Garry Bushell
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May 30. WOW. Did you see the end of Lost? Turned out the whole thing was something Amy Winehouse dreamt after eighteen pints of Guinness, three opium cakes and a Vindaloo. I’m kidding. Amy doesn’t eat Vindaloo. The final episode was actually extremely moving. It moved me to pull out what’s left of my hair. Yes, it neatly explained the parallel universe element of series six; unfortunately it did so without attempting to shed light on any of the mysteries from the previous five seasons. Little things like what was that big stomping monster about in series one? What was the point of the time travel story-line, or the Dharma drama or the atomic bomb or the island sinking? Who exactly were Jacob and the Smoke Monster? And what happened to the polar bear? Did Hurley eat it? The fat bastard never lost an ounce in all the years he was stranded there.

Yet, if you set aside these frustrations, the finale itself was touching and powerful. Jack Shepherd was burying his father Christian. But when he opened the coffin there was no-one there. Then his Dad walked into the room. How was that possible when he was dead? Because they were all dead. The sideways universe was God’s waiting room; they’d been hanging around until every castaway died so they could move on to Heaven together (except for those who weren’t available for contractual reasons). And the first to walk into the light was Christian Shepherd (geddit?)

Back on the island, a handful of our favourites including Sawyer and Kate escaped by plane. Dying Jack watched them leave. The final shot was of Jack closing his eye as life slipped away. It was simultaneously sad and feel-good; the TV equivalent of being taken in by a fake psychic. Emotional at the time, but afterwards you feel cheated and slightly soiled. Lost was still wonderful television, though. It was as bold and beautiful as it was baffling. It got people talking. It broke the rules. British TV doesn’t make shows like this, anymore, because we’ve lost our balls. But no doubt in thirty years’ time ITV will do its own piss-poor version of it.

*AREN’T there clear parallels between Lost and EastEnders? They’ve got a smoke monster (Dot), and a bald devil (make that two; Lucas and Phil). The Others turn up periodically (unmentioned relatives). None of it makes much sense. And occasionally characters see glimpses of former chums in another dimension (The Bill).

*ODD. My pal tried to Sky+ Lost and got a re-run of the Kevin Mitchell fight.

BBC2 did for Money what Ronan Keating’s been doing to that dancer. It was such a bomb, al-Qaeda claimed responsibility. In Money, drunken London ad-man John Self becomes a hot-shot Hollywood director. But Nick Frost’s Self was such a moron it was hard to believe he could direct traffic down a one-way street . Most of the humour of Martin Amis’s novel and all of the sparkling lingo was lost. On the plus side, Emma Pierson sparkled as his cheating girlfriend. This woman is so hot Carla Bruni would have to learn a fifth language to do her justice.

SPARTICUS: Blood & Sand is full of war, gore and slappers sneaking about for sex. It’s like 300 meets the Chelsea training ground. The show makes Up Pompeii look like Hamlet. There’s no depth or characterisation, the CGI is crap; the slo-mo blood-spilling is like something out of a cheap video game. And yet in the right mood (drunk/stoned), there is much to enjoy: like the soft-porn romping, comic book action and dialogue that sounds like it was translated from Bulgarian - badly. You have to love a show with lines like “My boot will find your arse in the afterlife.” If only they’d remembered the laugh track...

HOT on TV: Viva Bianca as bad-girl Ilithyia (Spartacus)... Stones In Exile... Modern Family (Sky1)... Evangeline Lily – hubba-hubba.

ROT on TV: Money – two-bob drama; Amis devalued... Josh Dubovie (Eurovision)... David Dickinson – makes Titchmarsh look good... The Million Pound Drop – not as much fun as Fergie’s £500K bungle.

THE National Movie Awards are as mad and wrong-headed as the dopey Soap ones, but at least Tom Cruise and Chris Rock turned up for the fillums ((c) James Nesbitt.) The results were a joke. The Time Traveller’s Wife is bland old tosh. And Robert Pattinson deserves a Best Performance gong about as much as Sarah Ferguson merits free, life-time Mensa membership. The rest was just an over-long puff for the latest cinema releases.

*SHAME no-one ever finds TV time to toast the UK’s indie film-making industry. We make quality movies for tuppence. London To Brighton cost just £80K. Brit flicks like Freight and Rollin’ With The Nines win awards. It’s all a sight more interesting than Sex & The City 2.

