Enterprise – dvd 74

There’s two episodes of Enterprise on this disc – The Andorian Incident and Breaking the Ice. But I’ve looked at both of these episodes on another tape.

Here’s the TiVo details of the second recording.

After the second episode there’s another snatch of T4 Music, featuring an Eminem music video – Cleaning Out my Closet.

And because I feel like I might be shortchanging you, here’s all the adverts from the second recording.


  • Argos – Richard E Grant
  • Renault Scenic
  • The Sum of All Fears in cinemas
  • Direct Line
  • Chessington World of Adventures
  • Ribena
  • Phones 4U
  • Don’t Drive Tired
  • trail: Classmates
  • Toilet Duck Active Tablets
  • Mr Muscle
  • Police – Lennox Lewis
  • Head & Shoulders – Men in Black
  • Motorola V70
  • Pizza Hut
  • Men in Black II in cinemas
  • Toyota RAV 4
  • Orbit
  • trail: Friends/Will & Grace
  • Vanish Action Ball
  • Utterly Butterly
  • Modern Apprenticeships
  • Acuvue
  • Argos
  • Lucozade – Lara Croft
  • Carte D’Or

Dinotopia – dvd 85

On this disc is the pilot episode of Dinotopia. This was a three part mini series, filmed in England and Wales, and if I’m not getting confused, there’s a part of a set from this on the Studio Tour at Disneyland Paris.

It opens, as all big budget special effects extravaganzas must, with someone writing a letter. She’s writing with a quill pen, so it’s old timey. She’s writing to someone called Marion.

Cut to modern times, as a man takes his two sons on a plane ride. One of them, David, is played by Wentworth Miller.

The plane flies into a storm, and then crashes in the sea. Dad can’t get his seatbelt undone, so he doesn’t make it. The boys make it to an island, which seems to be deserted at first, until they come across a stone dinosaur head, which abruptly explodes. From out of the smoke comes David Thewlis, playing Cyrus Crabb, who’s looking for sunstones.

He takes them to a village, full of old timey looking people and (you won’t be surprised to discover) a huge dinosaur running through it knocking things over.

Luckily, a woman appears who can calm the dinosaur down – this is clearly where they got the idea for Chris Pratt training the velociraptor in Jurassic World. She’s introduced as Marion.

Next day, she takes the two boys on a trip to Waterfall City on the back of a Brachiasaurus.

Marion explains how things are in Dinotopia. They don’t eat meat, and they don’t use weapons. She warns that the convoy might be attacked by carnivores, but they won’t be able to fight them off because that’s not the way they live.

They reach a village which seems to be deserted. Marion tells them that the sunstone that protects the village has been broken.

Later that night, there is a T-Rex attack. The dinosaur effects are actually pretty good.

The T-Rexes are driven off by some pterosaurs, captained by Oonu (Colin Salmon).

With his help, the convoy makes it safely to Waterfall City. I think someone had been watching The Phantom Menace when they were designing this.

The entrance to the Senate building is one of the set pieces that are on the Disneyland Studio Tour.

Jim Carter is the Speaker of the Senate, and Marion’s father.

Over the years, Dinotopia has welcomed a lot of new people from shipwrecks, so David and Karl are invited to sign the register.

They’re introduced to the Head Librarian, a dinosaur called Zippo, voiced by Lee Evans. He’s going to put them up while they’re there. He can talk English and everything.

Marion gets given a letter from her grandmother. She must have been the woman writing the letter in the opening. Although the letter she’s given is a lot shorter than the one she was narrating in her head. It just says “Find the Light”. She’s also given a sunstone. It seems odd, if these stones are the source of all the power in Dinotopia, that they would waste one on jewellery.

The brothers have to go to school to learn all about Dinotopia, which Karl, at least, isn’t happy about. In fact he’s unhappy about everything. Although in this case, having to attend school with children ten years younger than you would be a bit odd.

Karl is so bored, he sets up a table tennis table in the library, most of which I can understand, but where the heck does he get a ping pong ball from?

He goes to see Cyrus Crabb to ask if there’s a way off the island. Crabb tells him he’s been collecting ships logs and charts, to try to chart a way off, but one he can’t get hold of is in the library. Luckily, Karl and David are currently staying with the librarian, so perhaps Karl can get the book for him.

I did like the scene where they have an exam, and have to write an essay on ‘How are we to live?’ Surprisingly, Karl’s short answer is chosen as the best, so it’s read out. “Is this the real life or is it a fantasy. Caught in a landslide, no escape from reality. Open your eyes, look up to the skies and see.”

The boys fight, and both end up falling off a balcony into the waterfall.

Marion and Zippo go out to look for them, taking a Messenger Bird with them (voiced by Terry Jones).

They find the boys, and Zippo is quite excited to find them at a temple that has been lost for centuries. This is a place that’s along a river, less than a day’s walk from the city. Seems like the Dinotopians aren’t particularly inquisitive.

or perhaps it’s because it’s guarded by a load of angry crocodile-like dinosaurs.

That’s where this episode ends, I’m afraid. It’s all a bit silly, but the effects were perfectly good, and the action was often quite exciting. Incidentally, this was directed by Marco Brambilla, whose other claim to fame was directing Demolition Man.






24 – Enterprise – dvd 75

“It’s time” says the continuity announcer as we reach the final episode of the first season of 24. I’m glad these recordings have the ‘Previously On’ because the Disney Plus version doesn’t. It seems that Victor Drazen almost managed to kill Palmer and Bauer with an exploding cellphone but both survived. Jack wants Palmer to pretend he’s dead, because the Drazens have Kim, so Jack offers to trade his life for Kim’s, and Nina Myers is definitely a double agent.

It looks like Kim has temporarily escaped from the Drazens.

Sherry Palmer doesn’t want to sit and pretend Palmer is dead until Kim is safe.

Kim has managed to find some police. She calls CTU so Nina knows about it, so I wonder how long before she’s back with the Drazens?

Jack confirms that someone at CTU is feeding the Drazens information. The first person he tells about this is Nina. This looks bad. He tells Nina she has to work out which of the other CTU people is the leaker.

Sherry leaks Palmer’s survival to the press, and Palmer is very angry about it.

Nina contacts the Drazens to let them know that Kim has been found, and CTU teams are on their way. Victor tells Nina to tell Jack that Kim’s body was found in the harbour, assuming that this will make Jack attack them.

The Drazens discuss the situation. “What if he doesn’t come? He may be too crushed by the thought of his daughter’s death.” Victor replies “That is exactly why he will come.” Cue Jack crashing through the doors in a big truck.

Lots of running around firing two guns at a time (although it looks like he’s only firing one of them in these shots).

He kills Andre Drazen, and faces off against Victor. Do you think he’s going to take him in quietly? No, me neither.

Back at CTU, Teri is told that Jack and Kim are coming back, but she’s still worried, so who does she go to for confirmation? Yes, Nina. Who she finds in an out of the way part of CTU speaking German to her handlers. When Nina guesses she’s seen too much, she drops the friendly act.

