Month: October 2014

Cheers – tape 519

Before the first episode, a short trailer for the Film Four Extra presentation Runners.

Then, an episode of Cheers. In Let Sleeping Drakes Lie Frasier tells Sam about a patient of his who is attracted to dancers, so Sam straps on the old jazz shoes. Ted Danson is, of course, a pretty good dancer, so much fun is had.

Sam the Dancer

Before the second episode there’s a trailer for A Very British Coup. Then the episode is Airport V. Carla is afraid of flying, so can’t visit Eddie on tour with the ice show. So Frasier takes her along with a lot of his patients who share her phobia.

Crane on a Plane

This episode was directed by Norm himself – George Wendt.

Before the next episode, another trailer for A Very British Coup.

In The Sam in the Gray Flannel Suit Sam is promoted to an executive position in the company so he can play in the company softball team.

Paging Mr Malone

Our Hourly Bread is the next episode, where a raffle for a cruise goes horribly wrong.

66 or 99


There’s a trailer for The Last Resort before the next episode.

The next episode is Slumber Party Massacred. Sam visits Carla’s home for a meal. It is not without incident.

Chez Tortelli-Lebeq

Before the next episode there’s a trailer for Coppolla’s The Conversation, the prequel to Enemy of the State.

The last episode on this tape is Bar Wars, another in the occasional episodes where Cheers pits its ingenuity against their bitter rivals at Gary’s Olde Town Tavern.

Waaade Boooooggs

After this episode, there’s a trailer for Brookside. There’s also a trailer for The Late Shift, presenting the Columbian Volcano Appeal Concert.

Then, for the last ten minutes of the tape, the start of an episode of The Last Resort. The first guest is boxer Nigel Benn.

Nigel Benn

The recording stops just as this interview finishes.


  • Mercury Communications
  • Motown Dance Party
  • Tissot
  • Anchor Spray Cream
  • Sybaris
  • Nat West
  • The Hits of House
  • Coke
  • London Underground
  • George Michael – Faith
  • Holsten Pils – Griff Rhys Jones – Some Like it Hot
  • Coke – First Love
  • BMW
  • Pimms
  • Heinz Beans with things n them
  • Our Price – The Style Council – Confessions of a Pop Group – featuring Hugh Laurie
  • Honeywell Bull
  • Dry Blackthorn
  • Wall’s Magnifico
  • Brook Street
  • Tuborg
  • Reed Employment
  • Heineken – Suzie Blake
  • Disprol
  • Pimm’s
  • Renault 25
  • Amplex – The Avengers
  • Buf Puf
  • Budweiser
  • Vauxhall Nova
  • Pimm’s
  • Our Price – Billy Idol – Best of
  • Budweiser
  • Goodyear Vector
  • Amplex – The Avengers
  • Reed Employment
  • Coke – First Time
  • Gillette Contour Plus
  • Billy Idol
  • New Woman magazine

LA Law – tape 429

Back to basics. More jurisprudence from our friends at McKenzie Brackman.

The tape starts with Mike Scott and a trailer for The Time The Place, talking about the proposed Section 28 which would seek to ‘ban the promotion of homosexuality by local government.’ Those were the days.

There’s a trailer for a subtitled Channel 4 film, He Dies with his Eyes Open starring Charlotte Rampling. While on Thames, there’s a late night horror film,The Torture Garden.

There’s a trailer for Hard Cases.

Then, an episode of LA Law.

Arnie, interrupted


This is the season premiere of season 2, The Lung Goodbye (#5K05).

The next episode guest stars the much-missed David Rappaport as a lawyer who goes up against Victor in a product liability case.

David Rappaport

This is episode #5K01 – The Wizard of Odds.

Before the next episode, the end of This Week. Followed by a trailer for next week’s programme, about the new Ethiopian famine. There’s a trailer for Crescendo with Stephanie Powers. And a short trail for Shelley.

In the next episode there’s an unexpected cameo from TV’s Garry Shandling.

Garry Shandling on LA Law

This episode also introduces Larry Drake as Benny Stulwicz.

Larry Drake

This is episode #5K02 – Cannon of Ethics.

Following this episode, there’s a slight technical glitch, leading to an embarrassed apology. Then a trailer for Minder. And a trailer for Superbowl XXII.

Then, the start of News at Ten. The lead story is the rejection of the appeal of the Birmingham Six – who would eventually be released some time later.

Recording stops during the news.

