Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Top of the Pops Christmas Day 1981

The first thing to say about this show is that it's presented by pretty much all the Radio 1 DJs of the time - Andy Peebles! Paul Gambaccini! Paul Burnett! - which means that alas two links feature Jimmy Savile (who appears to have turned up dressed as Geoffrey from Rainbow), which means it will probably never again be seen on British TV. A shame if so, as there are some memorable performances here and it would be easy to edit Savile out.

Honestly, there is so much to see: Julian Cope miming along to Reward dressed in what appears to be one of his mum's old frocks; Midge Ure doing Vienna in a gimpy leather cap with accompanying metal ch(a)in-strap. We know you're bald under there, Midge. There's also some quintessentially deadpan John Peel links; Colin Blunstone and lovely Kim Wilde singing live - albeit not together; Phil Oakey in full wonky-fringed mode, an inebriated-looking Adrian Juste introducing Kirsty Maccoll as "a little lady". Imagine being patronised in such a way by someone with precisely none of your talent.

Adam Ant reveals to Simon Bates that the highlight of his year was meeting the Queen. Phew, rock 'n' roll! Fans of Legs and Co should look away as show-offy usurpers Zoo prance about to the strains of Can You Feel It and O Superman; Steve Wright gets heckled by Chrissy Boy from Madness whilst introducing Toyah and Peter Powell invades Thereze Bazar's personal space (she should have kicked him in the knackers). There's also a communal rendering of All You Need Is Love over the end credits. All that plus The Beat, Depeche Mode, OMD and Altered Images with Clare Grogan done up like a Christmas tree. What more could you ask for?

video deleted by copyright killjoys

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