Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Listen 'Ere 'Arry, We're Goin' Dahn The Pub

Sky Sports 1's Ford Monday Night Football coverage of the potential Premiership title decider between Sheikh Yer Man City FC and The Scum (which City won 1-0, much to the Gallagher brothers' delight. And that of most other football fans in Manchester. Though, obviously not those in Wiltshire, Essex, Australia, etc.) was watched by an average of 2.55m punters across the entire three hour show. It had an audience peak of 4.4m (over seventeen per cent of the total TV available audience share) at 21:50 shortly before the end of the game. The match average from 20:00 to 21:55 was 4.1m. Between nine o'clock and ten o'clock, the coverage was watched by an average of 4.2m, making it the second most watched channel during that slot, only just behind ITV. This is, by a significant distance, the highest-rated Sky Sports match ever. Pretty much unheard of figures there. Note that between nine and ten, the match coverage beat Silent Witness on BBC1 (which averaged an overnight 3.88m) and got within a few hundred thousand of Scott & Bailey (4.51m). The third episode of BBC2's The 70s (1.93m) also seems to have taken a bit of a hit since it had been getting over two and a half million viewers for both of the previous episodes. Robson's Extreme Fishing Challenge on Channel Five pulled in seven hundred and seventy thousand viewers, down a couple of hundred thousand on its usual figure too. Later, on BBC1 Match of the Day - featuring highlights of the Manchester derby - was watched by a further 3.73m. Also during the evening, the start of Foxes Live: Wild in the City on Channel Four picked up 1.45m. Over on BBC4 the excellent The King and the Playwright: A Jacobean History, was watched by two hundred and seventy two thousand. (Yer actual Keith Telly Topping, incidentally, thanks to the wonders of modern recording devices, managed to watch the footie and The 70s and The King and the Playwright, just to prove those three weren't mutually incompatible). Monday's episode was the last in the current Silent Witness episodes. There was another two-part story filmed as part of this block - And Then I Fell In Love - which was originally scheduled to be shown some weeks ago. However it appears that the BBC are reluctant to broadcast this as there is, at present, a real life court case dealing with some, broadly, similar issues of sex slavery still ongoing. Next week's Silent Witness, therefore, is scheduled to be a repeat. Presumably the missing episodes will be held back to a later date - possibly as part of the 2013 series. Silent Witness finished its current run with an overnight series average of 5.41m, down a whopping 1.26m on the 2011 season. Scott & Bailey finished with an overnight series average of 5.26m, also down - 0.67m - on 2011. It would appear that neither of these two fine dramas has been been done any favours by the five-week Monday night scheduling clash between them.

The latest episode of Bones - The Family In The Feud - brought a very welcome return of Ryan O'Neill as Tempy's extremely criminal dad. Two further episodes are scheduled for the next fortnight, including the seventh series finale, The Past In The Present, which will be directed by David Boreanez. However, as previously mentioned, four further - vaguely inter-connected - episodes have been filmed although there's no news yet on whether these will be broadcaster during the summer or as part of the next - eighth - series, which was commissioned by FOX in late March.
Also on US TV this week, was a very fine episode of House, The C Word, directed Huge Laurie his very self. This explored, in even greater detail than usual, the complex nature of the friendship between House and Wilson (and featured a truly staggering performance by Robert Sean Leonard). Three more episodes are scheduled including the series (and show) finale, Everybody Dies, which will be co-written and directed by the series creator, David Shore. There are all sorts of rumours currently flying around about who may or may not be returning for this, most of which are unconfirmed as things stand.
And, finally in our weekly US round-up, another episode of Hawaii Five-0 - Pa Make Loa - passed by with Steve McGarrett mostly absent. Which, actually, didn't matter too much since this one was the first of a two-part crossover with NCIS: Los Angeles. LL Cool J and Chris O'Donnell turned up on the island when a suspect, the excellently named Dracul Comescu, seemed to be trying to sell nine vials of a deadly smallpox virus to the highest bidder. Although Five-0 and the NCIS task force managed to stop the deal from going through, they learn that the doctor who made the virus, has taken it to Los Angeles to release onto the populace. So, that's a very definite 'To Be Continued', then. The next evening, in fact, in the NCIS: Los Angeles episode Touch of Death. McGarrett (Alex McLoughlin) is scheduled to return in next week's Hawaii Five-0 episode, the first of a two-part series finale, Ua Hopu.
PBS executive Rebecca Eaton has insisted that Sherlock will 'always' be comprised of three-part series. Three ninety-minute instalments of the Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman detective drama were broadcast - to huge acclaim - in 2010, with three more debuting in January 2012. To even greater acclaim. '[The format is] very closely held,' Eaton told Collider. 'Steven [Moffat] crafts them, and Mark [Gatiss] writes some of them. It's a lot of work, and [Steven] also does Doctor Who and he worked on Tintin, so there couldn't be more than three.' Eaton argued that Sherlock co-creators Moffat and Gatiss use up all of their 'creative juice' on the show. 'I think there will only ever be three at a time, if we're lucky,' she said. 'It's getting harder and harder to do another season, not just because Benedict and Martin are getting such high profiles, but Steven and Mark are busy and in demand.' Eaton also claimed that she was not surprised by the success of Sherlock in the US. 'I knew, as soon as I saw Sherlock, that it was going to be special,' she explained. 'The fact that it caught fire the way that it did, didn't surprise me.'

Yer actual Keith Telly Topping is wholly indebted to his good chum, the totally brilliant author Danny Blythe, for pointing him in the direction of this Radio Times poll which asks the hugely important question What's the best TV ending of all time? 'Why,' Danny wants to know, 'are people voting for Sherlock in this poll?! It hasn't finished yet!'
Well, as far as we know, anyway.

Jude Law is reportedly a fan of Sherlock. Law played Watson opposite Robert Downey Jr's Holmes in both the 2009 film Sherlock Holmes and its 2011 sequel A Game of Shadows. Lara Pulver - who plays Irene Adler in Sherlock - told Zap2it that Law is a fan of the TV adaptation, which stars Benedict Cumberbatch. 'I actually just met Jude Law,' she explained. 'He said, "I'm in the action Sherlock and you're in the clever Sherlock.' However, Pulver admitted that she has not actually seen Law's own portrayal of Watson. (I have. They're all right, quite decent action movies, in fact, although not a patch of Sherlock. Law's reported summation is, in fact, quite accurate.) 'I hadn't seen the movie,' she said. 'I was interested in going on my research of Conan Doyle and what Steve [Moffat] had written on the page. It was so three-dimensional.' Last year, Pulver told the Digital Spy website that she would be happy to reprise the role of Adler in future episodes of Sherlock. 'It would be a privilege to work with Steven, Mark and the entire team [again] on this project,"' she said.

