TV Weekly: From nude footballers to a numb Carol Vorderman

Yes TV Weekly returns for a full run of news in brief for December and January.

This week, the word on the street is that Ray Quinn is going ice skating for ITV while we also look back at some stories from the past few weeks, including ITV and Ofcom, the views of Leeds football fans about ITV broadcast live on ITV, Charlie Brooker and his Screenwipe and Carol’s final Countdown.

Cold As Ice

We start with the speculation that former Brookside actor-turned-crooner Ray Quinn is to be one of the ‘celebrities’ on ITV’s version of Strictly Come Dancing; Strictly Gone Dancing On Ice or whatever its called. Anyway sources close to Quinn have suggested he’s up for the show. Nice.

“ITV is F**king S**t” chant crowd, while nude footballers air on the channel

You couldn’t make stuff like this up, its pure gold. ITV, once the people’s channel, now the ‘shareholders channel’ was at the centre of an embarrasement at the weekend. Well it started as one, and now has turned out to be two little – well one not so little – embrarrasments.

First, Leeds football fans were heard chanting “ITV is f**king s**t” during a match broadcast live on ITV1 on Sunday morning. We’re not talking one or two people, it sounds like its half the stadium!

Later, it transpires, live images were also broadcast of the players in the dressing rooms after the same Leeds v Histon game. It may have disgusted the Mary Whitehouse prudes, and brought some extra pleasure for bored women on Sunday morning when viewers were treated to a long shot of a well hung Histon player, with full frontal nudity, coming out of the shower. Well most people shower naked, so what did ITV expect?

If you wish to see the display then, I didn’t tell you but, you can see the full images on Famous Males Forums.

The Sun, who show boobs on page three have reported the sight of this naked man as if its some terrible thing. Its 2008 people, its time we were comfortable with the human form – be it male or female. Of course ITV viewers are more used to seeing tits on screen with the endless shows starring Ant and Dec, Piers Morgan and Peter and Jordan.

Two Faces Of Labour

While we’ve been away it was interesting to see some media events unfold. Most interesting was the ITV plans to ditch most of its regional services. The government couldn’t comment on those changes apparently. Then we had the Russell Brand and Jonny Ross insulting some old actors ‘satanic slut’ of a relative. This time members of the government could, and did, comment on that issue. Nothing like being two faced Gordon, is there? No wonder he offered a job to Fiona Phillips. Two peas in a pod eh?

ITV Regional-less

Yes ITV want to drop its regional news services down to a handful of programmes. Ofcom as usual have bent over backwards to the ITV shareholders. As the slogan goes: “Ofcon: Sod The Viewers.” Regional ITV is out-of-date apparently. Yet in the same breath they comment that most viewers still like local television, in fact you just have to watch the ‘Your News’ section on the BBC News Channel to see people want news programmes to show what is happening locally to them.

Its only out-of-date in as much ITV don’t want to pay for something that is part of their licence agreement. It isn’t a case of not being able to afford it, its a case of greed.

No, lets just be honest: Its regional slots have been sabotaged by ITV to save money for years, and the toothless regulator have allowed it. Let’s just hope that when voting time comes round people remember who introduced Ofcon – Labour!

Cameron On The Moral Front

Con leader David Cameron wants to clean up television, taking the moral ground. Unfortunately Cameron used to work for the worst television company ever to grace British screens – Carlton. This is a company that cared so much for ITV heritage that it binned many important historical documents. So I don’t think our Dave is in any position to talk about television morals

Although maybe he would like to make a mends and suggest introducing a heritage motion, that would see any broadcaster bound to keep important historical information and material concerning archive programming? With an added clause that those who flout it and ruin archives should be fined, so the Carlton shareholders and Michael Green should be top of that list… I won’t hold my breath Cameron.

Countdown to an End

Carol Vorderman has spoken about how quitting Countdown after 26-years left her feeling ill. The trauma of departing from the Channel 4 show made her believe she was having a stroke.

“I had gone numb all down my right side. I couldn’t feel anything touching my arm, and my skin was cold. I was terrified. I went to hospital, and it turned out to be an extreme physical reaction to tremendous stress,” she told the Daily ‘Hate’ Mail.

Vorderman has been with Countdown since its first episode in 1982. Her final edition, along with co-host Des O’Connor – who has also quit – will air later this month.

Meanwhile its been finally announced that Jeff Stelling and Rachel Riley will be the new presenters of the words and numbers programme from 2009.

Must See TV: Charlie Brookers Screenwipe

Do you dislike the cheap rip-off of High School Musical that is Britannia High? Do you find X Factor contestants and their sob stories tedious? Do continuity announcers who speak over the closing credits get on your knockers? Then this is the show for you. A gem in BBC Four’s crown. Its like TV Burp, but for adults.

News In Brief:

The seventh series of Channel 4’s urban drama Shameless could be cut from sixteen episodes to eight.

Pop Idol howler Will Young is to be featured on LWT’s long running arts and documentary series, The South Bank Show. It will chart a year in the life of a pop star. I use the words pop and star loosely.

Graham Norton has camply flounced out to tell us that he isn’t replacing Terry Wogan as host of the Eurovision Song Contest. We can all now rest safely. We like Graham, just not as much as BBC channel controllers

And Finally

Sergeant’s Festive Release

He wowed viewers with his dance moves (or lack of) on Strictly Come Dancing and now, riding on the back of the public affection, John Sergeant has decided to release a song for Christmas.

The former BBC political reporter is hoping to reach the top spot with his release of a song written by Chris Difford from the band Squeeze. Entitled Let’s Not Fight This Christmas, it will be released next Monday, December 8.

Its reported that the song has come out of a collaboration between BBC One’s The One Show presenters Christine Bleakley and Adrian Chiles. John will have to compete with whoever wins ITV’s X Factor and a host of pop acts hoping for the Christmas number one.

Lets face it, it can’t be any worse than the bubblegum teen pap that X Factor churn out every year, and will no doubt be vastly superior to the God-awful Do They Know It’s Christmas by Band Aid20.

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