19 February, 2008

Mouths almighty

Past-it celebrities, forever patronisingly referred to as "veteran personalities" by press releases, have a tendency to throw money at vanity projects as a way of keeping their names in lights. Well, in the Radio Times radio pages.

Readers of this week's edition will find a short question-and-answer feature with Dean Sullivan, the Danny La Rue of the dole office, sometime soap opera caricature Jimmy Corkhill but better known as The One Who Stayed Right To The Bitter End Of Brookside.

He's promoting City Talk FM, a new radio station broadcasting in Liverpool but also - oh, spare the flattery - across the nation online. It seems Dean is a regular contributor to the network. Indeed, he has a slot every weekday afternoon.

Regardless of the fact somebody somewhere thought it was a good idea employing a person best known for portraying a fictional character and reading other people's words to *be themselves* on radio, live, for three hours Monday-Friday, just look at the company Sullivan is keeping. They're all there: Margi Clarke, Simon O'Brien, Ian St John, Brian Reade... not a professional DJ among them. Trisha Goddard is also involved for some reason, as are students from John Moores University ("if you want a flyer to get into Liquidation for just £3, drop us a text!"). Oh, and Michael Brandon.

An act of monumental, unlistenable folly, you just know all the budget will have been used up in six months time and one by one the "big names" will quietly disappear. The wonder is that Professor Redmond hasn't got himself involved. Yet. Look out for a new show, Have Your Phil, turning up sometime mid-September, round about the time that everyone else has pissed off (except Dean Sullivan, naturally).

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's not that they've taken over Radio 4 Ian. God, you're in such a grumpy mood if your recent posts are anything to go by...

Chris Hughes said...

I tried listening to this when I was in Liverpool on Saturday, but they were just simulcasting Radio City's regular football show (which is pretty decent - there's nothing to compare on commercial radio in London).

It is a grim line-up, with too many refugees from the 1980s. I'm not sure, though, that what this needs is "professional DJs". They've got Phil Easton on the breakfast show, who's been a music DJ with City for eons, and I don't think I'd want to listen to him talking and fielding phone calls for three hours.

To be fair to the Saint, he's been on Radio City since the mid 1980s, at least.

I think, given that Liverpool is a relatively small city and already has the hugely successful Radio Merseyside, this would struggle whoever was on air.

The prospect of Phil Redmond mumbling for three hours about why the London Eye should be relocated to Liverpool is a painful one. Perhaps he could start the show with one word, and it three hours later on the same word.

Five-Centres said...

Brian Reade. Ugh.

Matthew Rudd said...

Margi Clarke. Ugh.