Saturday, January 20, 2018

If You Are Reading This I Have Probably Been Assassinated By Sinister Unaccountable Forces Within The Establishment

Yer actual Jodie Whittaker has been spotted filming for the next series of Doctor Who on location in South Africa this week. Which is jolly nice.
Jodie, of course, made history by being the first female ladygirl to play the lead in Doctor Who - you might have noticed, it was on telly and everything. But, she didn't get the role easily. The actress revealed that she had to go through 'months' of auditions before landing the part. Speaking in the latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine, Jodie said that her debut scene in the Christmas episode, Twice Upon A Time 'wasn't the first time Chris [Chibnall] had seen me play The Doctor. It was the first time he'd seen me as The Doctor in costume, on the set, but we'd rehearsed and before that I'd been through a few months of auditions. So Chris's main note was to trust my instincts – "they've been right so far, and they've got you here today. Just remember that."' Speaking of the scene in which Peter Capaldi's Doctor regenerates, Jodie noted that it was filmed 'very soon' after she was announced as taking over the role (in July). 'I think the announcement happened so they could get me to the TARDIS set to do the [regeneration] without it being leaked. If I'd been seen in Cardiff, being taken to Roath Lock, it would have been very obvious that I was playing the part! So they announced it the day before.'
Doctor Who's Christmas episode grabbed headlines with the introduction of Jodie Whittaker. Also returning for Peter Capaldi's swansong, Jenna Coleman reprised her role as Clara for one last time, appearing as a sentient glass avatar from The Doctor's memories. The Radio Times has revealed that it was all supposed to be very different. With Jenna on a tight schedule on ITV's Victoria, the original plans for Clara were rewritten to ensure she could still appear. Director Rachel Talalay told the magazine: 'It would have been such a loss if Jenna hadn't been able to appear. God knows she's busy. This wasn't like, "I don't want to do it." This was like, "I'm the star of a huge show and you're asking me to find time to come do this."' Talalay added that Clara was supposed to share an exchange with Bill and Nardole inside the TARDIS. 'I rewrote and rewrote and rewrote for everything we could do with Jenna's schedule,' said The Lord Thy God Steven Moffat (OBE). 'We couldn't get Jenna to our set. We couldn't have the three companions there together,' he said. 'But she does make a magical appearance on the battlefield, which we had to shoot separately a few days after the rest of the episode had wrapped.'
He has just ended an eight-year run on Doctor Who, but The Lord Thy God Steven Moffat (OBE) had planned to exit the BBC's popular long-running family SF drama, much earlier. In an interview with The Doctor Who Fan Show, Steven revealed that he was originally going to leave alongside Matt Smith in late 2013. 'I'd always sort of assumed that I would leave with Matt,' he admitted. '[But] I was so insanely busy I didn't have time to leave. It was season seven, The Day Of The Doctor, The Time Of The Doctor and people [were then] saying, "Who's the next Doctor?" and I'm going, "Yes, better find one!" And, before I know it, I'm auditioning Peter Capaldi.' But despite plans for an early exit, Steven insisted that the prospect of hiring Capaldi renewed his enthusiasm for working on the series. 'That's when I suddenly got excited. I thought, "My God, Peter being The Doctor! That's a whole new Doctor. That's going to be a whole new sky for us to fly through."' Elsewhere in the wide-ranging interview, Steven admitted that he was 'depressed' when Christopher Eccleston turned down the chance to be in the fiftieth special and revealed his original plans for series five if David Tennant had decided to stay with the show.
One of the most trailed dramas in the history of the medium, Sky's latest attempt to muscle in on Game Of Thrones' conceptual territory, Britannia, began this week to some good reviews, like this one and, this one. An rather sniffy 'if-you-like-that-sort-of-thing-you'll-probably-like-this' one from the BBC's resident slapheed, Will Gompertz and, one rather sneering and depressingly 'aren't I clever?' one from some arse of no importance at The New Statesman. This blogger, for what it's worth, rather enjoyed the opening episode of Britannia. Historically ludicrous, of course but completely over-the-top in the nicest possible way and with a terrific cast really going for it and, in the style of Game Of Thrones, taking it all totally seriously. Which merely added to the fun. The great David Morrissey, in particular, seemed to be absolutely relishing the task of acting his little cotton socks of whilst wearing a dead dog around his neck.
'Stepping in a pile of shit seems to have perked the boss up no end!' Hot-blooded revenge had important - and cold - repercussions for Josephine in the first of two further (brilliant) episodes of Spiral shown on BBC4 this weekend. The detective squad, to redeem their reputation after the disastrous Roma camp raid, dug up lots of dirt on the two corrupt officers in Herville's station. Watching assorted suspects stretched the detectives' resources, but did eventually yields some results. Meanwhile, for Josephine having run down (alleged) rapist Jean-Etienne Vern with his own car, when one door slammed shut, another conveniently opened when she started making waves for the ailing Judge Roban in picking up the case of the dead rent boy. And, Gilou had a heart-to-heart with Laure. And some of The Sex. Which, to be fair, Spiral 'shippers like this blogger have been waiting five series for. The Gruniad blog's recaps of last week's two episodes can be found here.
As was somewhat expected by this blogger when his participation in the current series was announced in the summer, that lanky scruff Russell Brand conspired to - mostly - ruin the latest episode of From The North favourite Qi. Whilst he wasn't anywhere near as objectionable and odious as Bloody Jack Bloody Whitehall during his three - quite horrific - appearances on a show that is, after all, supposed to be about intelligence as well as humour (neither of which Brand appears to possess much of) it was still an awkward half-hour. Brand, as usual, shouted a lot, talked over other people when they were trying to give answers and cracked a few attempted witticisms which the audience politely sniggered at but seemed not to find particularly funny. It didn't help that he was paired with That Bloody Weirdo Noel Fielding who, to be fair, is normally quite entertaining during his Qi stints. But, here, he was reduced to being Brand's straight-man. Which meant that half of the guests on this particular episode - Occult - spent their time being about as funny as a geet nasty painful boil on the bum.
Thankfully, the excellent Aisling Bea and Alan Davies - who, due to the presence of Brand and Fielding was only the third most irritating chap on display - managed to provide some worth to the episode. Most notably in a round concerning football superstitions with specific reference to the Argentine goalkeeper Sergio Goycochea and his curious, ahem, urine-related activities during the 1990 World Cup quarter-final and semi-final penalty shootouts.
Good grief Christina, dear blog reader, this week saw the broadcast in America of a half-way decent episode of The X-Files ... that was written by Chris Carter. That's got to be the first since, ooh, 1999 (ish). Seriously, this blogger was shocked and stunned by such discombobulation.
And, still on the subject of The X-Files, there's a rather good think-piece on The AV Club website about a couple of former - and, sadly, now mostly forgotten - X-Files characters, John Doggart and Monica Reyes, which is well worth a few moments of your time, dear blog reader.
On this week's episode of Only Connect, this blogger is extremely proud to note that he got this question right. Unlike the team which copped the question in question on the show itself. Who didn't. Of course, you just knew it would be TV-related, did you not?
And now, dear blog reader, a geographical telly-type note related to that scene in last Sunday's episode of ITV's Vera which was filmed in Amen Corner next to St Nicholas's Cathedral in central Newcastle upon the bonny Tyne. Believe it or not, dear blog reader, yer actual Keith Telly Topping his very self was actually passed by the location just whilst they were setting up the particular shot (for those taking notes, he was on his way to Pani's Italian restaurant in High Bridge for lunch with an old chum. For those taking further notes, he had Prawn Gamberi. It was very nice.) Despite the miserable autumnal weather this blogger can confirm that it was, in fact, filmed in July! That's Newcastle for you, dear blog reader.
And, so to this week's episode of Star Trek: Discovery - The Wolf Inside, the second part of the Mirror Universe trilogy. It seems to have gone down jolly well with fans and, this blogger was delighted to note, included some proper 'evil facial hair' on display in the Mirror Universe at last! And, this blogger is still loving Evil Tilly the mostest.
