TV Cream

Cream over Britain

Advent Calendar: December 16th

1980: Um, is it alright if we all agree to skip past the imagery of the first show trailed here? Thanks. BBC1’s Christmas music trailer, again with the skiing snowman, showcasing guitars too big for the choral singing children holding them and, correctly, Paul McCartney’s Coming Up presented as more important than the rest of the year’s pop.

1982: Unwisely for a band who often contrived to get themselves banned from the Pops studio, Madness had that set built especially for them, very careful framing and direction not revealing that it’s all in front of that week’s audience until the end.

1988: The Satellite Show was one of quite a few 1980s attempts to launch a Children’s BBC sketch show with a tremendously uneven mix that also incorporates a game show, a puppet host and an interview with assorted Neighbours actors. It was also the launch platform for Dooby Duck’s Disco Truck, which span off into its own series the following year. If you like big sweeping statements, let us put forward that without Dooby’s jiggling there would be no Green Wing – a series created by Victoria Pile, who has writing and assistant production credits here, and her co-writer (and husband) Robert Harley is in the cast alongside Caroline Leddy, who would greenlight that series as Channel 4 commissioning editor.

1989: On behalf of Going Live! Pip went down to PWL Studios the previous weekend to hang around the recording of Band Aid II, including watching Jason Donovan answer the phone and wandering into an artists’ green room he’s not supposed to be in. He got a lot further into the building than Motormouth’s Neil Buchanan did at least. After that Trevor & Simon do characters not even we remember and someone we don’t recall prepares to tell us how to join the Stefan Dennis fan club.

1991: Central News reported on ructions concerning their own output as Prisoner Cell Block H fans protested outside their studios and handed in a 16,000-strong petition complaining about the region dropping the show. That they’d only dropped it because they’d come to the end of the series – and here’s how they saw it off – broke no ice. They should all have moved to Granada, who didn’t reach the final episode until 28th February 1995 but did get to mark it with a live phone interview with Maggie Kirkpatrick.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. richardpd

    December 16, 2018 at 11:24 am

    I remember a few people, including me, thought CD from The Satellite Show was a rejected Andy Crane Puppet from Spitting Image.

    The first series of The Satellite Show was a lot better then the second in 1989, which got rid of the Big Brain Enterprises staff & a few other things that made the first special.

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