Jack learns that Nina lied to him about Kim’s body being found. He contacts George Mason to tell him to arrest Nina, but George is all “your word against hers”. He is a bit rubbish.

Palmer tells Sherry that he doesn’t want to see her again.

Jack watches security footage in his car. This is a bit weird, but the show has to contend with its real time nature, and Jack is driving back to CTU so they can’t have this scene there.

Nina gets to the CTU garage, but Jack is coming in at the same time, and there’s a shootout.

Jack has Nina, and is close to killing her before CTU people arrive to talk him down.

Jack and Kim are finally reunited. Am I crying? What do you think?

His reunion with Teri is not as happy. And the series ends with this scene, and the clock counting to midnight, but silently. For all its many faults along the way, this remains an amazing ending.

24, for me, has always been an up and down thing. I did an actual catch-up some years ago, and almost gave up at the end of S4, which I felt was quite poor, but the first episode of S5 seemed like a whole new show, and I stuck with it. It works best when you love the core characters, worse when the core characters are at each others throats, which was a problem with S4. But from this first series you can see why it had longevity, despite the ludicrous constraints of the show’s format.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England – 18th August 2002 – 22:00

There’s a plug for a live chat with Dennis Haysbert. Remember live chats? Think a Reddit AMA but without as many nazis.

There’s a weird teaser, possibly for something called The Ship. I’ve no idea what this is.

There’s a trailer for The Stretford Wives. There’s also a trailer for The Peter Sellers Story – As He Filmed It. Plus a trailer for Radio 1. Then the recording stops.

Next, over to Channel 4 and an episode of EnterpriseCivilization. We’ve already seen this, from a recording from Sky One so I won’t be looking at that today.

But after that episode, there was a bit of T4 Music, including Vernon Kaye talking to Ozzy Osbourne.

There’s also a great trail for The West Wing where they talk to actual UK politicians about the new series. You’ve got to love the Conservative MP who thinks Bartlet would be one of them.


  • Head & Shoulders – Men in Black
  • Full Marks Mousse
  • Clarks
  • Walkers Square Crisps – Gary Lineker Lennox Lewis
  • Currys
  • Pearl Drops
  • A Century of Cars
  • Boots
  • Abbey National
  • trail: American Pie
  • trail: World Rally Championship
  • Windtalkers in cinemas
  • Direct Line
  • Chessington World of Adventures
  • Burger King
  • Boots
  • Sensodyne Gentle Whitening
  • The Sweetest Thing in cinemas
  • trail: Classmates: The Grange
  • trail: T4
  • trail: Dawson’s Creek
  • trail: The West Wing
  • trail: When Pat Phoenix met Tony Booth

Salem’s Lot – tape 79

Much further back in time for us now, as this disc has a recording of one of my older tapes. It’s the TV Miniseries of Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot. This one is well remembered by a generation of traumatised kids. It’s directed by Tobe Hooper, but as it’s a TV movie it’s not as gruesome as his Texas Chainsaw Massacre, or as weird as Lifeforce.

It starts off in a church in Guatemala, where David Soul and (it seems) teenage David Soul are on the run from someone who makes bottles of holy water glow.

After the titles, there’s a time jump. David Soul plays Ben Mears, a writer, who has come to the small Maine town of Salem’s Lot, looking for somewhere to stay for a while. He seems particularly interested in the old house on the hill.

Fred Willard plays the local real estate salesman. When Ben asks him about the Marsten House on the hill, he says it’s just been bought.

He meets a young woman who’s reading one of his books. She’s Susan Norton, played by Bonnie Bedelia off of Die Hard. He grills her quite intensively about whether she’s really reading his book, which comes off as a bit defensive, and then asks her to dinner.

He takes a detour to the Marston house, and encounters the man who bought it, Mr Straker, played by James Mason. He’s textbook creepy.

Kenneth McMillan plays the local sheriff. He’s creepy too, but you get that by casting Kenneth McMillan.

He tells the local drunk, Elisha Cook Jr, to keep an eye on Ben. This town is very suspicious of visitors.

Before their date, Ben is introduced to Susan’s family. Her mother is played by Bonnie Bartlett.

Her father is played by Ed Flanders. I’m assuming that’s a hairpiece, as he didn’t have hair that black in St Elsewhere, a couple of years later. incidentally, Bonnie Bartlett also appeared in St Elsewhere.

Next day, Ben visits the local high school. They’re rehearsing the school pageant, written by one of the pupils, Mark Petrie. He’s the boy we saw in the opening flash-forward. There’s a very slight whiff of Rushmore here, although they’re doing the revolutionary war, not Vietnam.

Ben is there to see his old teacher, Jason Burke, played by Lew Ayres. We saw him recently in The Questor Tapes. Ben tells Jason that he inspired him to become a writer, although he must have done that pretty fast, as Ben also says he left the town when he was 11 years old.

Susan Norton has an ex boyfriend, plumber Ned Tebbets. Obviously he’s controlling and jealous.

Mr Straker asks realtor Fred Willard to organise a delivery of a large crate containing some antique furniture, giving a long and detailed description of how it must be delivered, and how the house must be secured with padlocks after it’s done. Willard in turn delegates the task to George Dzundza, the husband of his secretary. Risky, since he’s secretly having an affair with her, and thinks Dzundza doesn’t know.

Dzundza, in turn, delegates the job to Mike Ryerson (Geoffrey Lewis) and angry plumber Ned Tebbets. Ned is a loose cannon all round. All the time he’s “I want to open the crate, see what’s in it”. I’m surprised people trust him to be in their houses fixing their plumbing. Maybe he doesn’t get much work and that’s why he’s angry all the time. Ryerson seems a lot more chill.

Young Mark Petrie (played by Lance Kerwin) has a bedroom filled with monster models, masks, sculptures. I guarantee that he’s a Fangoria reader (the first issue of that magazine came out in 1979, the year this came out). He’s rehearsing a piece about the old Marston house. I’m still convinced he’s actually young David Soul, and there’s a time travel story underneath this.


Mark hangs out with his friends. the Glick brothers. They take a shortcut home, and young Ralphie gets separated from older brother Danny, there’s spooky wind, then a shadow rises suddenly in front of him, accompanied by what’s almost the ‘Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition’ Brass stab.

Danny arrives home later, and immediately collapses.

Mr Straker arrives back at the Marston House to find that Ryerson and Tebbets haven’t followed his strict instructions about locking everything. What’s more, the big shipping crate that they delivered looks like it’s exploded from the inside. Straker is carrying a package wrapped in black plastic. He unwraps it, and inside is young Ralphie Glick.

George Dzundza has been watching his house, and sees realtor Fred Willard go in to meet his wife. He bursts in on them with a shotgun, and threatens Willard with it. He pulls the trigger, but it’s no loaded, and Willard runs out of the house is terror, only to be attacked by an unseen someone with skinny fingers.

