Creamguide

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BBC4Top of the Pops
Thursday, 19.30, 01.00, BBC4

We’re absolutely delighted to report that we did indeed get Bright Eyes! And we’re even more delighted to report that we only got about a minute of it, presumably the most they’re allowed to show for “fair use” before they have to shell out a huge amount of money for it. Not like we haven’t heard it before. Actually that was probably the most exciting thing about the last episode which we thought was pretty rotten, full of videos and repeats, some of which we’ll see again this week as we’ve skipped one, but there’s some decent fare too. We don’t include Monks in that description.

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BBC2Happy Birthday BBC2
Wednesday, 22.00, BBC2

Turns out we’re getting a fully-fledged series out of this programme from a decade ago, though having seen the first one we’re pleased to report that they’ve managed to get it down from three hours to two by, hooray, editing out all the Dead Ringers sketches. Apologies if they turn up in this one, mind.

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BBC2The Story of the Open University
Tuesday, 23.20, BBC2

We’re not sure if this is technically part of BBC2′s birthday celebrations but it seems to fit, and this suitably late repeat of the documentary from a few years back is a lot of fun, as OU graduate Lenny Lenny Len traces its history and meets notable success stories, along with some rather cliched wacky academics with elbow patches and lots and lots of crazy hair.

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ITVTommy Cooper – Not Like That, Like This
Monday, 21.00, ITV

“Need money for food? Eat your fucking dog!” This biopic of Tommy Cooper tells perhaps a familiar story, fitting right into the tears-behind-the-laughter template we’ve come to expect from this kind of thing, but apparently David Threlfall’s performance as the man himself is a tour de force, and with Simon Nye on scripting duties we’re sure it’s going to be well worth watching. It does go right up to the end, and the cast list does include actors portraying Les Dennis and Dustin Gee.

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BBC2All About Two
Sunday, 21.00, BBC2

After the sporting compilation, here’s the centrepiece of the celebrations – though not the end, as we’re promised more, including a Harry and Paul special, “sprinkled across the schedules throughout the year” – as Dara O’Briain and top Creamer Richard Osman host this special. It’s all based around a quiz but you’re to expect lots of clips and surprise guests popping in throughout its hundred minute running time, and it should all be perfectly entertaining holiday fare.

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BBC2Pop Goes BBC2
Saturday, 22.30, BBC2

This is the first and potentially the most interesting of the anniversary programmes, and despite the name it’s not just pop featured but also jazz, folk, classical and the whole of the musical spectrum that’s been covered on the channel, with David Attenborough our VJ for the evening. Inevitably we’re most interested in the pop and they promise it won’t just be Whistle Test, Jools Holland and the last desperate year of Top of the Pops but music and chat from all kinds of shows. Let’s hope too for stuff from the shorter-lived series like Behind The Beat, Snub and The O Zone, a show we were always very fond of.

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BBC Radio 2Tony Blackburn
Good Friday, 14.00, BBC Radio 2

Given he’s on a million other radio stations, it’s no surprise Tony’s appearances outside of his regular Saturday slot are so infrequent on this station, though we can usually count on him to show up on a Bank Holiday, usually with a theme or chart. That’s the case this time as he presents three hours of original versions of songs that you may know better as covers, plus of course Tony’s trademark banter to while away a dull drive.

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ITVThe Walton Sextuplets at 30
Thursday, 21.00, ITV

Always nice to check in with the scouse sextuplets every so often, given how frequently they used to be paraded on the telly in the early days. Indeed we remember one of the first projects for that man Pip Schofield on ITV was to meet them on the occasion of their tenth birthday. Now they’re into their third decade so time to get the family albums out once more.

