Month: September 2018

The Fast Show – Fist of Fun – tape 2146

Skipping forwards a little in time for this tape, which opens with the end of Gardener’s World.

There’s a trailer for Red Dwarf VI which I’ve uploaded before, although this one says “In half an hour” instead of “Next Friday”.

Then, The Fast Show. This is a new series, although for someone like me who is an occasional viewer rather than a fan, it’s hard to identify by series.

Unlucky Alf gets assaulted by the National Lottery.

I think of this sketch every time I see Nick Park being interviewed. Was this filmed at Aardman? The Gromit is accurate. “Just a tiny amount…”

Ted & Ralph really is beautifully written and performed.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 16th February 1996 – 21:00

After this, there’s a trailer for The Fast Show.

Then there’s the start of Red Dwarf VI, a repeat run of the show. After a few minutes, recording switches to the end.

There’s a trailer for Later Presents Paul Weller in Concert.

Then, the first episode of series 2 of Fist of Fun, the other comedy duo consisting of a floppy haired intellectual, and his slightly more laddish partner (after Newman and Baddiel a few days ago). I don’t like the new set. “Like Sylvester McCoy’s Doctor Who, the new Fist of Fun is brief excitement followed by disappointment, shame and regret.”

There’s a bit of a dig at programmes like The Girly Show, featuring Sally Phillips.

Simon Quinlank, King of Hobbies, appears. His weak lemon drink gets a cheer.

There’s a guest appearance by Rod Hull. Yes, he’s the real Rod Hull. “I AM HIM!”

As always, loads of flash frames, mostly at the end of the show, and yes, I’m sad enough to capture them all.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 16th February 1996 – 22:00

Another episode of The Fast Show follows. I like the fast forwarding through the trailers at the start of a crappy home video featuring films like Cat and Dog.

There’s a cheeky bit where they’re fast forwarding through a Porkys style ‘raunchy comedy’ and there’s a glimpse of some girls topless in the shower, but when they pause and rewind they’re all wearing towels. I’m not saying that’s a shared experience, but it might be.

Uncle Duck

I do love the Bob Fleming sketches. You always know where they’re going, but there’s a joy in seeing quite how they get there.

I like the childish businessmen too. A simple joke, but funny, and slightly reminiscent of a Fry and Laurie sketch.

Another lovely Ted and Ralph sketch, this one with no dialogue at all.

Guest star Steve Davis plays Shaft at snooker.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 23rd February 1996 – 21:00

I’ve cut off the start of the episode of Fist of Fun here. I was probably too slow swapping tapes after recording ed Dwarf.

Rich loves Pancake Tuesday.

But his pancake routine is disrupted by Jarvis Cocker, fresh from his stage invasion at the Brit Awards. (As played by Alistair McGowan).

The Shrewsbury Pie Pie Festival is great.

Rebecca Front plays an EU bureaucrat who wants to abolish the tradition because people keep dying from food poisoning. “Some particles in the Pie Pie Pie could be up to 500 years old.” I love that her name is Uderzo.

This is all such a metaphor for Brexit. “I have the right to poison myself. Up Yours Delors.”

The parable of the prodigal son features Sally Phillips as a menstruating woman.

Ian News is both very very stupid and very clever.

Flash Frames for this episode

Genome: BBC Two – 23rd February 1996 – 22:00

There’s another brief clip of Gardener’s World before the next episode. There’s a trailer for Modern Times.

Then, another Fast Show. The off-roaders are going Paintballing.

“That looks nothing like the man who attacked me.” “No, it’s Jesus.”

“I’ll Get Me Clothes”

They’ve got Oasis to a tee.

“He knows what he wants!”

Forrest Gump gets an oscar.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 1st March 1996 – 21:00

After this there’s a strange trailer for Clive Anderson – Our Man In… with Clive playing Anne Robinson. Also a trailer for Fist of Fun.

Then there’s the start of Red Dwarf, and the end of the same episode.

There’s a trailer for Our Friends in the North.

Also a trailer for Murder One.

Then, more from Fist of Fun.

Simon Quinlank is angry.

Rich suggests doing ‘The F Files’ because the X Files has finished on the BBC. Stew talks about David Frost’s Beyond Belief.

York City are Magic.

