Christmas With LWT (ITV, 1987)
This is a look back at what another ITV region had to offer on Christmas Day in the 80s. Having looked back at Thames, I thought that I would review some adverts and continuity shown on LWT. Now of course, this region didn’t get many opportunities to be on air at Christmas, and as 25 December 1987 was a Friday, they only had about half the day. The clips are from various people on YouTube including “dunebasher1981”, and here are some of the highlights.
Although I wasn’t going to review Thames again, I do want to point out that the first in-vision announcement after the end of TV-am at 9:25am is also online, and it features Philip Elsmore who begins “Ho-ho-ho! Well you can tell that I’m in a good mood!”. We then go on to the afternoon film Bedknobs And Broomsticks which began at 4:35pm, which means that the usual Thames/LWT handover at around 5:15pm happened during the film.
So as the third break during Bedknobs And Broomsticks is the first to be shown on LWT, let’s start there. It’s a Friday evening, and there will be lots of people watching, is there anything fancy on offer. Well there’s an advert for McDonald’s, but Ronald doesn’t feature. And of course, there are lots of sale adverts including World Of Leather and Selfridges, where there are millions of bargains to bag (starts Monday!), and we also have a weird advert for Alka-Seltzer and meet the Oxo family who are all having a good time.
After skipping past Blind Date, we then go to the next clip, which features the end of Coronation Street. This is a famous episode as it is the final one to feature Hilda Odgen. It is also significant because it was the first time that three episodes had been shown in a week, it was the highest-rating episode ever, and it was also the first to be shown on LWT. So we get the views of the out-of-vision announcer Peter Lewis (“what an emotional moment”).
Then we have a trail for Boxing Day (LWT have that day all to themselves as it’s a Saturday), including The Sleeping Beauty, Bobby Davro’s TV Annual ’88 (featuring Davro as various pop stars in a parody of ITV’s music show The Roxy as The Poxy, how marvellous), the TV premiere of Ghostbusters, and Dame Edna’s Christmas Experience. Next is It’ll Be Alright On Christmas Night (later repackaged for repeats as It’ll Be Alright On The Night 5) where there will be plenty of cock-ups guaranteed.
We then have more adverts including a rather bad one for Wimpy, plus a promotion for Christmas Line (“open when London closes”). Bobby Davro then returns accompanied by some nice graphics to kindly wish all LWT viewers a Merry Christmas (I thought his shows were made by TVS?). Adverts in It’ll Be Alright On Christmas Night (when there were only two breaks in hour-long shows) include Courts, who are having their biggest-ever sale (aren’t they always).
There are also adverts for tobacco, Heineken featuring a young Harry Enfield, and the news that you can do it when you B & Q it. It’s now coming up to 9pm and a new episode of Inspector Morse is next, but before that, there’s another trail for Ghostbusters (being shown on TV for the first time, honest) and Dame Edna’s Christmas Experience, plus adverts for the AA and Radio Rentals, before another Christmas Line plug, Arthur Daley wishes us a Happy Christmas, and then the video comes to an end.