Jan 26. The nation is distraught about Hayley’s suicide on Corrie.
Even the plastic paperboy outside the Kabin was weeping. It
was sad and moving; a merciful release... for viewers bored
sick of the whole depressing storyline.
It’s a testimony to how well the Croppers were drawn that
millions actually cared, because I have to confess I didn’t.
Hayley has always felt about as believable as Tina’s lust for
Peter. She was soap’s first transsexual, but ITV lacked the
cojones to cast a real transgender person and gave the part
to Julie Hesmondhalgh. Hilariously the actress then fell pregnant...
suggesting that the NHS can work wonders with oestrogen patches.
Naturally her character was painted as a saint.
Hayley’s love for Roy was touching, though. Corrie’s oddest
couple tugged our heartstrings, and yes her death was well acted.
But was it necessary? ITV claimed it was bold and original,
yet suicide has been done to death in soaps. EastEnders did
right-to-die more than thirteen years ago when poor old Ethel
popped her clogs with the unlikely help of devout Christian
Dot. Phil’s Stella jumped off a roof, Demi and Donna deliberately
OD’d on smack... Angie Watts tried to top herself as long ago
Hayley coming a cropper just brought home the Walford-isation
of our soaps. All now share the same misery-driven, issue-led
agenda, hiding behind a lofty but unconvincing ‘social service’
justification. With more episodes and shrinking budgets, cranking
up the melodrama is a lazy cop-out. Upsetting viewers is easy.
Child death will do it, murder, illness – Albert Square must
be the cancer capital of the world with Carol following Tanya,
Pat, Dot and Peggy.
By aping Enders, Corrie has squandered much of its warmth
and everyday humour. Since 2010 this small close-knit community
has had 27 deaths, four of them murders, two suicides, arson,
rape, abduction, a tram disaster... Ghoulish producer Stuart
Blackburn oversaw an assisted suicide row in Emmerdale before
taking over Corrie. He’s behind Hayley’s demise too. It’s a
shame they can’t pull the plugs on him instead. Stan and Hilda
didn’t need constant trauma to make us love them.
*R.I.P. Hayley, now finally reunited with her family... jewels.
Her death was the soap’s most painful loss since Harold went
to Amsterdam. I can’t wait for the will reading, everyone huddled
around praying she hasn’t left them that poxy red anorak...
*HAYLEY’S greatest moments: 1) Her sex-change. Sinatra left
his heart in San Francisco, Harold left his parts in a Dutch
operating theatre. 2) Going on the run with Roy and bed-wetter
Wayne – so cops were on the look-out for two wet blankets...
3) Julie Hesmondhalgh being heavily pregnant on screen in 2001
- long after Hayley’s op. You don’t get service like that on
the National Health.
*IS it wrong to wish that the remains of Hayley’s suicide
cocktail had ended up in t’Bistro for Nick to take a good long
swig of? Death might cheer him up a bit.
THIS has been such a memorable run of Celebrity Big Brother
that the contestants’ names will surely pass into the language:
“That bloke is a massive Dappy”... “She’s got a cracking pair
of Caseys”...“Go and spread a bucket of Nolan on the rhubarb...
” Liz Jones grew on me. Yes, she was laid-back to the point
of lethargy, but the cracking way she faked depression to fool
Luisa suggests Liz missed her true calling as a soap actress.
She gave much more than Sam Faiers whose biggest contribution
has been her exploding face. Either she’s allergic to squabbles
or poor Sam has more hives than an apiary. Linda and Luisa were
on Jim’s case from day one, getting in more digs than Time Team.
But even Luisa sussed that Linda was coming across as “a moaning
bitter woman.” Not that it stopped the two venomous hags laying
into poor wet Ollie. Luisa called him embarrassing. That’s like
Justin Bieber telling you you’re drinking too much.