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BBC2Happy Birthday BBC2
Wednesday, 22.00, BBC2

Next week we’ll be celebrating BBC2′s fiftieth anniversary with a whole host of programmes which all sounds pretty ace to us, and which we’ll come to in due course. This is a bit of a taster though, as it’s, er, the fortieth anniversary programme again. Well, not exactly, because it was three hours long last time and now it’s been edited down into two half hours, but it’ll make for a suitable aperitif, especially because they’ve probably got rid of the Dead Ringers sketches.

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BBC Radio 2Bob Harris’ Ultimate Playlist
Tuesday, 22.00, BBC Radio 2

Of all of Radio 2′s regular presenters we’re not sure Bob suffers the most from the demands of the playlist as more or less all his programmes allow him to play whatever he likes, much to the delight his legion of loyal listeners. But if you can never make it past midnight, and you’re not that mad about country, here’s the chance to hear Bob at a more sociable hour for the next few weeks where he’s going to share with us his absolute favourite records from throughout his career.

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BBC1The Michael McIntyre Chat Show
Monday, 22.35, BBC1

This hasn’t done that much, to be honest, and we’ve yet to watch it, but we wish people wouldn’t say it’s no good because he doesn’t interview his guests properly, because that’s not the point of the programme, the point is to get Michael McIntyre back on the telly without him having to write a load of new material. We’re highlighting this last show because Brucie’s on it, though we don’t know if this was recorded before the devastating news last week that he’s jacking it in, and if it was this might look a bit daft. But now we have to take our Brucie where we can get it.

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BBC Radio 4The Reunion
Sunday, 11.15, BBC Radio 4

As with Steve Coogan, the press consistently now slag off Hugh Grant for being “a luvvie” who wants to censor the press but revels in fame, despite the fact that he can’t really do much about being famous because he’s Hugh Grant, and unless he acts with a bag over his head that’s going to happen. And like Coogan, he’s certainly made a more valuable contribution to the general gaiety of this country than every single newspaper editor put together, virtually single-handedly saving the British film industry twenty years ago with his winning performance in Four Weddings And A Funeral. He’s too famous to be on this show, alas, but Kristin Scott Thomas, James Fleet, Richard Curtis and Mike Newell are.

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Channel 5Morecambe and Wise Live
Saturday, 22.10, Channel 5

Not to give away who’s number one in the preceding Britain’s Best Loved Double Acts or anything. This “hasn’t been seen on television for decades”, and we think that’s pretty much the case because it appears to be Morecambe and Wise On Stage, filmed at the Fairfield Halls in Croydon in 1973. The show was never shown on telly at the time for whatever reason, seemingly just for Eric and Ern’s own personal study, but it was then dug out and shown by Thames in 1987, but seemingly only once, so this’ll be something of a novelty. Five then stick with the vintage comedy theme into the small hours with The Plank at half eleven and Up The Chastity Belt at half twelve, but they’re a bit more familiar.

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BBC2Britpop at the BBC
Friday, 22.00, BBC4

Telly finally gets in on the act with this season with this new compilation. Amazing how seminal the Beeb’s Britpop Now programme in 1995 was considered at the time, even though it was on teatime BBC2, watched by about three people, and we don’t think ever repeated. Presumably there’ll be clips from that on here, plus we hope some less familiar tracks from less familiar shows, along the lines of that fantastic indie-dance crossover clip show they did the other year. What chance Pulp on Live and Kicking?

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BBC4Top of the Pops
Thursday, 19.30, 01.00, BBC4

It was a song about a kitchen, so the obvious set dressing for Dana’s performance was a chaise longue, some pot plants and some stone tigers. Despite what she said you can’t burn stuff in a microwave, either, it just explodes, but apart from that we thought that was a rather jaunty tune, though we liked it less when we realised we’d been singing it to ourselves all day. The big news tonight is going to be what happens with Bright Eyes, which you’ll note they edited out completely last week because, like Summer Nights and You’re The One That I Want, it’s represented by a clip from the film which costs money to clear. Unlike the latter two, there isn’t a Legs and Co routine they can whack on in its place, and you’d assume there’s no way they’ll skip number one completely, so heaven knows what we’ll get here.