*RAY Alan has died. Well I’ll ge guggered. Lord Charles was speechless. Ray had only been dead for 24 hours when Derek Acorah spoke to him, while drinking a glass of water.

*WHAT future for Lord Charles now? Hmm, a self-important, opinionated, silly-arse dummy... Well, Britain’s Got Talent can always do with a reserve judge.

*I LIKED Neil the singing doorman (BGT); but how come all his bouncer mates wore suits and ties while he looked like he'd just been gardening?

RANDOM irritations: Hayley’s turmoil (Corrie) – pull yourself together, man. Loose Women’s bingo wings. Sex & The City 2 in general, any man who goes to see it in particular. Michael Bublé using auto-tune; and the lack of celebs at his Audience With. Instead of ‘Haven’t Met You Yet’ Michael should have sung, ‘I've Met You, But Who The ***k Are You?’

SMALL joys of TV: Ross Noble (HIGNFY). Lucy Lawless in Krusty’s red wig (Spartacus) – she looks like Xena, Warrior Clown. Modern Masters on Dali. Clueless dimwits on Million Pound Drop.

SEPARATED at birth: Nick Frost in Money and Ron Jeremy? One a loathsome creature defined by porn and abuse, the other Ron Jeremy.

May 29. I flew out to Germany today. As usual, airport security confiscated my water and deodorant and my guitarist’s shaving foam. Water, deodorant, shaving foam... everything terrorists don’t use, we can’t have.

May 23. SO let’s see if I got this right. Gene Hunt was a Dead Man Nicking, not just someone Sam Tyler dreamed up in his coma. And Ray, Chris, Shaz and Bolly-Knickers had been ghosts all along too. The last-ever Ashes To Ashes revealed that they’d all been ‘living’ in a 1980s-themed purgatory – a limbo land between this world and the next (to experience same, visit Croydon). Their entire existence had been, as Gene would have said, as fake as a tranny’s fanny.

Jim Keats was probably the Devil and not as previously thought Joe Pasquale’s stunt double. And the Railway Arms, Manchester (unseen since Life On Mars) was the portal to the after-life, a kind of Stella-way to Heaven, with Nelson as a pint-pulling St Peter. Only Gene stayed behind, leaving the door open for future possible Bowie-themed spin-offs. Confused? Well, it probably made more sense than the end of Lost will.

I’m still struggling to fathom why Viv died when he was destined to be the first black police inspector. Or what the significance of Keats whistling ‘Bubbles’ for an episode was (possibly a premonition of the hell Upton Park turned out to be for Kevin Mitchell?) The biggest disappointment was that Gene never got to bend Bolly over his desk and administer the trouser truncheon.

Ashes was never as hot as Life On Mars. The writing was uneven, and the tone swerved about like Sue Cleaver at closing time. The Gene genie was the reason we watched. This giant creation caught on because he was a magnificent echo of The Sweeney’s Jack Regan. Hunt was the Sherriff, with his posse of armed bastards. He stood for a time when the law was about banging up bad guys, not worrying about their human rights. Gene was that rare thing on British telly too; a man’s man. In a sane industry, other strong male roles would now be created for great tough guy actors like Ray Winstone, Dave Legeno and Craig Fairbrass. But our lazy, camp-obsessed TV bosses are no doubt too busy dreaming up a new 97-part reality show for Louie Spence to bother. Goodbye Gene. RIP – Reign In Purgatory; Regan impersonator. Long may you drink from a tart’s furry cup.

*WHAT Gene would have liked on TV last week: the Sons Of Anarchy rescue mission. Audrina Patridge. The demo chant of “Allah? Allah? Who the f*ck is Allah?” (Young, British & Angry).

