Garry Bushell
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APRIL 24. DOCTOR Who is back and he wasted no time "inter-acting with his own past to rip a hole in the Universe." Although I have absolutely no idea what any of that means. This may be because sinister new bogey-men The Silence can take away our memory of what we've just seen, making them officially the most forgettable aliens since the Slitheen. Or because, and I know this is a sacrilegious thought, the episode wasn't particularly well written.

One minute the Doc was hiding under a woman's skirts in Regency London (careful, mate, that's how Mrs. Brown got started), the next he was in modern-day Utah getting shot by a small girl dressed as a full-sized astronaut. She zapped the Doc again in the middle of his regeneration cycle, killing him stone dead. His grieving pals gave him a quick Viking-style funeral. And then he just sauntered back like nothing had happened. Except this Doc was 200 years younger...

So why didn't he look like William Hartnell, then, or gawd help us, Patrick Troughton? Back in 1969, President Nixon was taping phone calls from the terrified spacesuit girl. And a creepy grey guy was lurking in the White House ladies' loo like some extra-terrestrial Bill Clinton. He was one of The Silence; silent and violent. Looking like Munch's Scream in a suit, he topped a passing woman as casually as he wiped Amy's memory. In Florida, his mates had infested the US space programme. The little girl was lumbering about in her space-suit and Amy shot her - surely only excusable if she turns out to be Bonnie Langford?

I worry about this show. That entire crack-in-the-wall series could have been wrapped up in ten minutes by a decent plasterer. And so far this story seems as baffling as the AV voting system and Britain's train ticket pricing policy combined. Writer Stephen Moffat deserves the benefit of the doubt for writing the brilliant 'Blink' episode. But if next week doesn't tie up every loose end, Moff should be boffed by angry Sontarians for wasting our time... and our Time Lord.

*DID you clock the size of The Silence's hands? Strewth, if one of them gave you the finger you'd know about it. No wonder they've got no noses. One slip mid-pick and you're Tara Palmer-Tomkinson.

*THE Silence can erase all memory of any fresh horror you see. Oi chaps, any chance of popping round next Saturday to watch Britain's Got Talent?

*BRITAIN'S Got Talent? Britain Needs Shrinks.

IT was Mark and Lauren's engagement do on The Only Way Is Essex, and tubby Arg turned up on horseback. I felt sorry for the poor hefty mare. But enough about Gemma... For the old nag, see Lydia's Mum. Is Debbie some kind of witch, by the way? She's got the Merlin barnet going on, and someone has clearly turned Arg into a toad. Mark has the magic wand, allegedly. He's definitely got more front than Southend. You wouldn't be too surprised if Mark invited Sam, his sexy ex, along on his honeymoon night, swearing blind that he'd started a bed-warming firm and it was "only business."

*DIMBO Amy has been outrageously sidelined this series. The vajazzle made her famous but it's old-hat now. She needs something old, something bolder. Such as raspberry-flavoured nipples or extra breasts implanted in her back. Or how about a second, discretely located "Minnie"? Shu-UP, you say, but trust me, it's the future.

*ON Great British Menu, the narrator informed us: "Lisa is blanching the cockles before stuffing them into her trout." And you don't often see that before the water-shed.

HOT on TV: Game Of Thrones (Sky Atlantic)... Lena Headey... Sarah Wayne Callies (Walking Dead, Five).

ROT on TV: Saturday night shite... The Reckoning - more plot-holes than Libya has potholes... The Hunks - bunk in trunks... Fern - Failed Entertainment, Ratings Negligible.

THE only sex advice we got as kids was a warning to stay away from the school lollipop man. Now our entire culture is awash with raunchy images. The Sex Education Show rightly confronted the way childhood is sexualised. It was shown on C4, home of Minipops, Skins, Sugar Rush, Virgin School (continued Hypocrites R Us)

*RICK on The Walking Dead smeared himself with stinking zombie guts to escape the lumbering hordes. Lady Gaga must be furious - that was her Summer look!

*HORSE manure was dumped outside the Olympics HQ on Twenty-Twelve, but on closer inspection it turned out to be the script.

*ESSEX Jungle featured a collection of bearded dragons, the finest this side of Loose Women.

*BEN Fogle explored the Secrets of Scott's Hut. For the secrets of Pizza Hut see Arg. For revelations about Jabba The Hut, see Jabba's identical twin sister, Jo Brand.