Sally Phillips reports on this

Following on from that, Stew interviews Paul Daniels’ assistant, who tearfully admits that Paul Daniels isn’t really magic, and it’s all done with tricks.

“Rod Hull has a false arm?”

Seahand and Zemquitt, stupid Hollywood Producers

And all the show flash frames. See if you can spot the reference to Jimmy Saville buried amongst them.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 1st March 1996 – 22:00

We skip a few episodes, which I hope are on another tape.

There’s another bit of Gardener’s World, with Geoff Hamilton wishing us a ‘great pruning weekend’.

There’s a trailer for Reputations, about Alfred Kinsey.

Also a trailer for This Life.

Then, more from the Fast Show.

I like Denzil Dexter too.

“Cough Medicine? What will they think of next?”

Pan Pipes comes to Jazz Club

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 29th March 1996 – 21:00

After this, there’s a trailer for Murder One. And one for Fantasy Football League.

Then, there;s the start of Angus Deayton’s documentary about British Sex Comedies, Doing Rude Things. There’s a few minutes of this before the recording stops, and switches to the end of Newsnight. It’s interesting to watch the end credits of things like Newsnight, because you often spot names of people who would go on to be fairly important. This edition featured George Entwhistle, the future Director General who had to resign over the Jimmy Saville, Operation Yewtree fiasco. And Jay Hunt who would go on to be the controller of BBC One, the head of Channel 5, and most recently the Chief Creative Officer of Channel 4.

There’s another trail for Clive Anderson ‘Our Man In… The Bronx’. 

Then the tape runs out during an episode of The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer.

Space 1999 – Men Behaving Badly – The Larry Sanders Show – tape 1989

First on tape number 1989, it’s Space 1999. I’ll mention up front that Zenia Merton who plays Sandra Benes, died a few days ago. But I’d already seen her on another tape, so this one is just a sad follow-up. I’m so very sorry.

This episode is Seed of Destruction. Koenig and Carter land on an asteroid, and inside there’s a hall of mirrors. Koenig gets duplicated by the mirrors and the evil duplicate goes back to Alpha, leaving the real Koenig there so the aliens’ evil plan can be explained to him (and us).

Obligatory Eagle take-off shot.

This is not a bad episode, because it’s mostly about how you handle it when your commanding officer is acting erratically, as Koening starts diverting moonbase power to a beam that’s supposed to jump-start the asteroid to regenerate their race, and replace the Alphans. Carter stays loyal almost to the end, but even Helena can’t understand his behaviour. OK, so this is probably a retread of the Star Trek episode The Enemy Within.

After this, recording continues briefly, and we get the start of Alien Nation, then recording switches to the end of Newsroom South East. There’s a scary story about a truck crashing into an office building.

There’s weather from David Lee. Then a trailer for The X Files moving from BBC2 to BBC1. There’s also a trailer for Bob Monkhouse’s panel show Gag Tag.

Then, Men Behaving Badly, and it’s the first episode of the BBC1 run, so Harry Enfield has left, and Neil Morrissey’s Tony makes his debut.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 9th January 1996 – 21:30

Then, recording switches to BBC2 for The Larry Sanders Show. Larry’s old partner turns up, played by Eric Bogosian, and he’s given a writing job on the show because Larry feels sorry for him.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 9th January 1996 – 23:15

There’s another bit of the end of Newsroon South East again, and John Kettley is a Weather Man.

There’s a trailer for Inside Story. And one for the Michael J Fox comedy The Secret of My Success.

Then, another episode of Men Behaving Badly. This episode is Troublesome 12 inch. Gary finds a rare record among Dorothy’s records, and tries to sell it. But Dorothy asks where it is so he has to improvise. The Rich Tea biscuit is a small piece of comedy gold.

Deborah and Tony almost get together, but he manages to ruin it.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 30th January 1996 – 21:30

Next, from one laddish comedy to another, and an episode of Game On. In Working Girls, Mandy is getting frustrated at not having any opportunities at work. She meets a new author, a bluff Yorkshireman who has written a book called Blood Pudding. He asks her to dinner and she thinks it’s to ask for her help on the book.

Martin has a flashback to his schooldays. I keep forgetting he was at school with Matthew, which does explain why Martin puts up with him.

