Something rather lovely happening this week and a timely reminder of Eclipsed.
Back in the day, I was a team captain on a flagship comedy panel show on Channel Five called Bring Me The Head of Light Entertainment. There are so many ironies in this statement, I won’t trouble listing them here plus I am sure that you spot them for yourself – for those of you so inclined.
The series was not great. A heavily contrived show of parlour games – over-written, under-rehearsed and not terribly good.
But the show’s jewel in the crown was its host. A likeable Irishman who hadn’t really been a stand-up but was certainly likeable and was irresistibly winning. We shared an agent at the time and the word was that TV had big plans for our host.
And so this came to pass indeed because Graham Norton was his name and Channel Five couldn’t constrain him for very long.
Now the leading chat show in the UK, Graham’s sofa is one that everyone wants to settle in to and tomorrow will be the turn of my son, Tom Holland.
I bumped in to Graham not so long ago and I am pleased to report that he has remained lovely. Fame not changing him at all it seems. We caught up on each other lives – to be honest, mostly me filling him in on my life – and him not needing a similar career recap. This was post-Civil War and so we laughed at the prospect of Tom appearing on his show.
Today Tom is in Paris doing press and has just visited a children’s hospital. He called me because today he is scheduled to chat on the phone with the producer of the Norton Show. Tom and I chatted about various things and anecdotes and I wondered (and I worried) that I might come up in their conversation – and this might be awkward for Tom? I have been asked by a few shows if I might appear with Tom – and I have flat refused you will be pleased to read. No matter that I have a run at the Edinburgh Festival to promote and a book to flog – but I am never going to barge my way back on to telly via my son.
Post phone-call with the producer and Tom calls me again to say that it all seems straight forward enough.
Good, I say and then I ask him (rather apologetically) if my name came up at all in conversation?
Er, no, Tom says and I smile. No, of course not, why would it? What was I thinking?
I would have loved to see the recording tomorrow evening but sadly, I have a gig in Scotland – but I am sure Tom will have great fun and I will watch it on Friday along with everyone else.