Down on the streets, FBI agents used to wear the regulation uniform of dark : the modern agents’ methods either. He
suit, white shirt and snap-brim hat. These days Special Agent Joe Blow wears SWAT cap and body armour (on- duty) or sports shirt and slacks (off- duty). Behind closed doors, it has been alleged, the Feds’ most famous agent wore women’s underwear.
Any history of the FBI is inevitably a history of the legendary founding director J. Edgar Hoover, who created a crime-busting force of ‘G-men’ in his own image; pugnacious, powerful and puritan. He ruled the Bureau for almost 50 years until his death in 1972, seeing off seven presidents. Revelations that he might also have been a closet cross-dresser with sexual proclivities that would have shocked the middle-Americans he sought to protect have understandably caused that history to be reassessed.
Perhaps that’s why a British documentary crew has been given unprecedented access to film the modern FBI at work as it attempts to bring the bad guys to book in an increasingly violent war against criminals that Hoover would hardly recognise. In his day the Public Enemies, as characterised by James Cagney, at least lived by a rough code of honour.
SUITED AND SP0
3 organised crime.
: fly-on-the-wall documentary. Agents address the camera in that torturously
; their passing out ceremony.
display in talking about the their
thinking shine through. ‘I have never arrested someone where there is a
‘ substantial hope they’ll ever reform,’
' suspect from his house like a — reluctant mollusc. The FBI has become
through undercover work would
clearly loosening. (Eddie Gibb)
The Bureau: from fedoras to flak jackets Hoover probably wouldn’t approve of
believed contact with criminals
corrupt his clean-cut boys. How agents working undercover are a central part of the fight against
However The Bureau isn’t exactly a
formal syntax that so many Americans spout whenever a camera is pointed at them. ‘I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the constitution of the United States against all enemies,’ intone newly-minted FBI agents at
But despite the caution the agents
beloved Bureau, glimpses of their
intones one agent, after extracting a
a guerilla army of agents who believe that all it needs is enough firepower to fight the dirty war against crime. Hoover’s grip beyond the grave is
The Bureau starts on Monday 5 September at 9pm on Channel 4.
A selection of television highlights, listed by day, in chronological order. Television listings compiled by Eddie Gibb.
FRIDAY 26 '
I My Name is Albert Watson (BBC2) 8—8.30pm. The old ‘famous abroad. unknown in his own country' principle applies to Scottish photographer Albert Watson. who is best known for his pictures of rock stars. including the Rolling Stones. Eric Clapton and Grace Jones. He also has 70 Vague covers to his credit. This BBC Scotland documentary
proﬁles Watson. with contributions from Al Green. Gary Oldman and Guardian , photo-editor Eammon McCabe.
I Tights, Camera, Action! (Channel 4) 8—8.30pm. Last in this season of dance films includes all-male company The Featherstonehaughs and Ishmael Houston Jones's ‘Relatives'.
I Michael Moore's TV Hatlon (BBC2) 9.30—10.20pm. Moore‘sjolly persona belies a tough interviewer who likes to ask awkward questions. In tonight’s show he goes in search of the professional gameshow guest.
I Edinburgh flights (BBC2)
11.15—11.55pm. Emma Freud continues
her thn'ce weekly dispatches from the Festival frontline with a look at the sell- out opera A Midsummer Night '3 Dream and its director Baz ‘Stn'ctly Ballroom‘ Luhrmann.
I 25 X 5: The Continuing Adventures of the Bolling Stones (BBC2)
Midnight—l .55am. As the Stones world tour rumbles on. this 25th anniversary documentary from I989 is re-screened. with recent interviews and 60s footage.
' SATURDAY 27
‘ I ATV Night: A Salute to Lew Grade (BBC2) 7.55pm—l2.45aiii. Another television-about-television themed evening. this time looking back at the output ofcigar-choiiiping Lew Grade's ATV and its inﬂuence on early commercial television. The foyer of the Crossroads Motel has been re—created and the programmes will be linked by the soap‘s famous receptionist Jill Richardson. The running order is: An A—Z (If/ATV (8—8.3()piii); The Muppet Show (8.30—9pm) which Grade first produced; The Last Ar‘tian Series (8.30—8.50pm) with clips from Danger Man, The Saint
1 and The Persian/err; The Persian/er
(9—9.55pm). a profile of Grade. ‘the last ofthe old school media moguls'; followed by complete episodes of The Golden Shot (9.55—10.05prii) with Bernie the Bolt and
Patrick McGoohan in Danger Man (l 1.55pm—12.45am). i I Working Girl (Scottish) 9.30—1 l.35pm.
Melanie Griffith is hacked off with mopping tip after her boss. Sigourriey Weaver. and decides to clamber a few rungs tip the corporate ladder herself. In the process she nicks the boss‘s boyfriend
“lii‘£i‘8ibi iii 2'
I Fanny and Alexander (Channel 4)
l0. lSpm—lZOSam. The first episode of the four-parter which lngrnar Bergman originally made for television. but was later edited for cinematic release. Regarded as an autobiographical work. the film tells the story of ten-year-old Alexander and his younger sister Fanny who watch the activities of their large. wealthy family in the run-up to Christmas. Beautifully photographed. this saga has an almost soapy feel as it follows thejoy and sadness that family life brings.
I Just for Laughs (Channel 4)
12.45—l . 15am. Montreal Comedy festival rerun offers a welcome chance to see the late Bill Hicks satirise the Gulf War. plus stand-up from Roseanne Arnold.
I Equinox (Channel 4) 7—8pm. Channel 4 science and technology series returns with ‘For Whom the Road Tolls'. a look at how 'pay as you drive‘ schemes actually work. I The Score (BBC2) 7.20—8pm. The 100th anniversary of the death of Adolphe Sax. inventor of the saxophone. is commemorated with a specially composed work by John Harle. Plus a film about the tie-ins between classical music and television sports programme themes.
I The Tales of Para Handy (BBC!) 8—8.5()pm. Dougie predicts disaster and the Vital Spark steams straight in. Gregor Fisher and Rikki Fulton in the entertaining series based on Neil Munro’s stories.
I Wycliffe (Scottish) 8—9pm. Last chance in this series to get acquainted with the Itaciturn Cornish detective. Will he maintain his 100 per cent clear-up rate? ()fcourse he will.
I Monty Python’s Flying Circus (BBC2)
» - l 8.50—9.20pm. Look out! incoming alien
blancmanges and. inevitably. something completely different.
I Down and Out in Beverly Hills (Scottish) 9-10.55pm. Nick Nolte is the likeable bum who pitches into the swimming pool of a neurotic Beverly Hills family and ends up sharing a bed with several of its members.
I Haked Tango (BBC2) li).4()pm«l2.15am. Alex Cox presents another Moviedrome double bill which opens with this dark. erotic thriller set in the 1920s about a restless bride who escapes her marriage by assuming the identity of a dead woman. Followed by Apartment Zero ( l2.15—2.25am) about a serial killer and a cinema owner.
I Edinburgh Comedy (BBC2) 9.20-10pm. Behind the scenes at the Perrier comedy award with Emma Freud shadowing the judges as they sit through hours of funny and not-so-funny comedians. The winner of the 1994 award will also be announced. I Don’t Look Down (Scottish)
1 1.10—1 1.55pm. Arts discussion programme hosted by Janice Forsyth.
I The Vision Than (Channel 4) 8-8.30pm. Sheena McDonald talks to Daniel Goldin. head of NASA. in this series of set-piece interviews about ‘Big ldeasl
The List 26 Aurzust—8 September I994 93