'Your my father, you need my help, it's not like you're going to ask me to get rid of a body or anything!' Speaking of really good episodes of US TV drama, dear blog reader, there was a very good episode of The Blacklist broadcast this week - essentially a fiendishly complex (and very funny) heist mini-movie. One interesting side point, however, was that the production team seem to have gone back to a regular feature of earlier series, in that they seem determined to shoehorn a sequence featuring Megan Boone in her pants for no obvious reason into as many episodes as possible. For extra kinkiness, there was also a gas-mask involved!
Here are the final and consolidated ratings for the Top Twenty Eight programmes broadcast in the UK during the week-ending Sunday 14 January 2018:-
1 Silent Witness - Mon BBC1 - 8.68m
2 Coronation Street - Mon ITV - 8.53m
3 Death In Paradise - Thurs BBC1 - 8.04m
4 Vera - Sun ITV - 7.91m
5 EastEnders - Tues BBC1 - 7.71m
6 Emmerdale - Thurs ITV - 7.40m
7 The Coronation - Sun BBC1 - 6.90m
8 Twatting About On Ice - Sun ITV - 6.55m
9 The Voice - Sat ITV - 6.17m
10 Countryfile - Sun BBC1 - 5.79m
11 McMafia - Sun BBC1 - 5.75m
12 Six O'Clock News - Wed BBC1 - 5.50m
13 Girlfriends - Wed ITV - 5.24m
14 Kiri - Wed C4 - 5.00m
15 BBC News - Sun BBC1 - 4.97m
16 Big Cats - Thurs BBC1- 4.96m
17 Casualty - Sat BBC1 - 4.93m
18 Still Open All Hours - Sun BBC1 - 4.87m
19 Holby City - Tues BBC1 - 4.77m
20 Would I Lie To You? - Fri BBC1 - 4.48m
21 Next Of Kin - Mon ITV - 4.40m
22 The Graham Norton Show - Fri BBC1 - 4.35m
23 Z-List Pointless Celebrity - Sat BBC1 - 4.30m
24 Ten O'Clock News - Mon BBC1 - 4.28m
25 Britain's Brightest Family - Wed ITV - 4.20m
26 ITV News - Mon ITV - 4.05m
27 The Chase - Mon ITV - 3.93m
28 The ONE Show - Fri BBC1 - 3.88m
These consolidated figures - published weekly by the British Audience Research Bureau - include all viewers who watched programmes live and on various forms of catch-up TV and video-on-demand during the seven days after initial broadcast. They do not, however, include those who watched programmes on BBC's iPlayer or ITV Player via their computers. You knew that, right? The Tuesday second-part of Silent Witness's series debut was watched by 8.29 million viewers. Tom Kerridge: Lose Weight For Good again headed BBC2's weekly top thirty with 2.77 million. Inside The Factory was seen by 2.70 million punters. Trust Me, I'm A Doctor drew 2.40 million, Match Of The Day: FA Cup Fourth Round Draw, 2.34 million, University Challenge, 2.33 million, Surgeons: At The Edge Of Life, 2.29 million, House Through Time, 2.28 million, Only Connect, 2.24 million back in its traditional Monday evening slot and finally starting to get the sort of figures that it was pulling in last series before some bloody daft glake decided to move it to Friday, Mastermind, 2.20 million, Dragons' Den, 2.17 million, Dad's Army, 2.10 million, The Hairy Bikers' Mediterranean Adventure, 2.04 million, Rome Unpacked, 1.79 million, House Of Saud: A Family At War, 1.78 million and Qi, 1.67 million. Inside Number Nine was watched by 1.60 million and Yellowstone: The Wildest Winter, by 1.57 million. Kiri was - by a distance - Channel Four's highest-rated broadcast of the week and, indeed, was the channel's largest drama launch for about five years. Hunted attracted 2.56 million. SAS: Who Dares Wins (2.43 million), the second episode of Derry Girls (2.37 million) and The Undateables (2.16 million) came next. How To Lose Weight Well also had 2.16 million viewers, First Dates Hotel, 2.09 million, Twenty Four Hours In A&E, 2.05 million, the movie Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, 1.87 million, George Clarke's Amazing Spaces, 1.80 million, The Secret Life Of The Zoo, 1.79 million, The Big Fat Quiz Of Everything, 1.72 million and Kirstie & Phil's Love It Or List It, 1.70 million. Channel Five's top performer was, obviously, Z-List Celebrity Big Brother. The top seven broadcasts in Channel Five's list begin episodes of the sick Victorian freak-show with Thursday's watched by an audience of 2.02 million brain-damaged morons or the victims of cruel medical experiments. Broken Britain in a nutshell, dear blog reader. The return of Will & Grace (1.36 million), Billionaire Babies: Twenty Four Carat Kids (1.26 million), the movie Pixels (1.23 million) and Diet Secrets & How To Lose Weight (1.11 million) rounded-off Five's most-watched list of shame. More Kids Than Cash attracted one million punters and The Wonderful World Of Puppies, nine hundred and sixty nine thousand. Note, also, that BBC2, Channel Four and Channel Five all currently have shows on the subject of weight loss all of which have remarkably similar titles. Just sayin'. On Sky Sports Premier League, Gillette Soccer Special was watched by one hundred and thirty eight thousand, whilst three hundred and forty three thousand viewed Jeff Stelling, Tiss, Merse, Thommo and Champagne Charlie on Sky Sports News, three hundred and ninety five thousand on Sky Sports Main Event and seventy five thousand on Sky Sports Football. The Liverpool Alabama Yee-Haws draw with Champions-elect Sheikh Yer Man City was seen by six hundred and thirty seven thousand on SS PL, plus a whopping 1.58 million punters on Main Event. Bournemouth's unexpected - but, very amusing - twanking of The Arse had three hundred and twenty five thousand plus six hundred and ninety one thousand on Main Event. Goals On Sunday was watched by one hundred and twenty two thousand. The semi-finals of the League Cup (or, whatever it's being called this season) dominated Sky Sports Football. Moscow Chelski FC versus The Arse attracted two hundred and thirty four thousand viewers (plus eight hundred and seventy five thousand on Main Event), whilst Sheikh Yer Man City against Bristol City drew one hundred and thirty nine thousand (plus seven hundred and fifteen thousand on Main Event). Live EFL, Nottingham Forest versus Aston Villains was seen by one hundred and fourteen thousand (plus two hundred and thirty nine thousand on Main Event) and Blunderland's latest catastrophic hiding at the hands of Cardiff City had one hundred and nine thousand (plus three hundred and four thousand on Man Event). Main Event's largest audience for anything other than a football game was for an American football game, Pittsburgh Steelers versus Jacksonville Jaguars (one hundred and thirteen thousand, with a further seventy two thousand on Sky Sports Action). And, yes, dear blog reader, this blogger absolutely refuses to use the word Soccer unless he absolutely has to. On Sky Sports Mix, Real Madrid's home loss to Villarreal brought in thirty seven thousand punters. A repeat of last season's Belgian Grand Prix was Sky Sports F1's list-topper with six thousand. Highlights of the ICC Under Nineteen World Cup game between India and Australia had forty thousand on Sky Sports Cricket. Sky 1's weekly top-ten was headed by the return of Delicious with eight hundred and fifty eight thousand viewers and Hawaii Five-0, with eight hundred and thirty eight thousand. NCIS: Los Angeles (seven hundred and forty eight thousand), Modern Family (six hundred and seventeen thousand) and From The North favourite The Blacklist (five hundred and eighty one thousand) came next. Rancid stream of festering spew Trollied had four hundred and ninety three thousand people who should be bloody well embarrassed after choosing to have their intelligence insulted by such crass diarrhoea. Sky Arts' Portrait Artists Of The Year was seen by eighty seven thousand viewers whilst the movie Chocolat drew fifty seven thousand viewers. Nine of Sky Atlantic's top ten was made up of episodes of Game Of Thrones (the most popular one being watched by one hundred and eighty six thousand). The sole exception was the repeat of The Tunnel: Vengeance with ninety eight thousand. On Sky Living, the latest episode of The Good Doctor drew eight hundred and eighty nine thousand whilst Madam Secretary, had five hundred and fifty one thousand. Chicago Fire attracted five hundred and nine, How To Get Away With Murder, two hundred and twelve thousand and Britain's Most Evil Killers & Their Naughty Wicked Ways, one hundred and forty seven thousand. The acclaimed Get Out was the most-watched film on Sky Cinema Premiere, seen by three hundred and eighty two thousand. The Boss Bay drew one hundred and fifty six thousand. Midsomer Murders was, as usual, ITV3's top-rated drama (nine hundred and nineteen thousand viewers). Agatha Christie's Marple was seen by six hundred and thirty thousand, Endeavour, by five hundred and ninety five thousand and Lewis, by