1980: If only those people batting balloons about knew what was coming. As mentioned a couple of times before, Iron Maiden didn't appear in the studio with Bruce Dickinson until 2000, by which time he'd left and rejoined - Paul di'Annio is still singer here and not a particularly active one at that. Simon Bates complains that Dr Hook had "made a complete joke of me", so they do it again before Gladys Knight & The Pips, the latter in what look like lumberjack shirts, followed by a pop news slot which refuses to give any further details on anything. What'll be Christmas number one? St Winifred's School Choir, of course, but John Lennon will have been lost by then. For now he's still on his way up the charts and Legs & Co salute his name with backlit fun followed by the reveal of a group of outfits that have very little connection. Cash-in disco is best left to professionals like Liquid Gold, the sort willing to get covered in streamers and wear as ill-advised costumes as their drummer. Medleys were in their future, something more lasting for debutants Spandau Ballet, still working through their overtartaned phase.
1986: ...and rather neatly Spandau Ballet's final TOTP appearance came six years on to the day. Lighting helps keep the powder dry on the presence of most of the band but you can tell just from Hadley's comparative dress that time had marched on for them all. It was supposed to be Madness' farewell too as unlike Spandau they'd announced their split, only they decided to come back eventually - you'll see that at the end, albeit their special message is revealed far too early. You could make a claim about those suits too except you wouldn't class that as day to day wear round Camden.
2005: The tyranny of Sharon Osbourne's presenting career laid out here. The Darkness just aren't trying in any sense like they used to, something that could be said in other senses of Stevie Wonder for quite some time but TOTP were always glad to have him round no matter how many musicians he brought.