We've enjoyed the relaunch of UKTV G2 as Dave. Obviously the programming is the same, but we were already fans of the channel's mix of old hits including QI, Top Gear and Never Mind the Buzzcocks. Its presence on Freeview should increase its audience, and we like the idents and other marketing support. We're still not sure whether calling a channel "Dave" is a good thing, but it certainly stands out on the Sky EPG, where it has a prominent position.
THE MAGNERS PARAMOUNT COMEDY FESTIVAL
Paramount Comedy is one of our favourite digital channels, so it's good that Viacom, its owner, also invests a bit in UK comedy talent through its joint sponsorship of this comedy festival in Brighton. Some of the UK's best comics turn up to make an appearance, and winners of the Intelligent Finance Comedy Awards (the new backers of what was the Perrier Award) also put on a show. Hats off to Viacom Brand Solutions for organising an entertaining evening of fun for the media industry.
RAY DAVIES CD GIVEAWAY
Jumping on the CD giveaway bandwagon, The Sunday Times offered readers Ray Davies' new album, Working Man's Cafe, a week before it goes on sale ... and what a refreshing album it is. It seems the former Kink has lost none of his great ability to craft a good song, with some wonderfully witty lyrical wordplay. An album just perfect for lazing on a Sunday afternoon. It will be interesting to see how many sales the newspaper put on as a result.
JD WETHERSPOON WEBSITE
The UK's largest pub company is not everyone's cup of brown ale, but some of us are big fans and find its new website (www.jdwetherspoon.co.uk) invaluable. It contains detailed information on all of Wetherspoon's 670 pubs, as well as giving us the chance to rate and review our favourite beers. The site really benefits from new navigation tools that makes content much easier to find. Plus, there is plenty of information on new promotions to make the trip to the 'Spoons better value than ever.
AND ONE THING WE DON'T ...
The star of the BT ads and turgid BBC comedy My Family is becoming ubiquitous across the TV spectrum. We find him very annoying indeed, perhaps because the characters in long-running ad campaigns are rarely loveable, but also because he's the latest in a long line of stereotyped laid-back, downtrodden males on TV. His latest appearance was in the Sunday night ITV drama Catwalk Dogs, which promised romance in the world of dog shows. We don't know if it was any good, we had to switch off. Marshall is becoming the modern-day Nicholas Lyndhurst. Not a good thing in our book.