TV Cream

TV: R is for...


MEDIOCRE STUDENT T-shirt industry, famous for not ending in 1982.



  1. Glenn Aylett

    June 14, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    Now then, TVC, that’s rather cynical as this was a very successful and well loved children’s show in its day that ran for 20 years. However, Geoffrey never seemed to change and was spotted wearing flares as late as 1987.

  2. Billy Hicks

    July 30, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    Can’t be many students left who even remember Rainbow, surely?

  3. Applemask

    July 30, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    Please don’t try to be edgy. It deserves nostalgia as much as anything else on this site and more than most. Getting all grumpy because the proles got there first and have done it to death doesn’t help anyone.

  4. TV Cream

    July 30, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    Blimey! A Rainbow-related backlash. We’ll get to work on a re-write…

  5. Arthur Nibble

    July 30, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    I think you Bungled there! Boom boom!

  6. Ian Tomkinson

    October 2, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    Plus it didn’t end in 1982! Not the sort of lazy error I expect from TV Cream!

    But what can be said about Rainbow that isn’t on a hundred other sites? Even my stock joke about “when they were in the back garden, why did Zippy and George stand in next door’s garden?” is hackneyed.

  7. Adrian

    October 2, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    I thought it ended in 1992?

  8. Glenn A

    October 30, 2009 at 8:43 pm

    Started in 1972, with me being one of the original viewers, but somehow Geoffrey and Rod, Jane and Freddie’s fashion sense seemed stuck there all the way through the show’s lifespan. Jane always seemed to remind me of Lyn Paul out of the New Seekers in that she had the same hairstyle and dresses and worryingly never seemed to change.

  9. Rainbow lens

    December 14, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    Aw c’mon, Rainbow was great in it’s day and has cult status, too- how many old children’s TV puppets go on to become Dj’s on tour?!

  10. david

    May 13, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    Rainbow is a classic. It did end in 1992

  11. borgduck

    August 17, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    A Rainbow revolution!

  12. Lee James Turnock

    April 26, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    I seem to remember something called ‘Mole in the Hole’, which was more or less Rainbow recreated with the same cast but different characters. Or did I dream it?

  13. Scott McPhee

    April 19, 2014 at 10:20 am

    Why no mention of Zippy and Bungle?

  14. Marty McBroon

    February 20, 2015 at 1:36 pm

    Yes, as a few have said, this ended in 1992, guess the lack of a correction is to attract comments?! I remember the haircuts getting very mullety, especially on Rod Jane and Freddie. Along with their songs being injected with clunky synths and drum machines. It was revived briefly soon after (mid ’90s?) as Rainbow Days, but that had a freakier Bungle than the first incarnation. For early episodes with the original presenter and a Zippy that sounds like Ade Edmondson, Google ‘Rainbow 1972’ for videos. Bungle is played by the brilliant John Leeson (also the voice of K9 from Doctor Who). You might want to add ‘Bungle’ into the search to avoid accidentally clicking on Pink Floyd playing the whole of Dark Side Of The Moon live at the Rainbow.

  15. THX 1139

    February 22, 2015 at 5:13 pm

    Whenever there was an “outside broadcast” with Geoffrey in it, he used to wear really outlandish clothes you had to assume were his natural street attire. Silver knee length boots, bright pink and blue bomber jackets, that sort of thing.

  16. Matthew Harris

    January 3, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    Well, it both did and didn’t end in 1992. The real show died with Thames, but the Teddington diaspora of Tetra Films attempted to revive it in 1994 with a completely wrong toy-shop based setup with no Geoffrey, Rod, Jane, Freddy, or worst of all Roy Skelton. They reconfigured it two years later more along the original lines as Rainbow Days but it still wasn’t the same.

    • Andrew Barton

      October 14, 2021 at 5:21 pm

      The Bungle from Rainbow Days, Paul Cullinan, later turned up as a contestant on The Voice when that show was on the BBC. He didn’t get picked by any of the coaches.

      The 2015 series he appeared on was also the series which featured Joe Woolford and Jake Shakeshaft, who would become the Eurovision UK entrants in 2016. And no, they didn’t win Eurovision, finishing at the bottom of the scoreboard.

      Also in the same series as Joe and Jake and Paul Cullinan was Esmee Denters, who already had some UK chart success, as well as Nathan Moore of Brother Beyond.

  17. THX 1139

    October 1, 2018 at 1:04 pm

    “Goodbyyyye!” (“goodbye!”)

  18. James

    October 1, 2018 at 1:11 pm

    RIP Geoffrey Hayes

  19. Tom Ronson

    March 7, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    Rainbow took a while to find its feet (and it wasn’t always Rod, Jane and Freddy, either – Matthew Corbett and Roger Walker both played the ‘third man’ before Freddy Marks joined circa 1980) but when it settled on its classic format, it was great – and stayed great for longer than it had any right to. Benny Hill’s long-serving director, friend, and warm-up man Dennis Kirkland cut his teeth helming episodes, and it’s remembered a lot more fondly than guff like Let’s Pretend and Our Backyard.
    Incidentally, I am a forty-seven-year-old man with a hairy back who never went to university and I own a Rainbow t-shirt.

  20. Richardpd

    August 18, 2022 at 10:23 pm

    David Cook presented it in the early days.

  21. Droogie

    August 19, 2022 at 1:26 am

    I had it in my head that Gerry Marsden of Pacemakers fame was once a Rainbow presenter way back, but an IMDB search shows he was on The Sooty Show instead.

  22. Glenn Aylett

    August 19, 2022 at 9:27 pm

    @ Droogie, Gerry Marsden appeared in a Christmas special on The Sooty Show in the last glory days of Harry Corbett. To me, The Sooty Show was Harry Corbett, in the same way Geoffrey Hayes being replaced on Rainbow would never be the same.

  23. Richardpd

    February 11, 2024 at 12:55 pm

    I remember elsewhere someone describing Rainbow as a Heath era show that hardly changed over the years once it got going.

    Geoffrey’s dated by 1978 fashion sense being singled out for ridicule.

  24. Sidney Balmoral James

    February 12, 2024 at 9:28 pm

    Geoffrey Hayes was an excellent children’s TV presenter, having the combination of authority without talking down to the viewers, but also a sense of fun (see also Johnny Ball, Brian Cant etc.) and the fact that he didn’t really change in appearance was arguably part of the charm. Are there any children’s TV programmes now that people will be nostalgic for in forty years time? Perhaps Horrible Histories (they’ll probably still be showing it!)

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