TV Home Forum

Top of the Pops

1990 on BBC Four

AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today


Under Chris Cowey, a lot of the "rules" were very inconsistently applied and seemed to be happily abandoned, so there weren't usually exclusives but they would put them on if it was Robbie Williams.


Speaking of that, I remember them showing the video for Rock DJ... when Robbie was actually in the studio to introduce it (then to tell us at the end we had to watch the late night repeat to see the ending). Clearly the rules were different when it was something Chris Cowie himself liked.

Then that Rock DJ showing was immediately followed by Five instead of Eminem who actually was at number 1, again with us being directed to the late night repeat to actually see him.

A quick look at Popscene shows Rock DJ then got a studio peformance 2 weeks later- again before the song was actually in the charts.


I remember Chris saying once that he only really liked to show a video if it was in the top 3 or if it was an exclusive first play by a big act. But of course he did break that rule quite often, which was his prerogative! I think he was at least less snobby than Ric Blaxill, who'd cut some dance tracks of performances down to about 2 minutes!
AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today
Someone's uploaded the "return to TV Centre" edition on YouTube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VAINnieBIaE

Reminds me just how terrible the Star Bar idea was.

Looks like it actually could be repeated if BBC4 gets to 2001. Though Popscene lists Jimmy Savile as a presenter, it seems his only appearance is as they walk past him during the opening link, could be easily edited out (or even just zoomed in, like Jonathan King on the closing link of the 1985 Christmas special, as he's on the extreme left of the frame).


This is my upload - he actually gave an interview to Jamie Theakston before the U2 performance but I cut it out. There is another brief snippet of him in a top 10 rundown of "how not to present TOTP" that would probably need to go.
WH
Whataday Founding member Wales Wales Today
There was a series of TOTP2 in 2006/7 too, after the main show had ended, which had a fair few new performances on it, mostly made for the international versions which were still in production at the time.

Which countries had their own version, and were they branded TOTP?


Germany, Italy and France all had their own versions, branded TOTP around the time the show ended.

When the new logo was introduced in 2003, the international versions tended to incorporate both the new and old logo, as this clip from Germany shows.



Here are the German opening titles:

Last edited by Whataday on 28 September 2020 10:30pm - 2 times in total
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
That "new music" is now 26 years old though, so it's as retro as everything else! I am surprised that BBC Four don't find room for more TOTP2 other than the themed editions. Maybe the captions referring to "so and so died this week" or "they have a new album out next month" might make them seem a bit odd but most people would surely realise they are repeats anyway.


That never stopped UKTV G2 (and Dave in the early days after the rebrand) repeating them after all.
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today


Here are the German opening titles:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHsOqcpwSK4


NSync barely even attempting to speak German there, You'd have thought they'd at least give them phonetic versions of their links to read and try and learn and have on their cue cards!
Last edited by james-2001 on 28 September 2020 10:53pm
TI
TIGHazard Tyne Tees Look North (North East)
There was a series of TOTP2 in 2006/7 too, after the main show had ended, which had a fair few new performances on it, mostly made for the international versions which were still in production at the time.

Which countries had their own version, and were they branded TOTP?


Germany, Italy and France all had their own versions, branded TOTP around the time the show ended.

When the new logo was introduced in 2003, the international versions tended to incorporate both the new and old logo, as this clip from Germany shows.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhR8YvXBkCI

Here are the German opening titles:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHsOqcpwSK4


Of course, there was also the US version in the late 80's.

Wiki states that the Netherlands show TopPop got a revival, and that came under the TOTP brand (although I'm sure there was sharing happening years before... Popscene lists some clips as airing on TOTP in the 70's and 80's)

Apparently New Zealand had a licenced version.

Along with MBC 2 in the UAE, but this was the UK show re-edited with some Arabic performances replacing some performers (I can only guess why).

BBC Prime and BBC America also broadcast re-edited versions of the UK show a week after transmission, but removed some acts for timing reasons.
SW
Steve Williams
Germany, Italy and France all had their own versions, branded TOTP around the time the show ended.


You could always tell a performance from the German version when it appeared on the British show, partly because it was usually a nu-metal act because that genre was particularly popular in Germany and partly because, as German TV doesn't use the "counting the beats" way of directing music TV that we do, the cameras were up the artists' nose throughout. I remember when Blue did Eurovision in 2010 the documentary about them doing it featured them appearing on the still-running Italian Top of the Pops, which I remember still had some of the pre-2003 branding hanging around.

Of next week's repeats, the 11th January episode is notable as it's produced by Brian Whitehouse, his final contribution to Pops after a twenty year association with the show, his first credit in Genome is in 1970. This is the end of another link with the earliest days of the repeats as he produced many of the episodes we saw in the first six months back in 1976. He has a few credits in Genome after that, directing the odd episode of Wogan, with his final production credit being the Olivier Awards in April 1990, after which he presumably retired. On Roobarbs a while back, the ever-indescreet Richard Marson suggested towards the end he was seemingly not lavishing a great deal of care and attention on his work.

