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Reasons why I never watch….

By Mike Cunningham On November 5th, 2014 at 11:11 am

…………Daytime Television


I switched the tv on so I could check whether my ‘Remote Record’ selection has registered on the list I wish to record on my Sky box, and after checking for success, switched over to terrestrial tv before going back to my writing.

When I tell you that, on, I think, ITV, there was an Earth-shattering discussion, complete with revelations, on whether to squeeze, or not to squeeze, facial ‘zits’, I decided that my education needed no further enlightenment, and switched off.


By Pete Moore On April 23rd, 2013 at 11:19 am

A television drama series ended last night.

Broadchurch has gradually laid hold of the nation’s imagination, and by the start of the final instalment it held it in a sure, vice-like grip.”

Nope, never heard of it.

Signed….Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells

By Mike Cunningham On September 24th, 2011 at 11:32 am

Anyone watch the first episode of the second Downton Abbey saga? Watch, that is, as it was broadcast?

Seems as though there were two different sets of outcries from viewers, annoyed not with the broadcast itself, but with the number and length of the adverts which accompanied the story. The first set of attacks centred around the number and length of the adverts, which ITV chose to air for a total of 23 minutes out of a total programme time of 90 minutes. As the Daily Mail cartoon observed “They spoil the adverts by having little bits of drama in between”.

The second set of complaints were founded in the insurance company Aviva’s broadcasting of life insurance ‘stories’ whilst images of trench warfare, death and violence were showing, as part of their blitz upon the viewing public.

As for the first complaint, there does seem to be a case for ITV to answer, mainly because they did over-run, in strict terms, the usual time allotted to advertising. The episode was billed as being 90 minutes long, but the viewer only gets 67-odd minutes of drama. They might reply that the show was broadcast in Prime Time, 9.00 p.m. on a Sunday, they are a commercial broadcaster and they have sold the slots to maximise exposure to their clients’ products and services.

The second series of complaints is perhaps a little more tenuous in origin, based on the Aviva adverts for a ‘story’ of a injured motorcyclist who presumably gets all the support he needs because he signed up with Aviva.

We are ‘blitzed’ on an daily basis by the advertising profession, and I defy anyone to state that their behaviour has not been modified by one advert or another. The adverts which I remember best are the ones which make me laugh, but doubt whether I have ever actually purchased a product based upon my rather twisted sense of humour! The fact that we can, at the ‘click’ of a mouse determine whether others have had a good or lousy experience with any item or service says at least that most adverts have to be at least honest in their claims. I wrote a novel once which had ‘subliminal advertising’ as a theme or rather a sub-plot. It is because of my own limited knowledge of psychology that I know that the ‘subliminal message’ just could not work, a fact for which we should all be truly thankful!

As for Downton Abbey, I enjoyed the whole of the first broadcast without watching a single advert. How? Simple, I recorded the whole thing, watched it later; and fast-forwarded my Sky box whenever the dreaded ‘advertising breaks’ commenced.


Switch Off Your Television Set And Go And Do Something Less Boring Instead

By ATWadmin On November 2nd, 2008 at 9:45 am

SOMEONE said in here last week (modesty forbids) that the goggle box in the corner of the room is hugely damaging to children, retarding their development emotionallyas well as intellectually. I said (if it was me) that it’s time that the retarding power of TV was studied. Well apparently an egghead is on the case. Hitchens in the MoS:

But TV is so powerful that this terrible mistreatment of the young is seldom if ever researched. Here at last seems to be an exception. Professor Michael Shayer’s new study shows the brain power of 14-year-olds has slipped significantly in one generation. And that has been the generation of multi-channel, 24-hour colour TV and sets in every bedroom.

The professor doesn’t think it a coincidence and nor do I. Why do people who rightly fuss so much about what goes into their children’s stomachs, and fret about mobile-phone signals and air pollution, pay no attention to what is going into their offspring’s brains?

Can there be a connection, one wonders, between that and this?