Ben and Susan hang out at the lake. They hear cars stop, and then one drives off, and when they check, they find Willard in his car, dead.

Danny Glick is in bed, unwell. This is the scene that everyone who saw this show remembers. There’s spooky mist outside, and younger brother Ralphie floats into view, scraping at the window. Danny opens the window, and Ralphie floats in to the room. Later, Danny is admitted to hospital, and Doctor Norton tells Ben that he’s thinks it’s ‘Pernicious Anaemia’. I think this was the first time I’d ever heard of that.

While Danny’s in hospital, he’s visited again by Ralphie. I’m unsure, dramatically, why they are effectively repeating exactly the same scene, but the fact it’s the show’s most iconic scene means they probably realised what they had. The effect when Ralphie floats into the room this time is very dreamlike, thanks to it being shot in reverse, so the smoke billows backwards. It’s extremely effective. The discovery in the morning of Danny’s twisted dead body is a nice scare, too.

Danny’s funeral takes place fairly quickly. His mother faints, which was something that often happened to women in 70s TV shows. After the funeral, Mark Ryerson is burying the body, there’s scary wind all around, and he seems mesmerised by the coffin, so much so that he jumps into the grave (another box to tick on your Movie Funeral Bingo card) and pulls open the top of the coffin. Danny’s there, looking very blue – those morticians have a very strange colour sense – and he suddenly sits up and bites Ryerson.

BBC Genome: BBC One London – 15th August 1985 – 21:25

In the next episode, Mike Ryerson is showing the ill effects of having been bitten by a vampire (although nobody in town has yet realised that’s what’s happening). He interrupts Ben and Jason Burke having a meal at the local restaurant.

Now it’s Mark Petrie’s turn to have a visit, this time from the older Glick brother Danny. Mark, though, as a good Fangoria reader, knows enough not to open his window, and drives him off with a cross. (Which he pulls from one of his models. Score one for the nerds.)

Ben is woken at 4am by his landlady, with a phone call from Jason Burke. He throws on a dressing gown and goes to take the call. It’s a very small thing, but David Soul’s body language in this is amazing. You might expect the big-time hero of a TV movie to act everything like a hero, but his movement and posture in this very short scene read perfectly as a man who’s just woken up in the middle of the night. I like small moments like this. And the phone call is good too. We don’t hear the other side of it, as he tells Jason he’ll be there in ten minutes, then he’s asked something else. “Hell no, I was a Baptist” and you just know he’s been asked if he has a crucifix.

It’s opening day at Straker’s antique shop. I haven’t said much about James Mason yet, as he’s mostly been lurking, but he’s great in this, polite yet menacing. Incidentally, dialogue in this episode says he’s supposed to be 58, although he was around 70 when it was made. He’s frequently referencing his partner, a German man called Mr Barlow. “You’ll enjoy Mr Barlow. And he’ll enjoy you.”

Ben goes back to his room, where Ned Tebbetts is waiting for him, hiding behind a wooden screen. He beats Ben up.

Jason is sitting at home reading up on vampires when he hears a noise upstairs. Investigating he discovers the previously dead Mike Ryerson , now with glowing eyes. He manages to drive him out of the room – “I revoke my invitation” – but then starts having a heart attack.

Ned Tebbetts is in the local jail, and he has a visitor. It’s the mysterious Mr Barlow that Straker has been talking about. It seems an odd story choice to have Barlow’s reveal be here, since Tebbetts isn’t a character anyone really cares about, and this scene just happens with little build up. Barlow is played by Reggie Nalder, a fact that I can still remember to this day, an actor whose iMDb credits go back to 1938. His look is definitely inspired by Max Schreck in Nosferatu.

The local Catholic priest has come to visit Mark Petrie after his nocturnal visit from Danny. His father thinks it’s all because of his models and masks. But then there’s a lot of shaking, plates falling off shelves, windows smashing, and suddenly, Mr Barlow is in the house, smashes Mark’s parents’ heads together, and grabs Mark by the throat. The priest tries to fend him off with his crucifix. Is it just me, or have they deliberately cast an actor who looks a little bit like Jason Miller from The Exorcist? Straker is there too, and challenges the Priest to throw down his crucifix and face Barlow with his faith, and Mark will be released. “I’m going to kill you” promises Mark before running off. The Priest doesn’t fare well.

Ben is in the funeral home, where the dead body of Mrs Glick is a lot more sprightly than you’d want. He’s fashioned a cross out of a couple of tongue depressors which makes her fade away. Cheaper than crumbling to dust, I suppose.

Susan, ill-advisedly, goes to the Marston House. She sees Mark breaking in. It’s not in a very good state. Classic Spooky House.

She meets Mark in the house, but is captured by Straker. Mason is terrific, polite and scary, never turning into a ranting monster.

Ben and Susan’s father (who’s called Bill – Bill and Ben) arrive at the house, having gone by the church to get some holy water. But Ben pauses – he remembers being in the house when he was eleven, and being traumatised by what he saw. His trauma is interrupted by the door opening and young Mark running out – Straker had tied him to a chair, not realising he’d already established that he can get out of any knot.

They make the rookie mistake of splitting up once they go in the house, and Bill goes upstairs, only to meet Mr Straker who demonstrates that when politeness and a cut-glass English accent aren’t enough, being able to pick a man up by his shoulders and walk him backwards into a wall full of pointy antlers will have to do.

Straker’s had it with etiquette now. He strides back to the top of the stairs and rips a bannister up to use as a weapon. This is a 70 year old man, but I’m totally convinced by this. Lucky for Ben that the departing Sheriff gave him his gun before he left town, although it takes every bullet in the gun to stop Straker.

Finally it’s time to take on Mr Barlow in the basement. I’m not impressed with the tiny hammer Ben brought, as it take him ages to drive the stake in.

There’s a bit of timelapse to show the vampire decaying – although in one of the transitions his two front fangs disappear, but then reappear on the next transition.

They set fire to the house, and the wind carries the fire to the town. “It will purify Salem’s Lot” says Ben,  but there will be vampires left. And he never found Susan.

Then, we’re back in Guatemala from the opening – in fact, they play the whole scene from the opening again, just in case you’d forgotten it. But now we see what follows. They return to their house to find a visitor. It’s Susan. “I found you.” “I know.” “I love you.” “Yes.” “We’ll always be together. We’ll always be young. We’ll love each other forever.” Until Ben stakes her. But he’s really sad when he does it.

The last shot it a shot of the moon, and there’s a brief moment where there’s a superimposition of a skull, just for a moment.

I was expecting to find this rather schlocky, and a bit naff. I actually really enjoyed it, and came away with a far better opinion of David Soul as an actor. Sure, this was a TV miniseries, so it was relatively bloodless (strange for a vampire story) but it had good scares, plenty of gothic horror, and some great performances. Great stuff

BBC Genome: BBC One London – 22nd August 1985 – 22:10

Friends – dvd 65

Today’s disc has the first four episodes of Season 8 of Friends starting with The One After I Do. Chandler and Monica are married, so it’s time for the reception. Ross thinks Monica’s pregnant.