Meanwhile, Benedict Cumberbatch will reportedly play classic Star Trek villain Khan in JJ Abrams's upcoming movie sequel. The Sherlock star's role has been shrouded in secrecy since he landed the part in January. Cumberbatch was photographed filming fight scenes with Zachary Quinto's Spock in February. According to sources from TrekMovie, Cumberbatch will play the exiled Eugenics War leader Khan Noonien Singh in Star Trek 2. The character, a genetically-enhanced tyrant, was portrayed by Ricardo Montalban in the 1967 Star Trek episode Space Seed. He was brought back for the movie sequel Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, in which he attempts to steal a terraforming Genesis device, killed Jim Kirk's son and caused the most almighty bit of overacting in William Shatner's entire career. And, boy, that really is saying something. 'Khaaaaaaaaaaaaaan!' Furthermore, the website claims that Leonard Nimoy will return to the franchise to play the original time-line Spock. Nimoy recently told CNN that he was 'talking' with the filmmakers about coming back to the series for his eighth appearance as Spock in a Star Trek movie.

Australian entertainer and all-round British national treasure Rolf Harris is to be awarded the BAFTA Fellowship at this year's BAFTA TV Awards. The eighty two-year-old is being recognised for his 'outstanding and exceptional contribution to television.' Harris, whose career has spanned six decades, said he was 'hugely honoured and very thrilled' to receive the fellowship. He will be presented with his award at the ceremony at London's Royal Festival Hall on 27 May. First signed by the BBC in 1953, Harris's broadcasting career has spanned a variety of genres including children's television, arts and factual as well as light entertainment including The Rolf Harris Show and Rolf on Saturday OK?Rolf's Cartoon Club, Rolf on Art and Animal Hospital. He also entertained as a musician and comedian. In 2005 he was commissioned to paint a portrait of the Queen by the BBC to celebrate her eightieth birthday. The accompanying programme, The Queen by Rolf, was watched by seven million viewers. He was made a CBE a year later. 'Rolf Harris is one of the world's most iconic entertainers,' said BAFTA chairman Tim Corrie. 'He has huge audience appeal across multiple generations, and we are delighted to honour his contribution to television and the arts.' The BAFTA Fellowship is the highest accolade bestowed upon an individual in recognition of their work. Previous recipients include Lord Bragg, Sir David Jason, Sir Bruce Forsyth and Sir David Frost. Sir Trevor McDonald received the Fellowship at last year's TV awards.

