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The Prisoner re-locked The Prisoner re-locked

BBC Radio 4 Extra are currently raiding the Big Finish catalogue once again. If you are not watching Doctor Who on Sunday you can listen to a an audio drama based on ITV’s psychological spy thriller, The Prisoner.

Can you say the days alphabetically? Can you say the days alphabetically?

Here’s a poser! Can you name the days of the week in alphabetical order? National treasurette Victoria Coren-Mitchell hosts one of the joys of BBC2, a labyrinthine quiz show called Only Connect where competing teams are asked to determine connections between a series of clues. There is a time factor and the fewer…

Those meddling kids reveal the secret of stopping that pigeon Those meddling kids reveal the secret of stopping that pigeon

Stop Pigeons. Be warned big revelation spoilers follow!

White rabbits! White rabbits!

A little late, but White Rabbits! It’s December 1st. Christmas seems to be here. Some people started early. Coming home yesterday, I found the park at Porthmadog was hosting a little Christmas fair and they had a couple of reindeer. Rudolph and his pal seemed surprisingly docile considering the gaggle of kids around…

Just some stuff Just some stuff

Tiddly has decided to embrace the elements. Last night he decided he liked haunch of hare. Not so impressed by the carrots. Me, I’m sheltering from the wind and rain but I am considering popping out later to Maentwrog to learn more out the Snowdonia Solar System Trail (not that you can see anything beyond the grey…

Green Plaque salute for Black Beauty Billy Green Plaque salute for Black Beauty Billy

Earlier in the week, news broke that comic artist Mike Noble had passed away, aged 88. I wrote a few bars over on Observation Deck in praise of his Fireball XL5 strip. I mention Mike because he later drew The Adventures of Black Beauty for Look-In, which was a weekly comic produced by the ITV companies.

The man who put the fire into Fireball The man who put the fire into Fireball

Comic artist Mike Noble passed away on November 15th, aged 88. For over five decades, often uncredited, he produced some of the most dynamic and colourful artwork imaginable. Arguably the king of tv tie-ins, Noble breathed new life into Fireball Xl5, Star Trek, Zero-X, Follyfoot, Timeslip, Space:1999, The Tomorrow…

Voice of Hal dies Voice of Hal dies

Canadian actor Douglas Rain has died aged 90. At first glance I knew little about this veteran stage performer - but his voice has been etched in my mind since I was six-years-old.

Epitaph Epitaph

When you go home, tell them of us and say

Lost Fifties Dan Dare radio show unearthed Lost Fifties Dan Dare radio show unearthed

Grab a mug of Horlicks and fasten that space helmet. John Freeman’s Down The Tubes comics news blog has a long lost episode of Radio Luxembourg’s The Adventures of Dan Dare. The eponymous Pilot of the Future from the pages of Eagle had his own radio serial on the commercial broadcaster from 1951 to 1956, though few…

Fifty years ago today, Sgt Benton taught the band to play  Fifty years ago today, Sgt Benton taught the band to play 

English television producer, writer, story editor and actor Derrick Sherwin passed away on October 17th, aged 82. If you are not familiar with the name, Sherwin was the architect of a pivotal development in the evolution of Doctor Who.

Groundbreaking, bold and ambitious! But what was Inside No 9 for their "live" Halloween special ? Groundbreaking, bold and ambitious! But what was Inside No 9 for their "live" Halloween special ?

Last night, Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton returned to BBC2 with a “live” edition of their comedy horror anthology Inside No 9. We were told that when Arthur Flitwick (Steve Pemberton) finds an old mobile phone in his local graveyard, he makes the mistake of trying to contact the owner. But some mysteries are…

G'daily Rolf - Guns, money, stairs and toys

I mentioned Robert Plant and Jimmy Page the other day. They covered Rolf’s Sun Arise but would you believe Rolf covered Stairway To Heaven. Back in the Eighties Harris was touring Australia and put in an appearance on a comedy talk show, The Money or The Gun. They had a spot where guests were asked to perform Stairway…

G'daily Rolf - shellfish special G'daily Rolf - shellfish special

This was the B-side to Sun Arise and after the sublime sounds what better than a bit of a bawdy laugh. Never came to terms with winkles myself but a plate of whelks would be welcome.

G'daily Rolf - Diddle-iddle-iddle-dum G'daily Rolf - Diddle-iddle-iddle-dum

The BBC used to have a stable of poppy light entertainment shows that pretty much ran in rotation. Cliff Richard, Lulu, Cilla Black and Rolf Harris would front their own shows, bring on guests, maybe do some sketches, let the Second Generation do some dancing (cripes, I had forgotten them), Sometimes they would be the…

What's your favourite Australian TV show? What's your favourite Australian TV show?

Deep question! What is your favourite Australian television show? I’m not sure I have a clear answer to that myself. Early days, Skippy the Bush Kangaroo felt like a regular fixture in the schedules along with Flipper and Champion the Wonder Horse (neither of whom were Australian but walked or swam a similar path).

Coming dead for Halloween from the BBC Coming dead for Halloween from the BBC

Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith’s award-winning anthology Inside No 9 returns in a special live (dead?) edition for Halloween on October 28th on BBC Two at 10pm – 10.30pm. That’s UK time, other territories might have to wait a bit.

G'daily Rolf - sunnyside up G'daily Rolf - sunnyside up

Back in 1960 it seemed Rolf could do no wrong. His fourth single confirmed that trend. Sun Arise, written with Australian naturalist Harry Butler, takes a cue from Aboriginal beliefs and music. Producer George Martin thought that was boring but Harris told him the repetitive Aboriginal chanting could become quite…

G'daily Rolf - Kangaroos and wallabies G'daily Rolf - Kangaroos and wallabies

This is one of those songs that formed the soundtrack of my childhood. It has never gone away. Rolf Harris was inspired by the calypsos of Harry Bellafonte when he wrote what has become possibly the most successful Australian song of all time. Allegedly Harris offered his backing musicians ten per cent of royalties…

Take a drive down the Mystery Road Take a drive down the Mystery Road

The last few weeks I’ve been watching a rather hard-boiled and twisted murder mystery on BBC4. The six-part Mystery Road is set in the North Western Australian outback. Newly promoted Detective Jay Swan (Aaron Pederson) is sent to investigate the disappearance of two farmhands on a cattle station. He is not exactly…

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