It’s been there three weeks now, my creeping green, which I mentioned last issue in the hope that a kindly List reader would provide a simple solution. In the absence of any helpful suggestions I called in expert advice. ‘Could be your tubes, could be the whole thing’s buggered,’ said Expert Advice. ‘Either way it’s going to cost you.‘

The psychedelic shades to be found on The Trials 0101(BBC2) were thus somewhat muted, although the comedy certainly wasn‘t. Old hands (hams?) Leslie Phillips and Nigel Hawthorne vied for the honours as the Establishment judge and prosecuting counsel, although Nigel Planer had a nice cameo as John Peel. 'Why do you say “make love". when everyone else says “fuck”?‘ asked Mr Prosecutor sternly. ‘Well, I thought as I was in court I should be polite.’ replied a perplexed Peelie, ‘but seeing as everyone else is saying “fuck”. I suppose I might as well say it too.‘ The true lesson of the 02 trial: it‘s just dandy to swear. especially if you‘re supposed to be part ofthe Establishment.

‘Naked Video was cancelled in deference to Terry Waite’s release. Presumably it was the big man’s first request, and an understandable one.’

The laughs came to a temporary end when the play was followed by the requisite Late Show debate, all vague, brooding questions and everyone trying to be desperately significant. The pantomime swiftly resumed when the flailing Jonathan Dimbleby introduced Germaine Greer as a ‘seminal feminist‘. ‘I believe you edited the feminist edition of Oz, although it was called something different,’ stuttered Jonathan. ‘Cuntpower is the word you‘re afraid to say, I think,’ replied an unfazed Ms Greer. ‘Well it‘s very easy to say Cuntpower,’ proved Jonathan, stung to bravado, providing a healthy return for all

those who had taken the 100-1 down

I their local bookies against a Dimbleby saying the C-word on

thetwork TV. All the old walls are

tumbling . . .

The Gravy Train Goes East (Channel 4), despite the lack of Alexei Sayle, is a substantial improvement on the first series, shown last year. This time we’re whisked off to Malcolm Bradbury’s mythical Balkan state of Slaka with Mr Bradbury’s name sneaking in a sly Hitchcockian appearance on the cover of the local guide book. The whole series has been crammed full of such playful directorial flourishes from the gargantuan Foreign Office secretary

. g wearing the End Sexual Harassment! kidnappcdboymrcscuc.

Now’ sweatshirt, to the taxi-drivers

; at the airport with signs for Roger


Ian Richardson deservedly held centre stage as the suavely xenophobic Brit, Spearpoint, craving a knighthood at all costs. Due reverence however must be given to Roger Lloyd Pack, TV’s utility man. He was delightfully absurd as Plitplov, the professor of English and all-round hustler. He also managed to put in a fleeting appearance earlier in the week as an unlikely transvestite in the 1974 Naked Civil Servant production , and appeared on the Tuesday in an

‘The whole series has been crammed lull of such playlul directorial llourishes from the gargantuan Foreign Ollice secretary wearing the ‘End Sexual Harassment Now’ sweatshirt, to the taxi-drivers at the airport with signs for Roger Scruton.’

episode of Boon. And people still label him ‘Trigger‘ after his part as the pub dimwit in Only Fools And Horses. The man deserves to be way up there with Warren Clarke in the Great British Lugubrious Character Actors Hall Of Fame. (He’s Emily Lloyd’s dad as well).

Monday night is BBC Scotland comedy night with City Lights (880) and Naked Video (BBC2). except the latter was cancelled in deference to Terry Waite’s release. Presumably it was the big man’s first request. and an understandable one. A programme called Lifesense replaces City Lights elsewhere in the U K. I don‘t know what it’s about but it undoubtedly has more life and makes more sense than Bob Black‘s enduring (like an old auntie who refuses to die) comedy. Gerard Kelly still mugs for the camera like an ancient silent-movie actor. you can count the beats to the punchlines, so formulaic is the writing, and for the new series all the old favourites have fallen comfortany back into their two-dimensional ‘characters’. If you‘re currently producing a panto and are looking for some antique gags to pad out the script, you could do worse than give Bob a bell, as he seems to be in possession of an encylopaedia full ofthem. As Chancer says to the pub dimwit Tam (a crudely-drawn Caledonian Trigger, John Sullivan please note), ‘I hope that wasn’t meant to be a joke.‘ He summed up the whole script. (Tom Lappin)


The List guide to what's new on the rental shelves and in the shops this lortnlght.


