Chef! – The Thin Blue Line – The Fast Show – Knowing Me Knowing Yule – Have I Got News For You – tape 2363

Straight into an episode of Lenny Henry’s Chef! Everton persuades Gareth to let him use the restaurant to cater his sister’s wedding.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 23 December 1996 20.30

Afterwards there’s a trailer for the Vicar of Dibley Christmas Special. Then a trailer for the Stallone moutain rescue thriller Cliffhanger.

Then there’s the beginning of the Nine O’Clock News, but after a few minutes, recording switches. There’s an episode of The Thin Blue Line, possibly the first evidence that Ben Elton was starting to fire comedic blanks. This episode is The Green Eyed Monster.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 23 December 1996 21.30

Following this there’s a trailer for The Wrong Trousers.

Then there’s the start of an episode of They Think It’s All Over – the christmas edition.


There’s a few minutes of this, before recording switches to an episode of The Fast Show in progress. Its a christmas special, featuring all the usual crew.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 27 December 1996 21.40

Following this, one of those ‘This is only possible due to the way the BBC is funded’ adverts, featuring Vic and Bob.

This is followed by a trailer for Robert Altman’s Short Cuts.

Then, Knowing Me Knowing Yule with Alan Partridge. The final episode of Partridge’s seminal talk show. It features most of the regular cast, plus the actor Kevin Eldon.

The Actor Kevin Eldon

Of course, the show ends with the bombshell that Alan will never work on television again, and ends with Mick Hucknall singing Ding Dong Merrily on High unironically while a manic Alan stalks the set with a partridge stuck on his hand.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 27 December 1996 22.25

Following this, a trailer for Steve Coogan’s newest character, The Tony Ferrino Phenomenon. Then a trailer for New Year’s Eve programmes, including The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus.

Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus

This recording continues for a few minutes with the start of Pedro Almodovar’s High Heeels, but then recording switches.

The timing on this tape is not good, as when we switch, we’re once again into an episode of Chef in progress. This s the last episode in the series – will Gareth try and reconcile with Janice, who revealed she was pregnant, or will he try to make a new life with Rochelle, whom he met in the previous episode? It’s all very sweet.

BBC Genome: BBC One London, 30 December 1996 20.30

Following this episode there;s a trailer for New Year’s Eve programmes on BBC1.

New Year BBC1 1996

There’s a trailer for Death Becomes Her, then the Nine O’Clock News, leading with a possible peace deal in Israel. After a few minutes of the news, recording switches again.

This time, we almost get all of the credits of a compilation episode of Have I Got News For You. This was the series Piers Morgan appeared on and made an arse of himself, but I wouldn’t subject the readers of my blog with his loathsome visage, so here’s a picture of Max Clifford instead.

Max Clifford

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 30 December 1996 22.05

There’s a trailer for Friday Night programmes, followed by a trailer for In the Name of the Father.

Then, the tape runs out with the start of Robert Rodriguez’ famously low-budget movie El Mariachi.



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