“It never occurred to us”

By ATWadmin On March 11th, 2008 at 1:02 am

Did anyone else watch "Rivers of Blood", the BBC2 documentary on Enoch Powell’s famous speech, on Saturday night? I did, and I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. Although I didn’t agree with all of its conclusions, it was far from being the hatchet-job that I was expecting, and it certainly seemed strongly sympathetic towards Powell’s critique of multiculturalism, even if it did, rather bewilderingly, imply that his speech was responsible for bringing state-sponsored multiculturalism about. It was also a pretty well put-together programme, with plenty of interesting talking-heads, balancing out the predictable ("he was a wicked racist!") contributions of a couple of race hustlers, and the execrable Roy "Tub of Lard" Hattersley. Plus, the Socialist Worker and the New Statesman both hated it, which can only count in its favour! As a regular critic of the BBC, I must say that on this occasion they’ve actually done rather well. Now, if only they could get it right the other 99% of the time…

If you didn’t catch it, then it’s been uploaded to Youtube, and the first segment can be seen here. It’s all interesting, but I was particularly intrigued by some comments from Lord Lester, the left-wing barrister, and former advisor to Roy Jenkins, who as Home Secretary in the mid-1960s first articulated the leftist doctrine of multiculturalism. Speaking at the very end of the film, he said:

The model we had was, everyone would share the broad values of being British; what we did not expect, was that there would be those who would unwisely suggest that, for example, Sharia law should be applied in this country, or that the punishment of stoning for adultery might be looked at…It never occurred to us that there would be those kinds of unwise challenges to the broad values of a liberal democratic society.

It really is astonishing that the liberals who launched the multiculturalist agenda that has dominated (and disrupted) society for over forty years never even considered the possibility that not everyone was going to accept the "broad values of a liberal democratic society", however they might be interpreted. They never thought it possible, that encouraging people to continue living their lives as though they were still in some backwater village in Pakistan, would also have the effect of encouraging them to continue to adhere to the moral, social, and political codes prevalent in those backwater villages. Their naivety was simply astounding!
Of course, while Lord Lester, and, apparently, Roy Jenkins by the end of his life, may have realised that something is not quite right, there are still a Hell of a lot of liberals who have not achieved this realisation. They still believe, in the face of all the evidence to the contrary, that the increasing size and influence of the Islamic population in Britain is nothing to fear, and that, indeed, it is those of us who oppose Islamification who are the real threat to this country. I have had plenty of liberals tell me that even should Muslims eventually become a majority in Britain, it will be no problem, because they will have accepted all our values. Well, they haven’t done so in the last forty years, but have rather become more extreme with each passing generation. The fact is, these liberals who decry any attack on Islam as part of some "racist" conspiracy may well find, that in thirty or forty years’ time, they, like Lord Lester today, will be complaining that "it never occurred to us" that British-born Muslims would actually start executing apostates, or establishing separate Sharia jurisdictions in cities such as Birmingham or Oldham. But by then, of course, it will be too late for them to do anything about it.

race through london

By ATWadmin On November 24th, 2007 at 9:13 pm

The team at Top Gear tries to determine which is the best form of transport during rush hour in London. They race each other through the capital using public transport (a mix of bus, tube and DLR), a car (with satnav, the police and the CC to contend with), a bike (rather him than me) and a boat. Brilliantly edited, a nice snapshot of life in the capital, topical and full of humour. Really good fun. In 3 short parts. I won’t tell you the result

part 2
part 3

Blasphemy and Libel

By ATWadmin On November 24th, 2007 at 3:14 pm

With such brooding rain filled black skies hanging over London what else can you do but blog?! Here are two interesting positions regards Britains oldest laws – Blasphemy and Libel .

Via the Guardian and hattip PoorBastardMarvin

The documentary maker cleared by regulators of misleadingly editing a Channel 4 programme about extreme Islamic preachers is considering legal action. David Henshaw, the managing director of Hardcash Productions which made the Dispatches film Undercover Mosque, said he was still "very, very angry".

"I really don’t like the libel courts and believe in a world of free comment. I don’t mind abuse, but Hardcash’s reputation has been severely damaged and it was a good reputation," Henshaw said. "The Ofcom judgment is great and if anyone bothers to read it they’ll realise this was a bloody good programme. But damage was done that day in August, huge damage.The Guardian

And via MediaWatchWatch on the ongoing Jerry Springer the Opera trial:

The latest on today’s Springer trial comes from This is London.

