Review of the Year: December 2013

This was the month when we bade a sad farewell to Nelson Mandela and Peter O'Toole. But at least London theatregoers got to see Matt Smith and Tom Hiddleston with their tops off... and that's what counts, eh?

With the month not yet over, the year not yet seen out, we at Radio remain fairly confident that the standout news of this December will be…(drum roll)….


Well the news that new Queen Vic landlord Danny Dyer was going to base his performance as the soap’s patriotc new landlord on former EastEnders favourite Frank Butcher OBVIOUSLY!

Oh yes, that and maybe the death of Nelson Mandela.

Healer, peacemaker, statesman, father of his nation and star of BBC garden makeover show Ground Force, Danny Dyer, sorry Nelson Mandela’s, passing marked a poignant day for liberty and justice. It was even reflected by the denizens of Walford.

This month the world also bid sad farewells to stage giant Peter O’Toole and Fast and Furious star Paul Walker who died in a high speed car crash.

We at also talked trousers with MC Hammer and Derren Brown told us that, after his TV special on the subject, people still think he can genuinely guess the lottery numbers – and often ask him what they are.

In other news we stood up for TV weathemen while the BBC TV boss Danny Cohen stood up for his employers – telling Corporation’s stars not to slag off the Beeb in public.

There was good news for Sam Bailey – she won the X Factor. Also celebrating was Matt Berry – his rockingly funny Channel 4 sitcom Toast got a second series. Yes – I can hear you Clem Fandango!

Ben Whishaw landed the chance to play Freddie Mercury in a biopic and we learned that Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman are nicknamed Curly Fu and Peanut in China.

Cumbers and co’s colleagues in the British male acting pin-up club decided to branch out this month, finding themselves in various stages of undress on the London stage.

Firstly Matt Smith popped up in a critically-praised American Psycho musical in north London (our review here).

And then Tom Hiddleston donned his armour for a very manly Coriolanus that was also very good.

The BBC was pleased with its haul of Golden Globes nominations. But Auntie continued to shoot itself in the foot.

First they axed popular drama Ripper Street, only to confirm that it may still be revived by LOVEFiLM.

And then the Beeb’s flagship current affairs programme Panorama did a brilliant investigation into…another flagship BBC institution. Yes, their programme about Comic Relief and allegations over its investments made headlines and led bulletins and prompted internal reviews.

Only at the BBC…..