*LINDA is so relentlessly stroppy she’s bound to get more
bookings: Grudge Match, Neighbours From Hell, Celebrity Benefits
EN garde! The Musketeers is nuts on many levels – the casting,
the lingo... did 17th Century army captains really bark “My
office – now!” at their men?? There was more authentic dialogue
on Dogtanian & The Muskerhounds. But it’s enjoyable tosh all
the same, largely because it’s about heroism, chivalry, toughness
and loyalty – machismo, in other words. The Musketeers might
look like a Kasabian cover band but they fight for what’s right...
in between swashbuckling, unbuckling, hangovers (they’re the
must-get beers), and cardsharping. Their chief problem is cunning
Cardinal Richelieu. Their king, Louis XIII of France, is a posh
perfumed popinjay with no sign of a spine. These days he’d be
on CBB’s Bit On The Side, slagging off Jim Davidson.
HOT on TV: Maimie McCoy, The Musketeers... Alexa Davalos,
Mob City (Fox)... David ‘Roy Cropper’ Neilson... Helix (C5)...
Ross Kemp: Extreme World (Sky1).
ROT on TV: Mr. Selfridge – dull in every department... The
National TV Awards – should be renamed The Groundhogs... The
Following – not following any more.
WELL done Ant & Dec for winning their thirteenth award for
being Ant & Dec at the National Television Awards. We didn’t
see that coming. It’s an odd night, devoid of wit and largely
bent. How could Sherlock win ‘top detective’ for a year the
show wasn’t even on air? At least This Morning’s shameless and
relentless vote-for-us campaigning paid off... again. Here’s
a puzzle though: if The Big Bang Theory was a sitcom contender,
why wasn’t Breaking Bad in the best drama category? Oh that’s
right - no British TV channel had the nous to screen it.
*THE NTAs are educational. They’ve taught us to avoid Harry
Hill’s naff X Factor-spoof stage-show, I Can’t Sing, like the
*THE Strictly mob gushed their thank-yous to everyone... except
Bruce Forsyth. Do you think he winds them up as much as he does
the rest of us?
*A WOMAN alleges DLT groped her at a pantomime dressed as
Abanazar. Could have been worse; it could have been Captain
CHRIS Packham on Winterwatch promised us black cock (a type
of grouse) “first thing in the morning”. As all possible gags
have been censored by the taste police, let’s leave that hanging
in the air.
*ON EastEnders Shirley Carter had a chat with Mick’s bulldog.
I love that fierce, dim creature... especially when she called
Sharon a “menopausal Barbie.”
*JAKE Stone? Another useless p*ss-head. Albert Square needs
proper blokes as urgently as Walford High needs condom machines.
*OVER on All Star Family Fortunes Stephen K. Amos introduced
his final team member Christine as a “family friend.” Not only
is the show unable to supply ‘all stars’, it can’t even manage
*A NEW report says that comedians have psychotic personality
disorders. Well it’d certainly explain Freddie Starr and Justin
Small Joys of TV: Liz Jones’s misery monologue in the Big
Brother bath. Pollyanna Woodward on Splash! The busker-bashing
rant on Uncle. Kate Quilton on Food Unwrapped – roll on Kate
Random Irritations: Mob City – looks great, moves too slowly.
The Naked Rambler – why give him publicity? Room 101 for watering
down genuine comic fury into another so-so panel show.
SEPARATED at birth: Mr Crabbe (Mr Selfridge) and the Carry
On films’ Kenneth Connor? Crabbe must stifle a “phwoar” every
time he sees Kitty.
First wild beaver spotted in England for 800 years! Experts
are calling it Luisa...
Jan 24. YES! That horrible dark cloud that’s been hanging
over Elstree for weeks has suddenly lifted! Narky Linda Nolan
just got voted out of Celebrity Big Brother. Hurrah! The atmosphere
inside the house seemed to brighten up immediately. We’re in
the final straight and voting for a winner now. I don’t think
Jim Davidson will win but I’d like him to. Not because I agree
with his politics but because it would be one in the eye for
the humourless snobs who try and tell us what we’re allowed
to laugh at, for the strident middle class guardians of Political
Correctness, and for the whole weepy-creepy, touchy-feely, over-feminised,
kissy-kissy, mwah-mwah world of what laughably passes for popular
culture these days. Vote Jim to win – by dialling 09020442405
- if you’ve seen him live and know why the Independent called
him England’s funniest living stand-up. Vote for Jim if you
loved his TV shows, if you appreciate what he’s done - unpaid
- for our fighting forces for three decades, if you grew up
with the giants of Cockney comedy, and above all vote Jim to
win if you support the Addicks. COYR!
