Tag Archives: 60s

That Was Then, This Is Now – Satire from JFK to Savile

Last night I went to the British Film Institute’s celebration of 50 years of the breakthrough TV satire programme, That Was The Week That Was. (TW3). It featured many of the original cast, writers and modern satirists, and clips including … Continue reading

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No Mr Bond, I expect you to cry.

This column (updated since it appeared in The Big Issue last week) explores whether old James Bond films can still be enjoyed in a more feminist, more racially equal society. And then Danny Boyle put him at the heart of … Continue reading

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Aliens, abortion and baby machines: HG Wells & John Wyndham

Woman’s Hour ran a fascinating interview today with novelist Kishwar Desai, about India’s burgeoning  surrogate baby industry. Her exploration of this massive business (an estimated 20,000 babies produced  each year) seems to differ from Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale only … Continue reading

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What the hell’s the Presidency for? Re-assessing LBJ

This is based on my interview with  author Robert Caro and fellow American writer, Michael Goldfarb for BBC Radio 3 Night Waves on June 6th. You can listen to the programme here. (last 18 minutes) Which US President won an election with the largest ever … Continue reading

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A Smashing Time: Murray Melvin on busting taboos in the 60s

For the third of my One to Ones for Radio 4 I wanted a Missing Angle on the golden age of British theatre and cinema — from the late 50s to the early 70s. You can listen to it here. … Continue reading

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Can we laugh about this? Race on film

I spent an hour with the Film Club charity in Battersea Park School in South London today,(I’m a trustee) discussing the treatment of race and racism on film. It was Anti-Racism Day, apparently. I chose clips from a sample of … Continue reading

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A Taste Of Honey: 50 years on

I’m an extraordinary person! There’s only one of me, like there’s only one of you. We’re unique! Young! Unrivalled! Smashing! Bloody marvellous!” (Jo and Geoff in A Taste of Honey)  “Now? We’d probably have to make it via reality TV.” … Continue reading

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‘S Marvellous: Brian Wilson at the Royal Festival Hall September 18th 2011

What happens when the ultimate West Coast musician takes on the ultimate East Coast sound? You get a lot more xylophones in Gershwin. (God Only Knows performed at the Royal Festival Hall in 2002) Brian Wilson says he did an … Continue reading

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The Swingeing (cuts) 80s: Lessons from The Ghost Town Generation

They were playing the jaunty TV theme tune to “Jeeves and Wooster” on Monday night when guests walked into the Financial Times summer party at Lancaster House near Green Park in London. It reminded me of how much I enjoyed … Continue reading

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Privilege: Lessons from the Swinging 60s and the Swingeing (cuts) 80s

This has been superceded by the longer post above which is the full comment piece on how far we really are re-living aspects of the 1980s: major strikes, job cuts, recession, Two Nations. Since the Royal wedding in April I’ve … Continue reading

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