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2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

12 items from 2014


Kirstie's Fill Your House For Free review a recycled programme about recycling

8 July 2014 9:50 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

The genius of this programme is that it capitalises on our current fetish for parsimony, while recycling the domestic makeover format from the last millennium

As much as I adore Kirstie Allsopp and everything she stands for, I can't help worrying whether she's got what it takes to go it alone. For years, she and Phil Spencer were one of the greatest comedy double acts of British telly. She had hilarious fascistic snootyboots hauteur as she hectored the less privileged into buying glorified coal bunkers for 500k. He was her nice-but-dim, bald-but-buff foil with the aura of a newly redundant estate agent desperate to cut it in this TV-presenting rackjet. Together they were comedy gold. Kirstie without Phil is like Fern Britton without Phillip Schofield, like Abbott without Costello or like the Chuckle Brothers minus a chuckle.

But now Kirstie has upcycled herself successfully as opinion-former, a kind of interior »

- Stuart Jeffries

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The Big Allotment Challenge to return for series 2

19 May 2014 8:02 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

The Big Allotment Challenge has been renewed for a second series.

BBC Two has recommissioned the competition after it launched in April, according to Broadcast.

The six-part first series attracted an average audience of 1.9 million, with contestants Alex and Ed winning the grand prize.

Fern Britton will return to host the second series, which will air in 2015.

The remaining judges will be confirmed at a later date.

The BBC's head of documentaries Emma Willis said: "Over the series, millions watched our muddy contestants toil their way to an entertaining final that captured the hard work and passion of Britain's amateur gardeners." »

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The post-Paxman style will still need that element of surprise | Gaby Hinsliff

2 May 2014 10:25 AM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Political interviews are getting harder. But sometimes the Fern Britton approach is more effective than Paxman's battering ram

Should you ever have been driven over slowly by a talking lorry, then you will already have an idea of how it feels to interview Gordon Brown. First would come the crushingly heavy wheels of his argument. Then he would reverse over you, beeping statistics. Only once you were road kill would he pause long enough for you to ask a question, for all the good that did. The lorry would simply unload whatever story it had previously decided to unload, with a crash, and that was that. But the infuriating thing was that once the tape was off, he could be riveting a soaring intellect released, like a helium balloon when someone lets the string go.

It takes a battering ram to pierce the fortress mentality of too many modern politicians, »

- Gaby Hinsliff

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Fern Britton proud of the Big Allotment Challenge

28 April 2014 2:15 AM, PDT | Virgin Media - TV | See recent Virgin Media - TV news »

Fern Britton has compared 'The Big Allotment Challenge' to 'One Born Every Minute'. The former 'This Morning' presenter likens her experience on the new BBC Two competitive gardening show to watching a baby's birth, much like the popular midwifery reality series, because of the long growing process and the anticipation once the fruit and vegetables are ready. Fern told Bang Showbiz: ''When you pull this carrot from the ground you don't know what it's going to look like, it's like a birth of this thing [the gardeners] have been incubating. It's like 'One Born Every Minute', or [better yet] 'One Pulled »

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Brenda Blethyn: I've been offered I'm A Celeb

25 April 2014 2:15 AM, PDT | Virgin Media - TV | See recent Virgin Media - TV news »

Fern Britton has compared 'The Big Allotment Challenge' to 'One Born Every Minute'. The former 'This Morning' presenter likens her experience on the new BBC Two competitive gardening show to watching a baby's birth, much like the popular midwifery reality series, because of the long growing process and the anticipation once the fruit and vegetables are ready. Fern told Bang Showbiz: ''When you pull this carrot from the ground you don't know what it's going to look like, it's like a birth of this thing [the gardeners] have been incubating. It's like 'One Born Every Minute', or [better yet] 'One Pulled »

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The Great British Bog Off: Is it time to stop Bake Off ripoffs?

16 April 2014 8:04 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

My goodness, Mary Berry, you have a lot to answer for. I suppose it's not your fault; neither is it Paul Hollywood who is to blame. Not even Mel & Sue could have known when it started in 2010 that The Great British Bake Off would become a genuine cultural phenomenon, spawning cookbooks, merchandise and an upcoming fifth series. But it did - and now we're all paying the price.

There was a story doing the rounds on Twitter this morning about how women are attracted to beards when they're rare, with the attraction level decreasing as more men adopt the hirsute lifestyle. Scientists were babbling about how we're reaching "peak beard". And honestly, aside from realising that science actually is fun, all we could think about was how we've also reached "peak competitive-crafting-show".

Don't get us wrong. We love The Great British Bake Off. Give us a soggy bottom and a »

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Six things we learned from The Big Allotment Challenge

15 April 2014 1:00 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Worm fanatics, improbably named judges and Fern Britton have united to tide us over until the next series of Bake Off and teach us a little about growing fruit and veg along the way. Here's what we've got so far

The Great British Sewing Bee has finished. The Great British Bake Off is still months away. And, as nobody at BBC2 had the foresight to commission a programme entitled The Great British Frilly Bunting Bonanza to ease the middle-classes through this treacherous scheduling gap, all hopes have fallen on The Big Allotment Challenge.

