1979: What's the worst that can happen when you've got yourself looking spot on for your TOTP debut? For the first of Madness' 22 visits Suggs has found a lovely saxophone emblem brooch to complement his purple jacket. Within literally three seconds of it appearing in shot, it falls off. Lee Thompson meanwhile had just come from his job as a poker croupier. Coincidentally, Prince Buster himself appeared with Mint Royale on this day in 2002 recreating the sample on their Sexiest Man In Jamaica, but if you can find it online you're better than I. Much calmer, classy soul from The Crusaders, and some tremendous jazz drumming miming towards the end. Meanwhile The Bellamy Brothers and the desire to keep some prurience forced Legs & Co into the stuffed waltz. See at the end Patti dropping her partner just as she's picked out on camera. Cliff Richard at number one and with all the moves. Peter Powell watches, rapt. His T-shirt names something he hasn't been for many, many years.
1984: Last week we saw the Intercity cut off Bucks Fizz in what passed in August 1984 for their prime, so still rising up the chart they were invited back. In the interim the girls have come up with a little routine. More leather trousers from Sister Sledge, clearly not all equal after all. Level 42's Mark King got so into his frontman duties that he just neglected to mime bass normally by this stage, and he's developing a little shuffle to go with it. Alphaville by contrast only ever needed one hand apiece. Also worth a look, Bruno Brookes' introduction to the show, incorporating some classic Peel.
1990: Both Jakki Brambles using the words 'Elvis stylee' in introducing Adamski and his look locate this in time almost to the week. What's that girl in the white at the back actually doing? The Farm haven't brought Harry Cross, as Jakki seems to think. Slightly strangely, Caron Wheeler and her backing dancers are side by side and dressed the same as if she'd formed an extravagantly draped girl group the previous night.
1991: When people are cheering the sax solo as much as they cheer Sonia at the end something's not quite right. Similarly this onstage setup where everyone bar the drummer is standing in a line swaying almost in time. Similarly Zoe gives as much exposure to her guitarist, and doesn't he just know it. Lovely box work from the graphics people before Kylie Minogue, who's evolving well into SexKylie, by which is meant we can see both her belly button and her stocking top, a bit.
1996: Clock's latest hired hands seem a little too well dressed for a retread of November '63. That must be one cushy session guitarist job. More reflective, Rocket From The Crypt. Watch the camera collide with the bass head at 1:29.
2002: Quite difficult to camouflage it when one of a band, here Atomic Kitten, has to miss out. Natasha had given birth two weeks earlier, so a quick visit to the T-shirt printers and some hope about mimed harmony interpretation was in order.