Phoebe is confused, because she knows she and Rachel found the positive pregnancy test in the trash in Monica’s apartment, but doesn’t realise it was Rachel’s. “We found your test in the trash, if you’re not pregnant…” Looks at Rachel. Rachel glares back in panic, gives a small head shake. “It’s because I am.”

Chandler has taken ballroom dancing lessons so their first dance will be perfect, but his new shoes are really slippery.

Ross meets a girl called Mona and thinks he’s hit it off, so he contrives to swap his seating arrangements to sit on the same table.

Chandler’s Mom (Morgan Fairchild) has brought her new boyfriend to the wedding, seemingly just to embarrass her son.

Ross has got the table numbers wrong…

Monica talks to Rachel about Phoebe being pregnant, and how hard it will be for a single woman bringing up a child. Rachel isn’t enjoying the conversation.

Ross wants to dance with Mona but all the little girls at his table ask him to dance with them. I didn’t like the punchline to this gag with a much bigger girl.

Joey learns that Chandler’s mom’s boyfriend is a theatre producer with a new show, so he take the opportunity to make his speech an audition. He needn’t have bothered, as the show has an all Chinese cast. “Can you be Chinese?” “Well, I’m not proud of this..” as Joey turns away, and they cut away, making the joke land without having to go there.

Monica really wants to dance with Chandler. “Try not to move your feet at all.” So Chandler busts out some hand moves, as Monica’s parents come past. Jack Geller (Elliot Gould) says “Chandler I’m gonna have you arrested. You stole my moves.” I think this is Gould and Christina Pickles’ only appearance in this episode, which I presume would have been filmed as a double-length episode.

Phoebe and Monica now both know that Rachel is pregnant, but they suggest she test again in case it’s a false positive. They get hold of a test, and head to the toilet. This scene is utterly brilliant. Jennifer Aniston is superb, going through a maelstrom of emotion and uncertainty. Rachel can’t bring herself to look at the test, so Phoebe looks for her. “It’s negative.” Rachel is saying she’s relieved. “You know, because of the whole not being ready, the financial aspects.” But her whole performance is saying the opposite.

“How could I be upset over something I never had?” she asks, wiping some tears away. “It’s negative?” Phoebe replies “No, it’s positive.” “Are you sure?” “Yes, I lied before. Now you know how you really feel about it.”

And if you weren’t crying at that (I was, you won’t be surprised to know) then there’s a dedication at the end of the episode that might get you. This was the first episode broadcast after September 11th. I remember there were discussions about how the show would have to edit locations shots which featured the Twin Towers.

The next episode is The One with the Red Sweater and starts the day after. Everyone’s checking out. Monica is unhappy. “I’m no longer a bride. I’ll never be a bride again. Now I’m just someone’s wife.” Chandler tries to cheer her up with the promise of the disposable camera pictures from the tables.

While Chandler’s trying to find where the disposable cameras went to, Monica is finding the big pile of presents in the apartment irresistible.

Rachel is going to tell the father today, but until she does, they have to keep pretending that Phoebe is pregnant. Joey is told this, and asks who the father is. “You don’t know him. It’s not important. He wants nothing to do with me, or the baby.” “Who is this guy, who is he? ‘Cause I will track him down and kick his ass.” “David Lynn.” “DAVID LYNN! DAVID LYNN!” says Joey as he strides off. Which we found very amusing here when watching the episode, as that’s my son’s name. (This screenshot from Netflix)

later, Joey comes back to talk to Phoebe. “I always felt the you and I have a special bond.” And he proposes. So then Monica has to tell Joey that it’s Rachel who’s pregnant.

Joey remembers Rachel meeting someone a month ago, who left a red sweater. Phoebe recognises it and thinks she knows who the father is. She gets Rachel to come to Central Perk, and tells her that she knows who owned the sweater, and he’s in there right now. Rachel enters, only to find Tag, the young man she went out with briefly. And he’s wearing his red sweater under his shirt.

Meanwhile, Ross and Chandler, having failed to find the disposable cameras, are trying to fake some wedding pictures at the hotel where another wedding reception is taking place. Including Chandler kissing the bride.

The end of the episode has Ross find the sweater in Monica’s apartment. “I’ve been looking for that for about a month.”

The next episode is The One Where Rachel Tells…. Monica and Chandler are packing for Honeymoon. “The only thing I couldn’t find was your speedo.” “Err… I don’t have a speedo.” Do Americans really call Speedos ‘a speedo’? This is Lego all over again.

Monica and Chandler have gone away, and Phoebe realises she’s left her guitar in the apartment. Neither she nor Joey have keys, so they call the building superintendant saying they smell gas, so he’ll open the door with his keys. Trouble is, he’s got so many keys, he thinks it would take too long, so the fire brigade is there to knock the door down.

Rachel goes to Ross to tell him, but he thinks she wants to sleep with him again, so we get another of those “I know what you’re going to say but I won’t let you say it, just let me talk a lot and embarrass myself” scenes which I hate. When she does finally tell Ross she’s pregnant, he freezes.

Later, Rachel is having a sonogram which, given that she’s definitely only about a month pregnant, seems extremely early. Then Ross walks in, having processed Rachel’s news. Given he wasn’t expected, I’d be surprised if they’d just let a random man in, but the show doesn’t worry about it.

Here’s the TiVo details for this recording. Friday 18th July 2002.

The final episode on this disc is The One with the Videotape. This is an episode with a truly great punchline. Ross and Rachel get into an argument about who initiated their rendezvous. Rachel says Ross kissed her first, Ross says that Rachel was giving off all sorts of signals. The argument starts getting heated, Rachel asks Ross if he can show her the signals. “I can show you, I have it on videotape.” Which is a bit of a bombshell. Also, Monica and Chandler have a TiVo.

Rachel walks out, and Ross tries to explain, with a flashback to six weeks earlier. Ross is asking for Joey’s advice as he hasn’t had sex for months. Joey tells him he has a story that will guarantee a woman will have sex with him. “Years ago, when I was backpacking across Western Europe…” it starts. I like that Ross is wearing the red sweater from the other episode.

Ross tries it on a date, but it doesn’t go well. “I was in Barcelona.” “I studied for a year in Barcelona.”

Chandler and Monica discover that a nice couple they met on Honeymoon gave them a fake number. Joey suggests they probably gave fake names too. Monica is skeptical. “Maybe people give out fake numbers but they don’t give out fake names.” Joey turns to Phoebe. “Hi, Ken Adams.” She replies “Regina Phalange”

Ross brings the tape so Rachel can destroy it, but the rest of them want to see it, to see which of them was right. They talk about an earlier time, when Monica and Chandler got engaged, and they almost had sex, but were interrupted. Rachel says “In ten seconds you’re going to see Ross kiss me.” Ross replies “and in five seconds you’re going to see why.” Then, on the videotape, Rachel pauses, then asks “Did I ever tell you about that time I went backpacking through Western Europe?” Joey’s reaction is perfect.

