Saturday, 30 April 2011

Sadly 'Arthur's Egyptology Lecture (Dustbuster)' didn't make the cut.

Qikiqtarjuaq. In case you were wondering.

Sorry for the gap - it's been all Cabin Pressure, all the time, round here lately. Apologies also if you are one of the many people to whom I owe a letter, email, phone-call or visit. But as of yesterday, series three is now not only written but recorded, and I now find myself in a strange new world where I must learn what it is humans do when they're not writing radio sitcoms. Answer their emails and visit their parents, possibly. The first thing I did this morning, though, was dismantle the huge and oppressive wall of multi-coloured post-its with bits of plot on them which has grown up round my desk. Here are a few of them:

  • - Eddie immovable.

  • - Carolyn retrieves the lemon.

  • - Arthur's phantom fire. 

  • - Otter in fridge?

  • - Martin grills Martin

  • - No toblerones!

  • - Apple juice confiscated.

  • - Hercules scared of sheep.

  • - Yellow car III

  • - Douglas chases bears. 

The odd thing is, these are all reasonable descriptions of moments in the series. You should have seen Roger Allam chasing those bears last night. Magnificent.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011


Strapline to historical novel I've just seen:

'1804. Napoleon has all of Europe in his sights. Wellington will do anything to stop him. Who will win?'

Well, look, I don't want to spoil the ending for anyone, but if you're taking bets....

Mind you, I'm one to talk. I recently looked up a reference in Julius Caesar; and then hurriedly stopped reading when I saw that Cicero was one of the characters. This is because I have enjoyed the two Robert Harris novels about Cicero, and don't want to find out how things worked out for him under Caesar's rule before the third novel in the trilogy comes out. That's me - so woefully lacking in classical education that I fear spoilers from Shakespeare.

Friday, 8 April 2011

...and taller than her five feet and six inches would have you believe.

Character description in a script breakdown:

'Naomi is older than her 21 years suggest.' 

Is she really? That's a good trick. How much older? Eleven months? 

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Cabin Pressure - Extra Date

A few people have asked me why there were only five episodes being recorded in the new series. Well, it was because we made the foolish mistake of casting incredibly talented and therefore in demand actors (present company excepted) in the main roles, and therefore it's increasingly difficult to find days when they can all be in the same room together. However, because they are also all incredibly generous about working at times and on days they really shouldn't be expected to, I'm happy to say we've found another day we can record. It's the 29th April, and you can enter the draw for tickets here.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Also, check that they're apple trees. Or you'll be there a while.

...No, I don't think so. I'm pretty sure when you want a eureka moment, you need to take a few baths. I believe what you're thinking of is what you should do when you want a few apples. Happy to help. 

Friday, 1 April 2011

G. Boycott in mean-spirited big-headedness shock. Nation reels.

On Radio Four's excellent obituary programme Last Word this week, the first speaker commemorating England spin bowler Fred Titmus was Geoffrey Boycott. Well, I say commemorating: in fact the first thing he said was:

'Well, I played against him many times, for Yorkshire against Middlesex, and I think, I'm pleased to say, he never got me out.'

Yeah, that's the spirit Geoff. The important thing is that everyone is very clear straight away that he wasn't as good as you.