Monday, 6 July 2009

The Bruno di Gradi Fanclub

The other night, people of my age were out and about. Socialising, drinking, druging (that one doesn't fit, admittedly), shagging and vomiting. I however was listening to Priscilla Ahn and chatting to Merciless Public about our favourite television shows when we were wee (alliteration!) bairns. Such is life.

"But what were your favourite TV shows when you were a child, Ewar?"

Well, thanks for asking! I think the important thing here is to split my childhood into parts.

The first part is "The Broom Cupboard" era, the pre-school/early days stuff. I'm afraid it's all a bit boring, really : Postman Pat, Thomas the Tank Engine, Rainbow, Mr Benn, Fireman Sam. All the classics. It was about that time that I had my very first stirrings with regard to women, and so I would like to take this moment and thank Philippa Forrester for setting me on my hetrosexual path through life.* Thank God it wasn't Andi Peters presenting that day.

I then went through the Gerry Anderson phase - Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet, Joe 90, Fireball XL5, Stingray. After that, I was a bit older, and I began to watch some more classic stuff - Man from UNCLE, Randall and Hopkirk, The Saint, The Avengers. It's a sad state of affairs when a 10 year old lists Illya Kuryakin as one of his idols.

But, if pushed, what are my Top 3** childrens TV programmes? Well, after a bit of thought, here we go:

3) Knightmare Oh yes, what a show this was. In fact, it's a little unlucky to finish in 3rd place. Knightmare was just so ahead of it's time, and pretty much had everything in it that a boy could want in a TV programme. Victory was almost impossible, although sometimes that wasn't so surprising, considering the retards that took part sometimes. In that video, I love the way Treguard just openly laughs at them for being shit. That's one programme that needs to be brought back onto our screens.

2) Kenan and Kel I can't begin to tell you just how funny I found this when I was about 11. Kel's love of orange soda. Chris, the store manager. Kenan's father. Man, I loved that shit. Looking back on it now, it's awful American trash, but it's still strangely endearing. This was my favourite episode back in the day, and I have to admit the joke at 5:05 still makes me smile.

1) Renford Rejects Because it was on Nick, Renford Rejects is incredibly underrated amongst the youth of today. It was, without doubt, my favourite TV show as a young lad, and I still recall it often now - whenever I take part in Fantasy Football/Baseball, I nearly always call my team "Renford Rejects". There is nothing not to love here - a goalkeeper who wears a top with a Cantona quote on it. A striker who always wears a Hull City shirt. An English lad called Barry who pretends to be Italian and called Bruno di Gradi. The token cute girl. Priscilla, the cafe owner who you never see.

You want guest appearances? How about Jim Rosenthal, Bob Wilson, Franco Zola, Martin Keown, Shaka Hislop, Geoff Hurst, Gordon Banks, Harry Redknapp and more. The theme tune was by the Manics. The guy who played Eddie is now Taggart, for fucks sake. The guy who played Stewart was in Band of Brothers. Sure, it was a show about a rubbish football team, with lame jokes and poor acting. But it was also about friendship, about solidarity, about always giving it a go, no matter how bad you are. It was the perfect show for a football obsessive growing up, and if it was ever put onto DVD, I'd honestly buy them all the very next day.

Renford Rejects, I salute you! Now, what was YOUR favourite shows as a youngster?

* I still fancy her nowadays, to be honest.
** I've purposely not included The Simpsons, as it's still one of my favourite shows now, and is aimed at adults just as equally as kids.


  1. Agreed on Knightmare, used to love watching that when I got chance. Would definitely watch it now if it was brought back.

    Seriously laughing myself silly at the kid in that video 'Simon, sidestept to your left' - hahaha!

  2. i agree too, renford rejects are the best.
    i used to see them when i was younger too, and they still captivate me because the characters are so peculiar
    my favourite show? well, i guess that renford rejects is in the 2nd place, and in 1st one is The adventures or pete & pete. i supose because it has almost the same formula or something similar, talking about the characters, and some references are good. It also has iggy pop and michael stipe!, could you ask for more ?