Jan 19. Lionel Blair left Celebrity Big Brother in true showbiz
style – all eyes and teeth, some of them his own. He’d had quite
a fortnight. Lionel came in a dignified light entertainment
veteran and ended up strutting about in fetish gear demanding
that someone “Suck my d*ck!” You didn’t get that at the Dave
Lee Travis court hearing.
Initially horrified by uncouth talk of “finger-banging”, Lionel
finished up telling Big Brother to “go f**k yourself!” He turned
into Chubby Brown, without the jokes. Even the Wolf Of Wall
Street was saying: “Woah, mind the language.” Of course Lionel
was only truly happy blowing his own trumpet. As opposed to
Jasmine who’d have cheerfully blown Lee’s...
The series has been deliriously demented. House mates are
split between the ones getting the hump, and the ones getting
dry-humped. Linda Nolan (Granny Boo-Boo) got drenched in paint
for being boring and made to watch it dry. Loose Luisa boasted
about shagging five men in one night – there’s classy; and then
got her leg over the top of a jail cell to half-inch bubbly
and chocolates. Caught breaking the rules on camera, Luisa had
the right to remain silent but not the ability. She claimed
that Lionel was as much to blame as she was. Another verbal
Luisa always plays the innocent party saying men – specifically
Jim Davidson - don’t like her because she’s a strong and successful
woman. But what we actually see is a selfish, sexually incontinent
loudmouth with the morals of an alley-cat who’s had blazing
rows with three housemates. Luisa love, might it be you? The
only surprise is that Jasmine went instead of her on Wednesday.
At least this gave Lee Ryan something else to do with his lips.
Dappy’s sublimely funny shouting match with Luisa – “What
have you got, an A and B in Stuck Up?” - was surpassed in venom
by Linda’s Thursday night bust-up with Jim. The great Frank
Carson’s dressing room ding-dong! This confusing row was actually
about her late husband Brian shamefully stealing cash from Frank’s
wallet. Not once as she and Emma Willis claimed, but repeatedly.
Jim has been terrific value, dubbing Lee a “fanny rat”, and
Luisa “Princess Pushy”. And in fairness he’s done his best to
defuse arguments. Best though was Jim’s heartfelt reaction to
being trapped in a house with squawking drunks: “Roll on death...
it’s like being in hell.” Not for us! Short of Francois Hollande
turning up on his scooter to have a go on Luisa it’s hard to
see how this show could be improved.
R.I.P. Roger Lloyd-Pack, a brilliant part of the greatest
British sitcom of our time. The finest tribute the Beeb could
pay to him and fans of Only Fools & Horses would be to re-launch
Comedy Playhouse to showcase pilots by unknown working class
writers – because the Oxbridge establishment can’t come close.
MP Penny Mordaunt washed up on Splash! proving the celebrity
barrel has been well and truly scraped dry. It can’t be too
long before we see Eric Pickles strutting about in his budgie
smugglers. Unpleasant, yes, but in fairness he’d triple the
size of the splash zone. Treating politicians as celebs is generally
a bad thing, but if they are going to jump off diving boards
isn’t it time to unleash the sharks? Or at least bring on Bridget
Phillipson in a bikini? Knowing our luck we’ll get lumbered
with Margaret Beckett. I say get Tessa Munt in CBB, if only
for the “Munt out for the lads” crowd chants. And book Lord
Rennard for Take Me Out.
*ANN Widdecombe, on All-Star Family Fortunes, chose a rhino
as the worst animal to share a bed with because it has “a very
nasty horn.” It’s the same reason she never married.
