Saturday, September 29, 2001 by · Comments Off 

Writer, critic, gourmet and erstwhile biographer of Dickie Davies, Jonathan Meades made his perennial return to BBC2, presenting a programme on the subject of surrealism. Read more

I Love 1995

Saturday, September 29, 2001 by · Comments Off 

On 31 December 1995 me and a few mates decided to commit ourselves to a suitably non-hedonistic activity. We sat down and made some lists. The last 12 months had been the midpoint of the decade. What had it told us about the 1990s so far? What records and films would we rate and which would we rubbish? Would we still think the same in another five years time? Read more


Monday, September 24, 2001 by · Comments Off 

“No, the world hasn’t gone mad – it’s quarter past four!” And so, with twinkling eyes and a voice brimming with scarcely-concealed merriment, Richard Whiteley – the Mr Bumble of Channel 4 – opened another series of Countdown. Read more

The Saturday Show

Saturday, September 22, 2001 by · Comments Off 

Almost 25 years to the week, an era of Saturday morning TV has come to a close. The familiar mix that has filled the gap between 9am and noon since Swap Shop started in 1976 is no more, and, after seeing the final dire edition of Live & Kicking last week, one could argue that it didn’t end a moment too soon. Read more

Dream Team

Sunday, September 16, 2001 by · Comments Off 

I like Dream Team. There, I’ve gone and said it now. My guilty secret is out. And do you know what? I don’t really care what the soap purists think. The way I look at it, if you’re going to ask people to suspend disbelief, then you might as well go for it on a scale of Brazil circa 1970 proportions rather than the Leeds-under-Revie extent so peculiarly propagated by the likes of EastEnders and Corrie. Read more

Malcolm in the Middle

Sunday, September 16, 2001 by · Comments Off 

After a long wait, the second family of American dysfunctionalism finally returned to our screens, albeit on Sky One. Whilst comparisons to Homer, Marge and their brood are inevitable only in the minds of lazy slag writers, the hearts of viewers have long regarded Malcolm in the Middle as something considerably more than a live action version of The Simpsons. Read more

I Love 1994

Saturday, September 15, 2001 by · Comments Off 

Saturday night, Saturday night… and I’m sitting in front of the television, recalling a conversation with a colleague at work. “Everything came back in the ’90′s, so the decade never really had a style of its own,” I was informed. So I Love the Nineties was always destined to be problematic. Read more

The Last Night of the Proms

Saturday, September 15, 2001 by · Comments Off 

First came the pictures. Arresting images terrifyingly simple to understand. Frames that will resonate through history, tragic marriages of blurred video camera with cruelly focused real life. And as those pictures continued to emerge, filmed from ever more galling angles, so the words began. A torrent of them, raw, unqualified, sorrowful and vitriolic, homespun and world-weary. Attempts to both rationalize and elaborate on a jumble of facts, emotions, and consequences. Read more


Monday, September 10, 2001 by · Comments Off 

Our preconceptions of BBC2′s ‘Orrible are formed chiefly around its star and co-scriptwriter – Johnny Vaughan. His previous experience in this field is Snow White and the Seven Cons (the pantomime he wrote when serving a four year prison sentence), yet the £5 million that the BBC spent to secure his services, ensures that expectations are high. Read more

Bob and Rose

Monday, September 10, 2001 by · Comments Off 

Russell T Davies, the writer of ITV’s new six-part drama Bob and Rose, has baggage. In the pre-autumn schedule skirmishes his name has been deployed as an exocet to punch a hole through the BBC’s “cynically populist” drama output. He is, like McGovern, Bleasdale and Bennett, a writer whose name can be bandied about in the marketing of a programme. Read more

I Love 1993

Saturday, September 8, 2001 by · Comments Off 

I love 25 August 2001. I remember it clearly because I was stuck on a bus. Read more

Absolutely Fabulous

Friday, September 7, 2001 by · Comments Off 

If in doubt, fall over: the credo of Absolutely Fabulous since its debut in 1992. A step down from a chair, a simple walk across a room… the tiniest movement from Edina (Jennifer Saunders) or Patsy (Joanna Lumley) always came accompanied with assorted jerks and twitches, better still an all-out collapse at the knees. Read more

I Love 1992

Saturday, September 1, 2001 by · Comments Off 

1992: the year of Europe, the Single European Act, the Treaty of Maastricht, Black Wednesday and the Barcelona Olympics. In short, one of the most momentous years in recent European history. But, wait a moment, this isn’t 1992 – it’s I Love 1992. Read more