SOME write off The British Soap Awards as 150-minute waste of time. The speeches are lousy, we know all the results and Phil Schofield is such a vacuum he should be sponsored by Dyson. Fair enough, but if we didn’t watch it we’d miss the joy of seeing bad actors trying to hide their resentment at being passed over in favour of rotten ones. Emmerdale’s eye-rolling, head-shaking Danny Miller didn’t even attempt to disguise his wounded sense of entitlement. The highlight was Scott Maslen picking up the Best Actor gong – the same Scott Maslen who fluffed his lines in the Enders live special. Mind you he was pretty good in that coma. The Walford clip-show was terrific; the only problem was it reminded us that no current Ender can hold a candle to the giant characters of yore. Irritations were manifold. Not least, Enders winning Best Storyline for Who Killed Archie, as opposed to best rerun of something Dallas did much better thirty years before. And how did praying mantis-faced Sam Warwick make the Sexiest Female shortlist when Jorge Porter didn’t? It’s an outrage. At least Betty Driver was recognised for her many centuries of asking “Who wants hot-pot?”

*BOY George once called me “the Bernard Manning of pop” – a huge compliment which I could never live up to. The real George had far more spark than BBC2’s damp squib version; he was funnier and fatter too. This one looked as happy as a Charlton fan with shares in Greek government bonds.

HOT on TV: Jason Isaacs (Brotherhood, FX)... Charley Webb... Jack Bauer wiping out Dana (24, Sky1).

ROT on TV: Question Time – more arseholes than the Naked Office...Robert Peston (HIGNFY) – comedy bankrupt... Corrie salsa class... You Have Been Watching – no we haven’t... Worried About The Boy – I’m more worried about the Beeb.

* JANET Street-Porter reckons weather reports excite her sexually – a thought to give any man a chill. By coincidence, most blokes experience a sudden ridge of rising high pressure whenever ITV weathergirl Becky Mantin appears on screen. PS. A 40+ woman who fancies younger men is called a cougar. Janet, 93, is more your sabre-toothed tiger.

RANDOM irritations: Lorraine bloody Kelly getting worked up about fashions that will never come in her size. EastEnders’ numbskull writers calling an allotment shed a summer house. BBC1 worshipping chronic con artist Picasso.

SMALL joys of TV: Raging fool Phil Mitchell’s baseball bat being clearly made out of rubber (Enders). Old Speckled Hen footballing nuns (Dave channel ident.) That hot lizard babe on Doctor Who: could a human bed her? Or would they suffer from e-reptile dysfunction?

*SHAME Jane missed that bucking bronco on EastEnders. She hasn’t had a powerful beast between her legs since Grant. Other Wild West traditions that would improve Walford life: lynching, hanging, cattle stampedes....

*RONNIE Mitchell described herself as being “like the dog at the gates of hell.” You said it, love. Except Cerberus had three heads, not two faces.

*SEPARATED at birth: Kristanna Loken and Tamzin Outhwaite? One plays Painkiller Jane, the other was pain-bringer Mel on EastEnders.

*BOFFINS have created artificial life in a lab. Worrying, yes. But it’s already more likeable than Vernon Kay. And a damn sight easier to understand.

* BBC1 bosses want Victoria Beckham and Amy Winehouse for Strictly. Get Sally Morgan too. What a line-up – Posh, Sloshed and Dross.

* THE first British TV ad for abortions airs tomorrow. I believe it’s The Chris Moyles Show.

May 16. One week in and Junior Apprentice has already found a star in can-do market trader Zoe Plummer. Zoe, 16, charmed passers-by with her cheeky smile and flirty chat. Flogging cheddar in Covent Garden she said, “You look like a cheesy kind of fella”; sales soared. She was lucky. If a pretty blonde tried patter like that in South London some perv would have offered to show her how to put the blue vein in Caerphilly. Stinking Bishop? If you insist...

Zoe did so well it made her project manager cry. The big difference between this and the normal Apprentice is that the regular show is full of bolshy big-heads, deluded bastards and ego-driven losers whereas the kids on Junior Apprentice are a whole lot younger. They’re all 16 or 17, although Rhys looks twelve. The audience is half-pint too – just four million watched. But the format’s the same and the kids know how to play the game: big yourself up, then let yourself down. “I’m ruthless in business,” boasted posh boy Jordan De Courcy. “If somebody is there that I don’t need in my company, they’re gone.” Naturally his decisions stank like ten year-old gorgonzola and Jordan was the first one fired.

Never mind mate. Que cheddar, cheddar. Whatever will brie, will brie.

