Radio Times took the slightly over-the-top step this week of running a whopping 21 different covers, all in the name of charity. The Comic Relief issue, which paid tribute to 21 years of Red Nose Day, featured celebs such as James McAvoy, Simon Pegg, Davina McCall and Girls Aloud. Coming up with one eye-catching cover per week isn't easy, so getting 21 off the printing press deserves due credit and, of course, donations.
Law & Order on ITV1
It's not been the best of weeks for ITV, but we're enjoying its latest drama offering, a UK version of the hit US show Law & Order. With nothing much else showing on Monday nights, Law & Order has been getting good audiences (more than six million for the first episode) and ITV has reproduced the storytelling virtues of the US show well. Hopefully it can keep this up beyond the promise of the first two episodes.
The relaunch of the Club 18-30 brand
While some of us are well past going on a Club 18-30 trip, the brand conjures up some enduring images of fun in the sun. Thomas Cook is trying to reinvent the brand for a modern, more upmarket audience with its first media activity in four years: sponsorship of Kiss Radio's Saturday night Kissalicious show. Negotiated by Arena BLM, this could prove valuable in updating the brand's "sex on the beach" image, though we're not quite sure it will ever come to represent, in the words of Thomas Cook, "best mates, no ties, no responsibilities, no work for a couple of weeks, hot sun, cool tunes and great clubs".
We're big fans of the rotund star of the BBC and UKTV Food show MasterChef (also a regular in magazines such as Olive and BBC Good Food). Now that MasterChef is over, we'll miss his gluttonous demolition of each dessert and his groaning of phrases such as "deep, deep flavours". But, courtesy of Closer magazine, we can enjoy his unlikely ascendancy as a sex symbol. "Television is very, very good for your love life," he told Closer, before revealing that he's had a 21-year-old girlfriend and is now dating a 29-year-old. "I'm the cooking woman's crumpet," he concludes. Hopefully this sex-symbol image will prove useful for advertisers looking for the latest screen candy.
AND ONE THING WE DON'T ...
UKTV History rebrand
While we've liked many of UKTV's channel rebrands (last week's Dave ja vu, for instance, was inspired), "Yesterday" is the least inspiring choice of name for a TV channel we've heard in a while. It's an odd brand name considering UKTV's aim is to shift the emphasis of its history channel on to modern events. "Yesterday" has connotations of something that is dead and buried and not worth switching over for.