As a special treat, here’s a compilation of all the trailers, ad breaks and the News – basically,  everything on this tape that isn’t LA Law.


  • Car Fix It
  • Solpadeine
  • Alfred Marks – with “The most advanced office systems training in the country” – what are these “Data Bases” of which you speak?
    Data Bases
  • Oracle
  • Kitekat
  • Payless DIY
  • Nurofen
  • Sunsilk
  • Domestos
  • Harp Gas central heating
  • British Airways Club World
  • Lemsip
  • Timotei
  • Oil of Ulay
  • Ford Sierra
  • Hippo Pota Mousse
  • Whiskas
  • TV Times
  • Kenco
  • House of Fraser Sale
  • Alfred Marks
  • Sealink
  • Knorr Sauces
  • Paston’s Lamb
  • Canderel Spoonful
  • Paston’s Lamb
  • Pontins
  • British Airways Club World
  • Royal Mail
  • Wella Balsam
  • Pan Am
  • British Pork
  • British Gas
  • TV Times
  • Peugeot 405
  • Eagle Star – Rowan Atkinson – Pirate
  • Pan Am

Film 88 – Craig Charles in Melbourne – St Elsewhere – tape 521

First on the tape, an episode of Film 88 wherein Barry Norman reviews the following films:

There’s a report on the filming of A Fish Called Wanda.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 6 June 1988 22.10

Recording switches to some adverts, then a trailer for the “Golden Rose of Montreux winner” Strike!

Then, an episode of St ElsewhereBum In Shot! I mean Boom In Shot!

Boom In Shot

This episode was directed by cast member Eric Laneuville

After this episode, we switch to another recording, Craig Goes Mad in Melbourne. it opens with a coach tour of Melbourne hosted by Rod Quantock who seems to specialise in harrassing regular householders by showing his tourists around their houses without invitation.

Stand Up from Anthony Ackroyd.

Anthony Ayckroyd

New Zealand group The Front Lawn perform a very strange song that for some reason I remember quite well.

Rita Rudner performed at a press conference.

Rita Rudner

The press conference was apparently interrupted by a naked Bing Hitler (Craig Ferguson).

Bing Hitler in the Buff

Richard Stubbs talks about the effects of alcohol.

Richard Stubbs

After this programme, recording switches to the end of a news programme about Northern Ireland. The titles reveal it’s Panorama.

There’s a trailer for a bizarre looking play, Watch With MotherBBC One London, 14 June 1988 21.30

Then, back to Barry Norman, and another episode of Film 88 looking at:

There’s a preview of forthcoming summer movies, including Rambo III and Crocodile Dundee II. And there’s an interview with Woody Allen about September. And Tom Brook looks at the summer movies in the US.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 13 June 1988 22.10

After the programme there’s a trailer for Showreel 88, with an example of a ‘bad’ video – I feel sorry for the poor crew who were tasked to go out on the Thames and make a bad video.

Then, there’s the start of  80th Birthday Celebration for Stephane Grappelli (BBC One London, 13 June 1988 22.40)

The recording stops after 15 minutes of this programme.


  • Abbey National
  • Chambourcy Bonjour
  • Simple
  • Piat D’Or
  • Gold Blend – I think this is the second in the long-running saga of the Gold Blend Couple

  • McDonalds
  • Eagle Star – Rowan Atkinson

  • Ford Orion
  • Lamot Lager
  • Citroen AX
  • Krona
  • Vienetta
  • Maxwell House
  • Conqueror paper

The New Statesman – tape 423

The tape starts with some LWT Weather, some ads, a super-hip trail for the new Night Network, and a trail for the Nicholas Lyndhurst sitcom The Two of Us.

This is the first series of The New Statesman, probably from the first broadcast., although I can’t be sure of that. The first episode is Happiness is a Warm Gun. Alan B’Stard is elected to Westminster with a huge majority, after the other two major candidates are seriously injured in a freak car accident. John Woodvine appears as a mad Chief Constable who drinks beer in the pub with the Holy Spirit.

John Woodvine

Before the second episode there’s another trail for Night Network, and an extremely cheeky trailer for Never Say Never Again which used the regular Bond theme – though I would blame LWT for this.

Second Episode is Passport to Freedom, in which B’Stard’s wife inherits £1m in shares in a car company, and Alan plots to ruin the company so she won’t divorce him.