Piers Wenger is to be the new head of drama for Channel Four and E4. He's currently a senior commissioning executive at Film4 but is best known for being one of the executive producers of Doctor Who. Along with Steven Moffat and Beth Willis, he oversaw the launch of Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor. Channel Four chief creative officer Jay Hunt said: 'Piers is an exceptional creative leader with a brilliant track record for delivering unmissable drama. His passion for distinctive authorship makes him the ideal fit with Channel Four. I can't wait to work with him.' Wenger said: 'It's a hugely exciting time to be taking on this role and I can't wait to start work with Jay and the team on developing a new generation of drama for Channel Four. I'm also greatly indebted to Tessa Ross and all at Film4 for the expertise they have shared in the last six months and it's a dream come true to be able to continue those relationships into my new role.' While executive producer of Doctor Who, Wenger was also head of drama for BBC Wales, overseeing production of Christopher and His Kind, also starring Matt Smith, and the acclaimed Eric and Ernie.
Rupert Murdoch 'is not a fit person to exercise the stewardship of a major international company', MPs have said. The Commons culture committee questioned journalists and bosses at the now-disgraced and disgraceful Scum of the World, as well as police and lawyers for hacking victims. Its report has concluded that Murdoch exhibited 'wilful blindness' to what was going on in News Corporation. But, the committee was split six-to-four with four Tory members refusing to endorse the report and branding it 'partisan.' Which disgraceful brown-tonguing will, hopefully, be remembered by voters at the next election. Conservative Louise Bagashite called it 'a real great shame' that the report's credibility had potentially been 'damaged' as a result, with the report carried by Labour and Lib Dem members backing it. News Corp said in a statement it was 'carefully reviewing' the report and would 'respond shortly', adding: 'The company fully acknowledges significant wrongdoing' at the Scum of the World 'and apologises to everyone whose privacy was invaded.' The committee itself does not have the power to impose sanctions, but it raised the possibility of a vote in the House of Commons about whether witnesses had been in contempt of Parliament - and if so, whether those witnesses should be forced to apologise in and to Parliament. The BBC News Channel's chief political correspondent Norman Smith said that the report was 'much more damning' than had been anticipated and directly questioned the integrity and honesty of Rupert Murdoch. BBC business editor Robert Pestinfestation said that it would push Ofcom, the media regulator, 'closer to the conclusion' that BSkyB - thirty nine per cent owned by News Corp - is 'not fit and proper to hold a broadcasting licence.' Reacting to the report, an Ofcom spokesman said it was 'continuing to assess the evidence - including the new and emerging evidence' that may assist it in ruling on that issue. The committee of MPs began its inquiry in July 2011 in the wake of fresh revelations about the extent of hacking at the tabloid newspaper, with reported victims including the murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler and the families of victims of the 7/7 London bombings. It heard evidence from Murdoch and his son James Murdoch the small, and has now concluded that the notion of a hands-on proprietor like Rupert Murdoch having 'no inkling' that wrongdoing was widespread at the Scum of the World was 'simply not credible.' It noted that the newspaper mogul had 'excellent powers of recall and grasp of detail when it suited him', and added: 'On the basis of the facts and evidence before the committee, we conclude that, if at all relevant times Rupert Murdoch did not take steps to become fully informed about phone-hacking, he turned a blind eye and exhibited wilful blindness to what was going on in his companies and publications.' Tory MPs objected specifically to the line branding Murdoch 'not fit', with one, the thoroughly odious Philip Davies, telling a press conference that the committee had seen 'absolutely no evidence' to endorse such a 'completely ludicrous' conclusion. But Labour MP Tommy Watson (power to the people!) said 'more than any individual alive', Murdoch was to blame for phone-hacking, and it was right to 'raise the bar' of the report and 'make that clear.' The committee also criticised three former News International executives - one-time executive chairman Les Hinton, former Scum of the World editor Colin Myler and former legal manager Tom Crone - accusing them of 'giving misleading evidence.' Myler, who is now editor of the New York Daily News, claimed that he had 'always sought to be accurate and consistent' in his evidence. 'The conclusions of the committee have, perhaps inevitably, been affected by the fragmented picture which has emerged from the various witnesses over successive appearances,' he said. News Corp as a whole was guilty of 'huge failings of corporate governance' and, throughout, its instinct had been 'to cover up rather than seek out wrongdoing and discipline the perpetrators', the committee said. And it concluded: 'Corporately, the News of the World and News International misled the committee about the true nature and extent of the internal investigations they professed to have carried out in relation to phone hacking; by making statements they would have known were not fully truthful; and by failing to disclose documents which would have helped expose the truth.' Murdoch the small told the committee last summer that he 'did not see' an e-mail which suggested that hacking was more widespread at the paper than previously acknowledged - a claim disputed by Myler and Crone in their evidence. On that matter, the report concluded that Murdoch the small was 'consistent' in relation to the so-called 'For Neville' e-mail, but that he had demonstrated 'wilful ignorance' about what had been going on, which 'clearly raises questions of competence' on his part. Murdoch the small has insisted that he did not know about any wrongdoing at the Scum of the World, but took 'his share' of responsibility for not uncovering it earlier. He gave evidence alongside his father. The committee also said that former Scum of the World editor and well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Rebekah Brooks must 'accept responsibility' for presiding over a culture at the Scum of the World which led to journalists impersonating members of Milly Dowler's family and hacking the teenager's phone. Brooks, the former Sun and Scum of the World editor and ex-News International chief executive, was largely spared from MPs' criticism because she is currently on police bail after being arrested on suspicion of voicemail interception and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Brooks denies any knowledge of, or involvement in, phone-hacking or other illegal activity. However, the MPs said that well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Brooks should take responsibility for 'the culture which permitted' what they described as 'unethical newsgathering methods' at the Scum of the World during the Milly Dowler police murder investigation in 2002, when she was the paper's editor. 'The attempts by the News of the World to get a scoop on Milly Dowler led to a considerable amount of police resource being redirected to the pursuit of false leads,' the report said. It added that Scum of the World journalists had impersonated members of the missing girl's family, 'besieged' a wholly innocent employment agency, falsely quoted the police and obtained Dowler's mobile telephone number from her school friends. 'For those actions, and the culture which permitted them, the editor should accept responsibility,' the MPs said of Brooks. And, it criticised the Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer and former Acting Deputy Commissioner at the Metropolitan Police Champagne John Yates for failing to ensure that hacking claims were properly investigated. After initially claiming malpractice was limited to one 'rogue' reporter at the Scum of the World, a story which they stuck to for the best part of four years, News International finally came clean and has now settled dozens of civil cases admitting liability for hacking between 2001 and 2006. More than six thousand possible victims have been identified and the police have so far made a number of arrests in connection with an investigation reopened in January 2011 - although no charges have yet been brought. Asked whether David Cameron regarded Rupert Murdoch as a fit person to run a media company, his official spokesman said: 'That is a matter for the regulatory authorities, not for the government.' Labour leader Ed Milimolimandi and Lib Dem Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg both said Ofcom must now be allowed to come to its own conclusion. The hacking revelations led to the closure of the Scum of the World and the government's decision - taken in a blind panic, frankly - to set up a judicial inquiry into press standards headed by Lord Leveson. Appearing before the Leveson Inquiry last week, Rupert Murdoch said there had been a 'cover-up' which 'shielded' senior figures at the paper and its parent company - including himself, Murdoch the small and well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Brooks - from knowledge of wrongdoing taking place. Watson, himself a phone-hacking victim who has doggedly pursued the Murdochs over the scandal – all the way to News Corp's 2011 AGM in Los Angeles – commented on his personal blog: 'The truth is that, whatever we have said in our report, and however you choose to report it tomorrow, the public have made up their minds. Powerful people were involved in a cover-up and they still haven't accepted responsibility. And after all of this, the story is not yet over. It was reported at the weekend that Rebekah Brooks was prepared to release her personal texts and e-mails to the Leveson inquiry. I think she should. But, as David Cameron said yesterday, the contacts between Rupert Murdoch and senior ministers crossed both sides of the House. If we really want to see how News Corp in the UK operates, then the current PM and Chancellor, all former prime ministers – including Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, and former chancellors might want to consider revealing their texts and e-mails to company executives. But to really stop [it happening again] requires more than tokenistic retribution. It needs conclusive attribution. The very cornerstone of justice is that those really responsible are held to account – that the rich and the powerful are as low in the face of the law as the most humble and weak. In the words of Bob Dylan, "that the ladder of law has no top and no bottom." And everybody in the world knows who is responsible for the wrongdoing of News Corp: Rupert Murdoch. More than any individual alive, he is to blame. Morally, the deeds are his. He paid the piper and he called the tune. It is his company, his culture, his people, his business, his failures, his lies, his crimes. The price for his profits and his power.' Another culture select committee member, Paul Farrelly, has written a comment piece for Comment is Free: 'The whole saga raises questions about James Murdoch's competence. Unlike the son, print and ink runs deep in Rupert Murdoch's veins and he is not a hands-off proprietor; indeed, Rebekah Brooks told us that, when chief executive of NI, she would talk to him "every other day." There are many examples of questionable practices at the News of the World, all in the public domain – from the Operation Motorman inquiry into the use of private detectives, to the judge's comments about blackmail in the newspaper's sting on Max Mosley. Yet no action was taken. "This culture," we considered, "permeated from the top throughout the organisation and speaks volumes about the lack of effective corporate governance at News Corporation and News International." We concluded, therefore, "that Rupert Murdoch is not a fit person to exercise the stewardship of a major international company." This is, sadly, not the end of the affair. The police and the Crown Prosecution Service do not come out smelling of roses, either. We have reserved our right to publish further findings following the Metropolitan police's investigation and any future criminal trials. The House of Commons will now consider punishment – and important lessons for parliament. The integrity and effectiveness of the select committee system," we conclude, "relies on the truthfulness of evidence. The behaviour of News International and certain witnesses in this affair demonstrated contempt for that system in the most blatant fashion."'