For Martin’s Birthday, Matthew arranges a girl to visit him, and of course, he’s oblivious to the fact that she’s been paid to have sex with him. It’s left unclear whether they actually did the deed. She tells Matthew they did, he says he just had a massage.

And Mandy does end up sleeping with professional northerner Ron Grimshawe, discovering there’s not really a research job. This really is a desperately tragic series. Really bleak.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 1st February 1996 – 22:00

After this there’s a trailer for Just a Minute.

Then, a short Video Nation segment in which Lauren Bateman reads a story from a magazine and wonders just what it is that men have to offer women.

Then, there’s a bit of an episode of Newsnight.

The recording stops during this, and underneath there’s part of an episode of the Robocop TV series. Then, after that, the start of an episode of Picket Fences during which the tape stops.


  • trail: Posse
  • Wall’s Feast
  • Pantene
  • Red Bull
  • Bird’s Eye Crunchy Garlic Chicken
  • Cash Converters
  • McVities
  • trail: Fire
  • trail: Quantum Leap
  • Sky Travel Service
  • Kit Kat
  • Corn Flakes
  • Pepsi Challenge
  • trail: Movies in June
  • trail: the Untouchables
  • Walker’s Crisps
  • Prudential
  • Burger King
  • Proton
  • trail: The Critic
  • Mum
  • Bran Flakes
  • Mars Ice Cream
  • trail: Prelude To A Kiss

The Tall Guy – tape 1985

The Tall Guy is a film that stars Jeff Goldblum and Emma Thompson. As such, it’s hardly surprising that I love it rather a lot.

It’s the first film written by Richard Curtis, and is very slightly semi-autobigraphical. Goldblum plays Dexter King, an actor who’s working as the straight man to grumpy, rubber-faced comedian Ron Anderson, played by Rowan Atkinson. Curtis used to be Atkinson’s straight man on tour – the comedy record Live in Belfast features Curtis. I’ve no idea what Atkinson is like in real life, but I doubt he can be as bad as Ron Anderson, a truly awful man who treats his team with contempt. But I suspect Atkinson enjoyed playing it.

There’s some lovely 1980s West End location shooting as Goldblum cycles home. I remember when Follies was on at the Shaftesbury Theatre.

There’s a tiny appearance from Jonathan Ross, on a TV, introducing Ron Anderson, to Dexter’s horror.

He shares a flat with Geraldine James, a woman who always has a naked man with her. She gives him terrible advice about relationships. “Behave like a total bastard” she says.

He falls in love with the nurse at his doctor’s practice. Because she’s Emma Thompson.

I like that Dexter is wearing Superman Jim Jams, but I can’t help noticing how incredibly off-model that logo is.

Joanna Kanska, off of A Very Peculiar Practice plays an old girlfriend of Dexter’s.

I’m fairly sure this is Richard Curtis, meeting Dexter in a corridor. And is it me, or is Dexter dressed as Peter Davison’s Doctor Who? Given that Kanska played Davison’s girlfriend in A Very Peculiar Practice, is this actually a multi-layered nerdy reference?

I’m loving the flashbacks to Dexter’s earlier life.

There’s a very silly shagging scene when Goldblum and Thompson do finally hook up. It’s definitely played for laughs, but if I’m honest, despite all the comedy, it’s one of the more realistic sex scenes, as they actually seem to be having fun.

There’s a brief glimpse of the end of a scene in the Ron Anderson show that’s clearly a sketch they used in Mr Bean. Which hadn’t started when this film came out. Was it a sketch they did on stage?

There’s a rather marvellous montage scene, set to Madness’s It Must Be Love that actually turns into a mini-musical number featuring members of the cast, and even Suggs himself.

After being sacked from the Ron Anderson show, Dexter visits his agent. There’s cameo appearances from Angus Deayton.

And Robin Driscoll. Both of whom have also played straight man for Rowan Atkinson.

His agent is played by Anna Massey.

He gets a gig on a musical version of The Elephant Man. “It’s called Elephant. With an exclamation mark, presumably.” The choreographer is Charles Augins, Queeg from Red Dwarf.

Kim Thomson plays his co-star, who has a thing for him. And because he’s an idiot, he has an affair with her.