four hundred and sixty thousand. The movie The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers and Ibiza Weekender were viewed by eight hundred and sixteen thousand and seven hundred and forty five thousand punters on ITV2. ITV4's list was headed by From Russia With Love with five hundred and twelve thousand. Kelly's Heroes had three hundred and sixty two thousand. Vera topped ITV Encore's top ten with one hundred thousand viewers, followed by Poirot and Outside Edge (both sixty four thousand). Appalling tripe Botched By Nature, was viewed by one hundred and thirty four thousand of exactly the sort of specimens who enjoy such risible and ugly exercises in z-list-celebrity-by-non-entity on ITVBe. Similarly wretched conceit, The Real Housewives Of Potomac was seen by one hundred and thirty two thousand. BBC4's top-ten was headed by the opening episode of England's Forgotten Queen: The Life Death Of Lady Jane Gray (1.06 million) and by the fifth and sixth episodes of From The North favourite Spiral, with nine hundred and eighty eight thousand and nine hundred and forty six thousand. The second and third episodes of England's Forgotten Queen: The Life Death Of Lady Jane Gray, broadcast on Wednesday and Thursday, attracted eight hundred and fifty eight thousand and eight hundred and thirty thousand respectively. Neil Armstrong: First Man On The Moon had six hundred and six thousand, Highlands: Scotland's Wild Heart, five hundred and seventy five thousand and Fit To Rule: How Royal Illness Changed History, five hundred and fifty eight thousand. Bloody Queens: Elizabeth & Mary drew five hundred and forty three thousand and Alaska: Earth's Frozen Kingdom five hundred and thirty seven thousand. 5USA's repeat of NCIS was viewed by five hundred and sixteen thousand punters, Chicago Justice by three hundred and sixty three thousand, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit by two hundred and ninety three thousand and NCIS: Los Angeles by two hundred and eighty three thousand. On Five Star, Z-List Celebrity Big Brother scored four hundred and seventy thousand thousand and Home & Away, four hundred and sixty one thousand. Fifty Five Days At Peking drew one hundred and eighty one thousand on Five-Spike. The High Chaparral was the most-watched broadcast on CBS Action (one hundred and seventeen thousand) whilst NCIS was viewed by one hundred and ten thousand. Judge Judy attracted eighty nine thousand to the curiously mis-named CBS Drama. For FOX's sake, the second episode of the newest series of NCIS was seen by eight hundred and ninety nine thousand viewers. The latest episode of The Orville had six hundred and three thousand and Bull, four hundred and thirty two thousand. NCIS also continued its - seemingly endless - repeat run on the Universal Channel with one hundred and four thousand viewers. On Dave, an episode of Taskmaster was watched by three hundred and forty nine thousand - no, this blogger had no idea why either - whilst Have I Got A Bit More News For You had three hundred and forty five thousand. Channel staples Qi XL and Would I Lie To You? drew three hundred and thirty thousand and three hundred and seven thousand respectively. Drama's Death In Paradise was viewed by four hundred and sixty one thousand whilst The Inspector Lynely Mysteries attracted three hundred and seventy three thousand viewers and New Tricks, two hundred and eighty two thousand. Two Drama Channel staple also headed the weekly top-ten of Alibi - Murdoch Mysteries with two hundred and forty eight thousand and Death In Paradise with one hundred and twenty nine thousand. Maisie Raine was seen by ninety four thousand. Sony TV's most watched movies were Jumanji (fifty three thousand), My Best Friend's Wedding (thirty eight thousand) and Matilda (thirty six thousand). Yesterday's repeat runs of Open All Hours and Porridge drew two hundred and fifty two thousand and two hundred and forty six thousand respectively. On Your TV, Bones brought in one hundred and twenty nine thousand and Castle, one hundred and nineteen thousand. The Discovery Channel's Gold Rush was seen by four hundred and seventy thousand viewers. Wheeler Dealers had three hundred and twenty one thousand, Moonshiners, ninety seven thousand and Mythbusters, eighty eight thousand. Former From The North fave Wheeler Dealers also appeared in the weekly top tens of both Discovery Shed (twenty five thousand) and Discovery Turbo (also thirty eight thousand). Though both of those were from previous series when the programme used to be good. Discovery History's Ultimate Weapons headed the top ten with thirty eight thousand. Weapon Hunters and Out Of Egypt both had twenty three thousand. On Discovery Science, How Do They Do It? was viewed by forty seven thousand. Salvage Hunters on Quest was watched by two hundred and twenty nine thousand. Pick's Road Wars had an audience of two hundred and forty two thousand. Spitfire: Birth Of A Legend and Codebreaker: Bletchley Park's Lost Heroes topped PBS America's weekly list, both with forty one thousand. National Geographic's list was headed by Banged Up Abroad and Air Crash Investigations. They were watched by fifty one thousand and forty seven thousand respectively. National Geographic Wild's Ultimate Animals was viewed by fifty five thousand. The History Channel's most-seen programme was The Curse Of Oak Island (one hundred and eighty nine thousand thousand), followed by Viking (one hundred and seventy six thousand) and Hunting Hitler (one hundred and seventy five thousand). WWII Lost Films on the Military History channel was watched by thirty seven thousand. Britain's Forgotten Serial Killer, The First Forty Eight and Homicide Hunter were Crime & Investigation's top-rated programmes with fifty nine thousand, forty nine thousand and thirty eight thousand blood-and-snots-lovers, respectively. Grave Secrets, Swamp Murders, 1980s: The Deadliest Decade, Baby Vanished and Deadly Women headed Investigation Discovery's list (eighty two thousand, sixty thousand, fifty four thousand, fifty four and fifty three thousand respectively). Comedy Central's largest audience of the week was for an episode of Impractical Jokers with two hundred and ninety five thousand. GOLD's repeat run of Only Fools & Horses continued with two hundred and twelve thousand punters. On More4, Cleopatra's Lost Tomb was the highest-rated programme with four hundred and sixty three thousand. E4's list was topped by Hollyoakes with 1.07 million. One hundred and thirty three thousand punters were trying, in vain, to be Keeping Up With The Kardashians on E! Escape To The Country was watched by one hundred and thirty nine thousand on Home. The Horror Channel's weekly list was topped by Steven King's The Stand which attracted one hundred and sixty eight thousand. Final Girl (one hundred and fifty eight thousand), The Unborn (one hundred and thirty seven thousand)and Don't Blink (one hundred and twenty five thousand) also featured in the channel's top ten. The Librarians headed Syfy's top-ten with two hundred and forty five thousand. The Naked Truth, Dick Powell Theatre, Panic In The Streets and The Day Will Dawn topped Talking Pictures list, with fifty nine thousand, fifty eight thousand, fifty five thousand and fifty five thousand respectively. TLC's list was headed by Ninety Day Fiance (two hundred and fourteen thousand). True Crime's Deadly Women was seen by seventy five thousand viewers. On True Entertainment, M*A*S*H was watched by one hundred and thirty three thousand punters. Tipping Point: Lucky Stars on W attracted an audience of two hundred and twelve thousand. Deadly Sixty was viewed by eighteen thousand on Eden. Monsters Inside Me was the Animal Planet's most-watched programme with thirty six thousand. Rick Stein's French Odyssey had seventy five thousand people on Good Food. Shameful and wretched pants Geordie Shore on MTV was viewed by six hundred and thirty two thousand geet planks. Escape To The Country drew two hundred and five thousand on Really. Tom & Jerry had one hundred and four thousand viewers on Boomerang. On Cbeebies, Hey Duggee was seen by five hundred and seventy nine thousand. In The Night Garden had five hundred and forty four thousand and Topsy & Tim, five hundred and thirty six thousand. Alvinnn!!! & The Chipmunks had an audience of one hundred and sixty three thousand on the Pop Channel. Gangster: Faces Of The Underworld attracted forty five thousand on London Live. Combat Report, was seen by one hundred and thirteen thousand on the Movies 4 Men channel. Non-Stop attracted four hundred and fifty four thousand on Film4.

