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Sky at Night, The

SMALL SCREEN equivalent of the Galapagos Island tortoise. Only ever been the one host, but PATRICK MOORE still makes astronomy seem both unerringly dull and annoyingly scary at the same time, even after 50 glorious years. Numerous spin-offs and specials also aired, coinciding with virtually every single development in space exploration over the past half-century, including first Moon landings (later wiped by cack-handed Beeb techies), comet sightings, eclipses, probes, shuttles, satellites etc. Still showing every month, shoved at out somewhere round 1am, to the glockenspiel galumpher’s increasing tetchiness. Recent 50th birthday edition featured special guest star BRIAN MAY inexplicably dressed up as a 150-year-old Moore.



  1. Glenn A

    June 20, 2010 at 4:19 pm

    Ever get the impression Patrick Moore looks like the mad professor out of A VIew To A Kill in this photograph?

  2. David Pascoe

    June 20, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    The Beeb are evidently paving the way for what to do in this show once Patrick makes his own merry way into the stars. Format now has him introducing, interviewing and linking while any number of younger astronomers do all the outdoor stuff.

    I had always assumed that Heather Couper would become the next host, but given the BBC’s prevalence for “names”, it will probably go to Brian May.

  3. Mr Grimsdale

    June 21, 2010 at 10:12 am

    Take a look at Sir Patrick Moore doing his thing, and then take a look at Paul Whitehouse doing the character Rowley Birkin QC.

    Now tell me they aren’t related

  4. paulus - bangkok

    June 22, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    Longevity and intrisically British… good on you Sir Patrick Morre

  5. Alan B

    June 24, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    The legendary Patrick Moore. The only man in the world who can wear a suit that is simultaneously two sizes too big and two sizes too small.

  6. Glenn Aylett

    May 30, 2021 at 12:56 pm

    One of those television programmes, the BBC were unsure about where to schedule, I can remember at one stage in the seventies, it appeared before Playschool, before flitting between late night slots on BBC1 and 2, and currently a monthly show on BBC Four. However, rather like Panorama and Blue Peter, it’s one of those 1950s BBC shows that will never die due to its PSB value. However, for all non astronomers have found The Sky At Night as exciting as watching paint dry, it does serve a purpose for anyone who wants to get into the subject or is interested in space travel. Also that ponderous theme tune has never changed since 1957.

  7. THX 1139

    May 30, 2021 at 1:24 pm

    I do like Maggie Aderin-Pocock, she really gives the subject a lift and enthusiasm that’s perfect for it. It’s great the Sibelius “theme tune” has been retained too, it lends the subject a real grandeur. I don’t always watch it, but it’s good to know it’s there.

    When I was little it was on past my bedtime, so I probably saw Sir Patrick on The Goodies or Blankety-Blank more often.

  8. Glenn Aylett

    May 30, 2021 at 1:42 pm

    The Sibelius theme tune adds a sense of occasion to The Sky At Night and was said to be reminiscent of man exploring space, when quite easily the BBC could have ditched it for something more hip when Sir Patrick died.
    Interesting man, Sir Patrick, apart from an astronomer, he was a decent cricketer, could play the xylophone( as demonstrated on Nationwide), and once tried to make his own car( again shown on Nationwide). He did have a few views that were rather to the right of centre and had a strong dislike of Germans, due to his wartime experiences, but I suppose this was typical of men of his generation.

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