The inaugural RadioTimes.com Awards was held last night to celebrate the very best television of the past year featuring appearances from a number of huge stars.
The winners of the main categories were decided by you, with over 43,000 votes cast in total, while our annual TV 100 list once again drew upon nominations from a prolific panel of TV industry experts including the BBC’s Chief Content Officer Charlotte Moore and broadcaster Sir Lenny Henry.
Michaela Coel tops the list this year, following a stellar 2020 that saw the release of her thought-provoking and acclaimed drama series, I May Destroy You.
The night got off to a strong start with the announcement of the Best Drama and Best Comedy prizes, which ultimately went to ITV’s dark thriller Des and BBC One’s lockdown favourite Staged respectively, both featuring David Tennant.
Des star Daniel Mays said: “I’d love to give a huge heartfelt thank you to all of the readers of Radio Times who have voted Des best drama at this year’s awards, we are absolutely thrilled to bits. The response to the show has been phenomenal with over 15 million viewers tuning in to watch the series and for that we couldn’t be prouder.
“Collectively as a group we set out to tell the true story behind the controversial Dennis Nilsen case, we wanted to challenge the audience’s perception of that, highlighting the plight of the victims, their extended families, the police investigation and, of course, the young homeless and vulnerable who were at the absolute centre of our story.”
Meanwhile, Tennant collected the award for Best Comedy with his wife and co-star Georgia, who hilariously wore an oversized Michael Sheen mask – but declined her husband’s request to “do the voice” too.
David Tennant said: “Just wanted to drop by and say how chuffed we are that Staged has won this prize. It means so much to us that it’s connected with everyone who reads the Radio Times and everyone who watched the show this year. It was great fun to make and it’s meant so much to us.”
The star-studded cameos didn’t stop there, with Jodie Whittaker and Mandip Gill sending in a message filmed in front of the TARDIS after Doctor Who won Best Sci-fi/Fantasy, while Neighbours stars Jackie Woodburne and Alan Fletcher appeared from across the world as the Australian drama took home Best Soap.
After a brilliant series that saw Bill Bailey and Oti Mabuse come out on top, Strictly Come Dancing also took home Best Entertainment programme at the RadioTimes.com Awards, with presenters Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman accepting the accolade.
“We just wanted to say the most enormous thank you to the brilliant readers of the Radio Times for voting Strictly Come Dancing 2020 your favourite entertainment show,” Daly said. “Last year was a strange year, it was a difficult year for all of us and it means so much to know that we brought some joy into your homes at such an unprecedented time.”
Claudia Winkleman added: “Mainly, this award is for the Strictly team who, against all the odds, got us on air and we are still very much in awe.”
Hollywood was also tuning into the event with Pete Docter, the director of Pixar’s latest family film Soul, accepting the award for Best Film.
“We’re so thankful,” he said. “It’s been an amazing journey working on this film, realising how things that we don’t really value often in our lives are actually the most important stuff. It’s given us a new chance to look out in the world and say thank you, be grateful for what we have, and this award certainly goes into that category.”
Liverpool FC superstar Virgil van Dijk sent in his thanks after the club’s Premier League victory was crowned Best Sporting Moment and the ceremony ended with a bang as the legendary Dame Judi Dench won Best TV Moment with her brilliant cameo in Staged.
She said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be given the TV Moment of the Year from the Radio Times. Thank you very much indeed, or in the language of David Tennant and Michael Sheen, it’s f***ing marvellous.”