*GREAT political entertainment bookings: 1) George Galloway
(CBB) 2) Simon Parkes (Confessions Of An Alien Abductee) 3)
Erh, that’s it. Worst: 1) Lembit (everything). 2) Widdecombe
(ditto). 3) Edwina Currie (Strictly 4) Blunkett (Celeb Mastermind)
HOT on TV: Nina Conti... Mob City (Fox)... Matt Berry, House
Of Fools... Bradley Walsh, The Chase.
ROT on TV: Linda Nolan – a whining migraine in human form...
Reflex – reflux is more fun... The Taste – a waste of Nigella...
Andy Samberg (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) – least convincing cop since
the Village People.
PEOPLE are fuming because Shabnam told her Dad he shouldn’t
date a white woman on EastEnders. I’m more annoyed that she
isn’t Shabnam. The old Shabs was laidback, gorgeous and an occasional
pole-dancer. This one’s a hard-faced hard-line Muslim harridan
who’s come back from Pakistan with a head transplant and a happiness
bypass. No wonder poor Masood has turned to drink. But why shouldn’t
the soap have unpleasant ethnic characters and unsavoury views?
They’re part of the “reality” the producers laughably claim
to depict. In the real East End, Nick Cotton would have voted
VIC and Bob’s House Of Fools is a tripping mental patient’s
dream of a sitcom. To prove how far beyond bonkers it is Sandi
Toksvig is every character’s ultimate pin-up. Dumb, daft, and
childish, the show packs in unhinged neighbours, exploding microwaves,
silly songs and elasticated testicles. I love it.
*BOB searching for his Gone In Sixty Seconds DVD: “It was
here a minute ago.”
*CORRIE has been accused of “steering vulnerable people towards
suicide” with their Hayley Cropper storyline, although in fairness
EastEnders has been doing that for years.
*HAYLEY pops her clogs tomorrow. ITV have vetoed their North
Korean writer’s plans to have her torn to death by starving
dogs up the Red Rec. Instead she’ll perish under an avalanche
of 500 strawberry punnets.
*AMY Poehler at the Golden Globes: “Congratulations to the
wonderful actors nominated tonight, from the amazing Chiwetel
Ejiofor to the stunning Lupita Nyong’o, to American treasure
Tam Honks... ”
*CHIWETEL Ejiofor: 12 Years A Slave; Bianca Jackson: 30 Years
Small Joys of TV: the colossal Costa Bingo Mel B. The Death
In Paradise soundtrack. Daft songs on Jinsy. Benidorm. Uncle
(BBC3). Jim Davidson channeling Basil Fawlty to ask Linda Nolan:
“Another vat of wine, dear?”
Random Irritations: Daphne’s voice (Eggheads). The Taste –
who can make the best prawn cocktail? Who the feck cares? All-Star
Family Fortunes – it’s not all-star, eight out of ten contenders
are complete unknowns and most of the pairs we actually recognose
wouldn’t excite a pack of hard-up paparazzi. Sherlock – all
style, very little substance.
SEPARATED at birth: Billie Piper and Tara Lynn Foxx, one associated
with tawdry sex sagas, the other a blue movie actress. Runners-up:
Joaquin Phoenix and Chas Hodges. (Gertcha)
*ON University Challenge you could almost hear announcer Roger
Tilling praying that Southampton's Day would buzz in before
ON Bake Off, Omid Djalili told contestants: “You have two hours
before your rings are judged.” We can only hope he was talking
Jan 12. Lee Ryan has set Celebrity Big Brother alight, juggling
gullible women as casually as Peter Barlow on a promise. Lee
clicked with cuddly Casey, telling her they could be an item
on the outside. Then he got off with Jasmine and dropped Casey
like a hot stone. “I’ve done nothing wrong,” he protested. And
like a politician he seemed to actually believe his own lies.
Truly he is a mutant super rat in human form. Putting Lee in
the bolt-hole with Casey was inspired, though. Yes she nagged
but there was always the slim possibility that they’d also shag.
CBB has been on brilliant form all week; by which I mean it’s
been rude, randy, foul-mouthed and feisty; a seething cauldron
of lust and betrayal. Demented sex-dwarf Dappy attempted to
turn the show into Big Rudder, poking his porn star appendage
at anyone who was interested in it. I don’t think he’s dim,
it’s just that his manhood requires so much blood to function
there’s very little left to reach his brain.