Sex Is Wrong is the third episode, with Alan using a ‘moral majority’ movement to publish a book called ‘Sex Is Wrong’ illustrated with pictures “frankly shocking in their sexual explicitness”.

Next episode is preceded by a trailer for Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Waste Not Want Not has Alan having to find somewhere to dump tons of Argentinian nuclear waste.

In Friends of St James Alan tries to set up a bank on a caribbean island, and ends up pretending to hijack a plane.

Before the next episode, there’s the end of an episode of the Nigel Havers series The Charmer. Then a trailer for The Bretts.

Three Line Whipping sees Alan give an awful performance on TV-AM, and ends with him driving the supposedly dead body of a taxi driver to be disposed of in the country.

Following the last episode there’s the trailer for The Bretts again, then the start of The South Bank Show. “Tonight a group which for the past few years have spoken in its songs for much of the intelligent, unblinkered youth of this country, The Smiths.” Melvyn can hardly keep a smirk off his face on the word ‘intelligent’.

Smirking Melvyn Bragg

There’s some remarkable footage of a pre-Smiths Johnny Marr.

George Formby


Naturally, John Peel chips in.




John Peel

And Morrissey himself is interviewed.

Morrissey on South Bank Show

Is “Voice and Lyrics” incredibly arch, or am I being unfair?

“The Smiths came together quite by accident really. It just suddenly happened. Which sounds… almost unbelievable, but it really did, it really did happen in a very sudden and very casual way.”

Well, since the only non-casual way a pop group would get together is if Simon Cowell creates you from the discarded parts of failed X-Factor entrants, it’s not really that unbelievable.

Johnny Marr says that Morrissey’s performance was an attempt to ‘Take back the gork.”

Johnny Marr

The programme also talks to fans. Jo O’Keefe liked his pale skin and rugged jawline…

Jo O'Keefe

And it’s not just the ladies. Here’s Shaun Duggan.

Shaun Duggan


“I wouldn’t want to characterise the typical Smiths fan” says Jon Savage of the Observer, all the while typifying all of rock journalism himself.

Jon Savage

Jo O’Keefe has no such qualms about characterising fans. “Male, late teens, lonely, dejected, failed in love, very nervous, no confidence whatsoever. A box bedroom rebel.”

Sadly, we only have 10 minutes of this programme before the tape stops.


  • Kaliber
  • The Guardian
  • Lloyds Bank – John Sessions, Leo McKern
  • Radio Rentals
  • Guinness
  • The Guardian
  • Renault 21
  • Wispa
  • Capital Radio
  • Heineken
  • Daily Express
  • Advertise on Central TV
  • The Untouchables
  • TWA Ambassador Class – they serve Ferrero Rocher.
  • Heinz Tomato Sauce
  • Apple – “Going To Work”

Compare this to the American version

The UK version is shorter, the close-up of the report is completely different – even the format and binding is different to the preceding shot, and the UK version ends with Apple as the brand, while the US version has Macintosh as the branding.

  • TWA
  • Whitbread Best Bitter – another one featuring Peter Capaldi

  • Renault 21
  • Castrol GTX
  • Intercity
  • Nescafe Blend 37
  • Daily Express Enterprize game – trumped up Bingo for stockbrokers
  • Volvo 340
  • ICI
  • Thomson Holidays
  • American Express – featuring Dominic Jephcott from The Beiderbecke Affair

Dominic Jephcott

This is the epitome of smug, rich people. “I adore Seville, but I couldn’t bear to leave Spain without spending a couple of days in Barcelona.”

  • Ford Montego
  • Flake
  • The Cream of Eric Clapton
  • Malaysia

The ‘Burbs – The Flash – tape 425

We open this tape with a BBC1 presentation of Joe Dante’s extremely dark comedy, The ‘Burbs. It starts with the Universal logo, but then zooms down onto the globe until it finds the suburban street on which the whole movie plays.

A strange family moves in – and the bored neighbours start imagining all sorts of horrible things – not surprising, since they look like the Addams family.

The ‘Burbs is an odd film. It’s funny, but it’s also hard to root for the protagonists, even the usually affable Tom Hanks, because frankly they behave appallingly badly. But that’s the nature of the story, and it does all lead to a ludicrously calamitous finale.

The head of the weird family is played by the always reliable Henry Gibson, seen here with Bruce Dern.

Henry Gibson and Bruce Dern

Naturally, it’s a Joe Dante movie so here’s Dick Miller.