Cameo from Melvyn Bragg

The Elephant Man makeup is impressive, if a little historically inaccurate.

The musical is an endless source of comedy. Like the balled “Packing His Trunk” and the stirring finale “Somewhere Up in Heaven There’s An Angel With Big Ears.”

The director of the movie, Mel Smith, turns up at the first night party.

Emma Thompson has worked out that he’s having an affair. “You said you liked me because I was clever.” And she leaves him.

John Inman appears on an awards show giving an award to Ron Anderson.

There’s a rush to the hospital where she works, and Dexter has to try to reconcile while she’s trying to save people’s lives. It’s an OK scene, but I never really bought it. However, because you like both the characters, you tend to ignore the logic of the scene and enjoy that they do, in fact, get back together.


After the film, recording continues, and there’s a short programme called Loved Ones.

Then, there’s an episode of The Kids in the Hall. I have to admit to not enjoying this series very much. “I’m crushing your head” is the only thing I remember from it.

After this, another programme, Baroque Duet, documenting a musical collaboration between Kathleen Battle and Wynton Marsalis.

After this, the tape finally runs out during an Edward G Robinson film, Smart Money.


  • Pearl Drops
  • Safeway
  • T-Gel
  • Legal & General
  • Vauxhall Astra – Tom Conti and Nigel Hawthorne
  • Cooperative Bank
  • L’Oreal Plenitude
  • Enigma
  • Peoples Phone
  • Wash & Go
  • British Airways
  • Polyfilla
  • Gold Blend
  • VW
  • trail: The Politician’s Wife
  • Ford Fiesta
  • Dulux
  • Legal & General
  • Tampets
  • Axa Equity and Law
  • American Express
  • Miller Genuine Draft
  • Immac
  • Direct Line
  • BiSoDol Heartburn
  • trail: Fair Game
  • trail: Takeover TV
  • Lilt
  • Lion Bar
  • Citroen Xantia
  • Cooperative Bank
  • Virgin Atlantic – Terence Stamp
  • Chatback
  • Budweiser
  • trail: Friday on Four
  • Gillette Gel
  • Levi 501
  • Monroe Shock Absorbers
  • McVities
  • One Plus One Dating
  • National Lottery
  • Vodafone
  • Renault Laguna
  • trail: Takeover TV
  • Vauxhall Astra – Tom Conti and Nigel Hawthorne
  • T-Gel
  • Nurofen Plus
  • Movelat
  • Hovis White
  • Essilor Varilux
  • Chatline
  • Holsten Pils – Denis Leary
  • Coca Cola
  • Caffrey’s
  • National Lottery Instants
  • Duck Mildew Remover
  • One Plus One Dating
  • Gold Blend
  • Vauxhall Astra – Tom Conti and Nigel Hawthorne
  • Movelat
  • Jolly Rancher
  • Monroe Shock Absorbers
  • Pedigree Chum
  • Rennie
  • Chatline
  • Philadelphia
  • HP Sauce
  • trail: Fair Game
  • Peugeot 106
  • Chatline
  • Immac
  • Pepsi Challenge
  • trail: Lady in White

Lenny Henry Christmas Special – Pauline Calf’s Wedding Video – Newman and Baddiel Live and In Pieces – French and Saunders Christmas Special – A B’Stard Exposed – The WH Smith Book Show – tape 1898

Wow, apologies if I’ve exploded your blog reader with the length of the title for this entry. I think it’s the longest I’ve ever had. It’s Christmas, so there’s a lot of different Christmas Specials and special broadcasts here.

First, The Lenny Henry Show.

A musical performance from Salt ‘n’ Pepa

John Fortune interviews Lenny as the richest man in the World.

Top American Cop Nathan Gunn comes to London.

Co starring Peter Wyngarde.

Curtis Walker plays a Welsh Rapper.

More music, this time from Dina Carroll.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 28th December 1994 – 21:15

Next, it’s Pauline Calf’s Wedding Video. I should admit here that I’m not a huge fan of wither Paul or Pauline Calf as characters. But there’s some good lines. “We’ve got none of that Caroline Tea. We’ve got Tetley.” “No thanks.” “They’re the round ones”

John Hannah appears.

Co-Writer Patrick Marber plays Pauline’s Greek fiancee Spiros.