The Gruniad's political editor Patrick Wintour wrote the following analysis on the committee report and the split between Tory MPs and their Labour and solitary Lib Dem colleagues: 'David Cameron and his Conservative MPs now face the unappetising political prospect of appearing to defend Rupert Murdoch after four Conservative MPs on the committee refused to declare he was not a fit person to run an international company. Cameron is a genuine admirer of Murdoch's business skills, and like his Conservative colleagues on the culture select committee, is likely to argue there is no evidence that he misled the committee. He is also likely to agree with the Conservatives on the committee that it was going beyond its remit by commenting on Murdoch's status as a man capable of running an international company. Conservative MPs on the committee simply refused to accept the evidence existed to show that either Rupert Murdoch or his son James had deliberately misled the committee. The report did come perilously close to suggesting he did mislead, describing some of his evidence as "astonishing" and accusing him of "wilful blindness." Labour MPs, with the support of the sole Liberal Democrat MP, Adrian Sanders, argued that the scale of the corporate wrongdoing meant it was necessary to declare that Murdoch was "not a fit and proper person" to run an international company. This report will now be referred to the Commons, and that could present a further problem for the Conservatives. Cameron may feel deeply uneasy at the sight of his MPs being perceived to stand by Murdoch in any way, narrow or wide. Ed Miliband was already preparing to make hay. John Whittingdale, the Conservative chairman of the committee, and Louise Mensch, a prominent Conservative on the committee, insisted that the motion in front of the Commons will be about the individuals, including Colin Myler, the editor of the New York Daily News, who they say has misled parliament. It will be easy for Conservative whips to agree to vote for that motion. It will be problematic if an amendment is tabled suggesting [Murdoch] is not fit to run an international company. But that is a little way down the track in the next parliamentary session. There will also be a further subsidiary debate about parliament can do to punish those that have been in contempt of the House. It is known for instance that the Speaker John Bercow feels strongly that some kind of suitable punishment has to be devised. At present the punishment includes being asked to apologise to MPs at the bar of the House.'
On what should happen to people who mislead parliament, Mensch suggested that there should be a 'contempt of parliament', similar to contempt of court. 'We need a defined consequence for misleading parliament. That is my personal view.' The report also calls on News Corp to waive legal privilege to crucial Burton Copeland legal advice which has so far been withheld. Mensch said that it is 'quite right. We call on News International management and standards committee to release Burton Copeland from privilege at once so we can have transparency to ensure there is nothing further being concealed.' On the split in the committee over the report, Whittingdale said: 'On the main findings which relate to misleading evidence, the committee was wholly agreed.' Mensch claimed that, in her opinion, there was 'a deliberate cover-up further down' at NewsCorp, so the Murdochs, themselves, didn't know. This is the culture select committee's third report on Scum of the World phone-hacking. The first was published in 2007 when News International was claiming phone-hacking was the work of a single 'rogue' reporter, former Scum of the World royal reporter Clive Goodman, who was jailed after pleading guilty hacking-related offences in January of that year. The second report, published in February 2010, after the committee re-opened its phone-hacking inquiry following the Gruniad Morning Star's revelations that the practice at the now disgraced and disgraceful Sunday tabloid was more widespread, accused News International executives of 'collective amnesia' and 'deliberate obfuscation.' MPs also said that it was 'inconceivable' that only a few people at the paper knew about the practice. The select committee re-opened its phone-hacking inquiry for a second time in July last year, after the revelation that the Scum of the World had hacked murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler's phone. Hacked Off campaign creator Martin Moore said that repercussions of the report went beyond what was going to happen in Parliament, as there would be 'ramifications for individuals' and the News Corp business itself, in terms of what shareholders think and what Ofcom decides. The Torygraph's political editor James Kirkup wrote: 'At first glance, the Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport is a loser here: far from appearing a respectable, credible organ of parliamentary scrutiny, it looks like a sack of querulous ferrets. But peer into the sack and you'll see that some ferrets are doing better than others. Consider Labour's Tom Watson. Yes, his overblown Dylan-quoting presentation verged on the hysterical, but he's achieved two things today. First, he's put into circulation a further question about Rupert Murdoch's fitness to own a stake in BSkyB. Remember that in the Murdoch empire, the News of the World was a minor outpost but BSkyB is a significant possession. Any threat to the Sky stake could unnerve big US shareholders in News Corp and cause Mr Murdoch real grief. And that, of course, is Mr Watson's primary aim in politics these days. Remember too that this report was never intended to consider such broad questions, but to focus on narrower details arising from the News of the World. Yet thanks to Mr Watson, the headlines are all about Mr Murdoch's fitness to retain one of his crown jewels. Second, look at those Conservative MPs on the committee explaining why they didn't vote for Mr Watson's "not fit" conclusion. Some, like the right-winger Philip Davies, have no problem with defending Mr Murdoch as a successful businessman. Others lack Mr Davies' admirable frankness. But the effect is the same: Conservative MPs have been manoeuvred into a position of publicly defending Rupert Murdoch. Expect other Conservatives, especially ministers, to face questions now about whether they, too, believe Mr Murdoch is fit to run an international company. At a time when the Conservative bit of the Government is facing questions about the cosiness of its dealings with the Murdochs, that's a political gift to the Murdoch-baiting Labour Party. Not a bad day's work for the party's deputy chairman.'
Some of the most biting criticisms in the CMS Committee's report are of the behaviour of Scum of the World journalists in 2002, who hacked the phone of the murdered teenager Milly Dowler. The MPs call the paper's activities 'indefensible', 'grotesque', 'astonishing' and 'brazen', in a unanimously-agreed section. The committee say they are 'still unable to publish' the full evidence they have unearthed, because of the prospect of criminal charges against Scum of the World employees involved in the hacking. They, therefore, do not name them. But the report makes it clear that Scum of the World staff 'directly interfered' with the police investigation, and attempted to 'bounce' Surrey police into providing material for their 'exclusives.' The attempts by the Scum of the World 'to get a scoop on Milly Dowler led to a considerable amount of valuable police resource being redirected to the pursuit of false leads,' the state. They say that the then editor, well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Rebekah Brooks, must be held responsible overall, despite her testimony that she found the Dowler revelations 'abhorrent' and 'staggering' and had been unaware of the hacking. She sought to 'portray a culture of ethical and respectful journalism' in which the paper handled such stories sensitively and in close co-operation with police, the report said, and she explained that she had been 'on holiday' at the time of the hacking. The report treats this account sceptically. The MPs point out that well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Brooks had returned from her holiday to take charge of the paper by the following week, when staff were still pursuing the Dowler story and still openly telling Surrey police that they had tapes of Dowler's voicemails. They add: 'Impersonating members of a missing girl's family; besieging an employment agency; falsely asserting co-operation with the police; falsely quoting the police; and, according to their own account, obtaining Milly Dowler's mobile telephone number from her school friends are hardly the actions of a respectful and responsible news outlet. For those actions, and the culture which permitted them, the editor should accept responsibility.' But the report draws back from detailing the full extent of the Scum of the World's misbehaviour in the Dowler case: 'We refrain from drawing conclusions about the conduct of individuals in their evidence to the committee about Milly Dowler because at least one of those individuals has been arrested and faces the prospect of criminal charges.' The Scum of the World's lawyer Tom Crone, who the report accuses of' a cover-up', is roundly criticised for his evidence about a published Scum of the World story which was obviously based on voicemail interception. 'It is highly probable, in view of his role at the newspaper, that he was responsible for checking the original article's content, at the very least. Anybody who saw that article will have been aware that the information came from Milly Dowler's voicemail account. Any competent newspaper lawyer could reasonably have been expected to ask questions about how that information had been obtained. We are astonished that Tom Crone should have decided to present to the committee the hypothesis that the information was provided by the police.' Within the report there were some passages critical of the Murdoch family that met with cross-party approval. One paragraph, approved by nine votes to one, said the committee found it 'simply astonishing' that it took Rupert and James Murdoch at least two and a half years between 2008 and the end of 2010 to conclude that the company line – that hacking was confined to a single 'rogue' reporter, the jailed former royal editor Clive Goodman – was 'untrue.' The only dissenting voice was that of Therese Coffey, a Conservative MP.

