Monday, 30 July 2012

30th July

1981: There's someone dressed as a clown behind Duran Duran. For once in the new romantic era you can't say the same of the band, but some of those suits must be quite polyester. Logic rules as Kim Wilde's Water On Glass is illustrated by shots of... some water. On some glass. Legs & Co? They're dealt a hand and a half, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra's Hooked On Classics. No wonder the pale leotards and arm waving are as far as they dare go.

1987: Hue & Cry again, but this is really here a) to pad the post out a bit and b) for the girl behind Bruno Gary at the start who applauds with everyone else, stops to fiddle with a ring, realises she's on camera and starts clapping with declining enthusiasm as if nobody had noticed.

1992: The never knowingly overdressed Betty Boo doesn't have the most convincing guitarist you've ever seen. By contrast Roxette are all too keen to show their stadium rock pose chops even though it's Marie's turn to sing after some none too committed keyboard playing. Madness build their own Underground station for their pre-Madstock comeback.

1999: At this time Pet Shop Boys decided they were too old for pop so had a Kabuki-inspired image change. They could do this because they were the Pet Shop Boys and Neil Tennant knows far more about culture than you do. Lee from Madness also had a special costume, one of slightly different sourcing. All makes Five in their big bulky jackets look a bit silly.

2004: Live from Gateshead Quays, TOTP's first ever outside broadcast and the latest attempt to freshen and variously rejig the show and expectations therein. Girls Aloud, containing a local front and centre, did their best to curry local favour. Certainly people seem surer about them than Natasha Bedingfield, though one refuses to believe the same people go as mad for Lostprophets no matter how smartly turned out they are.

2006: But none of that really worked, so here it is. After all the revamps, all the callbacks, all the trips out... the final show, officially hosted by Sir Jimmy Savile, Tony Blackburn, Dave Lee Travis, Mike Read, Janice Long, Pat Sharp (who only hosted the show proper seven times - maybe he was there for the experience having also hosted the final The Roxy), Sarah Cawood, Reggie Yates, Edith Bowman and Rufus Hound. Not even Fearne, away hosting that staggering success Love Island. Still, only one man could have ended it all. Ever since there's been at least biannual stories about the BBC wanting or Simon Cowell claiming he's about to start a "new Top Of The Pops" but nothing solid ever comes of them. Perhaps there really was only ever one.


Si said...

Strange performance from Roxette - not quite sure why Per is singing along to his own vocal (and manages to chuff the lyrics at one point).

Mistaking Gary Davies for Bruno Brookes is interesting!

Simon said...

Well, there should have been a name caption or something.