from Toronto prompted nearly all of the film's potential distributors to end negotiations with them. The thriller centres on a clairvoyant, played by Heard, who is aware of the time and place of her death, but does not know the perpetrator - one of two strikingly different suitors. It is narrated by Billy Bob Thornton's character - an author who has moved to London to try to overcome his writer's block - who is determined to intercept the killer. Heard's former husband, Johnny Depp, has a cameo role in the film. Cullen sued Hanley and Gertner at the opening of the Toronto Film Festival last year, accusing them of fraud. The premiere screening was then cancelled. Hanley and Gertner later counter-sued Cullen, accusing him of breaching his contract.
An eighty-year-old woman who wrote software for the Apollo space missions has been given the United States' highest civilian honour, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Margaret Hamilton was one of twenty one people awarded the medal by President Barack Obama in a star-studded ceremony this week. It is almost fifty years since her initial work on the Apollo 11 moon mission. Hamilton's pioneering software helped land the lunar module and its crew on the Moon in 1969. Other notable medal recipients at Tuesday's ceremony at the White House included comedian and talkshow host Ellen DeGeneres, the actor Tom Hanks and musicians Diana Ross and Bruce Springsteen. President Obama said Hamilton 'symbolises that generation of unsung women who helped send humankind into space.' Astronauts yer actual Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin his very self may have garnered the majority of the headlines after Apollo 11's successful landing (with Michael Collins getting one or two), but Hamilton was among those working behind the scenes at time when computer science was so new it was not even a recognised term and code was written out by hand. Hamilton led a team at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that created the on-board flight software for NASA's moon missions. 'Our astronauts didn't have much time, but thankfully they had Margaret Hamilton,' President Obama said, as he awarded her the medal. He was referring to a tweak Hamilton made to the Apollo system which enabled the computer to prioritise commands when overloaded with tasks. Her work provided vital on the day: Minutes before the lunar lander reached the Moon's surface in July 1969, several computer alarms were triggered. But, thanks to Hamilton's foresight, the NASA mission control team was able to see that the alert was nothing critical and the landing went ahead. 'If the computer hadn't recognised this problem and taken recovery action, I doubt if Apollo 11 would have been the successful moon landing it was,' wrote Hamilton in 1971. Hamilton was a twenty four-year-old maths graduate when she got a job at MIT. She planned for it to be temporary step, while supporting her husband who was studying law at Harvard University. She then intended to go back to her own studies. However when MIT was asked to work on the Apollo space programme, she joined the team and was hooked in an exciting new field. In an interview with Wired magazine in 2015, Hamilton admitted that being a working mother in the 1960s brought 'additional challenges' and she often took her daughter, then four years old, into the lab with her. She also noted that in this new world of computing, there were no footsteps to follow in. 'When I first got into it, nobody knew what it was that we were doing. It was like The Wild West. There was no course in it. They didn't teach it,' she said. Yet she and her MIT colleagues went on to write the code for the world's first portable computer. From the 1970s onwards, she used her expertise to found her own software businesses, including Hamilton Technologies, which is still based in Massachusetts. Obama also hailed the Indiana-born mathematician for developing software architecture that 'echoes in countless technologies today' and said that she encapsulated the 'American spirit of discovery that exists in every little girl and little boy.' Rear Admiral Grace Hopper was also awarded the medal, posthumously. Obama said that the computer scientist, who died in 1992, was 'at the forefront of computers and programming development' from the 1940s to 1980s. President Obama hailed the twenty one honourees as 'extraordinary Americans who have lifted our spirits, strengthened our union, pushed us toward progress.'
