Thursday, 8 September 2011

The staff are the stars...

Since about two weeks ago I have been logging my collection of books, DVD's, VHS' and also other items which has given me a chance to look at some things I knew I had, other I didn't and some 'What was I think recording that?' moments as well. But over time there has been a trend occurring as I go, with the most of the recordings being about television naturally though with a twist. Its seems that people are always more then willing to appear in front of the camera if they have been behind it for so many years...

So I have seen the excellent Stewart Morris talking about swinging Shirley Bassey off an ship to get a good shot and then coming back and turning the air blue at him, Greg Dyke remembering about saving a sinking ship by getting a rat to help him and Paul Jackson getting caught by the fuzz with Denise Van Outen and Ray Burdis as well. 

"If you rub cream onto it Sammy, then the chaffing will go double quick..."
By all of which television likes talking about itself, but one thing which surprise me though was when watching the 'Finger' episode from Bottom was a bellboy who turns up who's just delivered Ritchie and Eddie's bags to their room at the Marvelouso Splendido Hotelo in Wolverhampton demanding a tip from Ritchie for doing so. It took two turns, well after a 'Nah, it wasn't him was it?' It was, he was Jon Plowman head comedy honcho at the BBC making a cameo in the episode and making a darned fine job of it as well. At any time the staff would have been their offices coming up with the next idea for a programme or making sure they run off like clockwork. Even those of the old school have been running off programmes such as Michael Grade's History of Variety on BBC4 and also Bill Cotton appearing in The Story of Light Entertainment as well. 
"Match.. of the day?"

When usually they would be associated with appearances on Points of View having to defend what they are putting on their channel from people who've written in using a Crayola, it must come as a relief to impart what they know to the public by explaining what they do rather then just having the public running at them screaming 'ARRRGGGHH! Taxpayers Alliance are right!' At the moment there's another furore going on about the vetting of contestants on ITV's Red or Black, seemingly they have tightened up the rules by eliminated two contestants who could also possibly sue the network now for just dumping them and finding a moral compass down the back of the sofa at Gray's Inn Road. 

Seemingly we've gone from old Uncle Bill Cotton to grab the money and run, its little wonder why old school producers put themselves out there to explain what they did in programmes, maybe lessons can be learned from these people. Because if you don't know who started it all, then who knows where it will end up...

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