Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Welcome back, News at Ten.
It was an almost flawless first edition. Professional, well-balanced and as slick as a self-lubricating condom.

If I'm going to be picky (I know, very out of character), the only fault I could find was the delay in Trevor McDonald turning his head from the close-up camera to the longer distance one, so several times he seemed to be looking at somone over my right shoulder.
Strange, that.
You lure the doyen of veteran, iconic newsreaders out of retirement and then he looks into the wrong camera.
That said, give me Trevor any day rather than the ludicrous, affected and pompous Huw Edwards on the BBC. Why does he read little chunks of the bulletin from his script as though there were gaps on the autocue? Does he want us to think he delivers most of it from memory? Grow up, Huw!
And because there was no commercial break in News at Ten, we didn't get Trevor's famous drawl:
"When we come baaaaaaaaaack..."
Actually, I was rather disappointed about that.

The opening titles were splendid: preserving the famous brand but with a new, dramatic swoop up the Thames.
Like retro on speed.
(Christ, did I really say that? Sorry, I've been reading How To Bluff Your Way As A Media Creative.)
Call me childish, but that's how I want my news to begin. I want bongs, I want loud drums, I want frenetic strings.
I detest that lumbering BBC News music and those pathetic beeps that sound like a delivery lorry reversing outside the supermarket.
And those lines that ping the BBC's globe are wavy or crooked! They go round corners. I'm no expert but surely radio and satellite signals travel in straight lines?

Some will criticise the content of News at Ten and the lead scoop of an interview with Diana's ex-lover. But News at Ten was always a more populist news programme and viewers are entitled to a choice of styles. You might as well criticise a pollock for not being haddock.

However, on the trailers for News at Ten, Trevor's new sidekick, Julie Etchingham, said 'you're in people's homes at that time of night'.
She's not the first TV presenter to have said that but do these poor, deluded souls actually believe it?
Listen carefully, Julie:
Nobody is ever in my home at that time of night unless I'm going to sleep with them. And for reasons beyond my control that would never be you.
Far from being in my home, you are the flickering image of a midget person's disembodied head on a screen in the corner of my room.
And that's exactly how I like it.
For if you were actually in my home I wouldn't make a cup of tea without offering you one; I wouldn't turn my back on you to write my blog; I wouldn't wander around the room in my boxer shorts or scratch my arse; and I certainly wouldn't cut you off in mid-flow saying 'that's enough News at ten, so fuck off you pert, blonde bitch', switch the lights off and leave the room.
So be grateful for that.
And just to be clear: you are not my friend; I don't have to 'trust' you; you don't have a responsiblity to me; I don't have to believe what you're saying. You just have to read the autocue without stumbling and look into the right camera.
So don't get up yourself, dear.
Or you'll end up like Huw Edwards.


At 5:52 PM, Blogger zaphod said...

Hello Mr Lupin. I think that there is too much news on the telly.
From six until Emmerdale and then three hours and its the news again.

Porn would be more fun....but not with Sir Trevor in it.

At 7:23 PM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

I confess I often watch 24 hour news. And even the committee stage of the Housing and Regeneration Bill on the Parliament Channel. How could porn be more fun than that?


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