Jasmine comes across as the sort of girl who’d blow anyone
for a fiver and give change, but I’m sure she’s much worse than
that. What a piece of work! Flashing boobs, snogging birds,
talking about finger-banging – it’s like she’s auditioning for
Hens Behaving Badly. She makes Lusty Luisa seem almost virginal.
The first row surprisingly involved Evander Holyfield, whose
views on homosexuality were deemed offensive by Big Brother
– which begs the question, why broadcast them then? The second
row, less surprisingly, involved Jim Davidson upsetting Linda
Nolan. He had no idea why, and nor did I! What had Jim done
wrong other than fail to find Linda endlessly fascinating?
There’s wild talk of ‘Lionel for the final’, but isn’t he,
whisper it, a bit dull? Lionel drops a lot of names – Joan Collins,
Max Bygraves, Hereward the Wake... almost everyone he’s ever
worked with is dead. Do you think Sammy Davis would have remembered
dancing with him? Liz Jones only seemed truly happy with the
Sam has been quiet, almost like a completely normal person
who’s accidentally wandered into a house full of famous egomaniacs...
And there’s little going on with Ollie, the weeping wally, so
expect him and Sam to go all the way. In a sane world Jim would
STOP PRESS: last night’s show had the row of the series, with
Dappy dubbing Luisa a “two-faced slag” and her calling him a
“f**king pr**k, a wannabe f**king child who thinks he’s a gangster.”
A rare case of two wrong’uns making a right old ding-dong.
*TRUE story: Lee Ryan spent the night in my loft once. How
was I to know that all the time he was here, he was ogling my
*LOVE-rat Lee has cuddled Casey and snogged Jasmine but when
it comes to Sam Faiers the only way is Kleenex.
*Separated at birth: Liz Jones and Billy the Puppet from Saw
– one a channel of great evil, the other a puppet...
BBC1’s The 7.39 was the story of a love affair that started
on a commuter train – from 7.39 to 2.69. Carl was 40-something,
bored and married with kids; Sally was 30-something, divorced
and about to wed irritating creep Ryan. They rowed over a seat,
glowered and next stop, nookie. Naturally she went like Stephenson’s
Rocket. The show has been called a male fantasy, which is fair
enough. For starters the train was largely on time. Where does
that happen? In real life she’d have been getting her ticket
punched on a rail replacement bus. It ended badly. His wife
threw him out, her fella beat him up... and after all that Sal
finished up with someone else anyway.
*REASONS the 7.39 would have been cancelled 1: Condoms on
the line 2) Over-heated fiancé at Hampton Wick 3) Defective
box, Effingham Junction.
OVER on Splash! Gemma Collins told of her “two weeks of tears
and hell”. How the people of Syria must feel for her. “Shall
we go out now the shelling has stopped, Anas?” “Not yet, Fat
Gemma from Towie is about to flop off the one metre board.”
“Ah, good; she’s really confronting her fears.” This lame amateur
diving show squeezes five minutes of action into 90minutes of
dross. The only “fear” participants are confronting is that
their shaky, undeserved grip on fame might slip away.
*WHAT’S sadder, Gemma Collins mentioning her fans or the fact
that she’s got some?
HOT on TV: Being Mike Tyson (Fox)... Sofia Helin, The Bridge
II (BBC4)... This Is Jinsy (Sky Atlantic)... Celebrity Big Brother
ROT on TV: The Tomorrow People – yesterday... The Taste...
Secrets Of The Living Dolls – no secrets, they’re nuts... The
Undateables... Splash! – biggest load of old cobblers since
The Man with the Ten Ton Testicles.
IF you’re watching Dancing On Ice, possibly because the Care
Home remote is broken, you might appreciate this handy guide
to what Christine Bleakley is actually saying: Noy = Now. Ummayduyyertly
= Immediately. Quoyyt = Quite. Unnybudeez = Anybodies. Uyyt
= Out. Thuzz ayvnin = This evening. Jeessun Guhrdnar = Jason
Gardiner. Jaw Puskwarlee = Joe Pasquale.