Hundreds of people in a former steel-making town in the North East became 'directors' of companies involved in naughty pornography, dating, diets and travel, an investigation has allegedly revealed. Residents in Consett in County Durham, were allegedly paid to allegedly forward alleged post that came to their address, but allegedly claimed that, otherwise, they had 'no involvement' in the companies. Allegedly. One, John Mawson, claimed that he 'didn't really know' what his role involved. But, he did it anyway. Simon Dowson, who set up the legal firms, claimed that 'everyone was informed.' Dowson, from Shotley Bridge, formed the shell entities to provide a UK address, directors, company records and tax returns to meet UK requirements so overseas online businesses could trade in Europe. These were businesses considered by credit card companies to be 'at high risk' of refund requests. The investigation - by the Reuters news agency - found at least four hundred and twenty nine 'unconnected people' in the town were paid fifty knicker in cash to become 'directors', with a further one hundred and fifty quid a year for forwarding company mail and fees for extra paperwork. Mawson was 'recruited' by a neighbour who had already signed up. 'All we were told was that we would just get letters sent and all we had to do was hand them on,' he told BBC Newcastle. 'Money was rather tight. All we wanted was a bit of extra cash.' Another 'director', Andrew McBride, claimed that he 'did not realise' what he had agreed to, but accepted that he should have checked further. Dowson was paid between two thousand five hundred and three thousand smackers per shell company, administering twelve hundred such companies at his peak. Using 'unconnected individuals' as directors prevented 'cross contamination' if credit card companies withdrew services from one company, he said. 'It's a very simple operation. It's commonplace. It's just not commonplace here,' he said. Dowson said that the 'directors' were 'given information' about the companies, their role and any documents they had to sign. 'There was nobody ever kept in the dark,' he claimed. Mawson claimed that he only found out a few years ago one of his 'directorships' involved pornography sites and wanted 'nothing more to do' with the arrangement. Dowson said that the overseas companies' trade included travel, bingo and 'vanilla' dating sites, not 'just adult entertainment.' He has been investigated by the Insolvency Service, part of what is now the government's Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, he said. Some of the firms using his service have also been investigated - and some closed down - but there have been no criminal charges or sanctions brought against Dowson or any of the 'directors.' He was told what he had been doing was 'incorrect or maybe not best practice' but 'not illegal in any way, shape or form,' he said. He has agreed to stop using untrained people as 'directors' and said that his company formation business would soon close. The government declined Reuters' request for comment. Which is odd because they've normally go plenty to say for themselves.

A Heinz beans advert showing how to beat out a song on tin cans has been banned 'for health and safety reasons.' The advertisement featured young people and adults using empty or full tins to make the rhythm of a song, with the catchline 'Learn the Can Song.' The Advertising Standards Authority ruled that 'mistakes' might be made that could lead to people cutting their hands or fingers. Interesting word, 'might'. Kraft Heinz denied that the advertising campaign posed a risk to anyone with half-a-brain in their head,although conceded that such a pre-requisite obviously didn't include the Advertising Standards Authority itself. A total of three viewers - who, frankly, ought to be sodding-well ashamed of themselves - whinged that the TV advert 'could' encourage 'unsafe practice' and six more - who, also, need to take a jolly good hard look in the mirror - believed it featured behaviour that 'could' be 'dangerous for children to copy.' And, once again, let us consider the word 'could' and then simply stand up and salute the utter shite that some people chose to care about. Tragically, instead of taking the opportunity of publicly naming and shaming these nine risible fractions of individuals who -really - need to grow the Hell up, the ASA said it was 'unlikely' that consumers would be 'as proficient as the actors' at flipping and twirling the cans around. But, it said that mistakes 'might' - there's that word again - be made with an empty can, given the manoeuvres required and the lack of instructions. 'For the reasons given and because the ad did not include information on how to ensure consumer safety when recreating the song, we concluded that the ad condoned and encouraged behaviour that prejudiced health or safety,' the decision continued. 'We told Heinz to ensure that future ads did not condone or encourage behaviour that prejudiced health and safety, including behaviour that could be dangerous for children to emulate, for example by featuring open tin cans being used to play music.' The ASA ordered Heinz not to broadcast the advert again in its current form. Interestingly, just at the point where various newspapers were writing up their 'it's health and safety gone mad' articles, the Health and Safety Executive quickly said it 'would not contradict' the ruling, but its chairman Martin Temple said: 'It does look like the term "health and safety" has been used incorrectly here.' He added: 'We would hope the public realise there are absolutely no regulations preventing children from playing with empty sealed tin cans. One thing kids never lack is imagination to invent their own games with the simplest of props. Obviously if a child is playing with a jagged edge on a tin container there is a risk of injury, but we would hope parents manage that risk.' Heinz said its online tutorials on social media included taping the ends of an empty can as an extra precaution and at no time did it show people placing their hands or fingers inside the cans themselves. It said safety was its 'number one priority' but acknowledged the decision and confirmed that it had 'no plans' to run the campaign again. A spokesman said: 'We believe this popular ad did not pose any safety risk and many fans were inspired to create their own video versions.'