Last year it was announced that a second series of Danny Baker's Cradle To Grave would be going into production. Which was good news since the first series was terrific. But, now the show's creator has revealed that it is, currently, 'in limbo'. Peter Kay (who plays Danny's father, Spud, in the sitcom based on Danny's teenage years) recently announced that he was cancelling all of his 'upcoming work projects' due to 'unforeseen family circumstances.' Speaking to the Sun, Danny said: 'The show is in limbo. I'll wait for Peter until 2019, but the actors all need to know. The BBC is being very good about it but a big player independent of the BBC and everyone else has stepped in and said, "We think there's a way of doing your record shop or punk years." I'd be happy if it was just that.' Although Kay has said that he is cancelling all his projects, including his first live tour in eight years, two planned Car Share specials are reported to be still going ahead. One of the two episodes will wrap the series up, while the other one will be unscripted and improvised. When he announced his work cancellations, Kay said: 'My sincerest apologies. This decision has not been taken lightly and I'm sure you'll understand my family must always come first. I've always endeavoured to protect my family's privacy from the media. I hope that the media and the public will continue to respect our privacy at this time.'
The return of Twin Peaks was something that many of us thought we would never see. And, when it did eventually emerge, most of us also assumed it would be a final send-off for David Lynch's cult drama; but, it turns out that there is plenty of room for more. If or when 'more' will happen, however, is anyone's guess. Speaking to Slashfilm at the Television Critics Association winter press tour, Kyle MacLachlan said: 'David [Lynch]'s process is his own. He will come to it if he comes to it, in his own time. That could be ten minutes, it could be ten years. I don't know. If we do decide to go again I would be absolutely excited to revisit doing it again. Those characters are always fascinating.' Showtime President David Nevins also said at the same event that he will not ask Lynch when more Twin Peaks could be coming and would be happy just to leave Lynch to decide in his own time whether he wishes to continue with the drama - which, of course, was From The North's favourite TV show of 2017. Lynch, for his part, has previously said that 'there's nothing to talk about,' with regard to any potential continuation of Twin Peaks. But, afterwards, he also noted that he has learned 'not to rule anything out' and, cryptically, added that there is 'always room to dream.'
Katherine Ryan - who was just about the one good thing in a really very substandard episode of Would I Lie To You? broadcast this week - has revealed that she is currently writing a 'scripted project' for the Netflix streaming service. Katherine's stand-up special In Trouble was shown on Netflix last February and now the comedienne has revealed that she is looking to follow it up with a scripted comedy. 'I have a project with Netflix. I'm doing a scripted project for them right now. You never know until you see it on the screen whether or not it's definitely going to be made or not, but it's being written,' she told the Digital Spy website. Katherine previously wrote and starred in the Sky Arts short Katherine Ryan In Ireland and says that pursuing scripted comedy is 'definitely' something that she wants to do. 'If this one doesn't end up getting made, I'll write another one. I really am grateful to have my special streaming on Netflix and I hope that it goes that way. Comedians just want to tell their story in any way that they can. But who knows? I'm a pretty bad actress when I'm playing anyone but myself.' Launching a Netflix comedy would be another coup for the award-winning Canadian comic, who has recently been compared to a young Joan Rivers – a tag which she says she is happy with. 'I'm not precious about that at all – I think it's very flattering,' she says. 'I think I'm a little bit warmer and softer, dare I say it, than Joan Rivers. People ask me all the time, "Katherine, can you be softer? Can you be fresh? Can you warm?" Like an avocado. Joan had to be the way she was. She had to be that acerbic, because she was very busy knocking down doors for women like me and creating a path for women like me. So any comparison to her is a good one.' Ryan says that right now is 'a wonderful time to be a comedian' – even as the world gets seemingly more insane with each passing day. 'Comedy has always been a rebellious art,' she insists. 'I think it's very political and journalists are being silenced all over the world right now. So I think you have quite a difficult time on your hands, quite a tricky job. To say something in stand-up comedy, live in a room, really is very freeing. Something happens in the news, and you're able to get on stage and talk about it that evening. So I think there's been no better time for stand-up comedy. I don't worry at all about being PC, or being too PC, or anything. As long as you're punching up – that's my rule. As long as you're punching up, I think you can say anything you like. Will it get you barred from certain countries? Yeah, probably.'
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are set to collaborate once again on a new horror-comedy TV series. Returning to the medium they started in with shows such as Spaced, the Hot Fuzz team are now reportedly working on a new show called Truth Seekers. Made under their new banner Stolen Picture, the show will follow a three-person paranormal investigation team and each episode will focus on a different paranormal incident they investigate. 'Each episode is going to be an adventure, a potential haunting or something,' Pegg told Variety. 'It'll start as a very parochial idea, a very small business venture for these people, but it will expand as the series goes on to be something far more global. It's a language everyone understands, the mystery of the unknown. Shaun Of The Dead was a very parochial story set in North London and somehow it managed to get this global reach because everyone understands the language of zombie movies.' This isn't the only project in the works under Pegg and Frost's new company either, as the movie Slaughterhouse Rulez was announced in May last year. They are also reported to be working on a movie about a fading double act who haven't spoken in decades, but reunite for one last show. 'We'd like to do it as a two-hander and make it on a very low budget,' Pegg explained. 'We've had the idea for a long time and we're going to write an outline and then improvise and make something, which is far looser than when we work with Edgar [Wright] where every transition is so precise.' Frost explained that they're happy to make lower-budget work again to retain creative control, adding: 'There's that trade-off. I'd rather have a lot less money and make a film or a TV series and have a great time doing it than put it through a million processes and people you don't know and you don't respect creatively.'
The news ended up making the news this week, as BBC Breakfast noticed that Australia's Channel Nine had apparently 'made an homage' of one of their adverts. A social media type-person 'working' (if one can really call social media a 'job') for the Beeb spliced up the two adverts into one video and posted it on Twitter. When asked about the similarities, a spokesperson for Nine told Australian media that: 'The promo ran for a short period over the summer period and hasn't been on air for more than two weeks.' Which may be an answer to some question, but not really the one they were actually asked.
Witnesses' detective Sandra Winckler was faced with solving the murders of fifteen men found frozen on an abandoned bus in series two's A Frozen Death and now actress Marie Dompnier says that she will probably be back to another crime next year. The BBC4 Nordic noir-inspired series - set in a small coastal village in Northern France - follows Sandra as she tries to balance her job as a detective with raising her daughter as a single parent. Spiral's Audrey Fleurot joined the cast as the mysterious Catherine Keemer in series two. Writers Hervé Hadmar and Marc Herpoux reportedly plan to set the next series a decade on from the last. 'The director and showrunner would like to shoot it with the same characters, but five or ten years in the future,' Dompnier told the Digital Spy website. 'So I think the idea could be really interesting, to give an end to that story but five or ten years later. The series hasn't been written yet, but I know there are two choices – you choose to finish the series light, or in the dark.'
Anna Richardson has revealed that she and her partner, Sue Perkins, were the victims of an online scam a couple of years ago. Appearing this week on Loose Women, Richardson and the rest of the panel discussed their approaches to avoiding losing money online, before revealing just how easy it can be. Admitting that the incident made her feel 'stupid,' Richardson explained that, despite receiving information that appeared legitimate about the website and its owner, she and Perkins lost 'thousands' while booking a family holiday. 'I went to a website that I thought was very well-known to book a villa [and] spoke to the guy who was running the website,' she explained. '[I] booked a very expensive place for the whole family, asked for the chap's details because I thought, "Hang on a minute. I'm not sure I really recognise this website." I need to do my checks because I'm a journalist.' Revealing the level of detail in the scam, she continued: 'He faxed me through all kinds of information about him. I paid thousands of pounds for the accommodation and poof! He just disappeared. No villa, no holiday. Goodbye money.'