John Thomson plays Fat Bob, in love with Pauline but unrequited.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 29th December 1994 – 21:50

Next, not a Christmas show, but Newman and Baddiel Live and In Pieces. There are lots of stories about how their friendship was falling apart by the time these concerts, and they weren’t speaking offstage.

As a comedy gig, it is genuinely amazing to see the kind of reaction they get. The cliche headline was ‘comedy is the new rock and roll’ but the reaction they get from the audience is quite something.

The sound cuts out at one point, and I thought it was a recording problem, but it turns out it was a bit.

I’m not sure I’ve ever watched this before, but I’m finding this quite funny. But I did always enjoy the Mary Whitehouse Experience.

Rob Newman’s entrance on a motorised skateboard is pretty good.

I have to admit, a lot of Rob Newman’s material was outside my frame of reference. 90s music and footballers.

Rob Newman comes on on wires just to take the applause.

The encore could be nothing else – it’s History Today.

I love the fact that David Baddiel has to point out to the audience that Rob Newman is holding up Stabilisers.

Also appearing in the show is Sean Lock.

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 30th December 1994 – 00:20

Next, it’s the turn of French and Saunders. There’s a Dickensian sketch, featuring Ade Edmondson.

The Fat Old Blokes have never really worked for me, and these days they just seem awful. The fact it’s two women performing them isn’t really enough to compensate for the fact we’re just seeing two blokes harassing women.

The Piano is the movie parody.

A guest appearance by Anna Wing

The two extras meet Geraldine McEwan and Richard Briers. “Nobody knows what the hell is going on”.

A young Rupert Penry-Jones plays a runner.

I do like the two old country ladies, though.

Russ Conway plays the piano.

Another appearance from Christopher Ryan.

And a song and dance number from Anita Harris to close the show.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 30th December 1994 – 21:30

There’s a trailer for Cold Comfort Farm, and one for Clive James on 1994.

After this, recording continues, with a programme that wasn’t originally listed in my database. It’s Alan B’Stard Exposed, a hard hitting political interview with the Tory politician with the largest majority in the House of Commons.

He’s being interviewed by Brian Walden.

It’s strange that this programme turns up on BBC1, spinning off from an ITV show. But it works when there’s an ad break, and instead of adverts, we see what’s happening in the studio. There’s an appearance from the great Geoffrey McGivern as a floor manager.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 30th December 1994 – 22:10

Next, one more programme, as Frank Delaney interviews Stephen King for the WH Smith Book Show.

After this programme, there’s the start of a Sky News bulletin. The tape ends during this programme.


  • Mastercard
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Radian B
  • Fairy Non Bio
  • Esso
  • VW Polo
  • Kleenex Ultra
  • Today


One Foot In The Grave – One Night Stand – tape 1900

I don’t remember recording all these episodes of One Foot in the Grave. But I’m quite glad I did, as it lets me catch up.

The first episode here is Only a Story. Victor and Margaret return home to find their ceiling wallpaper has fallen down.

Mrs Warboys is visiting while her basement flat is flooded out.

Margaret is not enjoying her stay. But Victor is chilled out because he’s been visiting a women who does reflexology, stroking his feet to relax him. There’s a lovely beat in the opening scene when Margaret asks Mrs Warboys is anyone has been round to pick up the enlargement. “You know, the one we got done at the photo Shop that was horribly wrong?” Then, when the scene ends, and Mrs Warboys leaves the living room, we get this shot.

Victor has had another letter printed in the local paper. Previously, they’d printed a letter from him, but attached the wrong name and address. This time they’ve printed his name and address as that of the editor of the paper.

Victor and Mrs Warboys get locked out of the house, so they seek shelter at his neighbour’s, who is having a party with fellow members of the Dixon of Dock Green appreciation society.

And at the end of the episode, while Victor is upstairs about to apply lotion to his bottom (having sat on a roasting dish earlier in the episode) Margaret turns on the TV to see him through their bedroom window. There’s a TV Crew outside, having mistaken Victor for the editor of the local paper, doing a piece about a story in the local paper which invaded the privacy of a local MP.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 1st January 1995 – 21:00

The next episode is called The Affair of the Hollow Lady. It guest stars Barbara Windsor as a local greengrocer who has designs on Victor.