SMALL Joys of TV: LaRoche's eyes on The Mentalist, they flip from side to side like an Atari Pong ball. Tyrion (Game Of Thrones), the Johnny Rotten of TV fantasy. Dr Heston on Doctors telling Mrs. Tenbe “There’s nothing I like more than the taste of your red bush.” And the childish realisation that saying "Sarah Wayne Callies" fast sounds like a lesbian command.

RANDOM irritations: backdoor privacy laws - the biggest cover-up since Nigella's beach burqa. Charisma-free Lewis and his deadly dull side-kick. The predictable absence of St George's Day programming.

*NICK Knowles went straight from Secret Fortune to hosting Who Dares Wins. Memo to bone-idle BBC bookers: there are other Saturday night presenters available. Some of them likeable; some even talented.

*NEXT from the makers of Help! My House Is Infested: Help! My Ho' Is Infected (concerning a shameless Premiership footballer whose identity is protected by a new high court super-injunction).

RE Hugh Laurie on Later: why didn’t he perform any House music? And would John Miles have pledged to love "the music of the future" if he’d sat through last week's dreary edition? Vintage Trouble were the only new act with any vim.

*A READER moaned about my Top 5 sexiest sitcom women. I'm sorry I missed his favourites: Mrs Doyle, Granny Clampett, Olive from On The Buses...

APRIL 23 Stop Press: So sad to hear about the death of John Sullivan. John was a brilliant comedy writer, a humble man from a working class South London background and an all-round good egg. His finest achievement was of course Only Fools & Horses, which grew organically from a great sitcom into a national treasure. But Sullivan also created and wrote Dear John, Just Good Friends, Sitting Pretty, Roger Roger and the sublime Citizen Smith – every one a gem. I was never keen on Green Green Grass, although it was good to see Boycie and Marlene in regular employment, but John’s second Fools spin-off Rock & Chips was more successful. Next week’s new episode now has an extra poignancy. RIP John. Rest In Peckham.

PS. The first time I met John he took a keen interest in my ‘tomfoolery’, particularly my heavy bracelet (made by the legendary Essex jeweller Dougie The Gold). Some months later Del-Boy took delivery of a suitcase full of gold bracelets all with the name ‘Gal’ inscribed. I was more touched than Marlene on a hen night.

April 23. St George he was for England and before he killed the dragon, he drank a pint of English ale out of an English flagon! (G.K. Chesterton). Happy St George’s Day! As usual there is no recognition of England’s special day on TV, but what could broadcasters do to celebrate? Surely it wouldn’t take too much thought to come up with programming that reflected all aspects of our national characteristics? Our unique humour is captured in the Ealing Comedies and the Boulting Brothers films – and I’m Alright Jack mirrored our bloody-mindedness too. Our military achievements were dramatised in action adventures like Sharpe and Hornblower, our sporting victories are well documented while great shows such as The Sweeney, Minder and The Avengers remind us we were pretty good at drama once too. My fantasy St Geo TV schedule would kick off with the best morning shows (Tiswas, Big Breakfast, Soccer AM), and move on via movies – Passport To Pimlico, Henry V, Goldfinger – to a celebration of sporting triumphs. A serious documentary on English cultural genius (Shakespeare, Orwell, Kipling, Dickens, Turner, Elgar, Shelley) would be essential, before an evening line-up including a clip show of our greatest entertainers and comedians in action, a documentary on the golden age of English sitcom, the best Sharpe (Sharpe’s Rifles?), and a special on England’s unique and glorious contribution to rock and pop. Then on we’d go all through the night with a run of quality dramas (so no Bonekickers) and more great films (Lawrence of Arabia, the Long Good Friday.) Cheers!

April 17. ON our screens last night: eccentric bell ringers, a wannabe Red Indian, dogs doing the conga, and a chronic comic in her dressing gown... It can only mean one thing. Britain’s Got Talent is back. Or to give it its full title: Britain’s Got Talent So Why Can’t ITV Find Any?

Don’t get me wrong, I love this show. It’s an incredible entertainment format, and an absolute ratings juggernaut; but it isn’t about unearthing people with genuine performance skills. There is more chance of Joey Essex winning the Mastermind Grand Final than of BGT finding the next Freddie Starr or Lance Burton. (TV isn’t even interested in the variety stars we’ve got.) This is a vehicle for Britain’s bottomless supply of deluded freaks; simple-minded, tone-deaf folk whose one and only talent is kidding themselves.