C4 wheeled out ‘maskers’ on Secrets Of The Living Dolls, morons
who dress up in rubber woman-shaped suits. It gave new meaning
to getting dolled up for a night out. But if they wear that
now, what the hell do they put on for Halloween?
*MASKERS will have their own club one day: Madam Ho-Hos.
*POOR Ian Beale. Denise snogged Fatboy in the Vic toilets.
Talk about having a Chubb on. Still, at least it made a change
from Nancy and Wayne going at it in the beer-cellar. Imagine
all that foaming ooze. They might spill some beer too.
*ALL soap families have skeletons in their closets, only Ian
Beale lets his go out to work...
*THEY’RE all coming back: Wicksy, Jane. I’d like to see Pete
Beale pitch up at the bar saying “Oi Mick, is that right you’ve
got two Nancys?”
Small Joys of TV: Max Branning’s chicken chasseur rage on
EastEnders – they could do with him on The Taste. Born To Be
Wild (BBC4). Pasquale claiming to be “eye candy” on Dancing
On Ice. The 7.39, not great drama but it didn’t half cheer up
the next morning’s commute – she would, he would, she has...
Random Irritations: Ludo’s ludicrous accent (The Taste). Luisa’s
nasal whine. The BBC’s comedy blinkers. Big Brother embracing
thought-crime. Detection playing third-fiddle to stag nights
and self-indulgence for the Cumberbatch Holmes. Hey: less shit,
*RICH Hall, a Yank comedian, mocked our convenience food (Live
At The Apollo). Isn’t that like being lectured on pacifism by
*DID Dara got signed up for Stargazing Live because he looks
so much like Buzz Lightyear?
*THE flood footage is horrendous, but we’ll laugh about it
when the summer hose-pipe ban kicks in.
CELEB maths: Amy Childs + Rose-Marie = Living Doll Redhead.
Jan 5 2014. IT WAS the year of twerking, horse meat and celebrity
cocaine scandals. Drug-loving Reverend Flowers stood down as
head of the Co-op, but still hasn’t come down. Russell Brand
called for a revolution against capitalism while charging £75
for a front row ticket. And the nation debated the year’s big
question: why did it take so long for someone to chuck eggs
at Simon Cowell? Against the odds 2013 also saw some brilliant
television. Here are my winners and losers.
Show of the Year: Game Of Thrones, a dazzling blend of blood,
brains, bravery, bonking and brutality. Worst Show in a Packed
Field: Splash! It would have been better without the water -
Splat! Runner-up: Your Face Sound Familiar.
Most Wildly Inaccurate TV drama: The White Queen. Set in 1464,
it had modern drainpipes, zip-up dresses, corduroy coats, an
18th century field marshal’s baton and an American hawk. Dullest
drama: Mr Selfridge – shop flawed.
Greatest TV Moments: The Red Wedding on Game Of Thrones, Godfrey
Bloom whacking Michael Crick, Laila Morse strapped to a crocodile
– terrifying... for the crocodile. Worst TV Moment: Helen Lederer,
Splash; not so much diving as toppling.
Best Performance by an Inanimate Object: Katherine Kelly’s
wig on Mr. Selfridge. Runner-up: Joey Essex. Worst: those animal
masks on Dogging Tales – the beaver looked decidedly grim. Worst
Downer: The Village, it made EastEnders seem like the Magic
Best Show not on TV: Breaking Bad. Best new series: Banshee.
Best remake: House of Cards. Top UK drama: Top Boy. Best Whodunnit:
Broadchurch. Worst why-do-it: Sex Box – who’d have thought Mariella’s
box would be such a joyless let-down?
Top on-screen fight: Hood vs dirty rapist Sanchez on Banshee.
Top off-screen fight: Gregg Wallace versus the fan who allegedly
groped his girlfriend – TV hosts don’t come tougher than this.
Scariest witches: American Horror Story Coven, narrowly beating
Loose Women. Top Cop, US: Raylan Givens, Justified; UK: Luther.
