The DJ Kat Show (Sky Channel/Sky One, 1986-1995)
This is a show that I don’t remember watching at the time, this is because it was on Sky One and I didn’t have that channel myself until the late-90s. But when I looked through TV magazines a long time ago, I do remember being curious about what the show was. Did the title refer to a DJ as in someone who plays records? Well thankfully there are more than enough clips on YouTube for me to finally discover what it was all about.
The DJ Kat Show launched in September 1986 on Sky Channel which was available across most of Europe, and at the time it was produced in the Netherlands. This was essentially Sky’s children’s programming strand, their equivalent of CBBC and CITV, and it was one of the few things you would find on the channel in its early days, along with repeats of old imported sitcoms, and endless editions of Sky Trax with Pat Sharp.
But who exactly was DJ Kat? This was the host of the show, who was a leather jacket-wearing cat puppet with attitude who I suppose was their equivalent of a Gordon The Gopher/Scally The Dog-type character who introduced various cartoons, usually during the afternoons and school holidays (he also did a rap in the opening sequence). DJ Kat would also be assisted by a human co-host, and there were many of these over the years.
In the earliest days this was Linda De Mol, whose brother was behind the production company that launched Big Brother. In 1987, an American version of the show launched on a few TV channels, with our feline host picking up the accent from somewhere, but this was rather short-lived. After the relaunch of Sky Channel in 1989, The DJ Kat Show moved to the UK, and Linda departed, to be replaced by Steffanie Pitt.
By the early-90s, DJ Kat’s sidekick was Catrina Hylton-Hull, and among the shows featured were such goodies as Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles. Then in the mid-90s, DJ Kat was joined by Joe Greco (of CITV’s Spatz and Mega Mania fame), and features included interactive games that viewers could play at home using their touch-tone telephones for prizes (a lot of children’s TV shows included this feature around this time).
There were also a few comedy sketches including a parody of EastEnders. However, despite still being rather popular with viewers, after almost a decade the show was beginning to run out of steam a little, and it came to an end in December 1995. A new children’s strand launched on Sky One in January 1996 but it was very short-lived and much less successful. Having now seen some of it, I think that I would’ve enjoyed watching The DJ Kat Show when I was younger, and it seems that a lot of people still remember all this fondly.