Supergirl's Melissa Benoist has spoken about the firing of series showrunner Andrew Kreisberg following a series of sexual misconduct allegations made against him. Appearing at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour this week, Melissa admitted that 'the irony' of the situation was not lost on her. Calling the news of Kresiberg's alleged behaviour 'a major disappointment,' Benoist went on to explain how the cast and crew of the hit CW series have 'moved forward' since Kreisberg's departure last year. 'I have to say that the way our show has recovered as a cast and a crew together, we have an atmosphere on set now that I'm extremely proud of,' she told Entertainment Weekly. 'There are a lot of amazing men that work on our show and we have a lot of amazing women that are in powerful positions on our show as well.' Paying tribute to co-showrunner Jessica Queller and executive producer Sarah Schechter, Melissa also praised the new working atmosphere on the show. 'We're all in the fight for equality and for a safer atmosphere in the working space,' she added. Shortly after the allegations against Kresiberg came to light, Benoist publicly offered her support to those who have been 'mistreated' by people in a position of power. 'When people are mistreated, they should have a safe forum to speak their truth and always be heard,' she wrote. 'And when people commit crimes or harass others they should always be held accountable – no matter what industry they work in or how much power they wield.'
Eliza Dushku has reiterated claims she made about being abused at the age of twelve while working on the film True Lies. In a Facebook posting, the now thirty seven-year-old alleged that stuntman Joel Kramer sexually molested her. Following the allegations, Kramer issued several denials, calling the claims 'entirely untrue.' In response, From The North favourite Dushku, best known for her roles in Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Tru Calling and Dollhouse has posted again saying she 'stands by' her claims and is 'telling the truth.' The actress shared on Facebook an article reporting her alleged abuse and said: 'I stand by what I said here. His denials are not accurate. What I wrote is the truth. I won't let him victimise me again.' Dushku's original post, which she shared on Facebook last Saturday, alleged that Kramer had 'groomed' her and went on to 'sexually molest' her in a hotel room during the production of True Lies. She added that Kramer, who was the stunt co-ordinator on the 1994 movies, 'purposely injured' her after he was confronted by an adult friend in whom she had confided. Dushku wrote: 'I remember how later that very same day, by no small coincidence, I was injured from a stunt-gone-wrong on the Harrier jet. With broken ribs, I spent the evening in the hospital. My life was literally in [Kramer's] hands: he hung me in the open air, from a tower crane, atop an office tower, twenty five-plus stories high. Whereas he was supposed to be my protector, he was my abuser.' In a statement Kramer said: 'While filming True Lies I treated Ms Dushku with respect and was protective of her safety and welfare as is appropriate to my position as a stunt coordinator. A film crew is like a family and Eliza was always treated and protected as a member of the family. I never behaved in any way inappropriately with her. I was never in a position where I was alone with her and even while working with her on set, her female stunt double was always there to help her into her harness, offer support and ensure her well being. I did not "lure her to my hotel room,"' Kramer claimed. He continued: 'I understand the culture in Hollywood has been historically unfair to women and I applaud and support women who are standing up and pointing out these injustices. It is unfortunate, however, that this new culture allows a person to destroy the life and livelihood of a person with false accusations.' A number of people have come forward supporting Dushku's account - including her mother in a Facebook posting of her own. Judith Dushku says that she 'partially' knew what is said to have happened to her daughter - but claims that she 'was afraid of Joel Kramer, too.' Sue Booth-Forbes acted as the twelve-year-old actress's legal guardian while on the set of True Lies and says that Dushku is 'telling the truth.' In a statement sent to Deadline, Booth-Forbes says that she reported 'the inappropriate sexual behaviour towards twelve-year-old Eliza to a person in authority,' but was met with 'blank stares.' She further claims that she 'had the sense that I wasn't telling that person anything they didn't already know,' and added that the complaint 'did not go any further.' Writer and professor Peter Conti, who is a long-time friend of Eliza Dushku, has also corroborated the story, writing on Facebook that the actress confided in him 'a few weeks after it happened.' Conti says that he confronted Kramer at the premiere of True Lies but claims 'security got in the way. I certainly regret not handling [it] in a more direct way - I was much younger and I thought: If the producers of the film aren't doing anything, who the hell is going to believe me?' Kramer's talent agency has confirmed to BBC News that it has stopped working with him as a result of the allegations. In a statement Worldwide Production Agency said: 'WPA has elected to part ways with Joel Kramer based on the allegations of misconduct now being reported. Such behaviour is unacceptable and entirely at odds with the the standards of conduct we demand of ourselves and expect from our clients.' Meanwhile, Jamie Lee Curtis - who starred in True Lies as Dushku's mother - has written a column for The Huffington Post, claiming that she only found out about the allegations 'a few years ago. I was shocked and saddened then and still am today,' she writes. The actress added: 'All of us must take some responsibility. Many of us involved in True Lies were parents. What allegedly happened to Eliza, away from the safety net of all of us and our purview is a terrible, terrible thing to learn about and have to reconcile.' Arnold Schwarzenegger also said that he was 'shocked and saddened' to learn of Dushku's alleged sexual assault. Arnie tweeted on Monday evening that had he known about the incident at the time 'you bet your ass all of us would have done something.' Schwarzenegger also tweeted his support and his pride at Dushku, who played his daughter in the movie, for coming forward and speaking out about her alleged experiences. True Lies director James Cameron has commented on the claims saying: 'Had I known about it, there would have been no mercy. Now especially, I have daughters. There's really no mercy now.'
Dylan Farrow says that she feels 'outrage' after 'years of being ignored, disbelieved and tossed aside.' Woody Allen's adopted daughter appeared on the CBS show This Morning to talk about her sexual assault claim against the director. In what is her first TV interview, Farrow says that she is 'hurt and angry.' The thirty two-year-old has repeatedly accused Allen of molesting her when she was seven - claims that the director has always denied. Farrow expressed anger at the suggestion she was simply caught up in the Hollywood 'me too' campaign, saying: 'Why shouldn't I want to bring him down? Why shouldn't I be angry? Why shouldn't I be hurt? Why shouldn't I feel some sort of outrage after all these years of being ignored, disbelieved and tossed aside?' The initial excerpt, in which Farrow was visibly emotional, was a preview of a longer interview, which was broadcast on Thursday. The interview was filmed at Farrow's home in Bridgewater, Connecticut. Farrow discussed why it was the right time for her to do a television interview after years of claiming that Allen had abused her. 'All I can do is speak my truth and hope - hope that somebody will believe me rather than just hearing,' she said. Allen was investigated over a 1992 claim by Farrow that he had sexually assaulted her at the family's Connecticut home. Prosecutors did not charge the film-maker and he has always denied the allegations, which he claims had been 'fabricated' by his former partner, Mia Farrow. In 2014, Dylan Farrow wrote an open letter alleging that she had been molested by Allen - but he responded to the claims calling them 'untrue and disgraceful.' More recently, in a series of tweets posted ahead of last week's Golden Globes award ceremony, Dylan Farrow reiterated her claims that Allen was 'a predator.' A number of actors have distanced themselves from Allen as Hollywood's sexual harassment scandal continues. They include Timothee Chalamet, who announced this week that he would give his salary for appearing in Allen's next film, A Rainy Day In New York, to charity. Chalamet claimed: 'I don't want to profit from my work on the film.' His co-star, Rebecca Hall, also donated her fee to charity and said that she 'regretted' her decision to appear in the film. However, Alec Baldwin, who worked with Allen on Alice, Blue Jasmine and To Rome With Love, said the 'renunciation of him and his work' was 'unfair and sad. Woody Allen was investigated forensically by two states - New York and Connecticut - and no charges were filed,' he tweeted on Tuesday.