But, for all the greatness that that punchline has, there’s a capper that’s even better.

              You used the Europe story.

              That's the magic story you use when you want to 
              have sex.

              How do you know about that story?

              How do you know about that story?

              I heard it from my friend Irene, who heard it 
              from some guy.

                      (pointing to himself)
              Some guy!

              No, no, she told me that her name was Ken Adams.

                      (Pointing again)
              Ken Adams!


  • Barclays – Samuel L Jackson
  • Impulse
  • Ariel – Tim Henman
  • Homebase – Neil Morrissey Leslie Ash
  • Bacardi – Vinnie Jones
  • Mean Machine on DVD
  • McDonalds
  • Kingsmill – Mel and Sue
  • Barclays – Samuel L Jackson
  • Kodak
  • Pimms – Alexander Armstrong
  • Wrigley’s Extra
  • Pot Noodle
  • Finish
  • Yellow Pages
  • VW Beetle
  • Diet Coke
  • trail: Scrubs
  • trail: Friends
  • Film Four
  • Bacardi – Vinnie Jones
  • The Sun
  • Austin Powers in Goldmember in cinemas
  • Toyota RAV 4
  • OK! magazine
  • Acuvue
  • Nivea for Men
  • Vanish Action Ball
  • McDonalds
  • BaByliss Crazy Braid
  • Archers Aqua
  • trail: ER
  • trail: ER
  • Coca Cola
  • M&Ms
  • Scooby Doo in cinemas
  • Vodafone
  • Citroen – Ken Campbell
  • Inland Revenue – Adam Hart-Davis
  • L’Oreal Nutrilift
  • T-Mobile
  • Pringles
  • Lucozade – Lara Croft
  • Lloyd’s TSB Insurance
  • KFC
  • trail: Big Brother
  • Specsavers
  • Nissan Almera
  • Bounty

O Brother Where Art Thou? – dvd 64

Today we have a movie. it’s O Brother Where Art Thou?, a film from the Coen brothers, which I have never seen. I don’t know why that is – I’ve watched most of their films, some of which are favourites of mine, and this film always has good things said about it, but I’ve just never got around to watching it.

Before we start, though, a nerdy interlude. I complained at the recording of Election, that the widescreen picture had been squashed to fit a 16:9 frame, and blamed the broadcaster.

It looks like the blame lies with me, for not checking the source recording. All these recordings have been archived onto a hard drive just by copying the files from the DVD. These are everything a DVD player needs to play them, but for the purposes of this blog, I convert the DVDs to mp4 files, as they are easier to use. I use Handbrake to do this conversion. But there’s something different about the recordings that I’ve made from some of the Sky movie channels. This one comes from Sky Premier Widescreen, and the MP4 that was produced is again a 16:9 image, containing the full movie frame, but stretched top and bottom so there are no black bars. So all the picture information is there, it just thinks the pixels are the wrong shape. If I watch the original DVD files in VLC the aspect ratio is correct, so Handbrake seems to have detected that the file has black bars, and has just encoded the visible picture, but failed to set the correct aspect ratio. So sorry for maligning Sky’s widescreen presentation.

Enough nerdery, what about the movie? It claims to be based on Homer’s Odyssey, but I haven’t ready the Odyssey so I could say. Incidentally, The Coens hadn’t read it either.

Roderick Jaynes has edited most of the Coens’ films, as he’s a pseudonym for Joel and Ethan.

George Clooney, John Turturro and Tim Blake Nelson play three men who escape from a chain gang. Clooney plays Ulysses Everett McGill, so at least the Coens know who was in The Odyssey. He’s escaped because he only has a few days to get to where he’d buried $1.2m dollars from a robbery. It’s buried in a valley that’s going to be flooded , which is why there’s a time limit.

Turturro, who plays Pete Hogwallop, leads them to his cousin Wash, who can get them out of their chains and give them a place to sleep. Everett likes his hair pomade.

Their sleep in the barn is broken by the appearance of the law, who have been tipped off by Pete’s treacherous brother. “We’re in a tight spot” as Everett keeps saying.

These lawmen aren’t too concerned about taking them alive, and they soon start setting the barn on fire. One of them in particular is clearly supposed to be a nemesis.

The cops throw a burning torch into the barn, but Pete throws it back, and it ignites the contents of the cops’ armour truck.

While the cops are dodging their own bullets they see a car heading for them. It crashes through the doors of the barn to rescue the three of them, and it’s driven by the traitorous Wash’s son. This is just great.

They get rid of the kid when the car breaks down, Everett can’t get the right brand of hair pomade in the general store, and Pete gets angry at Everett, who stole his cousin’s watch, intending to seel it so they can buy a car. But before it can get heated, there’s singing from all around, and loads of people dressed in white walk through the woods o the lake nearby.

It’s a mass baptism, and Clooney makes a comment about “I guess hard times flush the chumps” but Delmar (Nelson) runs into the water to get redeemed.

They pick up a young black guitar player who was standing at a crossroads. He introduces himself as Tommy Johnson, and goes on to explain that he was standing at the crossroads, in the middle of nowhere, because he’d sold his soul to the devil so he can play the guitar “real good”. He also tells them where there’s a man who will pay money “to sing into his cans”.

So they end up in a recording studio run by a blind man, played by Stephen Root.

Clooney introduces them as The Soggy Bottom Boys, and they record a song called ‘I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow’. They’ve got pretty good voices.

On the way out, they pass the governor of the state, Pappy O’Daniel, on his way to broadcast his message. He’s played by Charles Durning.

That night, they’re sitting round a fire, talking when the lawmen turn up again, but they parked their car next to a barn, so they’re not seen. Tommy runs off, but the other three get away. Next day, they get a lift from a man called George Nelson who turns out to be a bank robber.

George leaves them that night, having fallen into a depressive slump, so they continue on their way. What they don’t realise is that the record they made is becoming a big hit. They even make the newspaper. “Soggy Bottom Boys a Sensation. But Who Are They?” I like that the headline on the front page is about the flooding of the valley, just to remind us of the time limit.

Keeping with the whole Odyssey thing, they are lured by Sirens.

Delmar and Everett awake to find Pete isn’t there, only his clothes remain. And when a toad hops out of his empty shirt, Delmar assumes Pete has been turned into a toad.

In a restaurant they meet John Goodman as Dan Teague who tells them he’s a salesman for the word of God. I’m going to assume he’s supposed to be the Cyclops. He turns out to be a very bad man who beats them both up with a large stick, steals all their money, and even kills the toad they think is Pete.

Speaking of Pete, he wasn’t a toad, he’s been captured by the lawmen and tortured for information about Everett and Delmar.

We meet Homer Stokes, who is running against the governor Pappy O’Daniel.

Everett recognises the group of young girls singing at his rally – it’s his own children. Their mother told them that Everett had been hit by a train.

