I can’t believe I’ve never come across this before. During a random Google search, I stumbled upon www.bbcprograms.com – a BBC America site dedicated to the sale of BBC programmes to PBS stations for syndication. In particular, I (predictably) got this page. It might be a bit cheap complaining about silly mistakes, like Series VIII not being mentioned in the cast list, or the fact that Andy de Emmony was never a producer (he directed Series VI) – but then this is an official BBC page selling the series, and there really isn’t any excuse for errors. I suppose it’s not too bad, though.
But the main reason I comment on this is that there is a lovely photos page, with lots of hi-res, clean images. (The quality isn’t always what it could be, but the size of the images usually makes up for that.) There’s similar stuff for lots of BBC programmes that are sold to America – The Brittas Empire photos page is a particular joy.
But that isn’t the only decent thing on the site. There’s also online (in Word and PDF formats) copies of The Insider, “the BBC Sales Company’s quarterly syndication newsletter, filled with the latest interviews, reviews, facts and updates on the people and shows your viewers love to watch.” This comes across as a fanzine more than anything else, and is none the worse for that. I’ve not had time to read many of the Dwarf bits, but from what I’ve read “The Red Dwarf Dictionary” isn’t worth bothing with, wheras the Robert Llewellyn interview, whilst not particuarly enlightening, is still quite interesting. The articles about other shows seem to be far better. “The Brittas Empire: A Fawlty Towers for the 90s” is a pretty good article, and for once not a lazy stupid pointless comparison; there genuinely are similaries. Although the bio that accompianies that “Barrie was welcomed back with open arms when he rejoined Starbug as a full-time member of the Red Dwarf crew for Season 8”, when in fact he never rejoined Starbug at all; he appeared on the resurrected Red Dwarf.
I’m sorry, I know that very cleverly draws things full-circle – but that is possibly the most pathetic nitpick in the universe. Sigh.