And now, dear blog reader, a story that just will not go away no matter how much some people would like it to.
Phone-hacking cases brought by Vic Reeves, Kate Thornton and two others against billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch's Sun and disgraced and disgraceful Scum of the World have been confidentially settled, just as a six-week trial was due to hear allegations of 'a cover-up' by senior executives at the media mogul's tabloids. The last-minute deal agreed on Thursday earned both sides a rebuke from Mr Justice Mann, who complained that 'issues important to another forty seven hacking cases' currently in the pipeline had 'not been determined' in a case that would have heard allegations of wrongdoing against James Murdoch The Small and well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Rebekah Brooks. Instead, the 'confidential settlement' was agreed with Reeves, under his real name Jim Moir, Thornton, Coronation Street actor Jimmi Harkishin and talent agent Chris Herbert. Billionaire tyrant Murdoch's News Group Newspapers was also expected to pay the costs of all four, estimated at a whopping four million knicker in total. Which is, obviously, in no way whatsoever 'hush-money' designed to keep awkward and embarrassing revelations about any former or current News Group employees from being revealed in court. oh no, perish the very thought. David Sherborne, counsel for the claimants, told the court the claimants would 'allege criminality at the most senior level: James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks' as part of the case. James Murdoch The Small, the younger son of billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch, was executive chairman of the tabloid's British owner News UK and is now chief executive of Twenty First Century FOX, whilst well-known Crystal Tipps lookalike Brooks has returned to her old job as chief executive of News UK. The case had also been due to hear allegations of hacking by journalists at the Sun. News UK has never admitted that any hacking took place at the daily title, nor any wrongdoing by senior executives. Although, it's probably worth recalling that they also spent three years insisting that none had gone on at the Scum of the World either. Or, that any which had was merely the work of one lone 'rogue' reporter. That was, until the weight of evidence against the Sunday tabloid became overwhelming and they were forced to cough up the naughties. The last-minute agreement meant that neither of these issues related to the Sun could be determined in a court of law. The Scum of the World was, of course, closed - in shame and ignominy - July 2011 and one its former editors, Andy Coulson, was subsequently found very guilty of being involved in hacking at a trial and extremely sent to jail. Mann noted that billionaire tyrant Murdoch's News Group Newspapers had made 'admissions of unlawful activity at the News of the World but it has made none at the Sun' in the context of the pre-trial submissions he had received. Mann also complained that the case had taken 'years' to prepare to reach the trial stage and that the other litigants in the pipeline had now been 'deprived' of the opportunity to see issues of liability being resolved in a test case. The judge told the court that the last-minute settlement of the four cases was 'a serious matter' because the court had devoted 'a significant amount of time and resources' to preparing them for trial due to the perceived importance of the case. The settlement of 'a useful test case raises difficult issues' for others hoping to bring claims, he said, adding that future hacking litigation would 'have to be dealt with differently.' Ed Milimolimandi, the former Labour leader and a strong critic of the billionaire tyrant Murdoch family, said: 'This last-minute deal is yet another case of the Murdochs going to extraordinary lengths to prevent detailed scrutiny of what really happened at their newspapers. It shows why we need the Leveson Two [press] inquiry to get to the truth.' Billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch's Twenty First Century FOX is still seeking regulatory approval from the Competition and Markets Authority for a full takeover of the satellite broadcaster Sky, although some opposition politicians, including Milimolimandi, have said that the media mogul should be prevented from concluding the deal, partly because of the phone-hacking allegations. Several other hacking cases, which were not due to come to trial, were also settled on Thursday. They included claims made by national heartthrob David Tennant and by Colin Jackson, the BBC sports commentator and former athlete.
Chris Tarrant has been very banned from driving after pleading extremely guilty to drink-driving. The seventy one-year-old was over the legal limit while driving his Mercedes on 16 December in Bucklebury. He had fifty microgrammes of alcohol per one hundred millilitres of breath. The legal limit is thirty five microgrammes. The Who Wants To Be A Millionaire host was disqualified from driving for twelve months by Reading magistrates and fined six thousand smackers. Outside court, Tarrant said that he was 'very sorry' and thought his punishment was 'fair.' Magistrates were told that he had been been drinking brandy and port in the Bladebone Inn before getting into his car. He was then snitched up to Bobbies by a dirty stinking Copper's Nark member of the public who was in the pub at the time.
Suranne Jones has revealed that she feels 'a little insulted' when people suggest that Doctor Foster is 'guilty pleasure TV.' And, you wouldn't like her when she's angry, dear blog reader. The actress has spoken about her experience of playing the extremely divisive television protagonist and why she was offended by some of the impressions the drama left on viewers following last year's second series. '[Reaction to series two] was so split,' she told The Sunday Times, 'with people saying, "This is ridiculous, this is a romp, this is crazy – but I'll watch it." That hurt, though, in the sense of, "You're saying it's guilty-pleasure TV." I don't want to do guilty-pleasure TV.' As a whole, the series and its finale divided viewers, although it also brought Jones a load of National Television Award nominations. However, its much anticipated reception also made Suranne cautious of being pigeonholed. 'I don't want to say the fame has grown, it's not that,' she added. 'But the support has grown. It feels like that, and I don't want to let people down. I think people do like to pigeonhole you.'
Shane Black and his writing partner Fred Dekker have reportedly scripted a TV pilot reboot for the cult 1960s drama The Avengers. And, dear blog reader, if you Google 'really bad TV remake ideas', you'll probably find that one jolly close to the top. Black first made a name for himself with his script for Lethal Weapon in 1987. He followed up with scripts for The Last Boy Scout and The Long Kiss Goodnight, before moving into directing later in his career with The Nice Guys and Iron Man 3. Black also co-wrote 1987's The Monster Squad with Dekker, who directed the film. Dekker was also behind the camera on Night Of The Creeps and RoboCop 3 and, after a long break pursuing separate projects, he and Black renewed their creative partnership to write the script for The Predator, which Black is directing. They also co-wrote the pilot for Western series Edge in 2015. When asked about the project, Dekker said: 'It's The Avengers with John Steed and Emma Peel. We're setting it in Britain in the 1960's and our approach is The Ipcress File meets Doctor Who. At this moment, it's my favourite thing we're working on.' And, if you Google 'The Ipcress File meets Doctor Who' you'll find it attached to the phrase 'really, very bad idea indeed.' An ill-fated movie reboot of The Avengers was released to wretched reviews in 1998. It starred Ralph Fiennes as Steed, Uma Thurman as Emma Peel and featured Sean Connery hamming it up like a big packet of ham as the villain. The movie was both a commercial and an artistic disaster for Warner Brothers, who drastically cut the runtime following poor test screenings, leading to numerous confusing plot holes and sloppy editing in the released cut. The non-existent chemistry between Fiennes and Thurman was also cited as a problem.
The newsreader George Alagiah is to undergo further treatment for cancer after the disease returned. The sixty two-year-old presenter of the BBC News At Six was previously diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2014, which later spread to his liver and lymph nodes. He returned to work in November 2015 after being cleared of the disease following extensive treatment. But, in a statement Alagiah's agent, Mary Greenham, said that the disease had recurred. She said Alagiah, a father of two, was 'in discussions' with doctors about options for treatment. Alagiah spoke of his determination to fight the disease for a second time. 'My brilliant doctors are determined to get me back to a disease-free state and I know they have the skill to do just that,' he said. 'I learned last time around how important the support of family and friends is and I am blessed in that department. I genuinely feel positive as I prepare for this new challenge.' The Sri-Lanka-born presenter first informed his doctors of a problem in 2014. After a colonoscopy, a tumour was discovered on his bowel. MRI scans later detected eight tumours in his liver. He had several rounds of chemotherapy and three major operations, one of which included the removal of most of his liver. He has spoken frankly about the chances of the disease recurring. In 2016 he told the Torygraph: 'I get anxious and then there is a huge relief when the doctor tells me it is clear again. But I am under no illusions. The doctor warned me last year: "Your cancer knows the road, the pathway out of the gut." It can happen again.' Alagiah joined the BBC in 1989 and spent many years as one of the corporation's leading foreign correspondents before moving to presenting the News At Six in 2007. A BBC spokesman said: 'Everyone at the BBC sends George and his family their best wishes as he undergoes treatment and we will be thinking of them.'
