In my newly acquired status as hausfrau, due to the recent arrival
of baby Tabitha, I feel qualified to become the daytime TV critic for
Campaign. So, with the much-heralded arrival of Richard and Judy on
Channel 4 to head the afternoon TV session, I took off my pinny, dumped
Tabitha on her playmat, got my cup of tea and chocolate eclairs ready
and settled down for some entertainment.
Judy looks comfier than ever, with a hairstyle (is it a wig?) that fills
my TV screen, while Richard with his slick flicks waves his hands around
as usual. I was intrigued in the first two minutes, when an interview
with a man who plans to cut off his feet live on the internet was
promised, but after that I was left plumping the cushions and wondering
when I could legitimately start on my second eclair.
Daytime TV viewers prefer Richard and Judy to sit in nice, colourful,
slightly stylish surroundings. Channel 4's set was not a patch on This
Morning's, with the drab backdrop doing little to pad out His and Her's
presence - and padding was sorely needed. The first gambit to try to
echo the "irreverent" approach of Channel 4, as opposed to the more
conventional ITV, was to have a series of Christmas scenes with "it's
too early" stamped on the end frame of each, in the style of Chris
Evans' TFI Friday.
This approach didn't sit well with Judy and Richard - aka the Mum and
Dad of TV. Parents should never try to look cool.
Next up is the sultry Spanish au pair, Ramona, from Cold Feet - not one
of the most obvious stars of the show.
Judy looked rather nervous (it must be hard trying to justify the
reputedly enormous pay packet for this gig) and in need of a stiff G&T,
while Richard fluffed his way along and left you wondering if he'd
actually asked any questions.
There was a brief set with a budding footballer from the Algarve who'd
been duped into coming over to the UK for a non-existent trial. Through
Richard and Judy, he was given a trial with Peterborough ... which he
When Richard presented him with a plane ticket home he seemed singularly
The interview with the man amputating his feet on the internet was the
only really interesting piece in the whole hour and the interchange
between Richard and Judy as they grappled with this man's proposal
reminded me why they can be a compulsive TV duo. But that faded all too
quickly when Kyle MacLachan from Twin Peaks was wheeled on and another
banal interview took place, before - thank God - the credits rolled and
I could get back into my pinny and retrieve the plastic bag heading down
Channel: Channel 4
Frequency: Monday to Friday at 5pm
Audience: 1.9 million (Thursday 29 November)
Advertisers include (first ad break): Goodfella's, Mars' Milky Way