Worst career move: Hilary Devey, The Intern (The Off-Turn)
Worst sitcom: Heading Out. Runner-up: Blandings. Best: Modern
Family. Runner-up: Toast Of London. Best comedy drama: The Wrong
Mans. Worst sketch show: It’s Kevin, it’s chronic. Most over-exposed
unfunny comedian: Seann Walsh. Top Drunks: Steph and Dom (Gogglebox).
Top Import: Ray Donovan. Runners-up: The Walking Dead, Sons
Of Anarchy, The Following, The Americans, Under The Dome, Nashville,
Vegas, Person Of Interest.
Best reality contender: Paula Hamilton (Celebrity Big Brother).
Hottest reality babe: Ruby Tandoh (Bake-Off). Worst live event:
Doctor Who After-party Live. Top TV Name: Samuel Kumm (My Phone
Sex Secrets) Top Quiz: The Chase. Worst quiz: Britain’s Brightest.
Worst Light entertainment host: Claudia Winkleman. Runners-up:
Gaby Logan, Clare Balding. Biggest Let-Down: The Returned finale.
Most Baffling Claim: CNN’s Jonathan Mann saying “We hunted the
dildo into extinction.” (He meant dodo).
Classiest Brunette: Jordana Brewster (Dallas). Feistiest Blonde:
Ellen Hollman (Spartacus). Worst Soap Relative: Sarah-Louise
Platt (Corrie), weddings, comatose brothers, family crises –
nothing could tempt her back from Milan.
Top Lookalikes: Alex Mills (The Apprentice) and Frank Sidebottom.
Top Actor: Jon Voight (Ray Donovan) Top actress: Kerry Godliman
(Derek). Best supporting role: Eva’s bra (Corrie) Man of the
Year: Godfrey Bloom. Woman of the Year: Nigella Lawson. Irritant
of the Year: Katie Hopkins. Star Of The Year: Micky Flanagan.
THANKS for nothing, Sherlock. We’ve waited two years to find
out how Holmes faked his own death, and we still don’t know.
Was it the bungee cord and Derren Brown, or the bouncy castle?
Or more likely neither? It was like watching the dance of the
seven veils only to discover the dancer has seven more veils
and a pair of Ann Widdecombe’s bloomers on underneath. I reckon
so many people figured out how the writers had planned for Sherlock
to survive his leap of death that they decided to fudge it.
The outline on the pavement suggested the original solution
was a trapdoor and safety net (as seen on Jonathan Creek). And
fans had already sussed out the squash ball trick - slipped
under the armpit to stop the pulse (as seen on The Mentalist).
The end result was the most self-conscious mess this side of
the Saatchi Gallery; brilliant in parts, yes, but too in love
with itself to bother including a coherent plot. PS. The underground
train under the Houses of Parliament on 5th November came straight
from V For Vendetta.
SHOCK scenes on EastEnders as lesbian Tina slept with Billy
Mitchell. The woman is part-dyke and all-bike. I was more amazed
when he pulled Honey, though. She was the hottest thing he ever
got his mitts on, and that’s including the Olympic torch. Elsewhere
Ronnie turned killer, smashing Carl senseless with a car boot
for the crime of dating her sister, Poxy Roxy. Luckily Ron found
the only scrap-yard in London open on New Year’s Day to dispose
of both car and corpse. That’s what I call 1-2 Crush On You.
*BILLY’S next karaoke number? Anything by Ike & Turner Tina...
(I Can Turn A Tina, geddit? Okay please yourselves).
*GAY Danny seems to flit between Johnny Carter and Lucy Beale.
But in fairness her figure is more boyish.
HOT on TV: Dave Allen night... Strike Back finale... Rab C.
Nesbitt... David Blaine: Real Or Magic... Dawn Penn (Hootenanny).
ROT on TV: Splash! – still wet... Greatest Stand-Up Comedians
– laughable... Silent Witness – stiff... Twit Of The Year –
twats talking tripe... Doggy Styling – ruff (for ‘doggy fashion’
see Strike Back.)
