Review of the year 2012: August

London 2012 united the nation, Vertigo was named the best film of all time and we watched the Paralympics kick off with a bang


With the Olympics well under way, August was choc-full of stories about the Games.


London mayor Boris Johnson made headlines – and raised a lot of laughs – on the first of the month, when he was left dangling from a high wire as a part of a publicity stunt.

Super-sprinter Usain Bolt got a surprise when a Radio Times reader showed the runner a doll of him she’d knitted, and we began gearing up for the Paralympics by profiling the “blade runner” Oscar Pistorius

And, as we reached August’s half-way point, and the end of the Games, we were astonished to learn that 23m viewers – more than a third of the nation – had tuned in to watch the Olympic closing ceremony.

Away from the world of athletics, August saw some some real upheaval as Nick Grimshaw was named as Chris Moyles’s replacement on the Radio 1 Breakfast show and Clare Balding was made the new face of horse racing on Channel 4 – a decision which ultimately put an end to bewhiskered pundit John McCririck’s career with the broadcaster.

We also first learned this month of Channel 4’s plan to air a sequel to Raymond Briggs’s colourful animated adventure The Snowman in the run-up to Christmas.

In cinema news, Top Gun director Tony Scott died in August aged 68, we heralded Arnold Schwarzenegger’s return to the world of action cinema, and the film world rocked as Citizen Kane was replaced as the best movie ever made by Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo.

Further eyebrow-raising news come to light as the month wore on, as we learned that Sean Bean prepared for a transvestite TV role by going on nights out dressed as a woman and blushed coyly at the realisation that Mel Sykes and her “toyboy” boyfriend Jack Cockings were living out their lust in public, on Twitter.

Across the Pond, Critics gave the US adaptation of E4’s adolescent sitcom The Inbetweeners some very lukewarm reviews, and we bade farewell to the US version of The Office.

And back home, it was revealed this month that we Brits are now less bothered than ever about sex and swearing on TV, which was just as well considering the epithets which flew after the cast of New Tricks decided to decide to put the boot in to the series’ writers during a Radio Times interview.

The scribes weren’t best pleased, to say the least, and the ensuing controversy saw stars Alun Armstrong and Amanada Redman announce that they would depart the show following its tenth series.


And as August turned into September, we got ready for yet more world-class athletics as we watched the Twitterati’s reaction to the Paralympic opening ceremony…