The dross that got through to last year’s semi-finals included a dancing ‘leprechaun’, self-styled Lady Gaga impersonator Maxxie Oliver and Sean the singing wood-chopper. In 2009 we got rubbish drag act Mama Trish (Utter Tosh) and a dingbat dressed as Darth Vader doing a Jacko routine. In the semis!

Will this series be any better? Put it this way, the opening act was Mary who jigged about a bit while playing a mouth organ. But at least the judges have improved. Out go puffed-up Piers and poor exhausted multi-millionaire Simon, in come funny, exuberant Michael McIntyre and the wildly enthusiastic Hoff. Next to these two giant egos, Amanda Holden barely gets a word in. Which as probably just as well; the woman’s judgement is so poor she read the script of Big Top and thought it was worth appearing in. Unfortunately, the changes have buggered up the judging balance. Every talent show needs a Mickey Most figure, a brutally honest but knowledgeable expert who tells it straight. Now there isn’t one. There was no-one to advise the nine-year-old comic to come back in ten years time, or to tell that idiot dolphin impersonator his act could only be improved by a Japanese tuna fleet. The producers also missed a golden opportunity to spread the net wider and recruit more semi-pro acts to improve the show’s dismal hit ratio. As it was, the best received turn was a singer who looked a bit of a state. Well, I never. Whoever saw that coming?

*HOFF joked that David Knight, nine, could be his long-lost son. Well he was famously a Knight-rider...

IN an eerily deserted petrol station full of abandoned vehicles, a cop spots a small blonde child picking up her Teddy. He calls out to her. The sweet little girl turns around. Only she isn’t sweet, and she isn’t a girl. She’s a zombie. It’s an image to haunt your nightmares, and The Walking Dead is full of them: zombies eating a horse alive like a horde of mad Frenchmen, a whining legless female dragging herself along like a slug, possibly en route to Loose Women. It’s stunning TV. US deputy sheriff, Rick Grimes (Egg from This Life) wakes from a coma to find ex-humans stalking his home town in Georgia. Filled in by Morgan (Lennie James), Grimes sets off to find his wife and son, killing the lumbering brutes with a heavy heart. This series has horror, tension, intelligence, and humanity. Don’t miss it.

NEW from the EastEnders merchandising: Max Branning Scaletrix (‘Smashing’ – Walford Gazette); Ronnie Mitchell’s Little Book Of Joy (very little); Abi Branning’s Fisher Price condoms... Yeah Jay, 16, nearly slept with Abi last week in a development voted Most Romantic Storyline by Gary Glitter. Abi is 14 going on twelve. It happens, say the BBC. Well yes it does, sometimes. But should they be in the business of normalising it for the soap’s huge pre-teen audience?

HOT on TV: The Walking Dead (Five)... Joanna Vanderham (The Runaway, Sky1)... Taylor Cole (The Event)

ROT on TV: Life Of Riley – death of comedy... Lewis – world’s dullest detective, TV plod... Campus – cankerous... The BBC is in trouble for televising a man's suicide. But if Stephen K Amos wants a second series that's his business. THE Crimson Petal: atmospheric and dreamy, or pretentious over-blown cobblers - you decide. Either way, Spartacus kicked it right into touch again. Their orgy made the 120 Days Of Sodom look like a slow year in Eastbourne.

*THERE were strange patches above hooker Sugar’s breasts on Crimson Petal; possibly psoriasis. Although you’d have thought she’d have had enough cream on her chest to have cleared that up.

*SUGAR and Rackham had sex on a piano. Was it an upright? What do you think? It was certainly grand...

*IF you ring Candy Cabs to complain that the laughs haven’t arrived yet, do they say: “Be with you any minute, mate...”, “They’re just turning into the funny bit now”?

*TWO hundred years ago Paris was one of the filthiest and smelliest cities on earth, said Dan Snow. Pah, plus ca change...

*JOEY Essex isn’t man enough for Sam. If he got her naked he’d probably want to play join-the-dots on her vajazzle.

*“MY life isn’t a sitcom,” says Caroline Quentin. No, and neither is her feckin’ TV show.

*JIM McDonald carried out the worst bank job since Fred the Shred on Corrie. His disguise was a flat cap. It was laughable. In fairness, Jim had planned to use Liz’s tights but the aroma drove him mad with passion, so it did.