A 'former friend' of Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis, who harassed her for over two decades, has been very jailed for contacting her from prison. Edward Vines breached a restraining order by writing to the journalist whilst he was behind bars and later out on licence, a court heard. Judge Peter Ross, who sentenced Vines to forty five months, said that the repeated contact amounted to 'psychological torture.' Maitlis said she had been 'left jumpy around strangers.' The presenter first met Vines when they were students at Cambridge University. He was first convicted of harassment in 2002. He was issued with an indefinite restraining order in 2009, which he was convicted of twice breaching last year. As well as contacting Maitlis while in prison for those offences, Vines wrote to her again while living in a bail hostel and subject to licence conditions. Judge Ross described this as 'wholly unsatisfactory' and gave the Probation Service and the governor at HMP Bullingdon ten days for a written explanation. In a statement read to Oxford Crown Court, Maitlis said that she had felt 'scared and let down' after she heard Vines had breached the restraining order 'even from within the prison system.' She said it had affected her relationship with her husband and scared her children, 'who thought the threats had gone away while he was behind bars. It has affected my ability to do my work, what time I feel able to come home at night. It also makes me jumpy around strangers for no reason as I fear any advance might be him,' she wrote. 'Altogether the breach has been a reminder for me that this man remains a constant threat in my life and my family's life and that my ability to do my work, hang out with my children and lead a normal family life without constant sense of suspicion and fear has been badly damaged.' Maitlis said that her husband had been 'left frustrated that we cannot get to the bottom of this problem even though we have been tackling it through the CPS and the court for over twenty years.' Vines's sentencing was delayed after his application to alter his plea was refused by the court. At the time, his lawyer, Michael Gould, told the court that he could no longer represent his client as he had been 'professionally embarrassed.'
People who have sworn on live TV this week; Suggs, Jurgen Klopp and Miriam Margolyes. Making the final score Shit One, Fuck Two.
The bestselling exposé Fire & Fury: Inside The Trump White House by journalist Michael Wolff is set to hit the small screen. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Wolff has sold the television rights for a seven figure sum. Or, mucho wonga. President - and hairdo - Trump has condemned the book, which depicts a chaotic administration and a president manifestly unfit for office, as full of 'made-up stories.' To paraphrase Mandy Rice Davies, 'well, he would, wouldn't he?' It is not yet known which network will screen the series. The rights have been sold to Endeavor [sic] Content and Wolff will executive produce the project alongside former Channel Four and BBC executive Michael Jackson, who now runs Two Cities Television. Wolff wrote the exposé after 'a year of unprecedented access to the White House and staff in Trump's administration.' The contentious book was published in January and has already sold more than a million copies. After leaked excerpts created a public sensation, Trump responded angrily on Twitter, calling the book 'boring and untruthful' and written by 'a total loser.' One or two people even believed him. Wolff thanked the president in an NBC interview, saying 'not only is he helping me sell books, but he's helping me prove the point of the book.' The President also defended his own mental state declaring himself a 'very stable genius' after the book raised concerns about his fitness for office. Again, one or two people believed him. The most controversial revelations, attributed to Trump's former chief strategist, Steve Bannon - key source for many of the more explosive claims in Fire & Fury - also created an extremely public (and, very funny) spat between the two men. Bannon is quoted in the book as making derogatory comments about Trump's family. He also suggested 'treasonous' behaviour by Donald Trump Junior when he met a group of Russians during the presidential erection campaign. Trump hit back nicknaming him 'sloppy Steve' and claiming that Bannon had 'lost his mind.' Amid the fallout, Bannon later stepped down from Breitbart News, the right-wing news site that he had been executive chairman of. Which, admittedly, was very funny.
A Canadian woman has been very convicted of killing her friend after police noticed the murder weapon in a picture of the pair which had been posted on Facebook. Cheyenne Rose Antoine pleaded extremely guilty to killing Brittney Gargol in March 2015 after the eighteen-year-old was found strangled near a landfill in Saskatoon. A belt was found near to the teenager's body and police discovered a selfie on Facebook showing Antoine wearing it whilst posing with her friend hours before she died. Antoine initially told police that the pair had visited several bars before Brittney left with an unidentified man, while she went to see her uncle. However, police were suspicious of the story and used Facebook in an attempt to establish a timeline of the pair's movements on the night of Brittney's death. It was while trawling Facebook that they saw Antoine wearing the murder weapon in a selfie and she became 'a person of interest.' Antoine posted 'where are you? Haven't heard from you. Hope you made it home safe' on Brittney's Facebook page the morning after her death, which police soon realised was a not particularly subtle attempt at diverting attention away from herself. Antoine was initially charged with second-degree murder and she later confessed to a friend that she and Brittney had 'got into a heated argument' and she ended up hitting and strangling her friend. Antoine admitted that the pair were drunk and high on marijuana at the time. Antoine's charge was later changed to manslaughter and she accepted responsibility for her friend's death, but maintained that she did not remember killing her. She said in a statement through her lawyer: 'I will never forgive myself. Nothing I say or do will ever bring her back. I am very, very sorry. It shouldn't have ever happened.' Antoine, who reportedly suffered years of abuse in the Saskatchewan care system, was sentenced to seven years in The Big House.
The cricket commentator and former England international David Lloyd is to be given the freedom of his home town, Accrington. The seventy-year-old ex-Lancashire batsman, former England coach and umpire will receive the award in June. Council leader Miles Parkinson said: 'Bumble is a cricket legend.' The Labour councillor added: 'David is a wonderful ambassador for Accrington who has never forgotten his roots and who has always been a keen supporter of Accrington Stanley.' In a first-class playing career which spanned eighteen years, Lloyd captained Lancashire from 1973 to 1977 and played for England in nine Tests with a top score of two hundred and fourteen not out against India in 1974 and eight one-day internationals between 1973 and 1980. A left-handed batsman and left-arm spin bowler, he scored nearly twenty seven thousand first class runs and took over two hundred and seventy wickets. He also played amateur football for Accrington Stanley during the 1960s. Following his retirement from cricket, David became a first class umpire for three years and, later, Lancashire and England cricket coach before moving into the commentary box with, first, BBC radio and then Sky.
The referee who aimed a kick at a Nantes player before sending him off has said that he 'reacted badly' and asked for the booking to be rescinded. Tony Chapron admits that he was 'accidentally' knocked over by Diego Carlos - but he subsequently kicked out at the defender and booked him for a second time during last Sunday's one-nil loss to Paris-St-Germain. The French football league has now rescinded the second yellow card. Chapron has been suspended. 'During the Nantes-PSG match, I was barged by Nantes player Diego Carlos,' the referee said in a statement to AFP. 'As a result of the impact, I felt a sharp pain from a recent injury. I reacted badly by moving my leg towards the player. I have sent a report to the disciplinary commission so that the [second] booking received by the player can be withdrawn, because having seen the images his action did not seem deliberate.' In its own statement, LFP said: 'After reading the report, in which Tony Chapron confirmed having reviewed the incident that Diego Carlos did not intentionally make contact with him, the commission decided to overturn the second yellow card shown to the player.' Chapron's own case will be studied in a meeting of the LFP's disciplinary committee on Thursday.
Doncaster Rovers' manager Darren Ferguson has been very charged by the Football Association after saying that he would 'shoot' League One's 'appalling' referees. The forty five-year-old made the comments, for which he later grovellingly apologised, following last Saturday's draw with Plymouth Argyle. 'I'm sorry and regret the wording,' he said in a statement on Sunday. If not the sentiment, seemingly. It is alleged that his comments were improper and/or brought the game into disrepute. The former Peterborough and Preston Both Ends manager claimed a 'blatant penalty' was not awarded by the referee Andy Haines in the dying seconds of the game. Asked by BBC Radio Sheffield what he would like the FA to do, Ferguson responded 'shoot them.' He added: 'The referees are part-time and the standard is appalling, their fitness levels are a disgrace, I've had enough of it.' In a statement released twenty four hours after the match, Ferguson said: 'When asked after the game what I personally could do to raise standards, I said: "What can I do? Shoot them?" Although clear to everyone in the room that my comment was a tongue-in-cheek response, it is worth clarifying my comments were borne out of frustration.'