Punk memorabilia said to be worth five million knicker has been burned in the middle of the River Thames. Joe Corre, the son of Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren and fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood, burned the items on the fortieth anniversary of the release of the Sex Pistols debut single. The forty eight-year-old told the crowd that 'punk was never meant to be nostalgic.' The 'protest' was aimed at official plans to 'celebrate' the movement's fortieth anniversary. Corre said his collection of clothes, posters and other music-related items was worth five million quid. Although, not now it isn't. Dummies of former Prime Minister David Cameron, ex-Chancellor George Osborne and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson were among those engulfed in flames as part of the protest, on a boat near the Albert Bridge in Chelsea. Corre, who founded lingerie company Agent Provocateur, has been critical of Punk London's plans to mark forty years of the sub-culture. The plans, which include events, gigs and exhibitions, is supported by groups including the Mayor of London, British Library and British Film Institute. 'Punk was never, never meant to be nostalgic - and you can't learn how to be one at a Museum of London workshop,' said Corre on Saturday. 'Punk has become another marketing tool to sell you something you don't need. The illusion of an alternative choice. Conformity in another uniform.' The Sex Pistols' debut single 'Anarchy In The UK' was released on 26 November 1976. Sex Pistols bass player Glen Matlock told Sky News that Corre's protest was 'dopey. I want to paraphrase Monty Python - "he's not the saviour, he's a naughty boy." I think that Joe is not the anti-Christ, I think he's a nincompoop,' Glen said. Dame Vivienne told the crowd to 'switch to green energy' following her son's demonstration. Very punk. Leaning out of the back window on the top of a green double-decker bus, parked on the river bank, she said: 'This is the first step towards a free world. It's the most important thing you could ever do in your life.' Although, she didn't elaborate on how, exactly.
Police were reportedly called to the set of The X Factor on Saturday night after 'pranksters' invaded the stage. Honey G - who is a popular beat combo, apparently - had finished her performance and was getting feedback from the judges when a man ran up behind her and 'tried to touch her.' A group  of naughty japesters who call themselves Trollstation claimed responsibility and said that they were behind the stunt. 'There was a stage invasion by four men, with one further person in support,' a spokesman for The X Factor said not long after the incident. 'All five had been in the audience. They were spoken to by police and security and have now been removed from the studio.' As Louis Walsh was speaking to Honey G, a man wearing a baseball cap came onto the stage, grabbed her by the shoulders and tried to take her microphone. Ironically, she had just performed a version of MC Hammer's 'U Can't Touch This'. Really, really badly.
A stunning shot of a white 'fog bow' has been captured by a photographer over Rannoch Moor in the West of Scotland. Melvin Nicholson was out on the moor, South of Glen Coe, on Sunday when the 'unbelievably beautiful' white rainbow appeared. Nicholson said: 'It is a colourless rainbow that is made up of tiny water droplets that cause fog. It's an amazing thing to witness and can generally only be seen if the sun is behind you when you are looking at it.' He said an isolated windswept tree, framed by the fog bow, completed the shot. 'It was just beyond magical and one of those days that you'll remember for a long time to come,' he added.
Keith Telly Topping's beloved (though unsellable) Newcastle United's tea lady has told 5Live she feels she is 'leaving friends behind' after stepping down from her role after more than fifty years of service. Kath Cassidy has served beverages to thousands of home and away players, managers and journalists at St James' Park since 1963. The club, who described the long serving Kath as 'legendary', celebrated her retirement when the eighty eight-year-old was a special guest at the game against Blackburn on Saturday. Which, somewhat typically, the Toon only went and lost, didn't they? When asked whether she would be going back to St James' Park to cheer the team on in future games, she replied 'most certainly; they said I can go up any time I want.' As for yer actual Alan Shearer's tea preferences, Kath said 'he doesn't take sugar', and she even let on which of the forty eight managers she's served tea to was her favourite (Alan Pardew).
