Comrade Rick

- TOTALLY OUT OF ORDER, THAT’S WHAT I SAID, COMPLETELY OUT OF ORDER, HE SHOULD WATCH HIS – oh, sorry, hello! Didn’t see you there. How are you? Mmm? Jolly good.

Yes, I’ve been a stranger. It’s been two solid months of writing outlines, pitches, applications and synopses round my neck of the woods. I’m emerging from the clammy darkness with some new work at the end of January, but in the meantime, come with me down memory lane…

In 2004 I embarked on one of my weirder projects, a square-eyed marathon where I resolved (for reasons still unclear) to watch one episode of Top Of The Pops for each year it’s held in the BBC archives, in a single sitting. I dug up bagfuls of VHS off-air recordings from Auntie Beeb’s vaults (one random date per annum) and chained myself to the gogglebox for a whole day. I took notes throughout, writing up the dubious results in brief installments for the really rather wonderful Choke Zine in Bristol. Unfortunately the zine quietly expired (probably for tax reasons) before the full story had seen the light of day; but many years later I chiseled apart a dusty hard drive and recovered my running commentary from the original exploit. Why not finish it, I asked myself? Why not end it all?

And, lo and behold, you can read about the sorry mess, in full, right here: TOTP: RIP

I hope it might bring you some small comfort in these dark times. Happy New Year.