A couple of weeks ago Heat magazine editor Sam Delaney appeared on Kate Silverton’s radio show as her sidekick for the day, and he left listeners in no doubt about his political leanings with a rant about Cameron and the Tories. I assumed at the time that Silverton would have a different “studio friend” each week, reflecting a broad spectrum of political opinion. That was pretty stupid of me, this being the BBC (and Radio Five Live in particular). As part of the station’s new year shake-up Delaney’s role on the show is actually permanent. No surprises, then, to read this in Monday’s Guardian:
Sam Delaney… was once a researcher for Harriet Harman and Gordon Brown…
In the 1990s, as a self-confessed “19-year-old stonehead”, he was passionately into Labour politics and one of his jobs as Harman’s researcher was to deliver her tuna sandwiches when she was in shadow cabinet meetings. His boss at Millbank was Ed Miliband. “Most of the people who were part of the research group, and would have a pint with each other or lunch in the canteen, are now cabinet ministers, whereas I am editor of Heat.”
Having listened to the mockney tones of the former Labour researcher, one can stay tuned for 7 Day Sunday, presented by Tory-hating Chris Addison. The Independent’s radio reviewer wasn’t impressed with the first programme:
Chris Addison, the comedian who plays the weedy Ollie Reeder in The Thick of It, has been given his own topical news show 7 Day Sunday.
As usual, there is a certain amount of “category error” in this choice. As Ollie in The Thick of It, Addison is hilariously funny, but this is because his lines are written by the comic genius Armando Iannucci. On 7 Day Sunday, however, Addison is writing his own lines, assisted by a studio gang who would laugh at a pig’s bladder on a stick. On The Thick of It there is snappy dialogue at a thousand miles an hour, but if you talk like that on radio without enough jokes or substance then the listener’s mind skitters all over the place trying to concentrate, before giving up. The show’s brief was to “pull apart the week’s big news stories”, but in the event the only news covered was snow. Weirdly for someone who made his name in a political satire there wasn’t any. Why not? The Gordon Brown coup should have provided acres of material, but it took ages to get round to, and then got a paltry two minutes.
This reluctance to make fun of the Labour government contrasts sharply with Addison’s attitude to the Tories. This week he joked about dancing on Margaret Thatcher’s grave. Classy.
Radio Five Live. Gearing up for the general election.
Update. In the comments Ryan reproduces an email from R5L controller Adrian Van Klaveren re Delaney.