That's not necessarily a bad thing. In the space of an hour, episode one of The Big Allotment Challenge went to great lengths to teach us all manner of important lessons. Here's what I managed to glean:

Continue reading »

- Stuart Heritage

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Fern Britton, innuendo, llama poo: What's The Big Allotment Challenge?

15 April 2014 5:00 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

The Great British Bake Off has a lot to answer for. Since it became a weird hit, we've had the format applied to sewing and hairdressing... and now it's about time gardening had a go. Enter The Big Allotment Challenge, which starts tonight. But what is it all about? Read on to find out.

What is the idea behind The Big Allotment Challenge?

The show sees nine duos (friends, parents and children, partners and so on) taking on an allotment each and cultivating flowers and produce. After months of gardening, the challenges begin - with each episode featuring a grow challenge (produce a sterling veggie), a make challenge (flower arranging) and an eat challenge (make a tasty preserve). Each instalment also sees one duo saying a sad goodbye.

Well, who's on it then?

Fern Britton is the host ("I was thrilled to even be considered to be part of it, »

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What to Watch: Tonight's TV Picks - The Big Allotment Challenge

15 April 2014 4:01 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

The Big Allotment Challenge: BBC Two, 8pm

Fern Britton hosts a new show where nine pairs of gardeners compete to produce the best fruit and vegetables from their allotment. Filming took place over several months, so throughout the six-part series, the cameras will flit back and forth to show the contestants' progress. While they play the long game with their gardening, the competitors are also tasked with more immediate tasks, such as flower arrangement and production of jams and jellies.

Gardening experts are on hand to judge the hopefuls: Royal Horticultural Society judge Jim Buttress, floral designer Jonathan Moseley and food writer Thane Prince will give their verdicts on the efforts and decide which of the teams will have to leave the competition.

Embarrassing Bodies: Live from the Clinic: Channel 4, 9pm

The Embarrassing Bodies team of Drs Christian Jessen, Dawn Harper and Pixie McKenna return with a live series, »

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Fern Britton: 'Leaving This Morning means I don't watch s**t TV now'

29 March 2014 8:59 AM, PDT | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

Fern Britton has admitted she doesn't miss being on This Morning.

Britton worked on the morning television show for ten years before quitting in 2009. She was replaced by Holly Willoughby, who has been presenting the show ever since.

Talking to the Daily Mail, Britton spoke about how her life has changed since quitting the show. She said: "Well, I don't have to watch s**t TV any more. When I was on This Morning I had to be up to speed on all those shows like Big Brother.

"I had to know about American film stars I'd never heard of, and be able to tell reality TV people apart. It was quite fun, some of it, but a lot of it just wasn't me. And no, I don't miss it. Not that bit anyway."

She added: "This Morning was wonderful but I was starting to think, 'Yes, I think we've »

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Can Michael McIntyre join the pantheon of chatshow greats?

11 March 2014 5:42 AM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Michael McIntyre made his chatshow debut on BBC1 last night, scampering around and breaking the fourth wall – but he still respected the golden rules of presenting. So what makes a truly great host?

Michael McIntyre made his hosting debut with The Michael McIntyre Chat Show on BBC One last night, and he didn't suck. I'm not a fan of his standup, and I expected his excitable squeaking and faux-confusion about daily life to be at odds with the cool, calm control needed to front one of these shows. But somehow, appearing like a kid let loose in his dad's workplace, he made it work, and checked off many of the following rules for successful chatshow presenting.

Don't be the star

Arguably the best example of a UK chatsmith is Michael Parkinson. For decades, Parky was shorthand for an unruffled command of chat and a firm hand on the tiller; a »

- Julia Raeside

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The search for the next Great British Bake Off

3 January 2014 7:50 AM, PST | Digital Spy | See recent Digital Spy - TV news news »

Forget all the cha cha cha-ing on Strictly and Louis Walsh's silliness on X Factor. The No.1 reality TV show of 2013 was most definitely the Great British Bake Off.

Making stars of its contestants and pulling in stupendously large ratings, it is a pop culture phenomenon and every TV commissioner in the land is looking for the "next Bake Off". Here are just a few of the shows hoping to match the success of Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood in 2014.

The Great Interior Design Challenge

The Premise: We really need to find Britain's keenest amateur interior designers. Of course we do.

The Talent: Architecture and design critic for The Times Tom Dyckhoff leads the hunt and is joined by judges Daniel Hopwood, award-winning architect and interior designer, and Sophie Robinson, ex-editor of BBC Good Homes and Interior Designer. Niche is the word you're looking for.

Could It Be The New Bake Off? »

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2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

12 items from 2014


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