Their mother is played by Holly Hunter.

Everett also meets his wife’s new beau, Vernon Waldrip. Everett walks up to him, stares him in the face, sniffs and asks “Have you been using my hair treatment?”

Everett and Delmar take in a movie, during which a group of prisoners is brought in to watch. Pete is one of them. “Do Not Seek The Treasure” he says. “They’re fixin’ an ambush.”

They break Pete out of prison, and he confesses to them that he spilled the beans about the treasure. But this reunion is cut short when they hear singing. There’s a lot of singing in this film. It’s the Ku Klux Klan.

It’s also a lynching, and the victim is Tommy the guitarist.

The Grand Wizard is Homer Stokes.

They rescue Tommy, then go to an event in town where Everett wants to speak to his wife, so they disguise themselves, and get on stage to sing. After their first number goes down well, they start singing ‘I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow’, and the crowd go wild. Pappy O’Daniel says “These boys are a hit.” “But Pappy – they’s integrated.” “But folks don’t mind they’s integrated.”

Someone who does mind is Homer Stokes, and he goes off on a racist rant that he expects to go down well, but the crowd doesn’t like what he’s saying.

He’s taken out of the room, and the boys continue singing. Pappy O’Daniel knows a good thing when he sees it, and gets on stage to take the reflected glory in aid of his election. He also pardons them all.

Afterwards, it looks like Everett is back with his wife, until he notices she doesn’t have her ring, and she tells him it’s back at their old cabin, in the roll top desk, and when he tries to tell her they don’t need it, it’s just a symbol, she turns frosty. “I’ve spoken my piece and counted to three.”

There’s a crowd of people walking down the street, and at the head, it’s George Nelson, the bank robber, who’s been captured and is going to be executed.

The three boys and Tommy walk all the way to Everett’s old cabin in the valley, but when they arrive, the lawmen are already waiting for them.

They’re going to be hanged there and then, but everyone’s forgotten about the time limit, and the valley is flooded. But the three of them survive, clinging to one of the coffins they were going to be buried in, and Tommy survives grabbing onto Everett’s roll top desk.

So it’s a happy ending. Almost, as the ring that was in the roll top desk isn’t her wedding ring. “I’ve counted to three.”

I really enjoyed this, and I wonder why I never watched it for all these years. It’s just delightful.

Here’s the TiVo details. Saturday 8th June 2002.


  • trail: Meet the Parents
  • trail: The Mummy Returns
  • Bacardi Breezer
  • Carefree
  • Bertolli
  • Sensodyne Gentle Whitening
  • Quilted Velvet
  • Eumovate
  • Mini Babybel
  • Pizza Hut
  • Abbey National
  • Thunderpants in cinemas
  • Lil-lets
  • Boots Opticians
  • Roundup
  • Audi TT



Dan Dare – Enterprise – dvd 78

Today’s disc has a couple of episodes of a show I don’t think anyone remembers. I’d certainly forgotten it, and I wonder if its creators have also. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for a hidden gem.

It’s on channel 5, which isn’t a good sign.

It opens with a rocket test. Which is apparently successful despite blowing up a vehicle nearby. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that the CGI here is not great. This was released in 2002, and it looks not much better than cutscenes from video games released that year. Very few textures, and rudimentary animation.

The character animation is a similar vintage. They all do that weird thing with their arms that so much non-motion-captured animation tends to do. Very exaggerated arm movements. The designer of the rocket is Professor Jocelyn Peabody. “Well, that went well” she says.

She’s upset, though, when they tell her she’s not going to fly the ship on its first voyage. “It’s my ship. I designed it, I built it, and I’m going to fly it.” But they want “A pilot of the future.” It’s Dan Dare, heading in on a rocket powered supersonic helicopter, although how good a pilot can he be if he’s texting and flying at the same time.

“Extruded Titanium rotors. Where they tempered in Liquid Nitrogen?” asks Professor Peabody. “I don’t believe so” replies the General. “They won’t hold” she predicts.

Oh good, there’s an annoying Disc Jockey character, those are always great.

As predicted, the helicopter does lose its rotors, so Dan has to heroically land the ship, while avoiding one small chunk of inhabited city in among the empty landscape.

Dan Dare’s chum Digby is watching everything from the control tower. “Phew. Captain’s going to need a good cuppa after that one.”

“And you want him flying my ship? This lunatic? This hotshot? This… Oh my goodness!” Well I suppose sexism was era-appropriate to the time the comics were written.

Talking of Sexism, Peabody has changed from her figure-hugging dress to a figure-hugging jumpsuit.

She’s patronised by xeno-biologist Hank Hogan, another new member of the team, who asks her where the ‘old coot’ Professor Peabody is. To her credit, after she tells him that she’s Peabody, she hits him on the bum with her clipboard as she leaves.

After naming the ship Anastasia, the launch is successful. Digby bemoans the difficulty of drinking tea in zero gravity. I wonder why they gave the blobs of tea flat faces. Probably easier to model.

They reach their destination, Venus, and discover there’s a war going on.

The Anastasia is hit, so Dan has to jettison the explorer module with the other three in it so he can try to land the rest of the ship.

Venus looks quite pretty at this time of year.

They meet the locals – Therons. They get given a ‘Comprendé’ plant that lets them understand each others’ languages. Useful. The Therons tell them that it’s the warlike Treens who are causing all the problems.

Dan, meanwhile, is being pursued.

He’s captured, and brought before the leader of the Treens, The Mekon. “You and your planet are doomed.”

Sadly (?) I don’t have part two of this, not on this disc anyway. However, the delights haven’t finished, as the end titles are accompanied by a song by Elton John and Bernie Taupin.

And they did have some motion capture, so I’ve no idea why the movements are so bad.

But the biggest shock is one of the production company title cards at the end. It’s produced by Foundation Imaging, who were the original CGI effects house for Babylon 5. Frankly, compared to this, Babylon 5 looks like Avatar, so I’m assuming, as with everything, the budget determines things like how much detail they can use.

In case you want to watch it yourself, here it is.

At the end of the recording, there’s a very brief glimpse of the Channel 5 presenter. Image Search tells me it’s Naomi Wilkinson.

There’s another episode on this disc, but from a bit later in the series, Journey to the Centre of the Sun part 1. Yes, another Part 1. I apologise.

This story opens with some Theerons in a ship being attacked by Treens. This must be where they spent the motion capture budget as they make a good stab at staging a fight scene.

You can’t beat a bit of good old-fashioned propaganda.

I really like this film. It’s A-Bomb versus the Thermal Diffuser. The Thermal Diffuser is designed to freeze and atomic blast.

The attacked ship from the opening lands on Earth, and the Treens are impersonating the Theron delegation.

Since the pilot, one of the Treens, Sondar, is now an ally of the humans.

The Treens steal the Anastasia, along with the prototype Thermal Diffuser.

Sondar does an Arnie in Commando, but in reverse, grabbing the undercarriage of the ship as it escapes.