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BBC Radio 2Not Just Britpop
Wednesday, 22.00, BBC Radio 2

As Tony Blackburn illustrates whenever he plays 1995 on Pick of the Pops, it wasn’t all the Four Main Indie Bands (copyright Harry Hill) in the charts in Britpop’s pomp and this week Radio 2 is going to reflect on some of the other stuff that was going on musically in what basically appears to be an attempt at Sounds of the Nineties (which wouldn’t be so outlandish, given Sounds of the Sixties started in the mid-eighties). It’s good to see that Mark Goodier is involved in the celebrations for his pioneering work back in the early nineties, though he’s here tonight in his role as the voice of the top forty in this period.

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BBC2The Battle For Britain’s Breakfast
Tuesday, 21.00, BBC2

Of course, for the full story of the history of breakfast television you need to get a copy of Morning Glory by our very own Ian Jones, which we see, ten years on, is now available on the Kindle. This is the next best thing, though, a brand new documentary focusing on those first few months in 1983, which promises to bring together all the surviving major players, some of whom you’ll have heard from before like Anne Diamond and Greg Dyke, but also some interviewees who have spoken less frequently about those days, including Jonathan Aitken and even the reclusive Frank Bough. It sounds like it’s going to be great fun and absolutely fascinating, and the executive producer is Caroline Wright whose name, we think, is now as near to a guarantee of quality from a TV programme (see also Brushing Up On, London On Film et al) you’re likely to get.

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BBC Radio 2Evening Session
Monday, 20.00, BBC Radio 2

It was Mark Goodier who launched the Evening Session back in 1990 and say it through the likes of shoegazing, baggy and grunge, alongside stand-ins including Neale James who seemed a bit at sea with the Ned’s Atomic Dustbin tour dates and Mark Radcliffe who renamed Goodybags’ news service The Hotwire as The Cheesewire, but it’s most notable now for its period under the auspices of Jo Whiley and Steve Lamacq, chosen after a beauty contest of potential presenters in the summer of 1993, with Lammo getting the nod despite previously managing to put XFM off air for several days by spilling Lucozade all over the desk. For the next four days they’re back to play exactly the same records and speak to exactly the same people they did twenty years ago, though it might be more interesting to hear actual vintage episodes that 6 Music are broadcasting at 1am for the rest of the week.

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How Britpop Changed The Media
Sunday, 13.00, BBC Radio 6 Music

It looks like we’re taking the death of Kurt Cobain, which happened twenty years ago this week, to now mean the official start of Britpop, as that genre’s being celebrated across the Beeb all week, as you’ll see. It’s also the tenth anniversary of the tenth anniversary which we featured at the time on TV Cream and even led to two of our inmates being invited to present their own show on Brentwood’s Phoenix FM, which we still have on a C60 somewhere. Heady days indeed, and here’s Miranda Sawyer to reminisce some more.

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Channel 4Fifteen to One
Saturday, 17.15, Channel 4

Last year’s revival of this evergreen format turned out pretty well all told, with the celebrity contestants really getting into it and it proving to be a particularly sturdy format, so it’s no surprise that, as well as a few more celebrity specials, it’s back in civilian form as well, starting here to get some kind of boost from the Grand National (even though everyone will long have switched off, an hour after the race) and then every weekday rather cutely in its classic half four timeslot, where it clashes with Pointless of course, though that’s on repeats this week. Sadly our old mate William G hasn’t returned, with Sandi Toksvig in his place, and perhaps more worryingly it’s been extended to an hour which we’re not sure will help it out as one of the huge attractions of the original show was its frantic pace. We also don’t know if the familiar likes of Michael Penrice, Bill McKaig and Mattii Wotton are going to be invited back either, but it’ll be worth seeing at least one, for novelty’s sakes. We bet Sandi doesn’t instruct them to enjoy the summer holidays, neither.

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