Chairing a conference on nuclear fission
Hullo and welcome to Creamguide, and let’s immediately address the elephant in the room, as spotted by Barnaby Salton, Ian Rhodes, Clive Shaw and Tony Hughes, all of whom pointed out that despite what we said in The Time Tunnel in the e-mail version of Creamguide, Doctor Who Jon P’twee was not Doctor Who in 1985, it was Doctor Who Colin Baker. Wasn’t even the year of The Three Doctors. Massive apologies for what’s got to be one of our silliest ever cock-ups, caused entirely of course by us forgetting to cut and paste when we reused the old template.
As ever we sneakily changed it when we put it on the website, so if you’ve not subscribed, you don’t get to enjoy these amusing moments. In addition, if you do subscribe soon you have the chance to be our thousandth subscriber, as we checked last week and it was 998, which we don’t think its bad going given we had to start from scratch just over a year ago and you can just read it on the site, so many thanks to everyone who’s subscribed. If you’re reading this on the web, just click on the bit where it says CREAMGUIDE just to the right.
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Saturday 24th September
19.10 Doctor Who
We have been enjoying the exploits of Doctor Who Chris Eccleston, Rose and Mickey recently and last week’s was another cracker. One person who didn’t spot our amusing Who gaffe last week, or at least couldn’t be bothered to tell us, was Father Of Fandom himself Keith Miller. He did write in, though, to say, “I haven’t been ignoring you (I’ve been following the Ted Rogers saga avidly) but I’ve been very busy putting the finishing touches to my memoirs of running the Doctor Who Fan Club in the 70s (out in January, folks!) and one thing I came across in my notes I made at the time was a meeting with M*chael P*rkinson in the reception of TV Centre where we were both waiting for taxis. He heard me talk to the receptionist and struck up a conversation about accents at the BBC – or rather lack of them as, even then, RP was almost compulsory. Not the most thrilling of chats, but the strange thing is, of all the meetings I had with telly folk (and I remember them all quite vividly), this is one encounter I have absolutely no recollection of! I remember standing next to Richard Baker at the TV Centre urinals (he’s a very small man) (in height) and recommending the shepherds pie to Christopher Cazanove in the BBC canteen, but I seem to have wiped my sole encounter with M*chael P*rkinson completely from my memory. Why is this do you think?”
19.45 Dad’s Army
Also in the postbag this week, Claire Whitfield, who by saying “you won’t print this, I bet” has virtually guaranteed inclusion here. She asks, “Can I ask you something I have always wondered about? What do you fellows do for a day job? Are you the Custodians of Cream full time or, as I have always fondly imagined, do you congregate around a PC in a bedroom and put the website and emails together after you’ve had your tea of an evening? The reality is probably much ore sophisticated and possibly more prosaic but I do like that image of you all huddled round an anglepoise. I have been following you for ages now but still don’t know anything about how Creamguide/TV Cream comes into being. I think we should be told, preferably with photos or illustrations!” Well, the activities in TVC Towers are of course top secret but we will say that you would have to be paid a phenomenal amount of money to churn this stuff out week in week out for eleven years. You may be interested to know, too, that we always have beans on toast for tea on a Thursday because it’s quick and we can start putting this together as soon as possible.
BBC Radio 2
13.00 Pick of the Pops
Claire didn’t just write in to pry, anyway, she also says, “I don’t have any Ted Rogers stories for you but I happened to hear Tony Blackburn on Pick of the Pops on Saturday in the car and heard the tail end of 1975 with Mike Batt at number four with Summertime City which, if you remember, I wrote to you about previously. Phew! Didn’t realise it was an actual pop record and there was so much involved, it doesn’t half ramble on before getting to the catchy chorus used in the telly programme. Mind you, it’s amazing I can remember it at all as I would have been aged one at the time. Don’t think an acoustic version will be appearing on Katie Melua’s next album somehow. In another interesting point (well, I think so) the Roger Whitaker song that Tone played next is mentioned in Andrew Collings’ book Where Did it All Go Right? as the bit about going to war terrified him as a child.” This week we’re promised “a special surprise” on this show, which had better be good as we’ve got the bloody fifties again. Plus 1972.
Sunday 25th September
17.00 Songs of Praise
The second and from our perspective the most interesting of this show’s fiftieth anniversary trilogy, this is a compilation of various clips from over the years, including it says here “some of the larger than life presenters”, and hopefully we’ll get some clips of the revamp with Michael Barratt in charge in the seventies which brought with it “a signature tune with an extremely prominent drum kick”, which was very controversial at the time. Among the hosts of the special is Diane Louise Jordan who’s been doing this show for way longer than she was ever on Blue Peter but, much like on that show, has failed to do anything at all that captures the attention.