RANDOM irritations: David Walliams and his awfully smug mug; this guy’s so full of himself it hard to laugh even when he’s occasionally funny. The BBC’s biased, bleeding-heart coverage of the immigration debate. C4’s rollercoaster indent – looks good at first but like their comedy output it turns out to be slow, dull and disappointing.

*IS Breast Best, asked BBC3. Who cares what Cherry Healey thinks? Let’s ask Berlusconi.

SMALL TV disappointments: that C4’s 27-Inch Man was just a midget. That no-one thought to stick a Walking Dead poster on the Lib-Dem election HQ.

GEORGIA Moffett’s real-life mum Sandra Dickinson played her mum in White Van Man. If she wants to use her real-life stalker, I’m available Mondays and Tuesdays.

SEPARATED at birth: The Silence and Norman Tebbit, one grey, bald and quietly menacing; the other a new Doctor Who alien.

April 10. CANDY Cabs was an original idea Jane Lush had while watching Carry On Cabby. But to give it a fresh, modern slant she decided to take all the jokes out. BBC1’s latest ‘comedy-drama’ was as funny as a melted head-gasket. Two women make their dead partner’s dream of an all-female minicab company come true, buying in a fleet of pink cabs. And like every cab firm you’ve ever been in they immediately launch their own slimming club, queuing up to get weighed in their underwear. This brought a far better cab comedy to mind. I can’t have been the only bloke thinking, “Roger, Roger... Roger... No, not with yours, pal.”

Most British TV is aimed at women, and Candy Cabs is no exception. All men are fools and/or bastards, and naturally there’s a soap star at the helm - Tanya from EastEnders. Now I have no objection to seeing Jo Joyner in her smalls. My biggest disappointment last year was realising the headline ‘Jo shows off her miracle twins’ was just a reference to her babies. But surely she deserves better than a script that relies exclusively on quaint Northern phrases (“Eee, look what t’cat peeled up”) for ‘laughs’?

It’s symptomatic of BBC management’s insane conviction that they can make the Corporation great again simply by moving to Manchester instead of, say, investing those wasted millions in high-quality drama.

I’m often accused of preferring US TV to our own. But only a lunatic or a liar would pretend that Bonekickers and The Deep come close to the genius of The Sopranos or The Wire. The greatest myth of modern television is that the BBC is a by-word for excellence. It actually blows the vast bulk of its drama budget on dismal soaps and formulaic dross. Forget The Killing, we’ve got Holby! It’s been five years since Life On Mars and eight since State Of Play. Sure they scored in the Noughties with HBO co-productions (Rome, Band Of Brothers) but their best work was decades ago. For all their fancy Oxbridge degrees, Beeb bosses are patently as clueless, wet and over-paid as our politicians. Like the world’s worst poker player ‘Auntie’ sits there saying “I see your Shield, your Boardwalk Empire and I raise you Outcasts and Candy Cabs. Eee, look what t’cat peeled up.”

*CANDY Cabs is like no minicab firm you’ve ever known. For starters, all the drivers speak English.

FILTHY Cities reminded us that London streets were once awash with stinking human waste. Nowadays of course all of that festering muck is simply delivered to C4 where it’s re-processed into comedy scripts. Like Campus, a steaming great mess of pathetic grotesques, unbelievable situations and witless dialogue. British universities are crying out to be sent up, but instead of satirising ‘What Is’ this show relies on unlikely monsters and bad jokes (Lydia turning down a randy Prof: “I’d rather be raped by a pig, and that’s speaking from experience”). Vice Chancellor Jonty is like a mad racist David Brent or The I.T. Crowd’s Reynholm channelling the spirit of Goebbels. Are Uni people really like this? Aren’t you more likely to find campuses over-run with spoilt rich kids spouting politics that make Galloway sound like a LibDim, and achingly PC lecturers who talk like Harriet Harman? And isn’t there more to “cutting edge comedy” than saying “vagina” a lot? Incredibly it took eight vaginas, sorry, writers to churn out this garbage. It only takes one viewing of A Very Peculiar Practice to see how to do it properly.

*CAMPUS is from the team behind Smack The Pony, including writer/director Vicky Pile. Technically it’s a Pile of Pony...

