Archive for the ‘BBC’ Category

Cordon Airs Next Saturday

The first two episodes of Cordon air starting at 9 on BBC 4 (They aired a while ago in Belgium). I’m getting excited since it does sound a bit like an updated version of Survivors.

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Posted 21/06/2015 by lacithedog in BBC, BBC TV

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It’s Spring 2015–Where is Cordon?

I mentioned that BBC 4 was going to run a Belgian show called Cordon in a previous post.   The show is described as:

Cordon is a new series from Belgium. Everyday life in the centre of Antwerp comes to a sudden standstill when the area is hermetically sealed off from the outside world. The cause is a contagious and deadly virus which spreads like wildfire.

The people trapped inside the cordon are suddenly left to their own devices. It brings out the very best in them, but also the worst…

The BBC web site says this is supposed to happen in Spring 2015, but it’s getting along in Spring and no new announcements about this.  I know that it is supposed to come out on BBC 4 and Four has had some serious budget cuts.  On the other hand, they have already announced they were going to be broadcast which says to me they have the money (i.e., these are bought and paid for).

The BBC has the usual menu of reruns, but they are not running some things from the archive that would be nice to see again (could you please rerun the Last Duel?).  My question is why if this is sitting around hasn’t it made it to broadcast?

Posted 25/04/2015 by lacithedog in BBC, BBC TV

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The Being Human Pilot and Idiotic BBC policies

I think I mentioned before that the BBC has never officially rereleased the Being Human pilot, despite the show’s gaining enough of a cult status enough to have a US remake and lasting five seasons.  This gets into their rerun policies which can also be fickle.  And as someone who seriously pondered applying for the BBC DG position, I know there is a fuck of a lot of politics at the place, but somehow there must be a way to cut through it.

Especially given their tendency for whining about how broke they are whilst sitting on a treasure trove of material.  well, what they didn’t trash prior to the 1970s and didn’t get saved by someone else.

In this case, they never put the series pilot on the DVDs, which is a shame.  Not that I’ve seen the pilot.

Yet.

As with most BBC material, you can find a copy of it if you dig around.  In this case, there are a few copies floating about online and I hope to watch a high definition one tonight.  Of course, the Beeb could have done this.  for all I know, there might be some political reason for it not doing so.

After all, the person who DID get the DG’s position lasted about 4 months grace a le Jimmy Saville Scandal.  I understand that the job is a shark pool of politics.  On the other hand, I’ve had years of dealing with the Greater North American Gun Loon.

More on BBC repeats

I was a little rushed after WordPress trashed my last post on this topic: As if we didn’t know this already….  I should have made it clear that I am a little less bothered by this policy;  especially, if the the scheduling deities repeat things which are worth repeating.  I would love to see the Last Duel again (hint! hint!).

Seriously, there are some serious treasures in the BBC archives which could do with being rerun besides Dad’s Army and the Good Life.  And they can always dredge up things like Bergerac if they want to waste broadcasting.  I could also go off and the stuff which was lost due to the idiotic policy of wiping the tapes, but have done that more than enough.

As if we didn’t know this already…

Or the licence fee dodgers are correct when they complain about repeats on the Beeb.

According to the Radio Times, a Freedom of Information request has revealed that almost two thirds of BBC programmes aired last year were repeats. an average of 63% of programmes broadcast across the BBC channels (BBC1, BBC2, BBC3 and BBC4) during 2012 had already been aired. BBC3 was arguably the worst offender with 3,196 (85%) of its programmes coming from repeats. BBC1 transmitted 2,793 repeat programmes in the period, around a third of its output. 4,423 BBC2 shows were repeats. BBC4 had already shown 2,604 hours, or 78% of its output.

The BBC’s statement regarding reruns said: “Repeats on the BBC are carefully scheduled to reach different audiences. On BBC2, many of its repeats are of classic shows. For example, we have recently shown Dad’s Army and The Good Life, chosen to offer viewers an alternative to what the other channels are showing.”

I noticed they recently reran I, Claudius, which gets to my gripe that there are a lot of classic programmes in their archives which they don’t use: e.g., Take Three Girls and The Borderers. I should add that I’ve also been watching classics such as The Six Wives of Henry VIII and Shadow of the Tower which are both contemporary to the Borderers, yet they are complete and available on DVD.  Not sure how some series can exist fairly completely, yet others do not.  I know that sometimes this is due to the tapes being broadcast in other countries.

Anyway, it seems that some good new material is in the pipeline with Professor Mary Beard presenting a documentary on Caligula.   I’ve got to admit that I find Prof. Beard kind of hot in a sapiosexual way which means that this sounds seriously promising.  I need to rewatch the Pompeii documentary, but I remember another of her documentaries on the Romans which she truly demonstrated a love of the topic.  Although she joked to the audience at the Telegraph Hay Festival that “no one, but no one can tweet this, otherwise I will get into such trouble”.

Really now…

Anyway, it’s far too late for regrets now–I’m prepped for some serious intellectual porn!

See also: Hay Festival 2013: Mary Beard making Caligula documentary

BBC America (Canada) at iTunes Store

It has come to my attention that BBC America material is available on demand from the Apple iTunes Store.  I am assuming the same is true for Canada as well.

It’s nice to see a lot of this available on demand, such as Mongrels and Horrible Histories.

Not sure if any ITV or Channel 4 material is available (Time Team).

Yes, the BBC can produce some real rubbish.

I can’t really say that Bluestone 42 was a disappointment since I was prepared for the worst when I heard that the people who wrote Miranda also came up with this show.  And, like Miranda, Bluestone 42 really wants you to like it.  Unlike Miranda, it’s not really likeable.  In fact, it probably has the worst clichés of British Television and maybe even military service.

Let’s start with a woman soldier named “Bird”.  I think that sums up the humour of the show.  The show got old–FAST.  I couldn’t make it through the entire second episode and skipped through it on iPlayer.

I’m not sure how long this will last since Being Human managed to make it to five series.  I fear the worst.

So, British TV can come up with some really good material, but it can also make some serious crap.

Sort of changing the topic, I found a book called A Concise History of British Television 1930–2000 by Tony Currie (Kelly Publications, ISBN 1-903053-17-X). I can’t imagine it being very thick given the Beeb’s archival policies. Yes, I am upset that shows such as  The Borderers were trashed by the old archival policies amongst other things (lots of repeats of nothing I really want to see).