Mrs Warboys wins a prize at Madame Tussaud’s – a wax work of herself.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 8th January 1995 – 21:10

The next episode is Rearranging the Dust. Victor and Margaret are waiting in a solicitor’s office. Antony Sher makes a guest appearance.

This is a really good episode, with lots of low level slapstick and public embarrassment. And a surprisingly melancholy ending.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 15th January 1995 – 21:05

The next episode, called Hole in the Sky, sees a guest appearance from Christopher Ryan. As twins.

Victor is experimenting with seafood.

The structure of these episodes is very interesting. There are frequently events that happen off camera, and we learn about them from the story being recounted by Victor and others. Like the disastrous trip to an Armenian restaurant by Victor and neighbour Angus Deayton, where they were assumed to be lovers wanting an intimate dinner.

Margaret finds some money lying on the ground, along with a restaurant receipt. Victor persuades her that he should track the owner down, which they do, and he visits the house, not knowing it’s the house of Angus Deayton’s brother in law. So he has to hide in a cupboard. The Brother in law is played by Michael Fenton Stevens.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 22nd January 1995 – 21:05

Following this, recording switches to Channel 4, for an unmarked programme, One Night Stand: Bill Hicks. I’m still a bit sad about his ridiculously early death, although I do wonder what age would have done to him.

After this, there’s an episode of Football Italia – Mezzonotte. I have nothing to say about this.

Then, a programme called Blood Sweat and Glory. It opens with the weirdest title sequence in which a group of very caucasian looking people are dressed up like native Americans, and a woman vaults over a bull.

This is a programme made mostly of archive footage, looking at people who liked thrills and spills. There’s a section about various skiing greats, and I was glad to see the definitive skier represented. For some reason, Franz Klammer is one of those athletes who will always be the primary exemplar of a sport I’m not that interested in.

Then the tape ends just as an old film, Wedding Rehearsal, starts.


  • Lil-lets
  • Walker’s Crisps
  • Vidal Sassoon
  • Scottish Widows
  • Special Constabulary
  • Quiz Show in cinemas
  • Pret-a-Porter in cinemas
  • trail: Pot Night
  • Colgate Plax
  • Glade Touch ‘n Fresh
  • Virgin Atlantic – Terence Stamp
  • The Equitable Life
  • Halifax
  • Rolo
  • Nouvelle
  • Tampax
  • Le Shuttle
  • trail: Friday on Four
  • Renault Clio
  • Walker’s Crisps
  • Kotex
  • IBM
  • Virgin Atlantic – Terence Stamp
  • Special Constabulary
  • Carling Black Label
  • trail: Red Light Zone
  • Crunchy Nut Cornflakes
  • Natrel Plus
  • Johnson’s Baby Shampoo
  • Ambi-Pur
  • Gillette Sensor Excel
  • Chatline
  • Felix
  • On a Dance Tip
  • Finish – Helen Lederer
  • British Beef
  • Foster’s Ice
  • Terry’s Chocolate Orange Bar
  • trail: Encounters: Explorers of the Titanic
  • trail: The Best of The Tube
  • Natrel Plus
  • No7
  • KFC
  • Microsoft Office
  • Johnson’s Baby Powder
  • Chatterbox
  • Kotex
  • Cadbury’s Fruit & Nut
  • Boots Opticians
  • trail: Thursday on Four

The X Files – tape 1940

I’m afraid this tape is full of repeats. We’ve seen all these episodes from their original run on BBC2.

The tape starts with the end of MASH.

Then. episode one of season two, Little Green Men. You can see what I thought of this here.

Next it’s The Host which I looked at (along with the next episode) in this entry.

Before the next episode there’s the end of an episode of Mash.

Then, Blood.

And finally on this tape, Sleepless, which I looked at here.

Following this, the start of an episode of Models, Inc, which looks like exactly the kind of show I really don’t want to be watching. Chiselled, entitled men pawing over young women.

But, it features some familiar faces, including Linda Gray from Dallas.

Robert Beltran from Deep Space Nine.

And, in another weird bit of synchronicity, Carrie Anne Moss, who was saw in a brief role in LA Law recently.

The tape ends during this programme.


