Star Wars trilogy – The Force Returns – Have I Got News For You – tape 2402

It’s over to the Sci Fi channel first, for Star Wars Trilogy: The Force Returns celebrating the return to cinemas of Star Wars with George Lucas’ universally loved Special Editions.

This is not a brilliant documentary. Typical US breathless narration, and the tendency to use the most bombastic music cues over the whole thing lends it an overwhelming air.

But it’s interesting to remember this particular moment in time. Star Wars was back, and for a very short time, everyone loved it again. The fans were even excited for the new scenes and new special effects. It’s a far cry from now, when the special editions are virtually spat upon. Seems like a long time ago.

After this recording switches to BBC2 and Have I Got News For you. Guests on this episode are Fred MacAulay

Fred Macaulay

And a spokesman for a single-issue pressure group given unaccountably large amounts of airtime by the BBC. Not, not Farage, it’s Swampy.



For the benefit of our younger readers, Swampy was famous for digging tunnels underneath the proposed location for an airport runway extension, to protest the new runway. Since he spent most of his time underground, his contributions to a topical news quiz were slight.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 18 April 1997 21.00

After this, recording switches again to the end of Newsnight with Kirsty Wark. (BBC Two England, 18 April 1997 22.30) Then a trailer for Call of the Sea.

Then, we have a Party Election Broadcast by the Natural Law Party. Utterly bonkers. They have graphs and everything.

Theres a trail for Bad Company.

Then, a trailer for Shoot Out in Swansea: The Making of Twin Town.

Next, an episode of Space: Above and Beyond, called The Angriest Angel.

I’m convinced that this show decided to make their CGI more realistic simply by only using black and white. It’s really dull.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 18 April 1997 23.35

Following this, there’s a trailer for The Sack Race about the short careers of football managers.

Then, we have the start of an episode of This Life, the ‘sexy lawyers’ show that I could never bring myself to watch at the time. Nothing I’ve seen since has convinced me to change that.

shortly into the programme, that recording stops, and underneath we’re back to the Sci Fi channel for more Star Wars documentaries. This is a different documentary, with lots of people reminiscing about the original release of Star Wars – Star Wars: The Magic and Mystery.

There’s also a repeat for the documentary shown earlier. Then a short piece about a man with a large Star Wars collection – Steve Sansweet, who also worked as head of Fan Relations for Lucasfilm.

Last on the tape is the start of an episode of Friday the 13th – The Series, a TV show that had virtually nothing to do with the film series. The tape stops not far into this episode, Shadow Boxer.


  • Lombard Direct
  • Currys
  • McEwans
  • Sheba
  • trail: Night of the Creeps
  • trail: Sightings
  • Heineken Export
  • Kellogg’s
  • Mr Kipling
  • Fruitang – Trevor and Simon
  • Fiat Marea
  • Midland Bank
  • Dance Party
  • Bacardi
  • trail: The Moldiver
  • trail: Night of the Creeps
  • Double Burner
  • Sci-Fi Entertainment magazine
  • VW Passat
  • Quick Chat
  • Mini Battenburg
  • Tesco
  • Chicken Bisto – Julie Walters
  • trail: Friday the 13th (tv series)
  • trail: Damien: Omen II
  • trail: Tales of the Unexpected
  • Burning Heart
  • Bodyssage
  • trail: The Thriller Domain
  • In Tone Rider Pro
  • trail: Sightings
  • Duzzit Handy Hanger
  • Easy Glider
  • trail: Friday the 13th
  • trail: Damien: Omen II
  • trail: Sightings
  • trail: The Moldiver
  • Classical CD collection
  • Buttoneer


    1. I remember they also had a huge double-page (possibly four page) advert in newspapers, full of the same stuff, but which also had a ‘proof of a unified field theory’ in a big box in the middle. I have to presume, from the lack of Nobel prizes awarded after that, that it was probably gobbledegook.

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