Saturday, January 2, 2010 by · 7 Comments 

As 2009 wraps up, and the “best of the noughties” appraisals get under way, what, if anything, from the decade’s final 12 months will be brought into focus?  Incredibly it seems, 2009 was the year of Simon Cowell, who having been involved in talent shows for most of the last 10 years, still has something left to keep him at the top of the TV hierarchy.  Will his luck run out in 2010, or is Cowell’s renewed dominance merely a sign that 2009 has been a year in which very little has truly emerged on the small screen to create the kind of impact his shows muster? Read more


Thursday, January 1, 2009 by · 9 Comments 

When TV pundits of the future look back at 2008 (a process that is sure to start in earnest in just over 12 months time as we begin the second decade of the 21st century), what will they make of the year just gone?  2008 brought us Rock Rivals, The One and Only, The Invisibles, Harley Street and The Duchess in Hull - five utterly forgettable series destined for curiosity status almost straight away.  Yet wasn’t this too the year of Lark Rise to Candleford and a resurgent The X-Factor?  Viewed in the context of the decade as a whole how will 2008 fare? Will it be seen as a significant year or 12 months that slipped through the cracks of television’s wider historical development? Read more


Saturday, September 20, 2008 by · 2 Comments 

The BBC’s new Doctor Who methadone, Merlin was a very entertaining 45 minutes. Read more

Only Connect

Monday, September 15, 2008 by · 5 Comments 

BBC4Victoria Coren looks incongruous sitting behind a desk Read more

Spooks: Code 9

Saturday, August 2, 2008 by · 1 Comment 

The announcement of Spooks: Code 9 was greeted with the kind of collective internet sigh last heard through every episode of ’90s flop Attachments.  The trailers looked like something someone might have knocked up for YouTube using clips from that failure to tap into the web zeitgeist, the main complaint being that this spin-off (then called Threat Level) made a nonsense of the parent programme because it showed everyone in London being wiped out, making the actions of the more familiar characters entirely pointless.

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“You lost me at carrots, which was the first draft of ‘You had me at hello’”

Friday, June 6, 2008 by · Comments Off 

As the Big Brother season once again holds us in its grip (is this the worst crop of contestants we’ve ever had?) I thought I’d note two things. Read more

“No consumer advice is available for this work…”

Friday, March 7, 2008 by · Comments Off 

If you want even more proof of ITV1′s confidence in their heavily trailed new series, the BBFC have just passed a documentary for the DVDThe Fixer: The Making of a Hit Series.


Tuesday, January 1, 2008 by · Comments Off 

So how do you begin looking back on a year in which television went completely evil?

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The Liverpool Nativity

Sunday, December 16, 2007 by · Comments Off 

The Liverpool Nativity was rather better than anyone expected. In the run up, cynical writing and comment abounded with some questioning the casting – any scouser with an equity card – and the setting, which could potentially have led to another airing of the usual stereotypes Read more


Wednesday, December 5, 2007 by · Comments Off 

It’s been a while since I’ve been this apprehensive about the broadcast of the finale to a US import – and it’s been a while since a series has been trailed by this much critical acclaim from professionals and bloggers, professional bloggers and people with access to broadband saying in unison, “Great series, shame about the ending”. Read more

“Dreams of silver screen quotations”

Tuesday, October 9, 2007 by · Comments Off 

One of five’s new imports, the David Duchovny starring Californication which begins on Thursday in a double bill with 30 Rock has attracted some average reviews. It’s rather popular in Australia, although the reaction from some sections of the viewing audience has been interesting. They’re calling it smut basically: Read more

Ident heaven

Sunday, September 2, 2007 by · Comments Off is a blog dedicated to bringing television idents and promos from across the world. Oh how I miss the old BBC4 ones and look at those titles – “The Man Who Deciphered Linear B” is a favourite. [via]

“Are you smarter than a 10-year-old?”

Friday, August 10, 2007 by · Comments Off 

According to this email I’ve just received, SRO Audiences are looking for punters to watch a new show: Read more


Wednesday, July 25, 2007 by · Comments Off 

It’s been a while since I’ve been this excited about the broadcast of a new US import – but then it’s been a while since a series has been trailed by this much critical acclaim from professionals and bloggers and professional bloggers and people with access to broadband all chanting quietly, “Watch … Watch … Watch…”. Read more

“Your logo has a lot of blood in it”

Sunday, July 15, 2007 by · Comments Off 

I thought some of you might find these of interest - the Premium Hollywood blog is running transcripts from the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour in which various US television stations publicise their new shows to journalists via interview panels with the talent.  Read more

Wrong Des

Thursday, July 5, 2007 by · Comments Off 

During a visit to the Channel 4 website looking for more on the news that they’re launching a +1 digital version of the main channel meaning that the same episode of Deal or No Deal could be shown three times in consecutive hours on different channels (and even clash with itself if the More4+1 on Sky is taken into account). Hoping for a press release which might explain where it’s going to replace the hellishly useful timeshifted version of Film Four given that the station only has limited space on Freeview, I stumbled upon their hopelessly out of date FAQ page. Read more

Can I have a bid, please, Bob?

Thursday, May 24, 2007 by · Comments Off 

Some television history is on sale at eBay. A selection of the sculptures that appeared on the set and in the title buffers of the ’80s quiz show Blockbusters have surfaced. HamletNelson MandelaBob MarleyMother Theresa and Pope John Paul II were saved by the seller during the closure of the Lenton Lane ITV studios where they’d been adorning the cafe for many years. Read more

Same but different

Wednesday, May 16, 2007 by · Comments Off 

Is the BBC working against itself or has The Restaurant been renamed? I’ve just spotted this advert on Gumtree, the online classified ad service: Read more

I don’t believe it!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007 by · Comments Off 

High Stakes, along with Believe Nothing and Hardware, was part of ITV’s attempt at re-establishing their Sunday night “edgy comedy” slot a couple of years back. Starring Richard Wilson and written by Tony Sarchet (This Is David Lander), this highbrow sitcom set in the financial world was not quite in the same league as its more celebrated ’80s counterparts, and suffered from some unrealistic and overblown pre-transmission publicity, but it was a likeable enough effort and it came as some surprise when the muted response to the first run led to the already-recorded second being shelved and eventually never transmitted. Read more

“What’s happening to me?”

Tuesday, May 15, 2007 by · Comments Off 

Those who are still freaked out whenever they see Alan Dale (Jim Robinson from Neighbours) appearing in the likes of 24The OC and Ugly Betty won’t love this survey from Rob Buckley of upcoming US genre series, since it includes preview clips from the remake of The Bionic Woman featuring Michelle Ryan (best known over ‘ere as Zoe Slater in EastEnders) playing Jamie Sommers.  Read more

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