Tag Archives: BBC One

Waterloo Road: EXCLUSIVE Interview with star Holly Jack

Bonnie Kincaid smallerWARNING: This article contains spoilers which some readers may wish to avoid

It may be the last series of Waterloo Road (sob!) but there is going to be no let up in drama as the hit school based drama heads to its climax in coming weeks. In Monday’s episode, we see former shrinking violet turned outgoing fake tan-aholic Bonnie take centre stage as her desperate bid for attention backfires spectacularly.  Continue reading

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The Missing: Hard hitting and haunting

Nesbitt_The_Missing-388765James Nesbitt last night endured every man’s worst nightmare. No, he wasn’t forced to watch a rerun of last Saturday’s X Factor; he was starring in BBC Ones new thriller/drama ‘The Missing’ in which he lost sight of his young son in a foreign country for a mere moment. This minor lapse in attention led  his alter ego Tony Hughes, and his family, into the horrific ordeal of a missing child situation; one that, 8 years on, where certain strands of this story pick up, still haunts him.

The Missing tells the story of the Hughes family’s agony on two separate timelines; one which builds up to and shows the immediate aftermath of Oliver’s tragic disappearance and the other which looks at how the characters continue to struggle in the present day, eight years later. The direction and writing of the episode, where characters are effectively introduced twice and events are portrayed in a non consecutive manner, keep viewers on their toes and hold attention perfectly. It is a tense hour of drama that you can’t take your eye off of for fear of missing anything; and the slow unfurling of the plot already allows, at this early stage, for pieces of the puzzle to start clicking together.

Any parent sitting watching ‘The Missing’ would have been wincing throughout the entire thing; feeling a cold dread in the pit of their stomach in the blink-and-you’d-miss-it moment where Tony loses sight of his son. Once it finished, I have no doubt many would have went upstairs and given their children extra tight hugs too for this is a drama that tells a brutally human story; in a non sensational way and it sticks with you long after it airs.

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Strictly Come Dancing: Dear Strictly

It’s more than 12 hours after my once-beloved SCD finished last night. I am still in shock. So much so that this blog is going to be a different kettle of fish to previous missives on the subject. You’ll have to forgive me, dear reader – it has, as they say, Been Emotional.

Dear Strictly,

We’ve had some wonderful times, you and me. When we first met, I hated Saturday Night Telly, with its mix of gaudy gameshows, Dad’s Army, dry documentaries about Cholera and Noel Bloody Edmonds. I knew nothing about dancing and you were much derided for being a throw-back to a dying era. People (hi Mum!) said we would never work.

You came, with your random mix of people off the telly, off the Olympics and quite often off their heads. Your sequins sparkled. Your judges were daring but fair, caring only about the dancing and not about themselves. You had a slightly-neglected old-school host whom everyone was delighted to see again, who was merely grateful to regain his rightful place on primetime telly. More than anything else, you were characterized by your good humour. Sure, people were called “contestants”, but they were participants rather than competitors. They were encouraged to do well and by and large did so, or at least had a ball. Who knew that woman who got bashed about by Phil Mitchell on Eastenders would be so good? That Julian Clary would be so bad? Who even knew who Kara Tointon was?

I loved you, Strictly. But more to the point, everybody loved you. Which meant everybody wanted a piece of you and everybody wanted to be like you. ITV looked longingly at your ratings success as you tore up Saturday Nights. They came up with this thing called X Factor. It was just a tired old rehash of its previous entries into the class that I like to handily term Pop Factory Crap. How could it ever trouble you, Strictly? You were a class apart, you didn’t need all that. You had series after series of Feelgood Glory, where it was simply about the Dancing rather than the ridiculous sideshows.

But tragically, people lapped up the Pop Factory Crap in their millions. And you got scared, Strictly, You thought that every person that watched that wouldn’t want you anymore and that THIS was the future.

So you changed, Strictly. Firstly, you ditched one of your original judges for being Too Old. She was in fact younger than the oldest judge who was a man, but somehow that didn’t seem to matter to you.

BLACKPOOL!

Despite this, we were ok for a while. You still had lots of good dancers and did laudable things like going to Blackpool (BLACKPOOL!). It wasn’t quite like the olden days, but it looked like you were going to get your spark back. 

Where It All Started Going Wrong

Then you got a gift, Strictly. Ann Widdecombe. She couldn’t dance and didn’t care. People were split in their Marmite-style camps. But it was impossible not to have an opinion, so everyone did. Everybody was talking about you, writing about you, watching you again. It felt GOOD.

But it went to your head, Strictly. And look at you now. Bloated and self-satisfied. 100 minutes long! Even my patience is exhausted by the end, so it’s no wonder even the participants have apparently well and truly had enough. Sitting through endless smug jokes by Sir Brucie, who continues to think people watch the show simply for his grandstanding, tired old nonsense. Through puerile VTs prior to each dance designed simply to fill time with stupid, children’s tv-style antics? Through look-at-me use of props that add nothing to the dancing (except for Artem and Holly’s number, which was clever and beautifully choreographed)? Continue reading

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Doctor Who 6.2: The Doctor flirts, Steven Moffat teases

Regular readers will know that this is always a spoilery-blog post, but this week it seems only fair to say that if you haven’t seen Day of the Moon yet, you really should go and watch it first and then come back to join us in our ooh-ahh-and-blimey! love-fest.

We were promised answers – and we got some – but even the ones we did get came at the price of more questions. I’m starting to feel like the River Song to Steven Moffat’s Doctor (“I hate you!” – “No you don’t…”).

We start off back in the gorgeous-looking Utah desert with men in black, including Canton Everett Delaware III (the completely fabulous Mark Sheppard), hunting down Amy, all flying, flaming locks against the red and terracotta rocks. Apparently Canton is now working against our heroes as he shoots Amy (giving us our first glimpse of those unsettling black marker strikes on her skin), nearly shoots River (who dives out of the 50th floor of a skyscraper) and then adds Rory to his tally.

All the while the Doctor (bearded – ugh) is imprisoned in Area 51 in  a strait-jacket and chains with Canton taunting him and slowly enclosing him in ‘the perfect prison’ (made of “zero-balanced dwarf star alloy – the densest material in the universe, nothing gets through it” and personally I think all party-walls should contain these magic bricks). Though personally I liked the little notices we passed on our way to the Doctor’s plinth – DO NOT APPROACH THE PRISONER and DO NOT INTERACT WITH THE PRISONER. Lovely.

Only when the prison is complete and Canton and the Doctor are ‘completely cut off from the rest of the universe’ with two body bags (for Amy and Rory) at their feet do we start to understand what’s going on and what all that nonsense about making the TARDIS invisible was about last week. Yes, hurrah, Canton is still a good guy and this is his way of helping everybody escape from the Silence.

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