Dick Miller in The Burbs

Plus, any movie that features Carrie Fisher has to be worth watching. Although it’s ages since I’ve watched Drop Dead Fred so that statement might not be entirely true.

Carrie Fisher in The Burbs

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 18 April 1992 18.55 – a very early time to show this film, I think. Future broadcasts seem to be after 9pm.

After the movie, there’s a trailer for Dragnet, then recording switches – very glitchingly. It looks like a switch from SP to LP, but the glitching continues for about a minute into the programme.

The programme, by the way, is The Flash. Yes, because although it’s the hot new show from DC in the US, they did it all before in 1990 in a programme that was clearly channelling Tim Burton’s Batman in a big way.

It has a theme by Danny Elfman, and incidental music scored by Elfman’s longtime conductor Shirley Walker, who had Elfman’s signature style down pat. It was developed by Danny Billson and Paul De Meo, writers of Trancers and Zone Troopers.

This episode is called Child’s Play and features a pre-Seaquest Jonathan Brandis.

Following this episode there’s a longer trailer for Arachnophobia. There’s a very intense trailer for a weekday Australian soap, E Street.

Then, we get some WWF wrestling with WWF Superstars introduced by a very shouty Vince MacMahon, with Mr Perfect.

Vince MacMahon

The recording stops after about 30 minutes of this.

Adverts (and trailers):

  • trailer: Arachnophobia
  • trailer: Unsolved Mysteries
  • Bounty
  • Peugeot 106
  • Kodak Gold
  • Shell Advanced Fuels
  • Cesar
  • Sky Sports
  • 21 Jump Street
  • The Simpsons
  • Esso
  • Sodastream
  • Fresh Cream
  • Midland Bank
  • Mars & M&Ms – Danny Baker

  • Golden Crown
  • Trailer: Marciano
  • Trailer: WWF Superstars
  • Snickers Ice Cream
  • Lift Lemon Tea
  • Kingsmill
  • Batman Returns – in cinemas
  • Proton cars
  • Cesar
  • trailer: Arachnophobia
  • Setlers Tums
  • M&Ms – heavily into the Olympic theme
  • Sheba
  • Cornetto
  • trail: Studs
  • Ribena
  • Pedigree Chum
  • Batman Returns in cinemas
  • Midland Bank
  • Feel the Rhythm – album
  • trail: Moonlighting
  • trail: Marciano
  • trail: Simpsons
  • Peugeot
  • Oxy 10
  • Studioline
  • Ariel Colour – or rather “Ariel Color” as they misspelled it on the box, the idiots.
  • Insignia

Friday Night Live – The Last Resort – tape 505

This tape has some recording problems at the start. Not quite as prolonged as the glitches that affected A Boy and his Dog but they’re there at the start. Luckily, the tape opens with adverts.

Recording problems

There’s a trailer for Wired – looks like it’s a trailer for the start of the series.

Then, an episode of Friday Night Live. Ben Elton introduces ‘what must be the last Friday Night Live’.

After his opening monologue, there’s music from Was Not Was – Walk The Dinosaur, obviously.

Was Not Was

Then, Harry Enfield as Stavros. He does a good Jonathan Ross impression, since The Last Resort would be occupying the 10:30 slot next week.

The big star of the show is Dame Edna Everage, who we first meet leaving her theatre in the West End on the way to the Friday Night Live studio.

Dame Edna Everage

After the break, there’s Australian comic Wendy Harmer.

Wendy Harmer

Then Jack Docherty and Moray Hunter as Donald and George.

Donald and George

Loadsamoney does his single.


Backed up by Charlie Higson.

Charlie Higson

And Paul Whitehouse.

Paul Whitehouse

Then we visit the Video Box with Josie Lawrence as Florence from Craigley, who reveals a shocking secret about her true identity, and does some sterling wire work.

Florence from Craigley

Then, Harry Enfield’s back again, this time as Buggerallmoney, the geordie hardman.


Then, the talkative mime Les Bubb.

Les Bubb

And Dame Edna arrives live at the studio.

After another break, more Australians in the form of The Doug Anthony All Stars.

Doug Anthony All Stars

Then a final routine from Ben Elton, and the show closes with more music from Was Not Was.

Next, recording switches to the next week, and the first episode the new series of The Last Resort which is plagued with some terrible recording noise on the soundtrack.

His first guest is ‘The High Priestess of Hip’ Tama Janowitz.