The human rights group Liberty are intervening in Stephen Green’s private prosecution as an interested third party. Their aim is to kill off the blasphemy law in the UK. Anna Fairclough, their legal officer, said:

"These blasphemy laws should be shelved in dusty archives, not used as a tool to bring mischievous prosecutions against the Arts. Thirty years have passed since the last blasphemy prosecution, making the law ripe for repeal".

kkkMOS_228x296.jpgGreen is hugely disappointed: "It is a great shame that Liberty have gone down this road, and strayed away from their core activities of defending civil liberties, which we as an organisation support".

Simon Barrow of the secularist Christian think tank Ekklesia has just issued a press release in support of Liberty.

Human rights advocates, including people of faith,have quite rightly campaigned against blasphemylaws in Pakistan and other countries, and having oneon the statute in the UK is both an offence and ananachronism. Privileging one religion above other views is indefensible in a democracy, and for Christians there is the added irony that Christ was himself arraigned on a charge of blasphemy. Using the law to attack opinions about belief is to misuse it, and suggesting that God needs protection against free speech makes no theological sense at all.

Certification class “z”

By ATWadmin On July 29th, 2007 at 11:10 am

Death is the one great leveller. We are all going to die; and when it seems that some people seem to have escaped from the Grim Reaper, that is when the blade swings forward. But death is also kind; it can relieve unbearable pain and suffering, it can end years of mental torture through the savage but random infliction of a mental illness or a physical illness which removes all physical control whilst leaving mental powers intact. From time immemorial, the death of a loved one has been a time of sadness, an acknowledgment of relief and a marker from whence those surviving can move on. Whether agnostic or deeply religious, the death of some one truly close has always been a time of solemnity, of an acknowledgment that the one who dies is but a traveller into a region from where there has never been any sign that this future place exists. All that the religions of this world offer is a promise, and, to me at least, the question always has to be asked, “How do you know?” The reply that all one has to do is to believe is but another promise.

While not subscribing to any faith or belief myself these days, and equally not wishing to deny the beliefs of billions of others, I would ask if many readers concur with my views that the proposed showing of the moments of the death of an Alzheimer sufferer is but a film clip too far? The wife of the dead man was interviewed on the radio, and has been prominent in both media interviews and commentary pieces; but her reasons for the national broadcast of her husband’s last moments are muddled and confused. She said she wants to highlight the total effects of Alzheimers’, and how it is not only a brain disease but also a physical one, as the brain functions close down, the patient literally starves to death, or suffers renal failure as their liver ceases working.

My own view is that the film sequence should be excised from the broadcast, as the dying man was not asked for his opinion, nor could he be, and his bereaved wife is surely the wrong person to give assent for such a travesty to be shown on television.

Journalist takes a stand

By ATWadmin On June 29th, 2007 at 4:39 pm

This is doing the rounds, so you may have seen it, but it is quite funny.  Mika Brzezinski takes a stand against celebrity tat masquerading as news.  Good for her!


By ATWadmin On June 7th, 2007 at 12:07 pm

I wasn’t sure if I would comment on this, since it relates to the hateful Channel 4 programme "Big Brother" BUT…..it appears that Emily Parr has been removed from the Big Brother house for using a racially offensive word to another housemate. The 19-year-old from Bristol was taken out of the compound at 0330 BST and was forbidden from having any further contact with the 11 other contestants.

Emily said: "Are you pushing it out, you nigger?" to Charley Uchea, while they were dancing in the living room on Wednesday evening. Charley said "You are in trouble", adding she was "in shock". Emily replied: "Don’t make a big thing out of it… I was joking."

Now then, I think it is wrong to "evict" some-one for using the "Nigger" word when in fact this word is liberally used in our culture. Take popular Rap music, sung along to in the streets, where it seems that it is almost a word of choice. (Along with "ho", that is) Is it only Black people that can say this word? Why? And what other words should we ban?

Listen, I don’t like the N word and would never use it to describe another person since I simply think it is crude. But there are MANY other crude words – in fact "Big Brother" delights in foul language and reprehensible behaviour. I think the producers of this contrived dross WANTED to find a way to show us all how decent and responsible they are (After last year’s Shilpa/Jade commotion) which is why they sacrificed poor stupid Emily.