TV Cream

TV: B is for...

Big E, The

El NinoHEY, IT’S 1992 and we’re all European now. So that means we have to sit up to 3am to watch a terrible continental pop culture wrap-up, featuring Nino Feretto, does it? Big on po-faced French rappers inveighing against Nazis, Aids etc. Mainly remembered for dismal interviewing barber, asking dim-witted questions while cutting the locks of that bloke off The Shamen, but most “famously” (a very relative term in this semi-watched netherworld) Oliver Reed. Reed was in a very grim mood and so the interview did not exactly go swimmingly. The questions were like: “So, er..I hear you were once in the British Army..?” “Yeah. Got a problem with that, frog?” At the end the barber made the unwise choice of making fun of his interviewee by putting a silly hat on his “customer”‘s head when he had finished cutting. Reed promptly leapt up out of his chair and beat the shit out of him. The classic Nighttime TV snakebite-addled-teenage-viewer-holding ploy of promising a glimpse of “some tits” later on was increasingly employed as the nation’s youth turned away from the European Union as a valid political idea and towards same as a sort of laugh-at-the-silly-foreigners affair, but with tits (see Eurotrash, but not on this site.)



  1. Mike Reynolds

    November 24, 2009 at 9:48 am

    Nino is now the breakfast presenter on my local commerclal station, Exeter FM. Don’t remember this show at all though.

  2. Kevin

    August 3, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    I remember this quite well – seemed to go on for bloody years so was surprised when it was only 1992-94. I recall it being part of ITVs big “Night Time” push when they had the fantastic idea of being able to broadcast all their unwatchable shite all night and very quickly it became obvious they didn’t have enough material to fill the schedules. Characteristic of ITVs slow decline.

  3. Richard Davies

    August 3, 2012 at 9:39 pm

    I don’t remember this at all, but there was a European chart show on Nightime around the time America’s Top 10 was worth setting the video to see what Guns & Roses would be releasing over here in a few months.

  4. Matty

    September 4, 2012 at 9:14 pm

    I remember seeing Craig Charles being interviewed by the barber and seem to recall that he re-did the “so nervous I nearly dropped my skateboard” gag from “Red Dwarf” as one of his answers.

    Dismal show but very much the kind of thing you weirdly look back on nostalgically as part of a time before everyone had the internet at home and late nights were spent in bed watching rubbish you wouldn’t give the time of day during the, well, day on ITV and C4 sideways with your head on the pillow.

  5. Droogie

    January 17, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    I quite liked this show. It was perfect eye candy after getting back frazzled from clubbing. I vividly remember 2 items: Comedian Bill Hicks being in the barber’s chair and the French bloke giving him a horrible bouffant hair do. When he held the mirror up after finishing, Hicks screamed ” YOU’VE MADE ME LOOK LIKE WILLIAM SHATNER!” Also there was a weekly feature involving a pair called The Cleavage sisters – 2 girls ( not really sisters) in garish outfits and push-up bras and who’d doorstep celebrities at nightclubs and ask them silly questions. There’s a hilarious clip on Youtube of them cornering an awkward looking Morrissey.

  6. Lee James Turnock

    June 5, 2015 at 2:43 pm

    Nino Firetto was briefly ITV’s ‘go-to’ presenter for programmes nobody else could be arsed with, such as a rehash of Mr and Mrs, for example. I also remember a well-endowed young woman who used to stand next to your man Firetto when he was doing some kind of a quiz or other. So many years ago. All happily endured while I was waiting for Anglia to dust off an eighties Cannon-produced Charles Bronson film at stupid o’clock in the morning with all the effing and blinding and most of the violence cut out.

  7. Tom Ronson

    October 27, 2022 at 1:10 am

    The fact that there was anything on telly at all at dickhead o’clock in the morning was a genuine novelty at the time. Probably explains why such a lot of this underwhelming late-night/early morning fare is so fondly remembered.

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