Tama Janowitz

Rowland Rivron appears, with the first appearance of Dr Martin Scrote.

Then, hollywood superstar Jon Cryer makes an appearance.

Jon Cryer

Rick Astley provides some music, singing the Temptations classic Ain’t Too Proud To beg.

Rick Astley Last Resort

In the audience after his number, I spot Harry Enfield, Paul Whitehouse and Charlie Higson (with a woman I don’t recognise) in the audience.

Enfield, Whitehouse, Higson

The reason for their presence is made clear with the final guest, Adam Athanassiou, who was the real-life model for Harry Enfield’s Stavros character.

Adam Athanassiou


There’s another episode of The Last Resort following this.

First guest is John Byrne – not the comic artist, but the writer of Tutti Frutti and Your Cheatin’ Heart.

John Byrne

There’s a variety act after this, Snake Woman, a very impressive contortionist.

Snake Woman

After a short interview with her (in Russian, allegedly) the next guest is Hazel Jones. She makes baby clothes for grown men who like to dress up as babies.

Hazel Jones


Jonathan in a bonnet

After the break, there’s a piece of archive footage from a very long time ago, featuring Frankie Howerd.

There’s music from Micha Paris.

Micha Paris

And the brilliant Gilbert Gottfried.

Gilbert Gottfried

Following this episode there’s a trailer for Woody Allen’s Everything you Always Wanted To Know About Sex.

This recording stops shortly, and there’s another recording underneath. It’ a very strange ‘semi-documentary’ about the effect of the Vietnam war in Britain.

I spotted Henry Woolf in there, but can’t find anything in his iMDb listing, but now here’s Glenda Jackson addressing an anti-war rally.

Glenda Jackson Stop the War

At last we get an ad break, and find out this programme is entitled Tell Me Lies. Directed by Peter Brook. It’s got a 10 star review on iMDb. The small section I saw wouldn’t make me agree. Perhaps it was a weaker section.

The tape finishes during this programme.


  • Old El Paso Tacos
  • Ovaltine Chocolate Drinks
  • Castrol GTX
  • Holsten export
  • Smiths Square Crisps
  • Lilt
  • Exchange and Mart – Thunderbirds
  • Whitbread Best Bitter – Punt and Dennis and Peter Capaldi

Punt and Dennis


Peter Capaldi whitbread advert

  • Honeywell Bull
  • American Express
  • Miller Lite
  • Nat West
  • Pepsi – “Call Triple-A”
  • B&Q
  • Our Price – Replay – album
  • Kaliber
  • Huntley and Palmer Romany
  • Bonnie Tyler in concert
  • Pentax Zoom 70
  • Old El Paso Tacos
  • Pizza Hut
  • Huntley and Palmer Romany
  • Black and Decker electric screwdriver
  • Allinson Wholemeal
  • Dulux Wood products
  • Traditional Homes
  • Datapost
  • Comet

Sleeper – the Cosby Show – Lost in Space – tape 427

The tape opens with Woody Allen’s Sleeper, one of his earlier, funny ones.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 30th November 1987 – 21:00

Afterwards, recording switches to Channel 4, where we get a trailer for The Golden Girls, followed by an episode of The Cosby Show.

Then there’s a trailer for Animal Traffic, before an episode of Lost In Space, called Return from Outer Space.

Following this episode, there’s a trailer for Agatha, and for The Best Little Girl in the World.

Then, the start of a movie, The Courtneys of Curzon Street. The recording stops about 10 minutes into the film.


  • From Motown with Love – album
  • Anaïs Anaïs
  • Heineken
  • Boots
  • Our Price – Bryan Ferry – Bête Noire
  • Bordeanx
  • Braun Silencio
  • Ysatis
  • Badedas
  • Party Pink Barbie
  • Budweiser
  • Thameslink
  • Olympus AF-10
  • Stone’s Best Bitter
  • Clerical Medical
  • Pepsi
  • barbie
  • Miller Lite
  • Mr Kipling Manor House
  • Electricity
  • Heinz Salad Cream
  • Diet Lilt
  • Saab CD
  • Palmer’s Romany

Film 88 – tape 609

Another tape of our old friend Barry Norman, and the erstwhile flagship BBC film programme, Film 88.

In the first episode Barry reviews:

Barry also talks to Clint Eastwood about his directing career.