Sir Alan is now Lord Sugar, but he’s still not funny – unless you count the time he seemed to tell them “Do me a favour, will you, leave this house in one piss.” Al’s scripted ‘adlibs’ fell flatter than a squashed cheese omelette. But Sugar had reason to be sweet. “For once I’m actually taller than most of the candidates,” he almost smiled.

It was boys v girls for week one’s task - flogging £500 worth of assorted fromages. Bearded Tim the Teen-Wolf had the bright idea of selling cheap, affordable Credit Crunch lunch packets. Then he stopped making them cos it was windy (“My least favourite weather condition”). So he’ll do as well as the emailer-plus. The big plus is the winner gets £25K towards a business, rather than having to work for Sugar. Result.

*THIS just in from Roman Polanski: Odd. Jordan is called De Courcy but Zoe’s the one who makes kids dream of nookie bare.

*RIP Blanche Hunt. That’s Rest In Poison of course. Corrie did the old battle axe proud. Blanche “wore honesty like a set of knuckle dusters,” observed Norris. While Roy Cropper pointed out that she was a “difficult unpleasant woman... often unnecessarily cruel.” “Thank god you’re not doing the eulogy, Roy,” quipped Peter. Roy Hudd's return as undertaker Archie Shuttleworth was a joy as was Blanche’s musical selections (‘Accentuate The Positive’!) and the memory of Annie Walker in pink looking like “Barbara Cartland with a slow puncture.” Irritations began and ended with Becky and Janice’s jackets. You need something black for a funeral. Like, for example, Tracy Barlow’s soul. Yes, jailbird Tracy kicked off after seeing Amy with Becky, although quite how she recognised her daughter escapes me seeing as the kid has had a head transplant. Blanche would have loved every minute.

*I THOUGHT Blanche looked hot when she was young. So let’s hope she left me her giant specs in her will. Who makes glasses that size? Presumably the people who supply lenses for the Hubble telescope. Even Specsavers couldn’t get them done in an hour.

*HD is coming to Corrie. Eh? She’s there already, isn’t she? Hideous Deirdre...

*HOW about a grumpy guide to the idiots on Grumpy Guides? Who are they, and why do they pretend to be wound up by things they clearly hadn’t seen until a researcher showed them the clips? Most of these witless no-marks were sucking Farley’s Rusks during the 1980s – a decade they professed to hate. And bad as 3-2-1 undoubtedly was, is Live From Studio Five any better?

*WHAT became of that posh twerp from the Gold Blend coffee ads? I always hoped that he’d dumped snooty drawers and run off with the tea lady. *GREAT in the 80s: Minder, Madness, Maiden, Motorhead, Dallas, Dexys, Auf Wiedersehen Pet, Boys From The Blackstuff, Spitting Image, the Special AKA, the Stone Roses (continued Memory Lane)

HOT on TV: Derren Brown v ‘psychic’ Joe Power – Power meets Kryptonite... Julie Benz – I bet she does (Desperate Housewives)... True Blood finale.

ROT on TV: All At Sea – nothing a few Somali pirates couldn’t improve... The Prisoner – as impenetrable as Iron Man’s y-fronts... Donna McPhail – always McFails to make me laugh.

*DIDN’T think much of Bill Oddie’s Top Ten Aliens; here’s mine: 1) 7 of 9 (Jeri Ryan) 2) Caprica Six (Tricia Helfer) 3) V’s Anna (Morina Baccarin) 4) Supergirl (Laura Vandervoort) 5) T’Pol (Jolene Blalock) (cont on the Holo-deck with the Borg Queen...)

*DR Who was trapped between two nightmares last night. So now he knows how Lloyd on Corrie feels – working with Eileen, sleeping with Teresa. The Doc was haunted by his inner self, who bizarrely looked like Ian Hislop. It was part Flashforward, part Q from Star Trek and all cobblers.

*NOT sure what happened on Tuesday’s EastEnders, I tuned in late, but it looked like Phil was driving his jag up Pall Mall while the Queen told some dodgy character called Gordon Brahn to “get outta my Palace.”

*THE big question arising from TV coverage of Brown’s resignation: when did Nicholas Witchell get so old? Any more wizened and he’d be a Sunmaid raisin

*CLEGG and Cameron are touted as the new Morecambe & Wise. What do you think of it so far? Cue Eric: “Rubbish!”

*BILLY Mitchell, dope dealer? Looks like Walford’s misery junkie just found another vein.