There's a really good piece on the BBC News website concerning the legend that is Mick Lowes who is retiring from Keith Telly Topping's beloved BBC Newcastle as their Newcastle United commentator after twenty five years this weekend. Mick - seen below in the press section at the Stadium Of Dreams with Mick Martin and Alan Shearer - called his final Magpies game on Saturday when Blackburn Rovers visited St James' Park in the Championship. From Tuesday's EFL Cup game against Hull City, yer actual Keith Telly Topping's old mate Matthew Raisbeck will be taking on the gig. Mick made an emotional appearance on the pitch before the game.
And, on a somewhat related theme, affectionate tributes have been paid to the former Mail on Sunday and Sun football writer Bob Cass who has died of cancer aged seventy eight. Born in Darlington, for many years Bob's beat was the North East - starting with the Northern Echo - where he covered both Newcastle United and Sunderland (including the latter's memorable FA Cup victory in 1973). The talented 'old-school journalist,' known for his infectious sense of humour, became a friend and mentor to players, managers and reporters alike during his time as a football writer and broadcaster. This blogger well remembers Bob's stints on Metro Radio during the 1970s covering Newcastle's runs to Wembley in the FA Cup in 1974 and the League Cup two years later. In particular, one fondly recalled moment occurred during the semi-final of the 1976 competition when United were playing Stottingtot Hotshots. The first leg was at White Hart Lane and United were trailing one-nil when Tommy Cassidy put a beautiful defence-splitting through-ball to Malcolm MacDonald, a close friend of Cass's and whose column Bob ghosted for the Sun. Bob, possibly a bit 'tired and emotional', told listeners back home in the North East: 'It's MacDonald with the ball, he's on his way to goal! No, the referee says he was offside. Was he shite!' Bob Cass, total legend.
Ron Glass, the prolific TV actor known for playing Ron Harris in the sitcom Barney Miller and Shepherd Book in Firefly, has died at the age of seventy one. The actor's representative confirmed the death to Variety, but had no further details regarding the cause or location. Ron was born in Evansville, Indiana and went on to study drama and literature at the University of Evansville. He began his career in Hollywood in episodes of series like Sanford & Son, Hawaii Five-O and All In The Family in the early seventies. In 1975 Glass found his breakout role in Barney Miller, set in a New York police station. His character was a dapper and ambitious intellectual, obsessed with launching his career as a writer. The role earned Ron a Primetime EMMY nomination in 1982 in the supporting actor category. After Barney Miller, Ron would go on to appear in eighteen episodes of the 1982 The Odd Couple remake The New Odd Couple as well as making guest appearances on The Twilight Zone, Family Matters and Murder, She Wrote among others. In the 1999 he appeared on two episodes of Friends as Ross Geller's divorce lawyer, Russell. In 2002 Glass joined Joss Whedon's cult SF drama Firefly, playing a spiritual figure with a mysterious past. Ron would also reprise the role in the 2005 movie Serenity. Ge was still a regular face on American television as recently as 2014 when he appeared in an episode of CSI. That same year he also appeared in Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.. The actor was a devout Buddhist and an active member of the SGI-USA Friendship Centre in Los Angeles.