Clint Eastwood talks to barry Norman

There’s a report from Tom Brook on The Accused.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 21 November 1988 23.40

In the next episode, the reviews are for:

As well as the review, the programme talks to Robert Zemeckis and Richard Williams about the making of Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

There’s a location report from In Country, talking to Emily Lloyd.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 29 November 1988 22.20

Next episode reviews:

There’s a report on the two new multiplex cinemas in Derby. I can’t wait to see The Runnnig Man.

Showcase Cinemas

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 6 December 1988 22.20

Onto the next episode, and Barry reviews:

There’s a location report on the making of Derek Jarman’s War Requiem.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 12 December 1988 23.05

And next, in the last regular edition of Film 88, Barry Norman reviews:

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 20 December 1988 23.25

Following this episode there’s a trailer for Silverado. Then, there’s the start of the Gene Kelly musical Brigadoon, and the recording stops

Beauty and the Beast – tape 558

This tape starts with another episode of the uber-romantic Beauty and the Beast. This episode is Nor Iron Bars a Cage.

Vincent (Ron Perlman) is photographed by a photographer doing infra-red nighttime photography – could he suddenly be revealed to the New York public? And Catherine (Linda Hamilton) is offered a new job, but it’s far away, meaning she’d have to leave Vincent behind.

The photographer actually works at a university, and is considered a crank there – he hasn’t published anything since his great work was ‘stolen’ by another professor fifteen years ago. So he’ll have something to prove.

A grad student comes to him, offering his help, and they manage to shoot Vincent with tranquiliser darts. Luckily, his capture is spotted by an old woman using her telescope to spy in Central Park at night. We’re not told what she normally looks for.

Old Lady Peeping Tom

The professor and his student clash over how to handle Vincent. The student thinks he’s just an animal, the professor believes he’s human. The student wants to announce their discovery immediately, the professor wants to keep him secret until he knows more.

Catherine manages to track them down, thanks to weird old peeping tom lady, and gets there just in time for professor and student to have a big fight. Catherine rescues Vincent, and the programme ends with her reading to him, back safe in his underground lair.

Recording switches after this to the end of a Richard O’Sullivan and Tim Brooke Taylor sitcom, Me and My Girl, complete with theme tune by Peter Skellern. There’s a trailer for the Ruth Rendell Mystery Shake Hands Forever.

Then, another Beauty and the Beast – It starts off in media res with an old man trapped in a fire started by some youths in a car. Vincent rescues the man – who turns out to be Mr Schorofovsky from The Kids from Fame.

Mr Schorovsky


I suspect the reason for the episode starting in the middle of the action might be censorship by ITV – we don’t get an episode title, or opening guest credits. This episode is called Siege and is actually a much earlier episode than the previous one. Clearly, LWT don’t worry too much about continuity.

The ‘punks’ are trying to get him and the other elderly residents to leave their home, presumably because there’s a corrupt landowner wanting to redevelop. This is exactly the same plot as an episode of The Equalizer I looked at a while ago, and also the movie batteries not included.

Meanwhile, Catherine meets a strangely shiny businessman, to whom she’s unaccountably attracted, since he’s clearly horrible. Naturally, he’s the owner of the building trying to evict the old folks.

Shiny businessman

Of course, eventually Catherine finds out the truth, and Vincent saves the residents when a large gang of thugs attack them in their homes. I’d forgotten that Vincent gets around the city quickly by hanging on to the roof of subway trains.

Vincent tube surfing

Following this episode, a trail for Saturday night TV, including the kind of clip from Blind Date that reminds me why I never watched it.

There’s a trailer for Bust starring that inexplicably popular charisma vacuum Paul Nicholas.

Then, the beginning of the final episode of Shake Hands Forever – an Inspector Wexford mystery. After a few minutes, recording switches – clearly that was a rare Friday night when I was out.

We’ve switched to Channel 4, and there’s a trailer for The Last Resort.

Then, an episode of Whose Line is it Anyway with a fairly heavyweight line-up.

Stephen Fry on Whose Line

The infinite smokestack that is Peter Cook.

Peter Cook on Whose Line

Josie Lawrence, Whose Line stalwart, and always reliable in the song-based games.

Josie Lawrence on Whose Line

And John Sesions, a man whose face is incapable of not looking smug.

John Sessions on Whose Line

Stephen Fry at one point gets so excited at performing in a sketch with Peter Cook that he drops his trousers.

Fry's Pants

After the show, there’s a trailer for The Media Show featuring Robin Williams.

