Sounds Familiar

“You are a pea-brained, prat-faced, pompous, pillock-headed cretin. If you took an intensive course of intelligence injections and studied till you drop, then one day you might make it to moron third class failed.” – Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), dispensing his usual brand of sharp-tongued invective on Chef!

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Wednesday Trivia Question

What kind of dinosaur is Dinosaur Train‘s Mr. Conductor?

Ian James Corlett provides the voice of Mr. Conductor on the PBS Kids series Dinosaur Train. Friendly, warm, playful and charming to everyone he meets, the Conductor is all  too happy to oblige and teach about the dinosaurs seen along the journey. But as any dino-aficionado knows, every character on Dinosaur Train is a specific species, even the Conductor.

So what is he? What kind of dinosaur is the affable Conductor? He’s a Troodon. Check out the Meet the Characters page at PBS Kids and learn more about this colorful cast of prehistoric railway riders.

Where Do I Know That Actor?

If you’re a fan of Midsomer Murders, I hope you know that UNC-TV is now presenting two episodes of the fan favorite every Saturday night (one at 8pm and one at 9pm). That means you don’t have to wait a whole week to discover whodunit – just stay tuned.

And speaking of Midsomer Murders, if you caught Saturday’s two-parter (“The Creeper”) then you saw DCI Barnaby out to catch a highly skilled cat burglar. You may also have spied quite a few special guest stars that may have been recognizable from other shows we’ve broadcast. Let’s see who’s who.

Paul Shelley portrayed Chief Constable Richard Lovell. The veteran actor has guested in dozens of series over the decades (Blake’s 7 and Inspector Morse, for example) but I think if you know him it’s from one of several roles. Shelley played Fred Simcox on Paradise Postponed, a 1980s Masterpiece Theatre series. He was also Persuasion on the classic Peter Davison Doctor Who serial “Four To Doomsday” and was Duncan on a Great Performances presentation of Macbeth (starring Patrick Stewart). Continue reading

Monday Montage

What’s happening, what’s on and what’s interesting this week …

The renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir celebrates the holidays with the world’s leading tenor, Rolando Villazon. Tune in for seasonal favorites and more on CHRISTMAS WITH THE MORMON TABERNACLE CHOIR – Friday night at 9 on UNC-TV.

John Cleese lent a hand at a UK event to benefit homeless charities by reading the attendees a bedtime story. Very cool.

Highway 64 meanders through 22 counties from our mountains to the Outer Banks. Discover the “backbone of the Tar Heel State” and all its quirky, artistic and cultural treasures on TOUR 64: NORTH CAROLINA’S HERITAGE HIGHWAY – Saturday at 10pm on the Explorer Channel.

Congratulations to Helen Mirren on a well-deserved honor. The Prime Suspect star is set to receive the AARP’s Movies For Grownups Career Achievement Award.

A new job, a new home and a new two-part special just in time for the holidays. Derek Jacobi and Anne Reid star in the LAST TANGO IN HALIFAX HOLIDAY SPECIAL as the beloved British comedy-drama returns. Part one airs Sunday night at 8 on UNC-TV.

Would it surprise you to know Neil deGrasse Tyson can apply physics to football? Probably not but it’s extremely interesting anyway.

Now check out some familiar folks celebrating birthdays this week…

December 11

Stephen Moore (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) is 80

Rita Moreno (The Electric Company) turns 86

Gary Carr (Death in Paradise) has his 31st

Dawn Steele (Monarch Of The Glen) marks 42

December 12

Sarah Sutton (Doctor Who) celebrates 56

Bill Nighy (Page Eight) has his 68th

Leslie Schofield (EastEnders) turns 79

December 13

Robert Lindsay (My FamilySpy) is 68

December 14

Vicki Michelle (‘Allo ‘Allo) marks 67

December 15

Michelle Dockery (Downton Abbey) turns 36

December 16

Joe Absolom (Doc Martin) has his 39th

Miranda Otto (The Way We Live Now) is 50

Ben Cross (The Citadel) celebrates 70

Christopher Biggins (Poldark) marks 69

December 17

Hattie Hayridge (Red Dwarf) turns 58

Bernard Hill (Wolf Hall) has his 73rd

Thomas Law (EastEnders) celebrates 25

Owen Brenman (One Foot in the Grave) is 61

Hey, It’s Photo Friday!

Say what you want about public broadcasting but one thing is indisputable – we got great swag! I am often amazed at the awesome gift baskets I see around the building that I assume will be given out as prizes at special events. Below are a couple of these baskets containing t-shirts, DVDs, plush toys and other chotchkes.

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I don’t know if these were prizes or something just made up for decoration but I’m sure this would be a welcome gift for any UNC-TV viewer (or staffer).