William Trevor, the Irish novelist, playwright and screenwriter has died at the age of eighty eight, his publisher has announced. Penguin Random House Ireland tweeted: 'We regret to announce the death of William Trevor, one of Ireland's greatest writers.' It added: 'We extend our deepest condolences to his family.' The writer won the Whitbread Prize in 1994 and has been shortlisted four times for the Man Booker Prize. Born William Trevor Cox in Mitchelstown, County Cork, in May 1928, he was educated at St Columba's College and Trinity College in Dublin before working briefly as a teacher and, later, as a copywriter in an advertising agency. Trevor married his college sweetheart Jane in 1952 and went on to dedicate many of his books to her. They had two sons. His first novel, A Standard Of Behaviour, was published in 1958 but he only began to work full-time as a writer in 1965. He later disowned his first novel and said in later interviews that he considered 1962's The Old Boys to be his 'real' debut. He subsequently adapted the play for BBC2's Story Parade drama strand in 1965. Trevor went on to publish more than thirty novels and short story collections during his career. He was awarded an honorary CBE in 1977 for his services to literature and was made a Companion of Literature in 1994. In 2002, he received an honorary knighthood. The writer's most recent novel, Love & Summer, was published in 2009 and was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. A prolific TV dramatist, notably for the BBC beginning with The Babysitter (for The Wednesday Thriller strand in 1965) and Walk's End for Out Of The Unknown. Trevor wrote A Night With Mrs De Tanka, The Mark-Two Wife and The Italian Table for The Wednesday Play, The Penthouse Apartment for Thirty Minute Theatre and ITV's The Girl for Armchair Theatre. 'William Trevor should perhaps get some sort of medal from the television actress' branch of Women's Lib, for he alone seems to specialize in writing big starring roles for women,' noted The Times when reviewing O Fat White Woman, his remarkable 1971 play of sexual repression starring Maureen Pryor and Peter Jeffrey. Amongst Trevor's other plays of the era are The General's Day (1972), Access To The Children (1973), Eleanor (1974), The Grass Widow (1971) and Last Wishes (1978). Mrs Ackland's Ghost, the trilogy Matilda's England and The Ballroom Of Romance, concerning a faded Irish dance hall, were successful in the early 1980s, as was Granada's Secret Orchid, about a bigamist whose deception is revealed after he dies. Later Trevor adapted his stage work for television with The Children Of Dynmouth (1987) and Beyond The Pale (1989). His final TV script was 2003's adaptation of his own novel My House In Umbria. He has also been shortlisted four times for Man Booker for The Story Of Lucy Gault, Mrs Eckdorf In O'Neill's Hotel, Reading Turgenev and The Children Of Dynmouth. Fools Of Fortune, about a Protestant family attacked by The Black & Tans in the 1920s, was made into a film starring Julie Christie. Trevor's novel Felicia's Journey, which won him the Whitbread prize, was also made into a Movie starring Bob Hoskins and Elaine Cassidy in 1999, five years after its publication. He is survived by his wife, Jane, and their sons Patrick and Dominic.

Florence Henderson, known to millions for her role as matriarch Carol Brady in The Brady Bunch, has died aged eighty two. According to her representatives, she died on Thursday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in Los Angeles, a day after being admitted to hospital. First broadcast in 1969, The Brady Bunch told of single parents with children who marry to form a blended family. Born in 1934 in Southern Indiana, the actress began her career in theatre before turning to television. She made her first stage appearance in New York at nineteen - a one-line role in a play called Wish You Were Here. She went on to land the female lead in a tour of the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Oklahoma!, which eventually took her to Broadway in 1954. She subsequently played Maria in The Sound Of Music and Nellie Forbush in South Pacific on stage. But her career nearly ended in 1965 when she suddenly lost her hearing while appearing in The King & I in Los Angeles. She was diagnosed with a hereditary condition called osteosclerosis and had corrective surgery in both ears. The Brady Bunch, which initially ran until 1974, brought her and her co-stars international fame. 'We had to have security guards with us,' she later recalled. 'We couldn't go out by ourselves. We were like the Beatles!' The show went on to return in various forms, among them a 1995 film in which she played the mother of her former character. 'It's such a gentle, innocent, sweet show, and I guess it proved there's always an audience for that,' the actress said in 1999. She made her movie debut in 1970 in Song Of Norway, based on the 1944 operetta with music by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg. As her TV career blossomed with The Brady Bunch, Henderson also began to make frequent TV guest appearances. She was the first woman to host The Tonight Show for the vacationing Johnny Carson. For eight years she also commuted to Nashville to conduct a cooking and talk series, Country Kitchen, on The Nashville Network. The show resulted in a book, Florence Henderson's Short Cut Cooking. After The Brady Bunch ended its first run, Henderson alternated her appearances in revivals of the show with guest appearances on other programmes, including Hart To Hart, Fantasy Island and The Love Boat. In later years she also made guest appearances on such shows as Roseanne, Ally McBeal and The King Of Queens and she was a contestant on Dancing With The Stars in 2010.