There’s also a trailer for a season of comedy films.

Then, another episode of The Last Resort.

TV's Mr Entertainment

His first guest is Leigh Bowery. You’d think he’d bother to make the effort for TV, wouldn’t you?

Leigh Bowery

Musical guest is Julian Cope.

Julian Cope

Next guest is the recently installed new editor of Private Eye, Ian Hislop.

Ian Hislop


Next guest is Bernard Laverty, with his incredible vegetables.

Bernard Laverty


There’s also a Last Resort staff training video, featuring Rick Astley.

Rick Astley on The Last Resort

There’s also, with no explanation or comment whatsoever, a motorcycle stunt rider in the studio.

Motorcycle rider

And the tape run out just as the final guest, Melvyn Bragg, is introduced.


  • Trailer: Agatha Christie’s Murder with Mirrors
  • Capri Sun
  • Bisto
  • Carlsberg
  • Kit Kat
  • Lunn Poly
  • Trailer: Piece of Cake
  • Federal Express
  • Rover 800 Fastback
  • Heinz Baked Beans – Cilla Black
  • Texas Homecare
  • Daily Mail – Neil Mullarkey
  • Trailer: Shake Hands Together
  • Heinz Beans – Steve Davis
  • Wispa – Andre Previn and Derek Jameson
  • MMR – an advert for the new Measles. Mumps, Rubella vaccine.

  • TRI-AC
  • Plenitude
  • Comet
  • Weetabix
  • British Telecom International
  • Trailer: Piece of Cake
  • Dickins & Jones
  • McDonalds
  • Walkers Crisps
  • Yorkie
  • Sugar Puffs – Honey Monster and John Cooper Clarke. This really happened.

  • Scottish Salmon
  • London Underground
  • trailer: Murder She Wrote
  • ICI
  • Sharps bedrooms
  • Black & Decker Quattro
  • Golden Wonder Crisps
  • Alpen – Lenny Henry
  • Daily Telegraph – Hitchhiker’s Guide ripoff
  • Gaggia
  • Mitsubishi Black Diamond
  • Queensway
  • No 7
  • Sybaris
  • Walkers Crisps
  • Renault 25
  • Carling Black Label
  • BET
  • Ovaltine Chocolate Drinks – Kathy Staff
  • Scottish Salmon
  • Comet
  • MIM Britannia – Saint and Greavsie
  • Our Price – Ruby Turner – The Motown Song Book
  • Super Bad – hits of the 70s
  • Gillette Contour Plus
  • Persil Automatic
  • Moonlighting – compilation album
  • WH Smith – Chris De Burgh – Flying Colours

One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest – tape 636

The tape opens with a trailer for Desperately Seeking Susan, Madonna’s only good film.

Then, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, one of the few films that achieved a clean sweep at the Oscars, winning Best Actor and Actress, Best Film and Best director, plus Best Adapted Screenplay.

It’s a classic movie, Jack Nicholson is superb as McMurphy, basically a troublemaker who has been committed to a mental institution, ruled over by the fearsome Nurse Ratched, played by the brilliant Louise Fletcher.

I first saw this film at school, projected from (probably) a 16mm print in Heath Barn, the old building we used for drama lessons, and which eventually became quite a sizable music department,

I think it was shown to us as a sort-of welcome to the sixth form event. We got to watch a film with (genuinely) adult themes, and got to discuss it afterwards with teachers. I can remember being impressed with the film, but frustrated that the sound system in the hall was terrible, and much of the dialogue was very hard to hear. It also diminished the impact of the ‘juicy fruit’ scene with the Chief. I didn’t like the ending, but that’s my problem. I want happy endings in everything.

Here’s the continuity introduction for the film.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 29th December 1988 – 22:00

After the movie, there is a trailer for The Shooting Party. Then, a rundown of tomorrow’s programmes on BBC Two, and a weather report.

Then, the tape continues with INXS – In Search of Excellence. I was never a fan if INXS – it sounded to me like their guitarist could only play one type of riff, so they based all their songs around that. And these days, given Michael Hutchence’s life choices, they just seem a little tragic.

The whole show is recorded here. I’d never realised that INXS was mostly three brothers.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 30th December 1988 – 00:10

Afterwards, BBC Two closes down, not with the national anthem (that’s BBC1’s job) but with John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Merry Christmas (War is Over). This is played over various pictures of children in nativity plays.