Tag Archives: Clare Balding

BBC…Clare Balding to lead Winter Olympics coverage.

9 Jan

BBC announces Sochi Winter Olympics coverage

The London 2012 Olympics produced two winners for the BBC. The first was acclaim for its unparalleled multi-channel coverage of pretty much all sports at the Olympics, and the second was Clare Balding.

Well for fans of multi-sport extravaganzas the goods news are that both are back for the Winter Olympics which starts in Sochi, Russia in four weeks time.

The BBC has promised that its programming will consist of Six HD streams across digital platforms to deliver over 650 hours of live action, covering every moment of Sochi 2014. New digital approach brings world-class live event coverage to audiences with over 200 hours on network TV plus two red button streams.

650 hours of sport over two weeks should keep even the most die hard sports junkie well taken care of.

Clare Balding’s informative, engaged and enthusiastic presentation during the Olympics was a ratings winner. So exemplary was her coverage that she was awarded a special BAFTA in  for outstanding achievement in factual presenting in recognition of her coverage of the Olympics.

Say what you like about the BBC, but they know a good thing when they see one, so no surprise that Clare along side Hazel Irvine and Jonathan Edwards will lead the BBCs team to Russia. She will no doubt be looking forward to another Olympic commentary gem like the now famous Bert Le Clos interview.

The 2014 Winter Olympics games runs from the 7th of February, 2014 to the 23rd of February, 2014 in Sochi, Russia

 

 

Have I Got News For You …and Jimmy Savile

12 Oct

They say it never rains it pours, but in the case of Jimmy Savile it has turned into a category 5 hurricane of revelations. I never really liked him, as I found the whole shell suit, gaudy gold chains, big cigar and “now then now then” persona creepy and weird, but the breath and nature of the revelations has still shocked me.

I caught tonight’s episode of Have I got News For You, the start of a new season, and I was curious to see how they will deal with the topic being as it is till very fresh and escalating in seriousness and distaste as each day goes by

Tonight’s show was hosted by Clare Balding riding a wave of popularity after her much lauded presentation duties at both the Olympics for the BBC and the Paralympics for Channel 4.  Regulars  Ian Hislop and Paul Merton were joined by Ken Livingston and Graham Glinner, the writer behind the ‘Father Ted’ series.

The first news item they dealt with was the Tory Party conference and the jokes were on Dave’s twit-tering, Boris’s popularity and George Osborne (He doesn’t get the single name treatment) getting roundly booed at the Paralympics.

It moved on from there to the Savile story. Paul Merton started off by categorically denying the existence of a much rumored outtake transcript of an episode of  Have I got News For You from a few years back when Jimmy Savile appeared. It was said to detail Paul Merton confronting Savile as a pedophile.

That’s not to say there weren’t uncomfortable moments from his appearance on that episode, a clip was aired where he was asked by Ian Hislop “What do you do in your caravan?” Savile’s answer “Anyone I can lay hands”. More disturbingly and although not broadcast tonight on the same show he was asked by the then host Angus Deayton “You used to be a wrestler”, Savile’s reply “I still am….I am feared in every girls school”.  No. You can’t make it up.

As Glinner pointed out the vile innuendo in hindsight was some sort of attempt at “using the truth to mask the truth”.  Making a open joke of the whole sordid affair and people will think there is no way can it be true cos he wont be joking about it so openly.

The rest of the programme veered from mildly funny to very unfunny (claire Balding’s joke at Abu Hamza being surprised to fly into an airport in America, he was expecting to fly into a building) going via a long vent from Balding on what she called Daily Mail’s sidebar of shame. A reference to  the paper’s website obsession with young female celebrities yet ready to take the high ground on Savile.

I am not sure if the The Savile affair had cast a pall over the rest of the programme or if its age and that of Ian and Paul have begun to tell, Have I Got New For You seems to have lost its edge. Well it has been 22 years.

The episode with Jimmy Savile.