I Boson NW (15) Rutger Hauer is stuck in the middle of the Sahara with no Guinness for miles. What‘s worse, two feuding tribes are on his trail, the CIA want to kill him, and he has a

Unengaging, overplayed thriller that is far from Pure Genius. (RCA/Columbia)


I Runaway Father (PG) (Odyssey)

I Skl School (18) (First Independent)

I White Fang (PG) (Buena Vista)

I Teenage Mutant Ninla Turtles 2 (PG) The Secret Of The Ooze is the subtitle for the less-than-blockbusting sequel. The guys go Green this time in search of some radioactive waste that the nasty Shredder is threatening to use for his own foul purposes. A few nice moments, but mostly hasty cash-in fodder that proved too blatant at the British box-office. (Fox) I LA Story ( 15) Steve Martin‘s offbeat romantic guide to the loopiest neighbourhood in the world. A soft-centred satire on West Coast extremes. undermined by Martin’s obvious affection for his subject. (Guild)

I Where Angels FearTo Tread (PG) Oh no. it's E.M. Forster. Oh no. again, it’s Helena Bonham-Carter. Yes it‘s Britfilm territory again. all tasteful direction and understated acting. Helen Mirren stars as a widow packed off to Italy by her in-laws, where the usual romance. culture shock and tragedy occurs. You can watch this sort ofthing in your sleep. and you probably will. (20:20 Vision)

I Separate But Equal (PG) A true-life drama set in South Carolina in 1950. Sidney Poitier plays an attorney leading a fight against racial segregation in schools. Burt Lancaster plays the opposing counsel. (Odyssey)

I Nothing But Trouble ( 15) (Warner)

set to do as well as it did at

I Close My Eyes ( 18) Stephen Poliakoff‘s powerful romantic drama stars Clive Owen, Saskia Reeves and Alan Rickman. A brother and sister who have drifted apart meet again in London during a long hot summer and their mutual attraction runs out of control. An original and sensual story with excellent performances. (Artificial Eye)

I The Flash Z-flevenge 0i The Trickster (PG) (Warner) I Crime Lords (18) (Warner)

I Born To Ride (15) (Warner)

Best of sell through

I Vic Reeves Big Night Out On Tour You would not beliiieeeve what‘s going on back there. The chart-topping light entertainment superstar recorded live at one ofhis recent sell-out gigs. An ideal pressie for smartass students and juvenile surrealists alike. (Palace £10.99)

I Passion (15) (Artificial

I Cheers Volume 3 (U ) A welcome opportunity to own Norm. Cliff and the regular guys on tape. (CIC)

I Cheers Volume 4(1)) (CIC)

I Star Trek Episode 31 (PG) (CIC)

I Star Trek Episode 32 (PG) (CIC)

I Star Trek Episode 33 (PG) (CIC)

I Amazing Stories 1—8 (PG) (CIC eight tapes)

I Subway ( 15) Christophe '~

Lambert hangs out in the Metro with the usual French types: pouty gels. cool stubbly types on rollerskates. and a host of jazzers. Stylish nonsense with a truly great car chase early on. (Fox£15.99)

I Ghost ( 15) Demi Moore 1 knows the score. The supernatural blockbuster is out for Christmas and

the box-office, thanks to an unhealthy amount of people who would like to get Patrick Swayze into their stockings. (CIC £12.99)

I AWorld Without Pity(15) The award-winning debut feature from Eric Rochant with a notable performance from young star Hippolyte Girardot. He plays Hippo. a. drifter who relies on his drug-dealer brother for suppport. Nevertheless his easy life takes a serious turn when he falls in love with a serious hard- working student played by Mireille Perrier. (Artificial Eye £15.99) ITwln Peaks (18)The whole shebang, from Laura Palmer‘s corpse being discovered to Agent Cooper giving himself funny looks in his shaving mirror. Twenty-nine hours of televisual delight, irritation, extravagance, surrealism, self- indulgence. pastries and great coffee. Lynch and Frost's soap noir polarised the critics. some going embarrassingly overboard in their devotion. others failing to see beyond the pretensions. The truth falls somewhere between the two camps with some moments of sheer genius and some dreadfully pointless longueurs. But in the final analysis, no one has ever made TV with such an adventurous and open attitude. Ten tapes. each containing three episodes. Well worth owning. More Twin Peaks next issue. (Screen International £12.99 per tape)

I The Doors-Dance On Fire (15) Archive material for the organ-driven (in more ways than one) Californian combo who enjoyed chart success with Light My Fire and Riders On The Storm before charismatic leader Jim Morrison‘s career went down the plughole. (CIC)

t ‘xx.


I The Doors-Live At Hollywood Bowl (PG) A classic live performance. (CIC)

I The Doors—Soil Parade (PG) Yes, it‘s Doors week. (CIC)

I The Doors—Box Set(15) Presumably the ab0ve three tapes compiled into one nice package forthe tidy-minded Morrison freaks out there. (CIC)

70The List 22 November 5 December 1991