Big Brother

Monday, July 31, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Who did you vote for? Was it Sada, with her tarot cards, crystals and droning mantras about being “one with the Goddess”? Or was it Caroline, with the machine-gun laugh, enormous teeth and pineapple hair? The first two weeks of Big Brother climaxed with us the viewers getting the chance to pass judgment on the fate of this irksome pair of contestants, and then seeing how the remaining occupants in the house coped with their former comrade’s dramatic departure. Read more

I Love 1971

Saturday, July 29, 2000 by · Comments Off 

I Love 1971 reeks of unashamed nostalgia. Concurring with its forbear of last week each section was interspersed with snippets of cine film and imbued with a sunny, yellowed taint. Tonight some of us relived clackers, The Banana Splits, Middle of the Road, Get Carter, Jackie Stewart, Shaft and the Brucie-era Generation Game, whilst those of us who couldn’t make it to 1971 felt an illogical pang of yearning anyway. Read more

Operation Good Guys

Thursday, July 27, 2000 by · 2 Comments 

In a few weeks, it’ll be time for a newspaper or magazine to proclaim that the sitcom is dead again. Read more

I Love 1970

Saturday, July 22, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Channel 4′s recent Top Ten series was, by common consensus, the best Saturday night telly for ages. It worked partly because of its scheduling (you’d never had anything like that on primetime Saturday evening before) but mainly thanks to its presentation: a carefully balanced mix of detailed research, knowing voice-overs and inspired choice of interviewees. Read more

Queen Mother 100: A Service of Celebration and Thanksgiving

Tuesday, July 11, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Unlike most people’s birthdays this year – which will last no longer than 24 hours – the Queen Mother’s 100th birthday seems to be running for a period of several months; and although it’s still a number of weeks till the big day itself, this solemn yet glossy church service was officially the highpoint of the whole festivities. Read more

Counterblast: Dear William/The Real Queen Mother

Monday, July 10, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Imagine a parallel universe in which the institution of the Royal family had crumbled in the dramatic social changes of the 1960s, but television itself had not been given its first big push towards becoming a mass medium in the 1950s. Read more


Thursday, July 6, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Here’s the setup: a legal situation comedy. Read more

Arena: Wisconsin Death Trip

Sunday, July 2, 2000 by · Comments Off 

Drug addiction, sexual dysfunction, spiraling violence, the corruption of childhood innocence , suicide, adultery… the very stuff of Millennial angst and the staple diet of sensationalist tabloids, but are these phenomena unique to our own times? This was one of the questions which anyone viewing James Marsh’s extraordinary film for Arena must have asked themselves. Read more