Tue 22nd Dec – TV Preview


Here’s to BBC2

It’s nearly Christmas for crying out loud and where exactly is the festive fun? Not on the TV that’s for sure. There has been such a paucity of decent telly so far since this little experiment started that I half expected Radio Times’ selections to include a documentary about Scrabble… Oh, Hang on, there is one! I kid you not, it’s part of Alan Yentob’s Imagine… series and is almost worth tuning in for just to see how they make it run for 65 minutes. If that’s not your cup of cocoa then Five are offering yet another CSI marathon, while over on Auntie we reach the conclusion of the British version of FlashForward, Paradox. I saw the first episode and was vaguely interested enough to set up a series link to record the remainder although I still haven’t watched any more. Reports are coming in that it’s all a bit samey and, despite being RT’s Pick Of The Day, their write-up begins with the thoroughly unispiring “Paradox always comes into its own in the last 10 minutes. Which is a problem when there’s an hour to fill”. ITV have pitched The Bill against it in the 9pm slot, which is another one of those shows that I simply can’t be bothered watching. I recall reading somewhere that they’ve tried to make the adventures of the Sun Hill police force a bit more grown up and post-watershed-y but you couldn’t pay me to watch it in all honesty. It seems that BBC2 is the place to be with a triple header of panel shows featuring Frankie Boyle’s final appearance on Mock The Week, the Buzzcocks Doctor Who Special in case you missed it last week (and which also gives me an excuse to use another screengrab, before the Proper Reviews (TM) start rolling in, in a few day’s time), and the extended HIGNFY. Collectively, these should raise a smile at least. However, there is one show that I will be absolutely glued to when it is shown at 8pm on BBC4. Oliver Postgate: A Life In Small Films promises to showcase the life and work of one of the voices of my childhood and sounds like it will be a shining beacon of what a Christmastime TV should be like in the flotsam of the other listings.

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