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The BBC – it was not ever thus

I am reading an excellent book – Last Hope Island by Lynne Olson. It is an account of how many Europeans notably heads of government, or self-styled ones like Charles de Gaulle, came to the UK in 1940 as it was the only substantial western European democracy not under the Nazi jack boot. The [...]

January 24, 2020 // 0 Comments

Back to the future, maybe

This organ used to pride itself on its unique and contrary, slightly left-field ‘oldie’ takes on aspects of modern living. Indeed this was the central theme our board’s USP when pitching for the US$1.6 billion funding injection in the fall of 2016 that took us into exclusive league of [...]

January 22, 2020 // 0 Comments

Test coverage

Once upon a time in the good old days of TMS, lengthy breaks in play were greeted with pleasure as the team could sustain a discussion on all matters cricket for hours on end. The modern broadcaster cannot so they have to pad out with replays of interviews, of the match and/or any other match. [...]

January 20, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Trial of Christine Keeler

I’m 3 episodes into the The Trial of Christine Keeler and am underwhelmed. Superficially it has all the elements of a powerful drama: sex, power, scandal , interesting personalities and no need to create any characters. The problem is that the story line is actually quite complex. The shooting [...]

January 8, 2020 // 0 Comments

University Challenge

We Rusters seem to have our own way of getting through the festive period and mine was University Challenge whose celebrity version of alumni appeared as contestants around 8.30 pm every evening. Following the excellent article on sit-coms I recollect and review that other staple of telly – [...]

January 7, 2020 // 0 Comments

On the way out, but laughing

Being a Ruster, my relationship with large swathes of the modern world – including technology, a bug-bear mentioned recently by my colleague William Byford – is generally tentative or somewhat hit-and-miss and so I set out to compose my post today with positive intent but also with [...]

January 4, 2020 // 0 Comments

Farewell to a member of the Fab Two

Overnight came the sad news of the death of Neil Innes – a talented musician, humourist, former stalwart of the Bonzo Dog Do-Dah Band, Monty Python collaborator and all round good egg – at the age of 75. One way or another, had the cards fallen his way, he could easily have become one [...]

December 31, 2019 // 0 Comments

The hazy days of a summer long gone

Back in the day I once worked with Simon, my immediate boss who was something of a fish out of water – an unworldly accountant, debuting in the crazy world of television, who suffered a degree of difficulty in accepting the norms of an industry that didn’t really have any. Because the [...]

December 25, 2019 // 0 Comments

Sports Personailty of the Year…ugh

If you are expecting an appreciation of Sports Personality of the Year (SPOTY) stop reading now. I had no intention of watching if and this is why. 1. The BBC has very few sports rights and almost every sequence will bear the logo of another broadcaster. Once the BBC could no longer showcase SPOTY [...]

December 16, 2019 // 0 Comments

Elizabeth is Missing /BBC1

A discussion we  often have amongst us Arts Rusters is whether a great book has ever been turned into a greater film. Neil Rosen came up with the Godfather Part One  but its hard to add to that list.  I offered up The English Patient. So the producer of Emma Healey’s fine first novel [...]

December 10, 2019 // 0 Comments

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