Cyrille Regis, the former West Bromwich Albion and England forward, has died aged fifty nine. He scored one hundred and twelve goals in two hundred and ninety seven appearances for The Baggies before joining Coventry City for a quarter of a million knicker in 1984. Cyrille was a pioneer for black footballers in the game when he played alongside Laurie Cunningham and Brendon Batson at The Hawthorns. His widow, Julia, described him on Monday as 'a beautiful man and a wonderful husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle.' Regis, who was appointed an MBE in 2008, returned to West Brom as a coach before becoming a football agent. In a tribute posted on West Brom's website, Julia Regis continued: 'Losing him has turned my whole world upside down. It is a void that will never be filled. I have been moved by the many messages of support and condolences I have received and the kind things people have said about Cyrille as a person and a professional.' Cyrille is survived by two children, Robert and Michelle and by three grandchildren, Jayda, Renée and Riley. 'He came into football the hard way and never lost his passion for the game. He was a role model for so many because he always treated everyone he met with kindness and respect.' The trio of Regis, Cunningham and Batson - nicknamed The Three Degrees by their then-manager Ron Atkinson - were subject to much racist abuse from fans across the country during the late-1970s. They are due to be honoured with a ten foot statue, called The Celebration, in West Bromwich later this year. At a preview of the structure in 2013, Regis said: 'We were part of that first generation of black players in this country and I'm sure that if you ask any second generation player they will tell you they were inspired by Laurie. That's why the statue will be so important.' Cunningham died in a car crash in Spain in 1989. Regis, who won five caps for England - many felt he should have had a lot more - scored sixty two goals in two hundred and seventy four appearances for Coventry and was a crucial part of their FA Cup-winning side in 1987. He retired from football in 1996. Cyrille was not simply an outstanding striker for West Brom and an FA Cup winner with Coventry City - he was also a role model and a trailblazer for black footballers in Britain. Regis, along with Batson and Cunningham at West Brom and the likes of Viv Anderson at Nottingham Forest, broke down barriers and demonstrated what could be achieved at a time when high-profile black players were a rarity in England. And Regis did it the hard way, coming through the Isthmian League at Hayes before being spotted and signed for The Baggies by then-manager Ronnie Allen in May 1977. Several other clubs had looked at him and there is a story - never confirmed but entirely believable - that he had been scouted by this blogger's beloved Newcastle United but the club had, ultimately, decided not to sign him because of a belief amongst some senior figures at the club that black players were 'unreliable'. How that decision came back to bite the club when Regis scored a brilliant goal in a three-nil win for West Brom at St James Park a few months later witnessed by this blogger as a gobsmacked fourteen year old. It was under Ron Atkinson that he achieved the status that made Big Cyrille such a legend at The Hawthorns; a striker of explosive, raw power and finishing who could unsettle any defence. Regis was powerful in the air, quick and a scorer of any type of goal, spectacular - like the one that won Match Of The Day's Goal Of The Season award in 1983 a twenty-five yard screamer against Norwich - or scrappy. Cyrille was born in February 1958 in Maripasoula, French Guiana. His father moved to England in 1962, with the rest of the family, including Cyrille, following a year later. Cyrille grew up in Harlesden, and went to school in Newman. After leaving school, he trained as an electrician, earning a City & Guilds diploma; he continued to practise the trade until his move into professional football. He was a cousin of the Olympic sprinter John Regis and his nephew, Jason Roberts, was also a professional footballer and, now, BBC Sports pundit. Cyrille was a gentle man away from football but such was his threat on the field, particularly when subjected to heavy physical attentions from opponents, that opposing managers used to specifically instruct their players not to upset or annoy him in any way as the results could be devastating. In full flight, Regis was a magnificent sight. For all the glorious memories he created at West Brom, his is also remembered fondly at Coventry, where he was a member of the side that won the FA Cup in 1987, beating Tottenham at Wembley. Regis also played for Aston Villa, Wolves, Wycombe Wanderers and Chester City. He will be remembered as one of the most significant footballing figures of his generation, not just for his impact on the field but his far wider influence off it.
The Kinks bassist Jim Rodford has died at the age of seventy six. The musician, who spent eighteen years with the band from 1979, also played with Argent and, most recently, The Zombies. His cousin and bandmate, Rod Argent, paid tribute on Facebook to the 'magnificent bass player,' who died following an apparent fall on the stairs. Argent also highlighted Jim's commitment to the music scene in St Albans where he had lived all his life, playing with family members in The Rodford Files. 'He gave us absolutely unflagging commitment, loyalty and unbelievable energy. Our gratitude is beyond measure,' Argent said. 'To the end, Jim's life was dedicated to music,' Argent continued. 'He will be unbelievably missed.' The Kinks' Dave Davies also paid tribute to his former colleague writing that he was 'devastated by Jim's sudden loss. I'm too broken up to put words together, it's such a shock, I always thought Jim would live forever in true rock and roll fashion - strange - [a] great friend, great musician, great man. He was an integral part of The Kinks later years,' Davies wrote on Twitter. Rodford was playing with The Bluetones when his cousin, Argent, first asked him to join his then-band The Zombies in 1962, alongside singer Colin Blunstone. Rodford declined, but Argent in his Facebook tribute said that he was 'inextricably bound to the story of The Zombies' and credited him as being 'an enormous enabler' for the band who went on to have major US hits with 'She's Not There' in 1964 and 'Time Of The Season' four years later. After a stint with The Mike Cotton Sound, the bassist did eventually agree to join his cousin as a founding member of Argent, who are best remembered for the songs 'Hold Your Head Up' and 'God Gave Rock N Roll To You'. After the band split in 1976, Rodford was recruited by The Kinks following the departure of John Dalton, performing on every Kinks LP from 1979's Low Budget to 1993's Phobia, playing on the band's last major hit single, 1983's 'Come Dancing'. 'It is with deep sadness that we have learned that Jim Rodford passed away - he toured and recorded with The Kinks for many years and will be greatly missed. He was much loved by all of us,' said an official statement from The Kinks on Twitter. Having spent some time touring with a line-up of The Animals, Rodford joined the revived Zombies in 1999 alongside his son, the drummer Steve Rodford, touring with Argent and Blunstone until his death, most recently in Florida earlier this month. He was presented with an honorary Doctor of Arts degree from the University of Hertfordshire last year. Rodford had been working on his autobiography at the time of his death and is survived by his wife of fifty six years, Jean and his sons Steve and Russell.
Coldplay reportedly made a gross of over five hundred million dollars from their 2016 to 2017 Head Full Of Dreams tour, according to Billboard. Which just goes to prove, finally and unequivocally dear blog reader, that there is no God.
And finally, dear blog reader, the death earlier this week of the legend that was Peter Wyngarde has, of course, already been covered on this blog's obituary of Peter. However, there are two further points which need highlighting. Firstly, this blogger is indebted to his old mate Robin Brown for the revelation - and it is a genuinely startling one - that, according to Robin's parents, Peter Wyngarde once owned a house near where they live. In Hartlepool. Why? Your guess is a good and this blogger's, dear blog reader though, as Robin himself notes: 'I guess we'll have to put it into the long list of "odd things that Peter Wyngarde did in his life!"' To which this blogger could only add: 'Compared to having a house in Hartlepool, even that very strange record he made in 1970 doesn't seem quite so odd now!'
Secondly , a thought which this blogger shared with his dear Facebook fiends. And that is John Drake, Simon Templar, John Steed, Napoleon Solo, Jack Reagan and Jason King are all now gone. The job just got a whole hell of a lot easier for major criminal supervillains, didn't it?