Live streams of the landmark appearance of Rupert Murdoch and James Murdoch the small at an inquiry into press ethics last week attracted an audience of more than two million people worldwide. ITN Productions ran a live stream of the evidence across its network of publisher websites, including Mail Online,, and Facebook, in partnership with Rightster. Coverage of the separate evidence sessions of Rupert and his son James Murdoch at the Leveson inquiry last week reached two million three hundred and thirty six thousand three hundred and sixty seven people across two hundred and fifteen countries. The peak viewing time was on 25 April, the first day of media mogul Rupert Murdoch's appearance, when at 12pm the people streaming the footage reached six hundred and nine thousand. On the second day of News Corp boss Murdoch's evidence, 26 April, another spike of five hundred and eighty thousand viewers occurred at 11am during discussion about the Gruniad's 2009 revelations that phone-hacking was more widespread at the Scum of the World. At this time, Murdoch said: 'The police totally disowned it [the report], said it was wrong.' The figures produced by digital distribution company Rightster show that more people watched the live stream of the Leveson evidence than when Rupert and James Murdoch the small appeared together at the Commons culture, media and sport select committee last year. 'These figures reflect the public's interest in the events taking place at the Leveson inquiry and how the Murdochs' appearances have dominated the news agenda in recent days,' said Mark Browning, the managing director of ITN Productions. 'The popularity of the live stream also shows that there is a real opportunity for online publishers to incorporate live video of major events alongside comment, analysis and live blogs to enhance their online content.' Rightster's founder and chief executive Charlie Muirhead added: 'Today's population cares more than ever before about being as up to date as possible with breaking news. Online video streaming across multi-platforms and devices not only gives the public access to events as and when they happen, but provides content producers with a reach and digital engagement with their audience that was unimaginable just a few years ago.'
Boris Johnson, the London mayor, has defended his decision to seek commercial deals with News International while Scotland Yard was investigating the company over phone-hacking. Johnson, who as mayor had responsibility for chairing the now-defunct Metropolitan Police Authority, defended his decision to approach James Murdoch the small and well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Rebekah Brooks in an attempt to get sponsorship for his cable car idea and a school academy while the Met was investigating the company. 'In the end I'm afraid News International didn't produce a sausage but it didn't mean it wasn't right to try,' he told the radio presenter Nick Ferrari on LBC. Johnson outlined the competing priorities he held as mayor which led him to approach Murdoch for cash, insisting he appealed to 'all kinds of people' to try to secure investment for London. 'Don't forget that actually what we were being given as advice by the police was that there was nothing new in the whole business. The New York Times story [into phone hacking in September 2010] hadn't taken things any further forward. At the same time in difficult economic circumstances my job is to get investment for London. I won't make any secret of it. I have talked to all kinds of people to get investment, to get projects moving. Things have been very tough. The days when the state, uncle sugar, could just step forward and write colossal cheques, that's gone.' On Monday he accused a BBC journalist asking questions over his approach to NI of 'talking fucking bollocks.' The mayor, who appears on course to beat his Labour rival Ken Livingstone for a second time, appeared to suggest that no apology was necessary for his sweary outburst. He blamed the BBC for not cutting out what he claimed was 'a jocular and regrettable outtake' despite the fact that he made the comment in response to a question from the BBC London's political editor, Tim Donovan. Far from apologising, Johnson said it allowed him to 'get over a point' to viewers about the way he had secured more than one hundred million smackers of sponsorship for London, which he claimed would not have been broadcast without him taking a swipe at the journalist. Johnson also came under fire for painting the stereotypical cyclist as a dreadlocked, lycra-clad man who jumps red lights and believes he is 'morally superior.' His comments were reported in The Times after Johnson took part in the last hustings of the campaign on Monday in an event jointly organised by The Times and Sustrans, the transport charity, which focused on cycling. The mayor, who is himself a cyclist and who was caught jumping six red lights in a twenty-minute journey to city hall after being elected as mayor four years ago, said he had been faced with a 'truculent and difficult audience' who were 'seeking to find fault with almost everything I'd done to improve cycling' as he took questions alongside fellow candidates. Ferrari told him: 'When you're rattled you either turn on people or swear.' Johnson insisted: 'I was trying to cheer everybody up by saying I didn't conform to that particular stereotype.'