  • Flash Excel
  • Ford Escort
  • Heinz Perfect Balance
  • SKy BT Offer
  • National Lottery
  • Sun Valley
  • Lenor Plus
  • trail: Renegade
  • trail: Boxing
  • Territorial Army
  • Clearasil
  • Pepcid AC
  • Thera-Med
  • Bird’s Eye Potato Waffles
  • Direct Line
  • trail: A Mind to Kill
  • trail: Tales from the Crypt
  • Rennie Rap-Eze
  • Tesco Clubcard
  • McCain Oven Chips
  • Night Nurse
  • Surf
  • Galaxy Fruit and Hazelnut
  • trail: Sky News
  • trail: Models Inc
  • Safeway
  • Proton
  • Natrel Plus
  • Jif Lemon
  • Harpic
  • Aunt Bessie’s Yorkshire Puddings
  • Nivea
  • Salon Selectives
  • Safeway
  • Sky Travel Service
  • trail: The Extraordinary
  • Coca Cola
  • Safeway
  • Thera-Med
  • TSB
  • Vidal Sassoon
  • Pampers
  • trail: Robocop
  • trail: Walker Texas Ranger
  • Philadelphia
  • Crest
  • Lynx Africa
  • Oxo
  • Timotei
  • Alpen
  • trail: Boxing
  • trail: Space Precinct
  • Persil
  • Somerfield/Gateway
  • Thera-Med
  • Direct Line
  • Midland Bank
  • trail: The Fugitive
  • trail: Space Precinct
  • Proton
  • Ariel Future
  • Salon Selectives
  • Guinness
  • trail: Models Inc
  • trail: Robocop
  • Persil Finesse
  • Viennetta
  • Family Channel
  • Otex
  • Phone Day
  • trail: Super Mario Bros
  • trail: Space Precinct
  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax, Zsa Zsa Gabor
  • Persil Washing Up Liquid – Penn & Teller
  • Pond’s Facial Cleanser
  • Fresh Brew
  • 1995 Grammy Nominees
  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax
  • trail: Boxing
  • trail: Models Inc
  • Halls Soothers
  • Pantene
  • Uncle Ben’s
  • Halifax
  • Dairylea
  • Lee Jeans
  • Otex
  • trail: Hawkeye
  • trail: Walker Texas Ranger
  • Sky Travel Service
  • Lilt
  • Aquafresh
  • Peugeot 306
  • Pond’s Facial Cleanser
  • trail: The Trial of OJ Simpson
  • trail: Movies on Sky
  • trail: Beverly Hills 90210/Melrose Place
  • Coca Cola
  • KFC
  • Fresh Brew
  • Abbey National
  • Lurpak
  • Oil of Ulay
  • trail: The Thing Called Love
  • trail: Robocop
  • Nivea Visage
  • McDonalds
  • Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum
  • Neutralia
  • Tetley


Prince of Darkness – Film 95 – Amazon Women on the Moon – tape 1942

I love Prince of Darkness, but I’m not sure I can adequately explain why. It doesn’t make a lick of sense, and contains some bland performances, but still, I enjoy watching it. Perhaps it’s the omnipresent synth score, lacking the killer hook of a Halloween or Escape from New York, but effortlessly managing to imbue the film with a sense of fear and dread that, perhaps, the script often doesn’t deserve.

My main problem is that I don’t really like the ‘lead’. Jameson Parker is entirely forgettable, and the moustache just makes things worse. Plus, he really comes off as creepy and stalky in his pursuit of Lisa Blount.

Talking of whom, she’s almost as dull as Parker. And if that hair isn’t a wig, I think she should fire her hairdresser.

But there’s sparkle elsewhere in the cast, starting with Donald Pleasance, playing the priest who is guarding a dangerous secret. This is basically the same character as he played in Halloween, but he was great in that, and it’s great here. Only he knows the truth, and the fools in charge won’t listen. It’s a classic trope, but that just means it works. And nobody does it better than Pleasance.

Returning from John Carpenter’s Big Trouble in Little China is the marvellous Victor Wong, playing a physics professor who is brought in by Pleasance to investigate his unholy secret. He’s a delight throughout.

Also from BTILC is Dennis Dun, who, among the physics students, seems to be acting in a different kind of movie, one with wit and energy.

