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Hot Metal (ITV 1986-1988, Robert Hardy, Geoffrey Palmer)

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Sitcom Hot Metal saw outrageous media baron Twiggy Rathbone takes over run down newspaper The Daily Crucible and begin to revolutionise it. He quickly sends the paper downmarket and rechristens it The Crucible.

Rathbone ‘promotes’ editor Harry Stringer to ‘Managing Editor’ but makes sure he has no power. Then he brings in a new editor, Russell Spam (Twiggy and Russell are both played by Robert Hardy), giving him the job of turning the newspaper into a sleazy downmarket ‘rag’.

Spam reinstates Greg Kettle, who had previously been sacked by Stringer. Kettle becomes the papers leading ‘sleaze merchant’, inventing stories whenever he can’t find any real ones.

Stringer later vanishes after a mysterious accident on an aeroplane. He’s replaced as Managing Editor by Richard Lipton.

Extremely funny take on the tabloids and certain well known proprietors. Series writers Andrew Marshall and David Renwick had mined a similar vein of archly satirical comedy with Whoops Apocalypse. Robert Hardy was fabulous in the dual role of Twiggy and Russell.

There was a short special broadcast on 10 March 1989 on BBC One as part of that years A Night of Comic Relief.

Hot Metal

production details
UK / ITV – London Weekend Television – Humphrey Barclay / 12×25 minute episodes / Broadcast 16 February 1986 – 17 April 1988

Writers: Andrew Marshall, David Renwick / Producer: Humphrey Barclay

cast
Robert Hardy as Terence ‘Twiggy’ Rathbone/Russell Spam
Geoffrey Palmer as Harry Stringer (series 1 & special)
Richard Wilson as Richard Lipton (series 2)
Richard Kane as Greg Kettle
Geoffrey Hutchings as Max (series 1)
John Gordon-Sinclair as Bill Tytla (series 1)
David Barrass as Jack Thrush (series 2)
Caroline Milmoe as Maggie Troon (series 2)
John Horsley as Father Teasdale (series 1)
Geoffrey Greenhill as Keith (series 1)
Doreen Keogh as Mrs Beatty (series 1)
Sarah Mortimer as Sharon (series 1)
Jack Watling as Prime Minister (series 1)
Eliza Buckingham as Mrs Macnamara (series 1)
Michael Stainton as Kuznetsky (series 1)
Nicolas Colicos as Lt Scott Mackenzie (series 2)
Peter Snow as Himself (special)
Mike Gatting as Himself (special)

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TV

Clochemerle (BBC-2 1972, Cyril Cusack, Roy Dotrice)

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Clochmerle BBC 1972

Period sitcom, based on a novel by Gabriel Chevallier that was adapted by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, that saw the French villagers of Clochemerle kick up a fuss over plans to install a new toilet.

cast
CYRIL CUSACK as Major Piechut
ROY DOTRICE as Ponosse
KENNETH GRIFFITH as Ernest Tafardel
WENDY HILLER as Justine Putet
HUGH GRIFFITH as Alexandre Bourdillat
BERNARD BRESSLAW as Nicholas the Beadle
MADELINE SMITH as Hortase Girodet
GEORGINA MOON as Rose Biraque
PETER USTINOV as Narrator

crew details
Writers: Ray Galton, Alan Simpson
Novel: Gabriel Chevallier
Producer: Michael Mills

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC Two – Bavaria
Duration: 9×30 minute episodes
Aired From: 18 February – 14 April 1972 Fridays at 10.05pm

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Clairvoyant, The (BBC-2 1986, Roy Kinnear, Sandra Dickinson)

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BBC 2 Logo

In Roy Clarke penned sitcom The Clairvoyant used car salesman Arnold Bristow is knocked down in a car accident and suddenly finds himself with psychic powers – or so he believes. There was a pilot broadcast 27 Nov 1984.

cast
ROY KINNEAR as Arnold Bristow
SANDRA DICKINSON as Lily
HUGH LLOYD as Burma
SHAUN CURRY as Newton
GLYNIS BROOKS as Dawn
CARMEL CRYAN as Carmen

crew details
Writer: Roy Clarke
Producer and Director: Alan J.W. Bell

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC-2
Duration: 6×30 minute episodes
Aired From: Pilot – 27 November 1984 and Series – 15 May – 19 June 1986

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Christmas Princess (UP 2017, Nicole Munoz, Zak Santiago)

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Christmas Princess Nicole Munoz

Christmas Princess is the true story of Donaly Marquez who, through a childhood of neglect and abuse, achieved her dream of becoming a rose bowl princess. An inspirational story of resilience, strength and finding a family to call your own.

cast
Nicole Muñoz as Donaly Marquez
Rosa Blasi as Sara
Zak Santiago as Ignacio Marquez
Olivia Steele Falconer as Emily Marquez
Jaedon Siewert as Abraham Marquez
Lina Renna as Young Donaly
Paloma Kwiatkowski as Chloe
Ty Wood as Trent
Pendo Muema as Monique
Kalyn Miles as Maria
Kaaren de Zilva as Roberta
Garfield Wilson as Dr. Miller
Clay St. Thomas as Judge #1
Patti Allan as Judge #2
Natalie von Rotsburg as Judge #3

crew details
Director: Allan Harmon
Writer: Tracy Andreen

production details
Country: Canada
Network and Production Companies: UP
Duration: 1×120 minute episode
Aired From: Sunday 10 December 2017

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