For Hallowe’en, we and our listeners present our scariest moments from Doctor Who and from childhood in general.
MP3 Direct Download Link = DDPC121 – You’re Never Alone With A Swan
(00:00:00) This podcast is opened and closed by “Rentaghost” is a British children’s television comedy show, originally broadcast by the BBC between 1976 and 1984. The show’s plot centred on the antics of a number of ghosts who worked for a firm called Rentaghost, which hired out the spirits for various tasks.
(00:03:30) Of course, we wouldn’t normally be so crass as to use words like “tits”. But this is a snide tribute to Jon Pertwee’s extraordinary final line in his Zanussi corporate video from around 1981.
(00:20:20) This clip is of course the famous censored “snails and oysters” scene from Spartacus (1960) in which Crassus (Laurence Olivier) attempts the seduction of his slave, Antoninus (Tony Curtis), in a Roman bathhouse. In the scene, Olivier asks Curtis if he likes oysters, then if he likes snails; some people, he says, like both. The four-minute scene was removed from the original 197-minute version of Spartacus at the demand of the New York Legion of Decency, a Roman Catholic group that monitored movies for what it deemed obscene. When the film was being restored, the footgae of this scene was stiull in the vaults but no soundtrack. So, Curtis re-read his lines specially while the lines of Olivier, who was then dead, were read by Anthony Hopkins doing Olivier’s voice.
(00:39:22) “Ghost Town” is a song by the British two-tone band the Specials, released on 12 June 1981. The song spent three weeks at number one and 10 weeks in total in the top 40 of the UK Singles Chart. Addressing themes of urban decay, deindustrialisation, unemployment and violence in inner cities, the song is remembered for being a hit at the same time as riots were occurring in British cities. Internal tensions within the band were also coming to a head when the single was being recorded, resulting in the song being the last single recorded by the original seven members of the group before splitting up. However, the song was hailed by the contemporary UK music press as a major piece of popular social commentary, and all three of the major UK music magazines of the time awarded “Ghost Town” the accolade of “Single of the Year” for 1981. The skeleton cover art with gave Hayden the heeby jeebies can be found on our Tumble page here.
(00:40:57) David Bailey shot a striking poster in 1984, commissioned in protest against the fur trade by anti-fur organisation Lynx in 1984 and was part of a campaign for Greenpeace. A TV commercial of the same theme with music by Vangelis was produced in the following year.
(00:41:32) “Lonely Water” (widely known as “The Spirit of Dark and Lonely Water”) is a 1973 British Public Information short film made for the Central Office of Information (COI). The film aimed to warn children of the dangers of careless or foolhardy behaviour in the vicinity of water, and was shown regularly on TV for several years during breaks in children’s programming. Lonely Water is widely recalled as one of the most memorable and chilling of PIFs. In a poll carried out by the BBC on the 60th anniversary of the COI in 2006, Lonely Water was chosen as the UK’s fourth-favourite PIF of all time and the highest ranked one-off production. Dozens of comments attested to the film’s power and lasting impact on 1970s children.
(00:46:40) 1959 Strand cigarettes advert.
(00:56:50) As the original Cybermen return, fans around the world pray they’ve retained their unique “sing-song” voices. By @pipmadeley.
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