23.10 Curb Your Enthusiasm
Well, we very much enjoyed the first episode of this new series which motored along quite pleasantly even if the story seemed a bit slight – although we wish Larry wouldn’t keep on moving house, it always confuses us, and Jeff always seems to have a different house as well. Doesn’t look like there’s a story arc in this run so Larry can just go around obsessing over a load of inconsequential stuff, which is what we always enjoy in this series.
Monday 26th September
16.30 Blue Peter
Back, back, back, and it’s always exciting to catch up with the gang again and even more so this time as they’re now in their new home (which means it’s now in HD, fact fans). Intriguingly we’ve yet to welcome a third host with just Helen and Barney holding the fort at the moment, and for how long we don’t know. We do know that there’s no expedition this year because they didn’t have enough money but to be honest we’re more interested in the films about them moving house.
18.30 Reel History of Britain
We think this might be the last week of Melvyn’s Movie-a-Grams, and this week we’ll draw your attention to Tuesday’s episode about high rise flats and comes from Sheffield’s notorious Park Hill, Wednesday’s show which looks at that Creamiest of subjects, disused railway stations, and on Friday it’s a jaunt to Blackpool to talk about holidays. That’s not the only reason why we think it’s the last show, by the way, Melvyn himself isn’t going on holiday to Blackpool.
BBC4′s war season is carrying on, and having been seen in this slot in clip form last week, here’s the whole of this film, first shown in 1988 and fairly controversial at the time for appearing a bit left wing at the same time the Beeb weren’t making The Falklands Play, although it does remain the case that The Falklands Play isn’t very good anyway.
No Who-related cock-ups this week, honest. We know you painstakingly annotate everything in some kind of ledger but if you’re interested, there are only three trips in The Time Tunnel left in this series after this one, which is our final jaunt to the seventies, which we haven’t visited for a while since that huge glut of them at the start of the series. It’s a year we visited regularly in the old days of Digi-Creamguide when we had a series running reviewing highlights of Broadcast from the relevant week in that year, and as we pointed out then, no, it’s not the year with the hosepipe ban.
JIMMY WILL FIX IT (1975-94)
UPSTAIRS DOWNSTAIRS (1971-75)
Everyone’s talking about…
After being too ill to do much in The Three Doctors, William Hartnell died in 1975, as did PG Wodehouse, Josephine Baker and James Robertson Justice. In the world of music we lost Badfinger’s Pete Ham in tragic circumstances and Tim Buckley, plus Graham Hill passed away, and so, famously, did Ross McWhirter.
Show of the year
Let’s go there now!
Unfortunately we don’t have our usual selection of idents and trailers from the Beeb here, but we can at least bring you the Christmas globe. We’ve also got some ITV as well, including this fantastic example of silent acting from Corrie. If any lipreaders want to work out what they’re saying during this phenomenally long take, do let us know. And here’s Sunday night on LWT. We’ve also got a few episodes of Top of the Pops, including the worst Top 30 ever (although we love number thirteen) and the first incarnation of 5000 Volts, plus The Sweet inventing punk and finally, isn’t it Rubettes, 1975, marvellous!
Tuesday 27th September
16.30 Blue Peter
No book this year, either, although they did take several years off in the nineties so it’s not quite the end of an era. In any case, they haven’t wasted any time in getting back into the swing of things with the launch of the appeal! It’s possible to find out what it entails with a brief scoot around the internet but the fun comes from it being revealed on the show itself, so we won’t give it away, other than to say it looks like, as in recent years, there’s a time limit on it, hence its launch now rather than the traditional spot nearer Christmas, which seems a bit off, especially as they could get months of programming out of it.
22.30 Mark Lawson Talks To Dame Diana Rigg
She’s dead respected now, of course, but there was a time when Diana Rigg was hopelessly typecast and was forever being sent scripts which involved her walking into rooms carrying a gun, to the extent she went off to America and did the dull sitcom Diana, and even then found Patrick MacNee turning up in an episode. She’s over that now, though, and here she is being a appealing batty old luvvie, apparently.
21.00 20 Managerial Appointments That Shook The World
We should have pointed out that ITV4 last week brought us 20 Goals That Shook The World, which included some nice period clippage from The Big Match and, good news for those of used to ESPN Classic, the right commentary. Well, the ITV commentary, which in some cases sounds all wrong, but at least they were there at the time. Looks like it was the start of a series, as here’s another one, which you’d think would have scope for plenty of interesting clips from the likes of On The Ball, and hopefully not too much we’ve seen on the ten million Brian Clough documentaries in recent years.