It is more than thirty years since the BBC last dramatised Shakespeare's history plays so it is little surprise that this summer's four new films from the corporation have attracted the cream of British acting and directing talent – from Jeremy Irons and Ben Wishaw, to Simon Russell Beale and Sir Richard Eyre. With the Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes as executive producer, the BBC will screen Richard II, Henry IV parts I and II, and Henry V, from late June on BBC2 as part of the Cultural Olympiad. Mendes' partner at Neal Street Productions, Pippa Harris, said the combination of the Queen's diamond jubilee and the Olympics made 2012 the perfect opportunity to revisit the histories. 'There are so many themes in these four plays which seem fitting to be showcased in this particular year – themes about monarchy, England and politics.' Wishaw takes the role of the doomed king in Richard II, which is directed by Rupert Goold, associate director at the RSC, whose acclaimed stage production of Macbeth, starring Patrick Stewart, was broadcast on BBC4 last year. Goold said the films came as Britain was showing an exceptional number of actors with great classical theatre skills as well as screen experience. 'That's a really rare moment when you can combine genuine verse speaking technique with screen understanding,' he said. Other actors appearing in the four films include Tom Hiddleston (Prince Hal), Patrick Stewart (John of Gaunt), Julie Walters (Mistress Quickly), David Suchet (Duke of York), Lindsay Duncan (Duchess of York), Rory Kinnear (Bolingbroke), Michelle Dockery (Lady Percy), Maxine Peake (Doll Tearsheet), Iain Glen (Warwick) and John Hurt (The Chorus). Irons will play Henry IV, while Russell Beale is to be Falstaff. Eyre will direct Henry IV, and Thea Sharrock is the director on Henry V. Mendes and Harris originally approached the BBC with a plan to re-stage all of Shakespeare's canon. 'It seemed to go down quite well until we pointed out that was thirty seven films, and they did the maths and worked out that wasn't going to happen,' Harris said. However, if the new history plays are well received, there are hopes that the BBC will commission further new Shakespeares. All four films have been set in the medieval period. 'I've never done a Shakespeare production in its exact historical setting before.' Goold, who had been considering a stage version of Richard II, based on the story of the singer Michael Jackson, before being approached for the BBC version, said: 'I've never done a Shakespeare production in its exact historical setting before. But there's so much in Richard II about kingship and crowns, and arguably these four plays are looking at the move from the medieval mindset to a modern mindset, so we wanted to keep it in period.' Each of the dramas, adapted from original text for television, is intended to work as an individual film – but shared cast members should ensure they also work as a series of stories. 'We wanted each film to stand alone but also to be like a miniseries you can follow through,' said Harris. The Welsh coastline and landscape features heavily in Richard II, which was filmed entirely on location in the UK – unlike many recent dramas such as ITV's Titanic and BBC1's Birdsong, both filmed in Budapest for budgetary reasons. 'There's something really special about the cathedrals, the landscapes,' said Goold, of the filming in Pembrokeshire. 'It's very difficult to find landscapes that can pass for the late fourteenth century when there weren't any fields, any pastures. So we were right down to the corner of Wales. But it gave it a kind of texture.' The films are co-produced with NBCUniversal and the US public service broadcaster WNET.

The Voice contestant Ruth Brown has responded on Twitter to abuse about her weight. The singer told her fans that the insults on the social networking site 'hurt.' After retweeting numerous examples she has been sent on Twitter, Brown wrote: 'Okay I'm big, get over it. Not gonna lie those comments did hurt, but I'm getting my dream and have amazing support thank you all.' Good on ya, girl. You tell 'em. Brown received support from her show rival Joelle Moses, who wrote: 'Call me if you need to! You know I'm here whenever you need me.' Comments about Brown on Twitter included one - no doubt perfect specimen of humanity - calling her an 'ugly fat cow', one branding her the 'fat controller' and another describing her as a 'fat wasp.' Several other even more offensive remarks were made about her size, outfit and weight. Brown - who is coached on the show by Sir Tom Jones - and Jaz Ellington are currently the bookmakers' favourites to win the talent show. Y'see, dear blog reader, this is just one of the many reasons that yer actual Keith Telly Topping isn't on Twitter. Because, lots of arseholes are.

The Voice will reportedly be 'revamped 'following 'concerns' about the most recent episodes of the show. This is all according to the Daily Lies, however, so it's probably a load of old shit. Producers, they allege, are planning 'dramatic changes' aimed at regaining viewers after the programme's figures dropped last weekend. The coaches will reportedly no longer perform a song together at the start of the show, after criticism of their rendition of U2's 'Beautiful Day'. Instead they will sing with their own acts, following the lead of the US version of the programme. A string of guest stars, including Adele, are also apparently being lined-up to perform alongside the contestants. In addition, double eliminations from each team will be introduced to 'create more drama.' The coaches have also reportedly been asked to become 'more critical and cruel,' and have been told to 'do their homework' following an incident when Sir Tom Jones called contestant Joelle Moses 'Jolene.' This, despite the fact that just a couple of weeks ago near enough every national newspaper in the country was claiming that the reason the programme was doing so well was precisely because, unlike Britian's Got Talent and The X Factor, it wasn't cruel or critical. So, you know, make your mind up, guys. An alleged, and nameless, 'source', who almost certainly doesn't exist, allegedly said: 'The BBC know that The Voice is liked by fans but the first live show didn't quite go as planned. They're ordering a shake-up because they cannot afford to lose viewers.' Allegedly. The Daily Lies, ladies and gentlemen, they know an alleged 'source' when they see one. This blogger's own, particular, favourite bit of the Lies report is the following: 'After the ratings shock on Saturday, when BGT drew 9.4m viewers compared with The Voice's 9.3m, the Beeb held a crisis meeting.' Yeah. Right. Over nine million viewers and, it's 'a show in crisis.'

The cleaner of illusionist and master of prestidigitation and jiggery-pokery Derren Brown has appeared in court, accused of stealing thousands of pounds from the television star through bogus cheques. Rocio Pavon-Navarrete, forty six, is alleged to have taken two signed blank cheques from Derren's central London home while he was away. Prosecutors claim the cleaner passed the cheques to forty eight-year-old Bernard Ayanbanjo. Brown is thought to have left the cheques at his Westminster home in case of emergency. Pavon-Navarrete and Ayanbanjo both appeared in the dock at Southwark Crown Court. They spoke only to confirm their names. Judge Alistair McCreath ordered the pair to stand trial in the week beginning 10 September. Derren, who is currently touring his Svengali show, is expected to give evidence during the two-day trial.