The writing credit for the film is ‘Martin Quatermass’ which is a pseudonym for director John Carpenter. I think, originally, he wanted Quatermass creator Nigel Kneale to write the screenplay, but Kneale declined, unhappy with the way a previous collaboration with Carpenter, Halloween III, turned out. He reportedly wasn’t impressed with Carpenter’s ‘homage’ to him with the credit. But you can see why Carpenter thought Kneale was right for the material. The combination of ancient religion and modern science is something right out of a Quatermass story.

The secret that Pleasance is guarding is a cannister which may or may not contain the ultimate evil. It’s unclear, and despite having watched this film a few times, I don’t really understand what it might be. But it looks really cool, and that’s the important thing.

Wong brings his class of young physics undergraduates, along with students of ancient languages, chemistry, history, to try to understand what the cannister is, and what it means.

The lack of chemistry between Blount and Parker’s characters is typified by their first actual conversation. She’s talking enthusiastically about how quantum theory blows her mind (a running theme of the film) and how she just wants ‘the clockwork’ of classical mechanics back, and he replies with “Every theoretical physicist I know wonders why it is that no one who looks like you ever seems to settle down in our end of the building.” It’s just gross. “You’re hot, so I don’t care what you think about science.” Plus, he’s trying (badly) to do some playing card manipulation. At least Blount calls him out on his sexism. but it doesn’t stop them ending up in bed together, presumably because the plot of the film requires them to be lovers.

The film does a good job of buildup a sense of foreboding. Not just the score, but the church where they are investigating, in the middle of Los Angeles, is attracting a shambling crowd of homeless people, one of whom is played by Alice Cooper, in a role with no dialogue at all.

There’s frequent suggestions that there’s some kind of astronomical conjunction coming up.

Deciphering the ancient texts, tells the team that the container contains the son of Satan, and it was almost destroyed by Jesus, who was an extraterrestrial.

One of the things I like is the recurring dream people have, which is some kind of video signal being broadcast from the future, but it’s unclear what’s being shown.

One of the students makes the mistake of going outside, and gets impaled on half a bicycle by Alice Cooper.

This is me on a deadline.

There’s some nice, old-school gore, as some of the students start getting possessed by the evil.

This really feels like a film that needed a much bigger budget to do a lot more with the ideas. Maybe it;s ripe for a remake. Slightly disappointing films can often be the best remakes. Like Carpenter’s own The Thing.

After this, recording switches to the end of a drama starring Bob Peck.

He’s somehow involved in a murder, and Brian Croucher is a policeman investigating. It’s Natural Lies, which I recorded elsewhere, but it hasn’t come up yet.

There’s a trailer for a season of films about Vietnam, Hollywood Vietnam.

Then, an episode of Film 95 with Barry Norman’s verdict on the following films:

There’s a location report on The Madness of King George. Helen Mirren, playing the Queen, says “I’ve always wanted to play the Queen of England”. This wouldn’t be the last time she’d do that.

There’s also an interview with director John Singleton, about his new film Poetic Justice.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 27th February 1995 – 23:00

There’s a trailer for Glam Metal Detectives. Yes, another one.

Then, a movie we’ve looked at before, Amazon Women on the Moon.

BBC Genome: BBC One – 27th February 1995 – 23:30

After this, there’s a trailer for Sportsnight Special.

Then the weather. And a public information film about Car Crime.

Then, BBC 1 closes down, Peter Offer wishes us a good night, and plays us out with the National Anthem.


  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax, Zsa Zsa Gabor
  • Tesco Clubcard
  • Natural Born Killers in cinemas
  • Talk Radio
  • McDonalds – Amanda Abbington?
  • Thera-Med
  • Colman’s Sauces
  • Kinder Egg
  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax
  • Vauxhall Calibra
  • The Best Funk Album in the World Ever
  • T-Gel
  • Treasures of the Earth
  • Ragu
  • Colgate Plax
  • Frosties
  • Yorkie
  • BT – Bob Hoskins
  • McDonalds – Amanda Abbington?
  • Microsoft Office
  • Colgate Plax
  • Crunchy Nut Cornflakes
  • Dime – Harry Enfield
  • Vauxhall Corsa – Ruby Wax, Zsa Zsa Gabor