There’s no time to lose, so Dan Dare and crew set off in the Theron’s transport ship, since it’s the only ship ready to fly. “If anyone can catch the fastest ship in the fleet on a slow moving space bus, it’s Dan Dare.”

Peabody makes a few minor adjustments to the ship to get it to go faster.

Chasing the Anastasia close to the Sun, both ships are sucked into a ‘solar Tornado’.

But they’re not dead, because there’s a planet at the centre of the Sun, and somehow it’s possible for the crew to survive on its surface. I’m beginning to think that the science on this show isn’t always 100% accurate.

That the planet is populated by giant insects, I have no problem with.

Once again, no part 2. All this excitement, no resolution. Here’s the video.

There’s another Channel 5 presenter glimpsed at the end of this, which Image Search tells me is Anna Williamson.

The last recording on this disc features slightly more realistic special effects. It’s Enterprise and an episode called Cold Front. But this is one I’ve already looked at as it was on another tape.

Here’s the TiVo details

After this recording, though, there’s a bit of run-on with T4 Music, featuring Blue.


  • Nokia 7650
  • McDonalds
  • Abbey National
  • Barratt Homes
  • Honda
  • Orange Photo Messaging
  • Monsters Inc on DVD
  • trail: Bo Selecta!
  • Nestle double cream
  • Inland Revenue
  • Burger King
  • More!
  • Mr Muscle
  • Nickelodeon
  • Halifax
  • trail: Friends
  • trail: Six Feet Under
  • T-Mobile
  • Bold Aqua
  • Sanex
  • OK! magazine
  • Toyota Corolla
  • Bounty
  • Johnson’s Baby Extraclean Tissues
  • Halifax
  • Danone Activ
  • trail: She’s All That
  • trail: In Memoriam

Election – Scrubs – dvd 46

Some comedy today. First, a movie. It’s Alexander Payne’s Election. I’ve only seen this once before, and remember enjoying it, but that was a while ago.

My first thought is that the presentation here is dreadful. I can just about understand squashing up the titles, although that’s still annoying when they’re playing over scenes. This is how the opening Paramount logo looks at this recording’s original 16:9 aspect ratio.

But if I apply my stretch factor – which I have to use when I have an MP4 that’s playing in 4:3 but should be 16:9 – it’s correct.

Unfortunately, the whole movie is squashed in this way, so I’ll be watching the version that’s currently on iPlayer, where’s they’re not afraid of original aspect ratios.

Matthew Broderick plays Jim McAllister, a teacher in High School.

Reese Witherspoon plays Tracy Flick, an ‘over-achiever’ who’s standing for Class President.

The first thing that shocked me is quite how ‘adult’ this is, starting with Jim McAllister’s fellow teacher Dave sleeping with Tracy. I was relieved when he did actually lose his job, although wouldn’t that also be statutory rape? (I just googled ‘age of consent in Nebraska’ so I hope I haven’t ended up on some kind of register. It’s 16, which would explain it.)

Jim is obviously annoyed by Tracy, and doesn’t want her to run unopposed, so he suggests to the football hero who broke his leg skiing that maybe he should stand too.

Paul’s younger sister Tammy is in love with her best friend, who isn’t in love with her to the extent that she starts going out with Paul. So in revenge, Tammy decides to run for President as well.

Jim and wife Diane are trying for a baby. This makes it look like a lot of hard work. (by the way, there’s an awful lot of sex in this movie.)

Jim starts helping out ex-friend Dave’s wife Linda as she’s now on her own with a small baby. You can tell where this is going to go.

We get speeches from Tracy.

Paul’s is a little less rehearsed.

Tammy’s speech, on the other hand, raises the roof. “So vote for me, because I don’t even want to go to college, and I don’t care. And as President, I won’t do anything. The only promise I will make is that, if elected, I will immediately dismantle the student government so that none of us will ever have to sit through one of these stupid assemblies again.”

The night before the election, Tracy is at the school, late, and she notices one of her banners is coming away from the wall. She tries to fix it up, but ends up pulling half of it down, which leads her into a bit of a meltdown, and she tears all her competitors’ posters down too. But as she’s disposing of the evidence in  a dumpster, she’s seen by Tammy.

As expected, Jim and Linda have a fling. On the day before the Election.

This rather puts a spring in his step.

The very serious matter of who tore down the posters is being investigated, and because Jim has a vendetta against Tracy, he assumes it was her. But then, Tammy enters, and confesses that she tore the posters down – and she’s got the posters in her bag as evidence.

Jim wants to see Linda again. He books a motel room, prepares it while his students are doing a test, then rushes back to the school.

After school he goes to Linda’s house, but she’s not there. You know what is, though? A wasp. Or a bee. He says it’s a bee later. Let’s go with bee.

He goes back to the motel room, and tries her once again, but there’s no answer. So he returns home to find that Linda’s there, with his wife Diane, and they’re both crying. He’s so busted.

It’s the day of the election, and Tracy has been baking.

When she casts her vote, she even has a photographer in tow.

Jim is in charge of counting the votes. Two students count first and it’s a really close count, with Tracy winning by one vote.

So when Jim does his count, and finds the same result, of course he decides to ‘lose’ two of Tracy’s votes in his waste bin, letting Paul win by one vote.

And he almost got away with it, but the next morning, he’s called in to the Principal’s office, where they’ve found the evidence of his voter fraud.

His wife divorces him, he leaves Nebraska, and moves to New York, where he works as a Museum guide. And at the end, it’s clear he hasn’t learned anything. He is a terrible man.

The second programme on this disc is an episode of Scrubs. In fact, it’s the very first episode of Scrubs, and it’s fascinating to watch it set up the whole show, and all the key characters.

Zach Braff is JD, the brand new doctor, starting at a large teaching hospital.

Donald Faison is his best friend Turk, a surgical doctor.

Sarah Chalke is Elliott, another new doctor.

Judy Reyes plays Carla, a very experienced nurse who’s always having to help out the inexperienced doctors.

Ken Jenkins plays Dr Kelso, the senior doctor, and am avuncular presence.

John C McGinley, on the other hand, plays the very scary Doctor Cox.

But this episode also reveals the hidden depths of these two characters – that Cox is actually a pretty good mentor, and Kelso could be Satan incarnate.

Rounding off the cast is the weird Janitor who always seems to be watching JD. He’s always good fun, played by Neil Flynn.

I only occasionally caught this show – it’s not one that I watched regularly, even though I always enjoyed it. It’s nice that I’ve got the pilot, though, and maybe it’s time to watched it all. It’s all on Disney Plus, after all (like 24 yesterday). And I could listen to the podcast too.

Except if I did that, I wouldn’t have time to watch the rest of these DVDs, and I wouldn’t do that to my loyal readers.


24 – dvd 44

There are two episodes of 24 on this disc. It doesn’t look like I’ve already looked at these episodes from Season One. First, 6:00pm-7:00pm (Episode 19). Teri has lost her memory (I know) and there’s a slightly creepy man with her who says they’re friends.