The BBC Trust chairman Lord Patten – a former governor of Hong Kong, chairman of the Tory Party and European commissioner for external relations – has, it would seem, finally arrived. Patten was puzzled to be asked to contribute to Prospect magazine's 'If I ruled the world...' column, reports the Daily Scum Mail. 'What do you mean "if"?' he asked.

The first ever live episode of Emmerdale will be broadcast this October in celebration of the soap’s fortieth birthday. Series producer Stuart Blackburn has confirmed that the special episode will make up part of a week-long celebration of the soap's four decades on air, which he describes as 'must-see TV featuring two weddings, one of which will be the most unexpected we have ever seen, plus the birth of two babies.' Emmerdale is the last of the big three British TV soap operas to produce a live edition. Coronation Street, which began life as a live show, celebrated its fortieth anniversary in 2000 and fiftieth anniversary in 2010 with live broadcasts. BBC rival, EastEnders, marked its twenty fifth birthday with a thirty-minute special.

A writer for The Thick of It has criticised BBC America's decision to censor the show. Jesse Armstrong described the move to 'bleep' Armando Iannucci's award-winning political satire as 'an error. They should at least have a conversation with Armando and check what they're going to do with it before they put it out,' he told the BBC. 'It seems a little odd.' BBC America stood by its decision, despite the show airing at midnight. A spokesman for the US channel told comedy website Chortle that it 'abides by basic cable television common practice in the US in using bleeps to cover profanity in its programmes.' But Armstrong, speaking at the South Bank Sky Arts Awards, said: 'I think if it's on quite late at night people know what they're getting and it's part of the programme. I think it's an error probably. We always wanted to do something that was behind the scenes in politics and part of that is that people use a lot of swearing in high-pressure situations. I think it's a shame.' Writer Simon Blackwell, who also worked on the show, tweeted: 'Apparently BBC America bleeped The Thick of It. Must have sounded like a lorry reversing into a heart monitor.' BBC America scheduled the third series of The Thick of It to coincide with HBO's launch of Veep, which is set in the office of a fictional female vice-president.

BBC Books is to republish another batch of classic Doctor Who novelisations this month, with introductions by writers including Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. The six books, republished in paperback on 10 May and priced at £4.99, comprise one story each for the first three Doctors, plus all three together in The Three Doctors and two stories based on the TV adventures of Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor. Titles are The Tenth Planet, The Ice Warriors, The Day of the Daleks (the first book yer actual Keith Telly Topping ever read, whilst on holiday in the Isle of Wight in 1975), The Three Doctors, The Ark in Space and The Loch Ness Monster (based on the 1975 TV story Terror of the Zygons). The selection was made via a poll on the Doctor Who Facebook page. The new books retain Chris Achilleos' artwork, as featured on the original books published by Target. In his introduction to The Ark in Space – a novelisation of the 1975 story, starring Tom Baker - current Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat writes: 'Doctor Who covers were masterpieces. Frequently, the most thrilling visualisation of a Doctor Who story wouldn't be on the telly, it would be on the front cover of the book that came after. How I'd stare at those covers.' Moffat also discusses the standing of Who writer Terrance Dicks as the master of the novelisation: 'In the days before DVD, even before video, his books were the exact equivalent. They were Doctor Who TV serials you could keep on your shelf. Utterly faithful, not just to the detail of the narrative and dialogue, but to the feel and the atmosphere and even the pace. In precise, zingy prose, he'd turn a projector on in your head and you'd be watching the show again.' But although Dicks wrote three of the newly republished books – The Day of the Daleks, The Three Doctors and The Loch Ness Monster – he didn't write The Ark in Space. Moffat recalls how, as a young Who fan, he was amazed to find the novelisation of The Ark in Space – which Moffat describes as 'the paradigm Doctor Who script' – was adapted from Robert Holmes's script by the actor Ian Marter, who had played Harry Sullivan in that and other stories. 'It was brilliant,' Moffat says of the book version. 'All the hinted-at horror was leaping and sliming and glooping off the page.' In his introduction to The Ice Warriors by Brian Hayles, Mark Gatiss writes: 'Show a copy of any one of these glorious novelisations to people of a certain age and they are transported back to a simpler, cosier age. Some of my memories of them are imprinted with Proustian clarity, like my very own, Time Lord-flavoured Madeleine cakes.' Yep. 'It became a wonderful ritual, saving pocket money, then deciding which Target book to go for.' Yep. Mark, mate, we've lived the same life. Which is, in my case at least, really sad! You writer Sherlock, I write a blog. 'I devoured them. Not literally. Although I did live in the north and was always hungry.' See! Other introductions in the new series have been written by Tom MacRae, yer actual Gary Russell, Alastair Reynolds and Michael Moorcock.

The names of the first one hundred LPs of the late DJ John Peel's record collection have been published online. The John Peel Centre, in Stowmarket, is behind the project, called The Space, which aims to recreate the late broadcaster's home studio and library. Peel, who died in 2004, had a collection of about twenty five thousand vinyl LPs. The names of about one hundred will be added in alphabetical order each week. Among the first artists are ABBA, ABC, AC/DC and Adam & The Ants. The website does not allow users to listen to the LPs but there will be links to other websites which offer this. There should be two thousand six hundred LP names put online by October, which is the period covered by Arts Council funding for the project. The website also features a video interview with Mike Absalom, a singer-songwriter, poet and artist whose Save The Last Gherkin For Me (1968) was 001 in Peel's card index system. Eye Film & Television, based in Norwich, has produced new films for the project and digitised the album covers and Peel's index cards. Charlie Gauvain, Eye's managing director, said: 'These cards have been scanned, often with typos, so we have tried to make it personal and make it feel the way that John kept his LPs. People will be able to trawl through the site, find a lot of information, link out and start lots of discussions, but the whole thing is about introducing people to stuff they hadn't heard of.' Andrew Stringer, a director of the John Peel Centre, said: 'This is just the first step and a fantastic portal to give the career of John Peel the justice it deserves. Whether people listened to his shows or not, their social history has been influence by him because nothing was deemed "out of the box" and it encouraged people to expand their horizons. Would punk have been the movement it was without John? I very much doubt it.' Damn straight.

