Not On Your Telly

Not On Your Telly is a book collecting some of my articles on the archive TV that we never get to see, with reports from the dustier corners of the archives on the fondly-remembered, little-remembered and just plain forgotten likes of wiped sixties episodes of Doctor Who, sketches edited from Lee & Herring's Fist Of Fun, Play School, R.3, Bizzy Lizzy, Kelly Monteith, The 8:15 From Manchester, Rubovia, Dear Heart, The Tyrant King, Hear'Say It's Saturday! and many many more. And, um, Spatz.

Within its pages you'll find features on The Daleks' first radio appearance, how Bob Dylan ended up acting in a BBC play, what it was like to watch a recovered sixties episode of Doctor Who for the first time, how a throwaway gag about a child who was scared of a panto led to a cowardly act of censorship nearly two decades later, and the enduring puzzle of how and why anyone thought Skiboy was a good idea in the first place. Oh alright, that one's probably beyond explaining.

There's also room for a look at some of the books, films, theatre and pop music that were around when all of this stuff was passing the viewing millions by, including TV-spinoff stage plays, some of the more unusual work comedians had to take to make ends meet in the days before arena tours, and what The Beatles, The Kinks and Pink Floyd sounded like in mono, as well as the unlikely story of the album that inspired Britpop, Well At Least It's British by Alan Klein.

A lot of this has never seen publication anywhere before - there's not just previously edited-out chunks (although there are some of them), but also entire 'new' features, including a history of the BBC's long-running 'Sunday Classics' drama slot, and an attempt to find something to say about that most ignored of Doctor Who stories, The Space Pirates. I'm not giving away whether I managed to or not. This isn't an ideal fun nostalgic present for that difficult-to-buy-for relative, it's for that difficult relative full stop. Especially if they remember Captain Zep - Space Detective.

You can get Not On Your Telly as a paperback here, and as an eBook here. It's also now available from the Kindle Store here.