There’s also a couple of bad guys hanging around the house, so it’s a good thing they set off the house alarm, and armed guards turn up to sort it out. Teri doesn’t have ID, but the guards are happy when they see all the pictures of her around the living room.

The Palmers are in conflict about the upcoming press conference David called to clear the air about suspicions about his son.

Kim is now with another bunch of thugs, who are involved in some kind of drug deal. I really hate all these types of guy, but I guess that’s the point.

Palmer gives his press conference, and disavows his major donors, accusing them of coercion, and of the murder of his son’s therapist. He also stands by his son, and tells the press to back off his daughter. This is a powerful moment for Palmer, and is probably pivotal to his later success.

The drug deal Kim’s trapped at gets a bit… standoffish.

Jack and George Mason go to an address that has something to do with Victor Drazen, but finds only a transformer station.

Palmer comes out of his press conference and his son is waiting there for him. There’s a beat. “I love you, dad.” “I love you, son.” You can bet I’m crying.

Just when it looks like the scummy guy who has Kim is going to double-cross the drug dealer, the dealer reveals he’s a cop, and a whole SWAT team bursts in, taking out the scummy guys, but also arresting Kim.

The bad guys outside Teri’s house finally make their move, killing Teri’s friend’s friend who he brought there for protection, shooting the friend, and then asking Teri where Kim is. He’s just about to kill Teri when he’s killed by Tony Almeida, who’s arrived in the nick of time.

BBC Genome: BBC Choice – 7th July 2002 – 22:45

The next episode is 7:00pm-8:00pm. Jack is still wandering around a big field. This feels like a way to delay his important story stuff until all the other strands have completed, or progressed.

Tony takes Teri back to CTU.

Kim is at the police station, and too scared to tell anyone who she is, as she doesn’t trust anyone.

Sherry tells Palmer that he’s just delivered his concession speech. She thinks the voters will hate his weakness. He thinks they’ll respect his honesty.

Jack finally finds what he was looking for – an underground prison facility, headed by guest star Lou Diamond Phillips.

Jack knows that the prison is going to be attacked at 7:20. There’s very few people there, just three guards, and some maintenance men. Bauer gets all the maintenance men to get into combat gear so it will look like the place is more heavily guarded. There’s a prisoner being brought in at 7:20, and Jack wants to warn off the attack.

Kim tells the arresting officer who she is, and tells him to call CTU. He doesn’t seem to believe her.

Palmer has actually seen a poll bump since his press conference. Those pollsters work fast.

Jack needs to know who the prisoner is, and why Andre Drazen is trying so hard to spring him. He gets into the prison’s CCTV monitoring system, and discovers it’s Dennis Hopper as Victor Drazen, Andre Drazen’s father and the man Jack thought he’d killed two years ago.

Sherry Palmer sets out her position to David. “When you’re being sworn in, make no mistake about it, this woman here will be standing right next to you.” Penny Johnson Jerald is so good in this show. Just fabulous.

And come 8pm, as Victor Drazen is being moved through the prison, the power is cut, and they await the attack.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England – 21st July 2002 – 22:00

Friends – Rough Science – dvd 76

It’s an all-new disc today starting with some episodes of Friends. The first is The One With Rachel’s Date. These are all from the 8th season, and one point of interest is that these aren’t in widescreen. But most of the other recordings of this era were already in widescreen, and I notice that the ads are in widescreen, so I can only assume that these episodes weren’t supplied in widescreen at the time.

We learn that Chandler’s middle name is Muriel. Also, notice the upside down Apple logo? It took a while for them to realise that most people see the logo when the machines are on people’s desks, so they turned them upside down – something Sony had been doing with the Vaio for a while.

Rachel meets an actor on the set of Days Of Our Lives when she goes to meet Joey.

Ross freaks out when he hears Rachel is going on a date.

One of Chandler’s co-workers keeps calling him Toby, then, when Chandler blocks his promotion to his team, he comes looking for the Chandler Bing that blocked him. He’s played by Chris Parnell, who plays Dr Spaceman in 30 Rock.

Phoebe starts dating one of Monica’s Sous Chefs, but then Monica wants to fire him because he’s a terrible chef, and Phoebe wants to dump him too, so they are in a race for which one gets to dump him first.

The next episode is The One with the Halloween Party. Phoebe runs into Ursula and discovers she’s getting married. This is a good two-shot, as it includes camera moves.

Some of the Halloween costumes are good, like Phoebe’s Supergirl.

Monica’s Catwoman isn’t bad.

Chandler’s Velveteen Rabbit is a bit of a disappointment.

Joey came as Chandler.

Ross is Spudnik

Sean Penn guest stars as Ursula’s Fiancee. Phoebe ends up persuading him not to marry Ursula.

The next episode is The One with the Stain. Chandler has hired a maid to clean the apartment, and it’s bugging Monica. Then she suspects the maid has stolen a pair of her jeans.

Phoebe is now dating Eric, Ursula’s ex, but there’s problems because he just gets angry when he thinks of Ursula, which is a problem when Phoebe looks like Ursula.

Lastly on this disc, in a break from Friends, there’s an episode of Rough Science. This is from the second series, which took place on the island of Carriacou.

In this episode, the team have to build some musical instruments to play music and manufacture fireworks. Some of the musical attempts are better than others – you can’t go wrong with pan pipes.

Maracas seem a little first-base

Mike L makes an attempt to create a Fire Organ, which plays tones by send hot air up large pipes.

Kathy Sykes makes quite a creditable slide guitar.

The fireworks were pretty successful.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England – 11th June 2002 – 20:00

In the ad breaks, there’s an advert for Buffy S6, and they’re still pushing it on Video – DVD isn’t even mentioned, and this is 2002.


  • Fellowship of the Ring on DVD
  • Barclays – Samuel L Jackson
  • Men in Black II in cinemas
  • Hits 55
  • Renault Clio
  • Barclays – Samuel L Jackson
  • Boddingtons
  • trail: Big Brother The Winner’s Story
  • Herbal Essences
  • Adidas
  • The Sum of All Fears in cinemas
  • Lotto – Billy Connolly
  • UK Gold
  • Charmin
  • Argos
  • Colgate 2in1
  • Colgate Dental Gum
  • Pringles
  • trail: Apt Pupil
  • trail: Classmates
  • trail: Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights
  • Orbit
  • Specsavers
  • McDonalds
  • Smirnoff Ice
  • Nissan Micra
  • The Guru in cinemas
  • Canesten Once
  • Daily Mail
  • Olay Total Effects
  • Nissan Micra
  • Buffy The Vampire Slayer on video
  • BT
  • trail: Cruel Intentions
  • trail: The Orange/Filmfour Prize for Short Film
  • The Guru in cinemas
  • OK! magazine
  • Crunchie
  • KFC
  • The Very Best of Pure R&B
  • Angel on video
  • Argos – Richard E Grant
  • Daily Express