John Sessions’ Tall Tales – tape 333

From joyless sex to joyless masturbation. Or perhaps I’m prejudging this tape a bit too much.

The tape starts with a brief bit of BBC continuity: “…insensitive in the current situation. Instead, the story of an American…” which is cut off as we switch to the end of an episode of French and Saunders.

After this,  there’s a trailer for Old Flames, a very good play with Simon Callow and Stephen Fry.

Then, the first of John Sessions’ Tall Tales is Harold’s Night Out. Thankfully, my initial cynicism about Sessions’ improvisational tendencies are unfounded, as these one man shows are not improvised, although they are still chock full of all the literary allusions he likes to employ. In this one, Harold Pinter reveals an unknown side, writing for Eastenders under a pseudonym.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 19th January 1991 – 21:30

Straight into another episode, The Glory and the Dream. It’s about some stereotypical American tourists who meet Shakespeare.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 26th January 1991 – 21:30

Third episode here is Don Juan in Cornwall. The story of a middle-aged painter, and his inflated opinions of his own attractiveness to women.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 2nd February 1991 – 21:35

Neighbours and Lovers is set in Ramsey Street and sees DH Lawrence visit the street, only to be revealed to actually be Rupert Murdoch for reasons which escape me.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 9th February 1991 – 21:35

In There’s Nowt So Queer As Folk some famous poets visit a folk club, as do Keith Richards and Mick Jagger.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 16th February 1991 – 21:35

Finally, in The Toy Shop, we meet the overweight assistant of a toy shop whose philosophical leanings and calm demeanour prevent a tragedy involving a crossbow.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 23rd February 1991 – 21:35

After this, there’s a trailer for Screen Two: A Private Life. Then, The Godfather begins, and there’s about 10 minutes of that before recording stops.

Underneath, there’s a programme featuring Russ Abbott and Les Dennis. It’s the end of The Russ Abbott Christmas Show from 1987. Then there’s a trailer for In Sickness and In Health.

Then, the Christmas episode of Only Fool and Horses starts. There’s about 3 minutes of this before the tape ends.

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