1977: Imagine if you'd never heard The Rah Band before and then this balaclava'd apparition and its weird moon music emerged from your prime-time TV. The actual Rah Band founder Richard Hewson doesn't actually appear in this version as he didn't want to appear on telly and in fact tried to take the label to court when they threw together this lineup in his place, hence the disguise and the remarkable turnouts of the rest of the band. Dressing up time all round, in fact, with Barry Biggs as a ringmaster with someone in a full leopard suit and makeup sitting behind him never fully focused on by the director like a Pops spectre, and Sue Legs & Co, who'd been a bee a few weeks earlier, now in old lady gear literally overseeing a Boney M routine.
1983: Now this is annoying, it's the actual show where Peel and Jensen became The Rhythm Pals and most of the links, including the first, aren't there. What we do have is The Mary Jane Girls, a muscle man and a trolley dash at a cheap couture store; The Cure steadfastly ignoring the dancing girls in cages, Robert with his usual full blooded guitar miming; Jimmy The Hoover being ignored in favour of some women with streamers; and the all in white Funk Masters attracting people in hats.
1988: Everything But The Girl and Glenn Medeiros, smooth in very differing ways.
1994: In their finest whites Take That got to do the pre-titles intro, and whose idea do you suspect all that was? Yeah, me too. Speaking of clothing, come on, Gun, a knowing red codpiece at least. Wet Wet Wet's reign of terror continued, and this time writer Reg Presley got to introduce it in a style that's not at all slightly embarrassing, especially for a man of his years.
2000: The talent of the set designers is paramount - this is almost an exact urban cityscape around Samantha Mumba. Coldplay made their debut and the kids are clearly more enthused about clapping along than they are for Sid Owen. Never mind, Five & Queen will soon sort that out. That clip, it should be noted, is from its repeat the following week's show, as the number one... wasn't shown. Yes, in a continuity nod to Je T'Aime and Relax, Eminem wasn't played, at least on the prime-time version (they had a Saturday late night repeat back then) for family audience reasons.