SO to clear things up: Marc on Corrie is a cross-dresser, Audrey only looks like one. And Gail is just permanently cross... What they really need is a dominatrix, if only to thrash some sense into the writers. Salon give-aways, ’kin Xin, Jim turning armed robber (so he is), Steve planning to abduct his kids... none of it rings true. Like True Blood’s Sookie Stackhouse, my favourite soap is currently away with the fairies. Let’s hope it comes back soon.

HOT on TV: The Event... Romola Garai (Crimson Petal) – fanny by gaslight... The Runaway (Sky1)... Paul Merton – still quick on the jaw.

ROT on TV: Campus – coarse work... Candy Cabs – a crashing bore... After Lately – Chelsea Lamely... A Different Breed – dog-rough... Supersized vs Superskinny – super-soppy.

*JOEY should stick with Lucy on The Only Way Is Essex. With his brains and her colouring, they could breed traffic cones.

*IF Jeremy Clarkson has had an affair, will his next Top Gear item be star kipping on a reasonably priced sofa? Possible Clarkson excuses: 1) I thought she was The Stig 2) Mistook her for an Escort 3) The going was wet and I finished in 57 seconds.

*BRUCE Forsyth still isn’t sure if he’ll be appearing in the next series of Strictly. In truth, the poor old sod isn’t sure if he was in the last series...

*DON’T miss the Eddie Stobart tribute documentary. You’ve all seen the trailer.

*THE earth didn’t move for newly-weds Tamwar and Afia on Enders, but the restaurant did. On the plus side there are now three new dishes on the Argee Bhaji menu: plaster pasanda, masonry masala, ceiling phall...

*WHAT caused the Bhaji disaster? Shoddy workmanship, Heather’s flatulence, or just aliens coming for their leader, Ronnie?

*A MUSLIM wedding is called a nikah. You don’t get quicker than a Walford nikah.

*FAT Pat was shocked that Whitney was on the game. That’s Pat the former madam who once pimped out Mary...

*WE got a blow-job and some back-scuttling on BBC2’s soft porn outing The Crimson Petal & The White. Not bad, but it’s no Spartacus.

*THE difference between Annie the Elephant and Fern Britton: one’s a lumbering, saggy-skinned jumbo who’s been put out to grass. The other one’s an elephant.

RANDOM irritations: BBC4’s bleeding-heart take on capital punishment. TV ‘satire’ completely ignoring the EU. Anyone who pronounces asks as “arks”. Unfunny gut-bucket Katy Brand – she gave up sod-all for Lent. But hey, if Gaddafi is looking for a decent human shield...

SMALL joys of TV: BBC4’s Corporal Punishment expert, one Professor Slapper. Horace Andy’s ‘Skylarking’ on the White Van Man soundtrack. Nanny Pat as the Queen (Essex). Neil Diamond Night (BBC4). Ted Danson (Bored To Death).

April 3rd. SEX & The Sitcom? Don’t make me laugh. Classic TV comedy was built on failure and frustration. Sitcom geezers have always been useless. Hancock couldn’t get a date with a calendar. Rigsby thought the erogenous zones were somewhere near the equator. And George Roper was terrified of wife Mildred, although unfortunately for her he was never actually scared stiff. Alf Garnett’s sex drive was permanently in park. “I never attempted to touch your mother until after we were married,” he told daughter Rita. “Well after,” added Elsie ruefully. Well-adjusted people with perfect love lives aren’t funny. Flawed losers are. That’s always been the case.

Sex & The Sitcom set out to show how comedies “reflected the sexual revolution.” Mercifully there was no sign of Mr Ed, the talking horse. But many series featured were either obscure ratings flops or just not that funny. Casanova 73 starred Leslie Phillips with a decent Galton & Simpson script, and still lost its primetime slot after just three episodes. Comedy was all about double meanings back then, the documentary claimed: “If you liked innuendo, Seventies sitcom would give you one”. Not true. The best 70s sitcoms were Porridge, Rising Damp and Fawlty Towers. Basil’s claustrophobic relationship with his little piranha fish probably put more people off marriage than even Terry & June.

1980s man-eater Dorien in Birds Of A Feather was presented as something bold and new, although she was predated by Hot Lips Houlihan (MASH) and Blanche Devereaux (Golden Girls). Voracious women have been a comedy staple since Chaucer. Even in Benny Hill, still dubbed ‘sexist’ by nitwits, the men are the real losers. It’s Benny at the end who turns tail and runs.