18th January is produced by Stan Appel and then Paul Ciani returns the following week, and aside from a month off in October then produces every episode until his departure in April 1991. That episode, and the one the week after, are actually two of the few episodes in this era that last longer than half an hour, as they were in a 35 minute slot on Fridays during the Commonwealth Games. It's also the final show in this period with double-headed presentation, and the first with the Cypher graphics I loved so much, so very exciting.

Richard Marson, who was on the production crew at the time, also talked about Paul Ciani, saying he was a very nice and funny man who was very popular with all the team and happy to let them try new things. Unfortunately he was badly injured in a car crash which caused further health problems, so he wasn't very well towards the end, and presumably contributed to his abrupt departure and the fact he was never well enough to return.
RW
Robert Williams Founding member London London
That "new music" is now 26 years old though, so it's as retro as everything else! I am surprised that BBC Four don't find room for more TOTP2 other than the themed editions. Maybe the captions referring to "so and so died this week" or "they have a new album out next month" might make them seem a bit odd but most people would surely realise they are repeats anyway.


That never stopped UKTV G2 (and Dave in the early days after the rebrand) repeating them after all.


BBC Choice used to repeat a lot of editions as well.

I am surprised that BBC Four don't find room for more TOTP2 other than the themed editions. Maybe the captions referring to "so and so died this week" or "they have a new album out next month" might make them seem a bit odd but most people would surely realise they are repeats anyway.


Those themed editions do crop up quite frequently in the schedules - any more than that and, alongside the main TOTP repeat run, it could risk BBC Four coming to be seen as 'The Top of the Pops Channel' - which may please some, but I think the channel should retain a wide variety of programming. I think I'd prefer to see new editions of TOTP2 being produced for its original home of BBC2 which could be a low cost way of filling some airtime.
SW
Steve Williams
Those themed editions do crop up quite frequently in the schedules - any more than that and, alongside the main TOTP repeat run, it could risk BBC Four coming to be seen as 'The Top of the Pops Channel' - which may please some, but I think the channel should retain a wide variety of programming.


That's true enough, there's no need to repeat TOTP2 just for the sake of it - as you say, they do show some of the themed programmes, there's another one next week, but the regular weekly show seems rather pointless.

BBC4 continue to make new clip shows in any case, the Australian Hits at the BBC the other day featured lots of Pops clips and was very entertaining.
VM
VMPhil Granada North West Today
Anyone know the reason why Steve Wright stopped doing the TOTP2 voiceovers - from what I remember he did the Michael Jackson tribute in 2009, then the Christmas episode that year had Mark Radcliffe and it was him from then on.
AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today
Which countries had their own version, and were they branded TOTP?


Germany, Italy and France all had their own versions, branded TOTP around the time the show ended.

When the new logo was introduced in 2003, the international versions tended to incorporate both the new and old logo, as this clip from Germany shows.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhR8YvXBkCI

Here are the German opening titles:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHsOqcpwSK4


Of course, there was also the US version in the late 80's.

Wiki states that the Netherlands show TopPop got a revival, and that came under the TOTP brand (although I'm sure there was sharing happening years before... Popscene lists some clips as airing on TOTP in the 70's and 80's)

Apparently New Zealand had a licenced version.

Along with MBC 2 in the UAE, but this was the UK show re-edited with some Arabic performances replacing some performers (I can only guess why).

BBC Prime and BBC America also broadcast re-edited versions of the UK show a week after transmission, but removed some acts for timing reasons.


The Wiki article is a bit confusing. Surely the Dutch TopPop was just a rip-off of TOTP?

But the version in the 90s/00s was proper TOTP, with the same sets/logos like the other European versions.
AB
AcerBen Granada North West Today
Germany, Italy and France all had their own versions, branded TOTP around the time the show ended.


You could always tell a performance from the German version when it appeared on the British show, partly because it was usually a nu-metal act because that genre was particularly popular in Germany and partly because, as German TV doesn't use the "counting the beats" way of directing music TV that we do, the cameras were up the artists' nose throughout. I remember when Blue did Eurovision in 2010 the documentary about them doing it featured them appearing on the still-running Italian Top of the Pops, which I remember still had some of the pre-2003 branding hanging around.


I could always spot a German performance by a slightly orange tinge to the picture. Dunno if it was due to the lighting in the studio or the cameras they used or the video format or what! Also, they didn't seem to have the same age restrictions on the audience members we had.. noticed older people wearing less fashionable clothes!!

The Italian 2011 series was a bit odd.. seemed to be mostly archive performances with a few new ones based around the current albums chart, and the set bore little resemblance to the UK one (indeed why should it..!), except they did have a big 2003 swirly thing on the floor and the 1998 logo sometimes on a screen in the background!

Newer posts