This weekend’s TV - Songs in the key of strife

sex pistols
sex pistols
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Britain’s Most Dangerous Songs

(Friday, BBC4, 9.00 p.m.)
‘Banned by the Beeb’ is a badge of honour worn by a rather bizarre collection of bands and singers.

This fabulous documentary celebrates the songs that had Auntie all a tizzy ... and even Bing Crosby fell foul of the self-appointed censors.

It’s worth watching, if for no other reason than seeing the eejit DJ Mike Read made of himself when he took offence at Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s ‘Relax’ single, and his ban saw it soar to number one.

Read never looked so square with his multi-coloured cardies and daft glasses - the very opposite of the hedonistic party-on approach of the Frankies.

Then there was the Sex Pistols’ ‘God Saved The Queen’, which still bristles with anger and venom some 40 years on - it too sent shivers down Broadcasting House.

These days, songs aren’t so much banned as simply bludgeoned by radio-friendly versions which have even the most ordinary words muted - if anything, commercial radio is as guilty of dumb , ham-fisted censorship as the Beeb was all those decades ago. The BBC bans were dumb and silly but at least they weren’t such a fudge.

Enjoy this rather eclectic compendium of songs that were banned - they’ll bring back great memories!

Alan Hansen: Player And Pundit

(Friday, BBC1, 10.35 p.m.)

The Beeb pays tribute to the retiring fitba’ pundit who famously sneered ‘you’ll never win anything with kids’, only to see Man United’s young turks take the title.

Must admit, I never warmed to his droll analysis, but 25 years of saying how well the boy done deserves the TV equivalent of a carriage clock - and this is it.

The usual suspects chip in with their tributes, while Hansen himself shines some light on his success at Liverpool and the dark days of Heysel and Hillsborough.

John Bishop’s Australia

(Wednesday, BBC1, 11.45 p.m.)
Before fame and ‘Live At The Apollo’ beckoned, Bishop left his job and went to Australia, where he cycled 1500 miles from Sydney to Cairns in 30 days.

Now he’s famous, the BBC is taking him back to recreate the journey in this three-part series.

Nice work if you can get it ...

The Cruise Ship

(Friday, stv, 8.00 p.m.)

The Royal Princess ship was launched by the Duchess of Cambridge last year and now it’s sailing with the proverbial documentary team capturing life at sea.

That’s it ...

On The Yorkshire Buses

(Friday, Channel5, 8.00 p.m.)
Spare a thought for the team behind this new documentary series.

While their chums on ITV got to sail around the world, they got the number 58 bus going round Yorkshire.

This series follows the staff as they trundle round the streets of ‘Ull and East Riding.

Friday night telly has surely never been so exciting ...


(Thursday, stv, 9.00 p.m.)
Boy, those bus documentary boys will be greeting into their pints of Tetley at this one.

The five-star luxury spa opens its doors amid a makeover. Fancy a dip?

The Million Pound Drop

(Friday, stv, .00 p.m.)

Davina McCall returns to host another series of the captivating live quiz show.

The premise is simple - you get £1m pushed under your nose, and have seven questions to gamble on. Every time you lose, a wedge of the wonga tumbles through a hatch never to be seen again.

It’s great tension telly - and, so far, no-one has walked away with the full cool mill.