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1989 now on BBC Four

JA
JAS84 Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
Last night BBC Four repeated the first new format TOTP from January 1985. Instead of just random songs, they actually had the top 10 run in sequence, whether it be a short clip, a music video or a full performance, with only the first and last songs being from lower in the chart. I did notice that Gary Glitter was barely outside that Top 10 though, so I won't be surprised if some episodes get skipped in the near future, as I don't think they'll want to air his songs.

Earlier in the week, they also aired episodes from 1981. Was there any significance to that?

By the way, I did search for an existing thread for this, but it turned out to be archived.
Last edited by JAS84 on 4 January 2020 6:15pm - 2 times in total
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
Gary Glitter doesn't appear on the show again until he performs with the Timelords on the 1988 Xmas special (and not again after than until he presents an episode in December 1994), I don't think, so there shouldn't be any issues with him for a while (we lost 2 episodes because of him in 1984 though- thanks to him appearing at points in the episode where it would be hard to edit him out).

There's still the ridiculous Mike Smith situation to contend with though.

It's a "new format" TOTP that only lasted for one episode anyway, quite clearly because it didn't really work.
VM
VMPhil Granada North West Today
Though I thought the Top 40 Breakers feature lasted a long time afterwards.

Did John Peel ever present an episode with someone other than Janice Long after this first one with Richard Skinner?
CO
Colm (previously Col) Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
After David Jensen left the BBC to join Capital Radio in the summer of '84, it seemed a few potential new presenting partners for Peel were tried out:

Arrow Tommy Vance for two shows, in July and November 1984, a pairing which ended after TV stepped down from TOTP duties

Arrow Richard Skinner for two shows, in August 1984 and January 1985

Arrow Janice Long, firstly in September 1984, and as it turned out, subsequently from March 1985 - and as testified in the Story of '85 documentary, Peel was only content in working alongside Janice until he gave up regular TOTP duties in early 1987

There was also a week in August 1983 when Peel was paired up with Mike Smith (echoing their involvement in the Late Late Breakfast Show).

The Top 40 Breakers, which come into play in a few episodes' time, remained a feature on the show until 1994, as part of the changes made by Ric Blaxill on taking over as producer from Stanley Appel - which also included bringing back Radio 1 DJs as presenters.
VM
VMPhil Granada North West Today
Thank you! I had seen the 1985 documentary where Janice Long talked about him not wanting to work with anyone else, but wanted to know if that actually happened.

Radio Rewind says Long left Radio 1 in 1987, so I would have assumed that was the reason why Peel stopped appearing at all afterwards.
CO
Colm (previously Col) Anglia (West) Look East (West sub-opt)
Peel's last TOTP in his regular stint was in February 1987 (he came back for a one-off in December 1995, as a cover for being the subject of an edition of This Is Your Life). According to an interview on the old TOTP BBC website, he gave up presenting the show because he was fed up of being recognised by the public for appearing on TV.

Janice was on the regular presenter roster until December 1987 before having her first child, and only came back to host two more TOTP shows in the summer of 1988 - it was mooted she was to return to Radio 1, but because she wasn't offered a slot in the schedule which was accommodating for the mother of a baby, she never did, and instead went to work on GLR.
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JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
Though I thought the Top 40 Breakers feature lasted a long time afterwards.


It did- but we haven't seen them yet. The breakers began on the 4th show of the year (an episode we won't get because Mike Smith co-presented), and continued until shortly after Ric Blaxill took over in 1994.

The strange new format on the first show of 1985 involved the top 10 taking up about 3/4 of the show! As I said, it only lasted the one edition. At the end John Peel told viewers to write in to say what they thought- and they obviously didn't like it!
JA
JAS84 Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
He also said that people had requested more top hits... I think maybe they meant get acts into the studio who are in the top 20, and not acts that are outside the top 30? The acts either side of the top ten in that episode were at 30something in the charts - so either not very popular (if they never got any higher), or old news (if they're dropping down the chart).
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
What's the reason the Mike Smith episodes aren't shown?
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JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
Supposedly it's because he didn't want them shown, though as far as he's been discussed, we think there's techically no reason for the BBC to get the presenter's permission (or his estate's, in MS's case), and they could just show them anyway.

BBC 4 did show the 1982 Christmas special (co-presented by him) back in 2008 with no problems, so it's a bizarre situation really.

There's been lots of "theories" about why the BBC are doing this even though they don't have to, but I doubt we'll ever know the full reason. The fact they included a clip of him in the Story of 1985 last week has just complicated the issue further.

It's frustrating though- particularly has he was the most prominent presenter in 1985 & 86 (and second most in 1987).
Last edited by james-2001 on 13 January 2018 6:08pm
VM
VMPhil Granada North West Today
The 2008 showing was before Yewtree - it’s quite clear he didn’t want anything to do with TOTP after that, particularly when the BBC News used a clip of him presenting the show with Savile.
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
I can't help but think if he was still with us things would have been different and he could have been persuaded to allow them to be shown. These repeats are proving popular after all, and nobody's really assosiating them with Yewtree. Not that we'll ever truly know.
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