BBC Radio 2
22.00 Greetings Pop Pickers – The Story of Pick of the Pops
You may wonder why this is a show that’s apparently “marking fifty years of pop chart rundowns” when Pick of the Pops actually started in 1955, but it’s sort of right because it is fifty years since Fluff took it over, and certainly the charts became very different, with the great man the first to do it in reverse order (although we wonder why, on that existing 1968 Pops, the opening titles involve numbers counting down and then they immediately do the chart going up). Hopefully there’ll be plenty of Fluff in here, and we think that rather than just being about Pick of the Pops – a format about which you can’t really say much – it’s going to be about broadcasting the charts in general, so invariably Gambo’s involved.
Wednesday 28th September
21.00 Rex Appeal
22.00 When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth
More prehysteria on BBC4, starting with a show looking at the continuing appeal of dinosaurs in the movies, followed by a suitably iconic example. Sorry to disappoint the contributors to our favourite page on Wikipedia but we don’t think Prehistoric Park is included, although of course it may have been mentioned in scenes not filmed or broadcast.
BBC Radio 2
22.00 Whistle Test 40
We’ve reached 1976 here, and via the fantastic Yes It’s Number One (and us copying it out of the Radio Times), we can bring you Bob and the team discussing the show that year. Everyone’s moaning about punk not happening on Pops 76 at the moment, but it was even further away from the ‘test at the time, given this week Bob recalls Peter Frampton, Stevie Nicks and The Allman Brothers.
Thursday 29th September
“Doesn’t have the raaaange, darling!” This kicks off a major new season of programmes about the contribution mixed race people have made to the UK, and the story of Burley Shassey is what you’ve come to expect from a BBC4 biopic about the sadness behind the smile, apart from the fact it’s on BBC2.
19.30, 00.00 Top of the Pops
Even though it’s half an hour now we’re still billing the repeats just in case. Good job they are all thirty minutes now given that last week we inexplicably lost Can, by far the most interesting thing about that episode. OK, so they’re on again in a few weeks, but we won’t get Noel calling them “an absolute wow” on that one. More wiping means we bypass September 16th – don’t worry, we’ve got a decent run of shows now – which is particularly bad news for The Real Thing as both their performances of Can’t Get By Without You have fallen foul of the magnets, and also means that we get a very familiar line-up with Blinded By The Light for the third consecutive week, although it does give us the chance to again marvel at singer Chris Thompson’s visual overload with his hat, hair, beard, glasses, badges, necklace and braces. Less is more, Chris! And Tony B’s presenting, who we haven’t seen for a bit.
22.00 Dear Censor
No relation to the above, dullard DigitalSpy posters who just bang on about Gary Glitter every five minutes. It’s the history of film censorship, in fact, looking at the golden age of the British Board of Film Censorship – before they wussed out and became the touchy-feely British Board of Film Classification – and the legendary stories of the likes of The Devils and Women In Love, with that marvellous scene by the fire.
Friday 30th September
23.05 My Funniest Year
They’re fair churning these out now, and better yet, Al Murray has chosen a year from the Cream Era – but only just, as it’s 1997, which given the demographic of this channel at this time of the week is about as far back as we’re going to go, we assume. A big year in all kinds of ways, this, not least because of the launch of a hugely unpopular telly website, although it’ll mostly be gags about Geri Halliwell, no doubt.
21.15 Singer Songwriters at the BBC
Well, it must be nearly a month since BBC4 devoted Friday night to folk rock so here’s some more of it, with the first of four new compilations of yet more appearances of the likes of Cat Stevens, Paul Simon and BBC4′s favourite, James Taylor. Speaking of dadrock, Tim “Tom” Worthington says, “Harking back to a Creamguide of a couple of weeks back, it appears that Pink Floyd were – despite what they all hazily claim these days – actually asked “which one’s Pink?” by an EMI ‘suit’ when they signed to the label, which given that said individual had probably spent the last couple of years working closely with Manfred Mann and Herman’s Hermits, doesn’t seem too unreasonable a question in context. And anyway, if Roger Waters and company want to get annoyed at anyone for not ‘getting’ the band in their early years, they should have another listen to the awful It Would Be So Nice and then invest in a mirror.”
That’s it for this week, do let us know if we’ve messed up again, and don’t forget that if you want the uncut raw version, subscribe here