RANDOM irritations: BBC1 jettisoning shows to broadcast rolling news of nothing happening. Jamie Olivier turning into Ali G: “West Side! Sha Mon!” The absence of DLT on Chris Moyles’s rotten Radio 1 retrospective – his rage might just have made it watchable.

SMALL joys of TV: Peter Kay’s new John Smith’s ad – “Clur from work, oh aye.” Nurse Kelly Brook (Sony World Cup ad.) Tracy Barlow’s angry return – the sore skank redemption.

*THIEF Tony White wasn’t happy in Wormwood Scrubs. “Every time I’ve come into prison I’ve self-harmed because I don’t like it here,” he moaned. “Prison’s not for me.” Yeah? Well stop nicking then, you moron.

*JO Brand is wasted on C4’s book show. Better uses for Jo: 1) a bouncy castle at The Jockey, 2) use arse to block Icelandic volcano, 3) Sop up US oil spill with her tampon...

May 8. SO who got your vote on election night? The BBC1 swots, the C4 bad boys or Alistair Stewart and the third-party ITV team? The Beeb had Paxman, Andrew Neil’s Luvvies Boat and Jeremy Vine’s virtual paving stones path to power. Stewart had a table. Those looking to C4’s Alternative election coverage for satire, wit and comic insight were as disappointed as the Lib-Dems, whose campaign crashed and burned like Nigel Farage’s plane. “Cleggmania” turned out to be a total media invention, based on the guy’s ability to talk to us straight down a camera. There were upsets and surprises, but these came from the likes of Caroline Lucas winning the Green Party’s first seat. Election coverage and tedium go together like Bank Holidays and rain. It was a long night, and the slow pace of results led to more padding than Teri Hatcher’s Desperate Housewives fat suit.

C4 filled in the gaps with a pre-recorded Celebrity Dine With Me, with such reliable tossers as Derek Hatton, Rod Liddle, and Edwin Currie. A hologram of Brian Paddock may also have been present. Neil’s election boat was better cast, with old shredded wheat nut exchanging smirks with Bruce Forsyth, Joan Collins, Piers Morgan and alleged comedian David Baddiel. Good old BBC. Britain’s in crisis and the economy is going down the toilet but they can still blow our cash on champers for celebrities. All they were short of was a Roman emperor and a fiddle. It was as surreal as it was pointless. At one stage Neil spoke to a panel of experts that included Dom Joly and Dame Kelly Holmes, a great Olympian whose political insights seem unlikely to grace the pages of Hansard. Sadly there was a power cut before he could garner Fern Britton’s views.

Much has been said about the Leader Debates revolutionising national politics. They didn’t. In fact most political TV shows lost viewers between March and April. Big issues were never properly acknowledged let along debated. It took the Institute of Financial Studies to ask the tough questions about cuts. All we got were three bland suits squabbling over imaginary middle ground. Saturation coverage gave us plenty on the Leaders’ Wives but little substance. There was less political TV a generation ago, but politics were more engaging because the satire felt dangerous and shows like Question Time fielded firebrands who Actually Believed In Something.

*WHY is British TV so bad at puncturing the pompous? US politicians are rightly mocked nightly by the likes of Leno, Letterman and Jon Stewart. Our political humour is either uninspired (thanks Rory) or puerile, relying on the sort of language you’d normally only see on Nick Knowles’s Twitter account; it’s all about as welcome as Danny Dyer at a battered wives’ refuge.

* IF Conservative Cameron hops into bed with Lib-Dem Clegg, will we all be Con-Demned?

THOSE beautiful vampires on Doctor Who turned out to have the worst trout pouts this side of Leslie Ash. Behind their masking devices, they were actually alien sea creatures. I’m not sure what kind, but something about them said blow fish. Their leader Rosanna, the biggest cod-faced monstrosity since Pete Burns, invited the Doc to get his tackle out. But he turned down a dip in the Pond last week so he was hardly like to hook up with old tuna drawers. I did like the blonde, though. She was 36-24-60pence a pound. Ironically this was one of the few new Who episodes that didn’t stink like Billingsgate.

HOT on TV: Justified (Five USA)... Strike Back (Sky1)... Idris Elba (Luther)... and Outnumbered.