Today’s comedies may be more explicit but the reasons the best ones are funny remain the same: cock-ups and inadequacy (cock-downs). Jay in The Inbetweeners brags about shags that have never happened. One night with Nessa and a toilet brush left Smithy traumatized (Gavin & Stacey). While Mark Corrigan in Peep Show is as socially useless as Rigsby, as trapped as Harold Steptoe and as cynical as Blackadder “Life is all pain,” he moaned. “Pain, rejection and gloom.” Yep. And that’s why we’re laughing.

*ALL-time Top 5 sexiest sitcom women: 1) Yvette (’Allo ’Allo!) 2) Big Suze (Peep Show) 3) Gloria (Modern Family) 4) Ellie May Clampett 5) Miss Thing (The Grimleys), although I accept that’s probably just me.

*TOP 5 under-rated British sitcoms: 1) The Grimleys 2) Dear John 3) The Brothers McGregor 4) Brush Strokes 5) Time After Time.

JAMES Dream School unintentionally exposes the nightmare of modern schooling. The trappy teens are bad enough, with their constant chat and lack of respect for anyone or anything. But what about that weak, wet headmaster who lets pupils text in class and smoke on the premises? “You think you’re higher than everybody else,” gobby Harlem told him. If only. He’s too busy bending over backwards to keep the little sods’ happy to assert any authority whatsoever. This well-intentioned series won’t confront the real problem: these kids have no self-discipline, no self-control and no sense of responsibility. No-one has ever taught them the rules. Consequently they’ve gone off the rails like a Weatherfield tram. Our ailing, failing education system can’t be quick-fixed by celebrities. It needs root and branch reform.

*ROBERT Winston took sperm samples from two of Jamie’s Dream School boys. Finally something they were good at... It was difficult in the circumstances, though – they’d just spent an hour with Cherie Blair.

HOT on TV: Martina Cole’s The Runaway (Sky1)... Bored To Death (Sky Atlantic)... Marisa Ramirez (Spartacus).

ROT on TV: Anna Nicole the Opera (BBC4) – just one pornetta... Women In Love – geezers in pub...$#*! My Dad Says – mostly just $#*!... Three In A Bed – Come Whine With Me.

*ALFIE tried to leave Albert Square by tube last week. Idiot! Everyone knows the only way out of that hell-hole is in the back of a black cab. The one exception was taxi driver Charlie Slater. He did get out by underground, leaving his cab behind. I’m still trying to work that one out.

*KAT didn’t enjoy her boxing ring meal, so she pulled out early. If Michael Moon had done that a year ago, we wouldn’t have had to suffer this joyless baby saga.

*MAX said he was happy with Tanya but only “content” with new love Vanessa. Must be because she hasn’t buried him alive and left him for dead yet.

*MEN Heather drools over on dating sites: Colonel Sanders, Ronald McDonald, the Burger King...

*WELL done Sam Attwater. You’ve gone from being “that nobody” to that nobody who won Dancing On Ice.

*NEW diet slogan from The Only Way Is Essex: ‘No carbs before Marbs’ (Marbella). See also, no pie before Dubai, no beer before Tangier, no Scotch no reason to watch... My tip for Arg: stop eating lard, you chunky retard.

*JOEY Essex’s hair looks so much like a walnut whip it’s a wonder Arg hasn’t eaten it.

*THAT’S who Chloe Simms reminds me of – one of those shape-shifters on Fringe... half-way through changing faces.

*ON Spartacus Batiatus enjoyed a leisurely threesome with wife Lucretia and gorgeous Gaia. Memo to Brian Cox, that’s one big bang I’d like to peer back to.

*BRIAN Cox says the speed of light is “the speed limit of the universe.” Give me Clarkson in a DeLorean and we’ll see about that. Fact: the speed of dark = the walking pace of Janine Butcher.

RANDOM irritations: 140 minutes of Dancing On Ice – a load of old boleros. Alastair Campbell’s TV career, rewarded for lying about Iraq and surviving Chilcot (the biggest cover-up this side of Jason Gardiner’s noggin). Lembit Opik – ’opeless fame limpet.

SMALL joys: Keith Allen’s crazy syrup (The Runaway). The Simpsons’ awards show send-up. Phil walking out on Kirstie ‘All-strop’ Allsopp (Vacation Vacation Vacation). Eminem (Entourage). Kelly’s return (Emmerdale).

SEPARATED at birth: Musa Kusa and Stanley Baxter – one a fugitive from a hostile regime (the BBC), the other Gaddafi’s foreign minister.