TV Weekly: Isolation Stories

Welcome to another TV Weekly Newswrap, we’ve been wrapping news like this since 2007, which makes us probably by now all wrapped up with nowhere to go… and at the moment this is just as well.

Newswrap Headlines

Strictly Isolated: The Sun reported that BBC producers were planning to put celebs and their professional dance partners in isolation together to ‘keep the show on the air.’ The tabloid noted that ‘the move would minimize chances of spreading coronavirus, but anger stars’ real-life other halves.’

Corrie Carry On: Andrew Whyment spoke about the possibility of the soap going off air amid lockdown, which has seen the soap go out of production for the first time since 1979. ITV went out on strike for three months in the late seventies when unions pulled the plug over pay. It may also end up just like 1979 in other ways too – back then Corrie disappeared from screens, along with the entire ITV network, from August to October.

Andrew Whyment noted that ITV have enough episodes, airing at three times a week, to stay on air until July. Emmerdale is expected to run out of new editions at the end of May. Elsewhere Beverley Callard spoke about how ITV bosses are “panicking like mad” over running out of Coronation Street episodes.

Channel 4: This week announced that Walkers Sensations will sponsor the 9pm film every day of the week on Film4 from Tuesday 14th April 2020.

MasterChef: Banking and international finance professional, Thomas Frake has become the MasterChef 2020 Champion, the sixteenth amateur cook to claim the prestigious title.

Good Morning Britain: Presenter Kate Garraway has revealed that her husband Derek Draper is still in a ‘critical condition’. The hubby of the former GMTV personality was admitted to a hospital intensive care facility at the beginning of this month after contracting COVID-19.

This Morning: Saw a caller stun hosts Eammon Holmes and Ruth Langsford so much so they noted their team would be calling the police. A phone-in guest called ‘Louise’ said she was still being tormented by an ex-partner, leaving the hosts and agony aunt Deidre Sanders outraged.

More Icons: Following a look at the life and times of Audrey Roberts, aka Sue Nicholls last year, ITV bosses are reportedly looking to fill gaps in the schedules with further retrospectives on much loved Coronation Street characters. Others lined up, The Mirror reported, include Ken Barlow and Bet Gilroy.

Pap Off: Laura Whitmore and Jessie Wallace have both hit out at the paparazzi. Love Island host Whitmore complained about press photographers who have been waiting outside her door during the Covid-19 pandemic while EastEnders actress Wallace called paps for The Sun c**ts for taking picture of her during the coronavirus situation.

NHS gift: Coronation Street actor Simon Gregson has gifted NHS staff a classic car and motorbike as a thank you for their service during this difficult times.

Benidorm: Actor Tony Maudsley – best known for his camp role as hairdresser Kenneth DuBeke in sunshine sitcom Benidorm for ITV is moving to the colder skies of Weatherfield as he joins Corrie. Tony will play the son of Archie Shuttleworth – the undertaker who was portrayed by the late Roy Hudd.

4 Comedy: Matt Lucas will front for Channel 4 a comedy sketch entertainment show written by Harry Hill while Mo Gilligan is to bring comedy to the network with his new Happy Hour variety show.

Bitter Taste: Sue Perkins spoke about the ‘painful’ separation of the original Great British Bake Off line up when the show was lured over to Channel 4 in 2016 from the BBC. While Sue and co-host Mel Giedroyc and celebrity chef Mary Berry decided not to be lured away by a big wage increase Paul Hollywood shot off to Channel 4 quicker than Mo Farrah at a half-marathon.

EastEnders: Actress Maisie Smith has been raising money for the NHS by raffling hand-painted rainbow canvases. The ‘Enders Tiffany performer has been raffling off her handcrafted rainbow works of art.

Emmerdale: Detective Inspector Malone, the ‘iffy’ law enforcer, has seen a number of complaints from viewers who believe the character misrepresents the police force. Malone played by Mark Womack has been seen involved in several dubious and illegal actions.

Casualty: There will be another farewell from the A&E department of Holby when Ruby Sparks bows out of the saga later today. Ruby, played by actress Maddy Hill, leaves to spend time with her daughter.

Farewell Tim Brooke-Taylor

This week we said goodbye to comedian and actor Tim Brooke-Taylor, best known for his time as one of The Goodies.

Brooke-Taylor died, at the age of 79, from coronavirus, his agent confirmed. Throughout the 1970s and early 80s Tim drew large audiences to the BBC and later ITV as part of the comedy trio The Goodies alongside Bill Oddie and Graeme Garden. Both colleagues paid tribute to their co-star.

“He was a funny, sociable, generous man who was a delight to work with.” Garden told BBC News, with Oddie adding that Tim was “a true visual comic and a great friend”.

Brooke-Taylor started his career in broadcasting on BBC radio later returning to the medium when he became a regular panellist on Radio 4’s I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue. As well as comedy there were serious roles in soap operas including Doctors on BBC One and ITV Central’s Crossroads, the latter gaining praise for his positive portrayal of an older gay man.

But it was his comedy writing and performing he will be best remembered for, other shows to be graced with the talent of Brookes-Taylor included Rediffusion’s At Last the 1948 Show, Thames TV’s Do Not Adjust Your Set, BBC One’s The Kenny Everett Television Show, Central TV’s The Upper Hand and as a regular in LWT sitcom Me and My Girl.

In 2011 Tim was honoured with an OBE for his services to entertainment.

Bloomin’ Lovely BBC

The nation’s favourite gardening experts will return to the BBC this May to provide special programming celebrating the world renowned RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

Alongside new footage from the show’s established presenters programming will showcase highlights from the festival over the past decade, from 17-24th May on BBC One and BBC Two, as this year’s show has been cancelled due to Coronavirus.

The special series of programmes will include new footage fronted by Sophie Raworth, Joe Swift, Nicki Chapman and Monty Don, alongside themed compilation clips showing the best of the Chelsea Flower Show over the past ten years.

In addition, for the first time the show will also offer an opportunity for viewers to get involved as there will be a vote for their Garden of the Decade in the BBC/RHS People’s Choice Award.

There will also be new input and advice from the Chelsea Flower Show team’s much admired experts including: Adam Frost, Carol Klein, Rachel De Thame, Toby Buckland, Mark Lane, France Tophill and Arit Anderson.

Life in lockdown to be brought to screens by ITV

ITV has commissioned a series of four short dramas from Oscar nominated writer and producer Jeff Pope, inspired by true stories and reflecting life in lockdown across the country.

Isolation Stories, produced by Pope’s Factual Drama label, part of ITV Studios, will feature a stellar cast and comprise of four 15 minute episodes.

Each episode, written by award-winning screenwriters, and assembled in conditions that the production team has never faced before, will reflect what families are going through after weeks of lockdown, featuring moments that are funny, sad, heartwarming and poignant.


Tom Hardy: Actor Tom Hardy will make another return to CBeebies’ Bedtime Stories later this month. This time he will read six new stories during ‘Tom Week’. The BBC says Hardy wanted to help to keep children entertained “at this challenging time”.

Channel 5: Home and Away and Neighbours will see episode output increase from two episodes a week to three. The network initally cut their five episodes down to twice a week in case supply ran out during the lockdown period.

The Chase: Former contestant Darragh Ennis has joined the line-up of Chasers. The Irish scientist, who competed on the show in 2017, told his Twitter followers that he’s “really excited to be the 6th chaser”.

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