ROT on TV: Lewis – duller than election night... Theo’s Adventure Capitalists – I’m out... Andrew Neil - oilier than the Gulf of Mexico...

ANNA the alien mated on V. She slipped out of her robe, straddled a hand-picked lover and thirty seconds later she was pregnant. Talk about “This is nice, wasn’t it?” Unfortunately it left her peckish and in the absence of cake she ate two-stroke Charlie instead. Hmm. There may be some women - Anna Paquin, Evangeline Lily – so hot that a guy might go for the old bed-and-die deal. I’d risk a leg for Kara Tointon. But the least you’d expect is a whole night at it and a cooked breakfast.

COCKNEY actor Gary Lammin turned up in Walford as a dodgy spark dressed like a tramp (no need to trouble wardrobe then, eh Gal?). No-one recognised him from his previous appearances as a plumber called Quentin (only on EastEnders...) or as murderer Dave Chapman who killed Pete Beale. That’s what I call multi-tasking. Hits, wiring and pipes he can do, only washing defeats him.

*LINDSAY Lohan may play Deep Throat star Linda Lovelace in a new biopic. Shouldn’t Michelle Ryan get the job? She always sucks.

*PAMELA Anderson is out of Dancing With The Stars. The rot set in the week she promised to “do Dolly Parton” and then just danced...

TALKING heads missing from BBC2’s tribute to lead guitarists last night: Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton, Ritchie Blackmore, Jeff Beck, the Edge... But they did manage to round up Billy Bragg, Al Murray and Lauren Laverne. It was like making a documentary on drummers with quotes from Lembit Opik, Nina Wadia and a bongo player.

RANDOM irritations: man-bashing condoned by EastEnders again. Yet more Walford arson. Uneven writing and cack sci-fi on Ashes To Ashes (nice Cockney Rejects song though.) Theo Paphitis’s voice-overs – almost as unintelligible as Duncan Bannatyne’s. There’s one thing these fame-craving fat-cats should invest in: elocution lessons.

SMALL joys of TV: Spartacus trailers (Bravo). Graham Norton having his cartoon self zapped by a Dalek. Bill Oddie’s new critter show having a cameraman named Tibbles. Andrew Lloyd-Monster rehearsing his words and expressions on Over The Rainbow, believing he was out of shot, and still fluffing his lines.

LUTHER, BBC1’s new barking mad police drama teaches us two things: 1) A good detective doesn’t need nonsense like proof to know who-dunnit. And 2) when married to a lunatic cop, oak doors are always a far better bet than plywood.

SEPARATED at birth: the CBBC witch and Janet Street-Porter, one toothy, fake and evil, the other a cartoon trailer. Runners-up: Nick Robinson and Judge Jules.

May 2. WHAT a shame TV bosses aren’t elected. None of them would ever work again. They’re lazy, smug and patronising with abject contempt for the tastes of the viewers who pay their wages. Worst of all they can’t deliver. Do they really think we’re happy with schedules stuffed soppy with soaps, camp and cookery shows? I’d like to see BBC Director General Mark Thompson on a meet the viewers walk-about. It’d make Gordon in Rochdale seem tame. But Thompson doesn’t walk anywhere. Like most over-paid BBC execs he’s far happier jetting about at our expense...

These self-important media aristocrats merrily lecture us about ‘climate change’ while blowing more than £2mill a year on unnecessary short-haul flights. They never come face to face with real viewers who might demand to know why the Beeb can’t do comedy or must-see drama any more. They don’t even respect their own creations – as the naff Graham Norton cartoon that trampled over the end of Doctor Who proved.

So what can be done? Here’s my TV manifesto aimed at all main channels:

*Give us grown-up drama. Where is Britain’s equivalent of The Sopranos or The Wire? We have great writers and superb actors, all we lack are commissioners with guts and vision.

*Respect our heritage. Why not tell the story of the Burma campaign the way HBO has captured The Pacific? Or dramatise the life of Alfred the Great? It’s the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain this year – mark it properly.

*Fix TV comedy. I’m sick of sneering smart alecks, bland sitcoms and dreary right-on satirists. The posh-boy mafia has failed, give new blood (or even old blood) a chance.

*Find and build entertainers. Talentless buffoons like Nick Knowles and Gurnin’ Vernon Kay should never be the faces of Saturday night TV.

