Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Magnus Magnusson and Waking the Dead

I was sorry to hear of the death of Magnus Magnusson. He was one of the dwindling band of public figures who have been there throughout my life. Among sports commentators, for instance, Bill McLaren, John Arlott and David Coleman are all dead or retired. There is only Peter Alliss left, though John Motson runs him close.

Magnusson was most famous, of course, for presenting Mastermind and it is hard for people today to appreciate just what a phenomenon that programme was in its early years. But I can remember his presenting the BBC2 archaeology series Chronicle even before that.

I also have something of a personal connection with Magnusson. He was given an honorary degree and made a speech at the ceremony when I got my BA from York. (When I got my MA from Leicester we had Tom Butler. He was the Bishop of Leicester. It was what he did.)

Best of all when I was a child, he sounded like a minor character from Noggin the Nog.

I suspect that I watch Waking the Dead for similar reasons. The acting - from Trevor Eve and Sue Johnston in particular is good, even if the series as a while is often overexcited and rather nasty.

But what I really like is that I can remember Trevor Eve in Shoestring, which was screened some 28 (gulp) years ago. Watching him convinces me that I am still young.

1 comment:

The Pink Hat said...

28 years since 'Shoestring' - Nooooooooooooooo - adopts Victor Meldrew voice 'I don't beliiiive it.'