WHAT does Chris Rock have in common with Steve Martin and
Jackie Mason? Apparently none of them are funny enough to make
the all-time Greatest Stand-Up Comedians. Unlike David Baddiel...
Max Miller, Mike Reid, Rita Rudner, Ken Dodd and Jerry Sadowitz
didn’t make the cut either. But the surprises didn’t end there.
According to the C5 time-wasters, Lenny Henry is funnier than
Eddie Murphy, Sarah Millican trumps Les Dawson and Michael McIntyre
is a better comic than Richard Pryor... Laugh? I thought I’d
never start. The only surprise was Sue Perkins wasn’t Number
PETER Barlow saw it in with Tina on Corrie. Talk about out
starting the New Year with a bang... “We’ve done something beautiful,”
he told Tina. Well he had. Carla’s suspicions weren’t aroused
even when he washed the bed sheets and Hoovered the settee.
If she’d caught them at it, he’d have got away with claiming
he was just giving her the Heimlich manoeuvre.
*SCENES you won’t see on Nigella’s The Taste: “This is 98%
Bolivian, this is 65% Columbian cut with talc... ”
Small Joys of TV: Dolphins: Spy In The Pod. Arena - Ken Dodd’s
Happiness. The Many Faces Of Stanley Baxter. Birds Of A Feather.
Benidorm. Glasgow Big Night Out. Top Of The Pops Big Hits 1979
– Squeeze, Costello, 2-Tone, the Ruts, Chas n Dave... truly
a golden year.
Random Irritations: The great Sherlock cop-out. Funny Old
Year – ropy old script. C4’s Big Fat Quizzz of The Year – over-long,
over-indulgent, rarely funny. C5 marking the tenth anniversary
of Bob Monkhouse’s death with An Audience with... Bruce Bloody
REASONS to be cheerful: as well as returning classic such
as Game Of Thrones and Sons Of Anarchy, 2014 will see new sci-fi
shows The Leftovers and Believe, Victorian horror from Penny
Dreadful, more vampires in The Strain and gritty crime drama
SOAP mysteries: what happened to the homeless people who used
to hang around Albert Square? They vanished quicker than Weatherfield’s
snow. Was Roxy’s interest in cocaine such a bad thing? She could
have been planning a career in banking. Why does Corrie’s Tina
follow Peter around just to tell him to leave her alone?
*NANCY was kidnapped from her own wedding by her Dad. She’s
a 21-year-old gobby chav, wouldn’t she have had a bit more to
say about it?
Goof of the Year: Dennis Taylor was talking snooker when he
observed: “I don’t know if I’ve ever seen Neil Robertson tied
up by the balls before.”
Jan 4. A GREAT twist on Celebrity Big Brother as contenders
were paired up and handcuffed. Boxing legend Evander Holyfield
got partnered with Luisa from The Apprentice – presumably because
they’ve both put strong men on their backs... and brought them
to a standing eight... and been pounded in the ring... Dappy
channeled the spirit of Rod Hull, arriving with a rough old
bird on his arm – barking mad columnist Liz Jones. Dappy meet
Dippy! Liz is here because American Horror Story: Coven aren’t
recruiting. Jim Davidson was teamed up with Linda ‘Naughty’
Nolan - not the first time she’s been in cuffs... Lee Ryan got
glam model Casey Batchelor – all rise indeed. While Lionel Blair
drew the short straw, Made In Chelsea’s Ollie The Wally. Towie’s
Sam Faiers isn’t too chuffed about being pulled around by pushy
unknown Jasmine Waltz. (Not to be confused with the “jizz-mine”
waltz, when Liz made off with her boyfriend’s stolen sperm).
Some of these nitwits would drive a saint to drink. Sure Luisa’s
fit but after a day or two of her nasal blathering, Evander
will be calling Mike Tyson begging him to chew off his other
lug-hole. It’s way too soon to predict a winner, but the race
to say the most shocking thing is clearly between Liz and Lee.
I hope Jim nick-nicks it.
*JIM was cheered in by his family, “all willing me not to
be myself... ”