*Find time for unfashionable things like variety, gag-telling comedians and engineering – Brian Cox made astrophysics exciting; let’s do the same for aeronautics.

*Cut back the soaps. They’re running out of steam, charm and credibility. Don’t turn EastEnders into Hollyoaks. Make it real – like it was at the start. Finally, stop imposing your PC views and grubby tastes on the rest of us. Give us the TV we want and you’ll get the ratings you need.

*OUTLAW bikers the Sons Of Anarchy are back, and they’re facing a ruthless new enemy. Neo-Nazis bullyboys – including punk legend Henry Rollins – are stalking the streets of Charming. (California’s answer to Weaver Vale). Their first bright idea was raping Gemma to teach husband Clay a lesson, which is on a par with trying to pacify an angry bear by kicking it in the nuts. The Sons, who siphon their gun-running bucks through their car-repair business, were founded by two Vietnam vets – John Teller, RIP, and Clay, who married John’s widow and raised his kid. Son Jax now knows his Dad wanted the club to be rebels not racketeers, sewing Hamlet-style family tensions. The show is violent but realistic, with shots of black humour – as you’d expect from creator Kurt Sutter, former exec producer of The Shield. This is what TV drama should be about: great acting, gritty writing, strong characters and an authentic feel.

*SURELY the real lesson of Gordon Brown in Rochdale is that to make politics interesting ALL MPs should be secretly miked-up. It’d be much more of an eye-opener than the three substance-free TV debates. Who did you like, the bland liar, the weird failure or the glossy opportunist?

*DID you see Brown with that Elvis Presley impersonator? He looked uncomfortable posing with such an absurd throwback. Not sure how Gordon felt.

*WAS it me or did that whole Gillian Duffy news story feel like a promo for The Thick Of It?

HOT on TV: Sons Of Anarchy (Bravo) – biker groove... Henry Rollins... Jeff Dunham (30 Rock)... V (Syfy)... Desperate Housewives.

ROT on TV: Iron Chef – ready, steady crap... James Caviezel (The Prisoner) - you’ll see better acting in Crimewatch reconstructions... Mary Queen of Charity Shops: Revisited – nope, just ‘repeated’...

*JOHN on Three In A Bed runs a gay b’n’b where clothing is optional. So sausage is always on the menu. The rugs were neat, but you have to watch out for all the exposed piping. And if you fancy a drink be careful not to ask for a mouthful of Gordon’s.

*Quote of the show, John exclaiming: “In ten years no-one has ever moaned about it on entrance.”

*OVER on V, the lovely Val is up the duff. Trouble is, she doesn’t know lover Ryan is a lizard (a helmet lizard, obviously.) She hasn’t got a bun in the oven, more like a gecko in the grill. Still, at least if it’s a boy he’ll have some tail on him.

*SIMON Cowell wants to find a new Lassie. Makes sense, a well-groomed performing barker you could keep happy with some water and a fresh bone...remind you of anyone, Amanda?

*AMANDA may have had collagen treatment, but it's Piers who deserves a thick lip...

*THERE were shock scenes on EastEnders that some viewers will have found distressing. For starters, Ian Beale’s charging £7.75 for bangers and mash. Turn it in. Then Harvey dated Pat and Peggy. Talk about glutton for punishment. His full name? Harvey Fool-banger.

*PAT’S an animal in the sack. A hippo.

*A DEADLY time-energy field erased memories on Doctor Who. I wish it could rub out all trace of that god-awful jammie-dodger scene and the ropy M&M coloured Daleks.

RANDOM irritations: decimal betting odds. BBC Breakfast treating EastEnders plots as news. C4 continuity cretins talking over the dialogue at the end of Comedy Lab. Louie Spence overkill – yes, we get it, he’s gay. Good for him. Move on.

SMALL joys of TV: Gene Hunt walloping a Ben Elton clone – shame it wasn’t the real thing. Jack beheading Pumpkin (30 Rock) – the most offensive buck-toothed dummy on TV since Janet Street-Porter. Gordon Brown joining Elvis while he sang “when everything I do is wrong”...

SEPARATED at birth: Beaker from The Muppets and Chris Evans, one a red-haired drip who always says “mee mee mee”, the other Beaker.