Roy Hodgson has been appointed England manager on a four-year contract. Which is not only good - he's an excellent coach with a very impressive track record of managing at the highest level internationally and in any other country that wasn't so absurdly parochial, he'd've been the national team coach years ago - but, also, hilarious funny as well. Take, of instance, the BBC's Dan Roan who on the Ten O'Clock News on Sunday evening ridiculously claimed that Hodgson - a man who has, let's remember, managed Internazionale twice - has only had 'one high profile job, Liverpool.' This blogger is also hugely impressed with the way that the Sun has already started it's campaign of hated towards Hodgson with Tuesday's headline, mocking his speech impediment. One is sure, of course, that all of their mothers are all really proud of them. I mean, they work for single 'rouge' reporter phone-hacking News International, for a kick-off, what's not to love? (The Sun, of course, has plenty of previous form when it comes to England coaches. Gentle humour is often kicked aside in favour of outright hostility. Affection quickly turns into nasty character assassination. Kevin Keegan, a previous example of 'the People's Choice' was given a torrid time following an initial honeymoon period when he held the post. Even 'national treasure' Bobby Robson was the subject of near enough eight years of vile and obnoxious, highly personal, negative coverage when he was England boss. Note that the Sun also calls Hodgson 'a shock choice.' This is journalistic code for rank hubris - the paper not only didn't get its own choice - Harry Redknapp was 'sensationally spurned' it said the day before - but it also didn't sniff out the real story. The paper's leader, Good luck, Roy, points out that Hodgson 'wasn't the nation's choice' - meaning, he wasn't a few journalist at the Sun's choice - but 'we can't blame him for not being 'Arry.' Even though, one senses, they will if things don't go well at the Euros. So, it offers Hodgson some crass faint praise: '[England] need a no-nonsense English boss with motivational and communication skills. Roy has both. We're not betting the farm on England winning the Euros. But Roy may still surprise us ... and good luck to him.') The West Bromwich Albino boss succeeds Fabio Capello after talks with the Football Association on Monday and Tuesday. He will remain in charge of The Baggies for their last two games of the Premier League season. The sixty four-year-old will lead his country after managing eighteen teams, including three national sides, during a coaching career spanning thirty six years. Hodgson's contract at West Brom runs out on 30 June but the Premier League club said they have agreed to release him after their final game of the season on 13 May so he can prepare for Euro 2012. England have two friendlies, at Norway on 26 May and home to Belgium on 2 June, before their first match in the tournament in Poland and Ukraine against France on 11 June. The Football Association said in a statement it was 'delighted' to announce the appointment of Hodgson, whose contract also covers the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016. 'Hodgson has won a total of eight league titles in a distinguished career, and coached the national teams of Switzerland, Finland and the United Arab Emirates,' it added. 'Along with his vast experience of international and European football, Hodgson is the only English manager currently working in the top flight to have won the League Managers' Association Manager of the Year award.' The FA announced on Sunday it had approached Hodgson for the job despite widepsread speculation linking Stottingtot Hotshots boss Now-Not-So-Happy Harry Redknapp with the vacancy after Capello quit in February. Redknapp was, allegedly, 'The People's Choice' although, as a fully paid up member of 'the people' this blogger doesn't recall ever been asked about this. In fact, I don't know where this idea that Redknapp is 'The People's Choice' comes from. Oh, no, hang on, yes I do. It comes from a bunch of odious, arse-licking journalists in Fleet Street and Sky Sports who couldn't wait to hold a coronation for their mate Happy Harry. Scum like the Daily Lies thoroughly odious brown-tongue-rimming Brian Woolnough, the cheerleader-in-chief for Redknapp, and the Torygraph's Paul Heyward who, six weeks ago on Soccer Supplement boldly claimed that the FA had 'a shortlist of one, and it's Harry Redknapp.' Frankly, anything that makes clowns like those - and plenty of others (the Scum Mail's Martin Samuels, for one) - look small, clueless and insignificant, is to be celebrated. Loudly. Hodgson guided Switzerland to the 1994 World Cup and the side achieved a FIFA ranking of third in the world as they qualified for Euro 1996. His former clubs include, as mentioned, Inter Milan, Blackburn Rovers, Grasshoppers of Zurich, FC Copenhagen, Fulham (whom he took to a UEFA Cup final just three years ago) and Liverpool Alabama Yee-Haws. He has also managed successfully in Norway and Sweden, and been a member of FFIA and UEFA's technical study groups at tournaments. Hodgson leaves West Brom after fifteen months at the club. Chairman Jeremy Peace said: 'We did not want Roy to leave and he will be a tough act to follow. But we understand Roy's desire to take the England job and he will leave us after the Arsenal game on 13 May with our best wishes. Of course, with Euro 2012 around the corner, we appreciate that some of Roy's focus over the next twelve days will be on England matters. But we are delighted he will be seeing the season out with us. The board will now concentrate on the important task of appointing a new head coach to continue our project as we prepare for a third successive season in the Premier League.' BBC presenter and former England striker Gary Lineker, who'd already said on Twitter than he felt Redknapp was 'the best man for the job', claims now that Hodgson is 'a solid choice' who has the experience to get the best out of a team. He said: 'I think Roy is a safe pair of hands, I think the FA would have recognised that. He's a very likeable guy, very authoritative and very knowledgeable about the game. He clearly has bags of experience, all over the world and at all sorts of levels of football. He has tactical nous and he understands how to get the best out of his team and players. He has enjoyed mixed success at various clubs. He has done a terrific job at West Brom, did excellently at Fulham where he led them to a European final, yet it did not quite happen for him at Liverpool and way back at Blackburn.' Sir Geoff Hurst feels Hodgson is well qualified but that Redknapp was the 'outstanding candidate' for the national job. Exactly why he feels this, since Redknapp has no international experience and had only one FA Cup victory in his trophy cabinet (whilst manager of Portsmouth) he doesn't make clear. Hurst, who scored a hat-trick as England beat West Germany in the 1966 World Cup final (and, has lived off the reputation ever since), said: 'I thought Harry was probably the outstanding candidate at the time because he has had success with Tottenham at a higher level. Roy has managed in the Europa League and also at international level, which is also good experience, but what Harry has achieved at Spurs in the last three or four years as been quite remarkable.' Has it? What's he done, exactly? What's he won? Meanwhile, check out New Staesman's Ten Things You Need To Know About Roy Hodgson. I particularly like number ten, myself.

And, so to yer actual Keith Telly Topping's 45 of the Day. Here's some more cockney chancers making an 'orrible noise on TV.