An Evening With LWT (ITV, 1987)
After writing a piece about an old continuity clip from the Thames region that I enjoyed watching on YouTube, I wanted to do the equivalent for LWT, the other ITV region that we could get in London. Recently I did come across an old LWT continuity clip and I liked it so much that I “liked” it if that makes sense, and I decided that it was worth reviewing here. It was shown on 18 July 1987 (just after my 4th birthday) and features adverts and continuity around the late film 9 To 5. It was uploaded to YouTube by a user called “thesearethedays” so credit goes to them.
Just before the film, there are the LWT News Headlines. LWT still didn’t have a proper news service at this point, the continuity announcer appeared in-vision to read the news, it wasn’t until the start of 1988 that their regular news programme launched. Then there’s the famous LWT ident which was introduced in 1986 and was used for a few years which I am just about old enough to remember. I also wanted to highlight some of my favourite adverts that appear in the clip.
One notable one is for Budweiser where some men sing “The Tracks Of My Tears”. One of them looks a little like a young Jerome Flynn. I’m not sure if it is him or not, but I do know that he had three Number One singles in the 90s with his mate Robson Green so seemingly all that singing in adverts came in useful eventually. There is also an advert for the Five Alive drink that came in cartons. Without wishing to sound too cliched, I’m not sure if they still make this drink, whatever happened to it? I definitely remember it.
There is also a rather odd advert for the Cadbury’s Double Decker chocolate bar, it’s “crunchy and chewy”. Also featuring are adverts for Diet Pepsi (with NutraSweet!) and Miller Lite with the “it ain’t heavy” slogan, which about a year later would lead to “He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother” by The Hollies becoming a Number One single after it was used as part of this campaign. We then come to my favourite advert in the whole clip…
It’s Cadbury’s Crunchie! I’ve always liked this advert, it’s rather hard to describe it though. It features someone with a horrid suit and big bow-tie saying that Crunchie bars give him “that Friday feeling”, and it also seems to use a lot of creative stop-motion effects, none of the advert seems to be computer generated. The “thank Crunchie it’s Friday” slogan was used for a long time and I still remember it. It’s just a shame that I actually don’t like Crunchies…
Then there’s an advert for radio station LBC influenced by TV show The Prisoner. I don’t think that the current LBC on-air is related to this version of LBC, but there have been so many owners and relaunches it’s difficult to keep track of the history. Then that’s it. Following the weather, there’s a look at the programmes that are coming on Sunday evening, including game show Tarby’s Frame Game and an episode from the first series of sitcom Watching. This is followed by the National Anthem (Thames never played it) and what has to be one of the final closedowns on LWT before they went 24-hours. It was really great to watch this clip and be able to go back in time nearly three decades. After all this time I still really enjoy old continuity clips, and this is definitely one of the best that I’ve seen from the LWT region.