Filed: Entertainment

The Road to Hell

Back in 1995, the BBC broadcasted a radio dramatisation of Len Deighton’s novel Bomber, the story of a fictional saturation bombing raid on Germany in 1943.

It was cleverly segmented so that the different sections of the play were broadcast at the same time of day as the drama, so the pre-raid preparations were on in the afternoon, the raid in the evening and the denouement at 11:30pm. Read more ›››

End of an Era

It’s funny how you can feel that you someone really well even though you never met them, and yet they’ve entered your home on what feels like a daily basis for as long as you can remember.

One such is the doyen of Radio Five, Peter Allen, who retired today at the age of seventy. Well almost retired since he is returning in the autumn for a Sunday evening news review show. Read more ›››

It’s no joke

I wonder if one sign of ageing is losing your sense of humour? Or perhaps it’s because you’ve been around long enough to have heard all the jokes there can possibly be in all their variants?

This occurred to me as I was reading about the top fifteen jokes from this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, as voted for by the viewers of the Dave tv channel, and thought most of them were rubbish. Read more ›››

The Thick Of It

A week may be a long time in politics, but it isn’t even a career in the post-Brexit, Alice in Wonderland world of Westminster when the life expectancy of a shadow cabinet post is barely numbered in hours.

On Monday, the newly appointed shadow Education Secretary, Pat Glass, said it was her ‘dream job’, but by yesterday her position was ‘untenable’. (I’ve no idea who she is/was either) Read more ›››

Man and Superman

I haven’t added much to the universal outpouring of sadness at the death of Muhammad Ali, apart from a short mention in my Sunday Round-up, mainly because others can do him justice better than I can, but I had to include a short post on something that passed me by at the time.

In 1978, DC comics published what must go down as the greatest fictional bout of all time – Muhammad Ali versus Superman. Read more ›››

Till Death Us Do Part

There doesn’t seem to be a week that goes by without an anniversary of some sort to remind me of just how old I’m getting. And here’s another. Fifty years ago today saw Till Death Us Do Part air on the BBC for the first time.

Actually, that’s not strictly true. The characters first appeared in the Comedy Playhouse pilot Till Death… in 1965, but let’s not quibble. Read more ›››

Take the Boy Out the North…

But you can’t take the north out of the boy, as I heard today while listening to an interview with Graham Nash on the Danny Baker Show podcast. Despite living in the US for so long, behind the mid-Atlantic accent there lurks the Lancastrian vowel shifts of his native Blackpool.

It’s a strange mix and not one necessarily confined to someone who has made it big in the States. If you close your eyes, he sounds not unlike the ageing Sheffield lothario, Yorkshire Pudding Peter Stringfellow. Read more ›››

Boss Brings City to its Knees

Bruce Springsteen was supposed to be playing to 60,000 people at the Etihad Stadium last night. I say ‘supposed to’ because quite a few missed the show because the city was in a lock down of total traffic chaos.

It was caused by a combination of bad timing – the show started at 6:30pm, coinciding neatly with rush hour – and five idiot drivers who either managed to drive into one of the city’s trams or get their cars stuck on the tracks. I’m guessing people who were unfamiliar with the city. Read more ›››