SURPRISE TV hit of the week is a series about offshore fishermen based in the north east of Scotland.
BBC1’s Trawlermen netted five million viewers on its first trip out to the stormy North Sea on Monday night.
That’s just two million fewer than the number watching top soap Emmerdale at the same time – and a massive three million more than ITV1’s multi-million pound flop Love Island.
It’s a fascinating “eat, sleep, fish” series about a hidden – and dangerous – world, featuring the crews of several boats playing for high stakes.


ROBSON Green was a little puzzled when he turned up to meet the press at a central London hotel yesterday.
We’d just watched the first film in series four of Wire In The Blood, which returns to ITV1 in September. Robson is back as Dr Tony Hill, alongside new screen partner Simone Lahbib as Det Insp Alex Fielding.
Inspired by the novels of Stockport-based author Val McDermid, it’s disturbing stuff about the darker side of human nature.
Which is why Robson was mystified to receive a call from one producer, who said: “I saw you in Wire In The Blood. Can you do six months of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang?”


WELL, did you see it?
Sir Jimmy Savile made his feelings quite clear without saying a word after the final credits had rolled on the last ever Top of the Pops.
Turning off the studio lights – 42 years after hosting the first show in Manchester – he shook his head. The message to BBC bosses was clear: “You’ve made a mistake.”
Last night’s one-hour special opened with the Rolling Stones, just as TOTP had on New Year’s Day 1964. And, of course, the choice of track from the black and white video library was: “The Last Time”.


BIG Mutha Davina warned us to have the tissues ready, and she wasn’t joking.
Last night’s Big Brother eviction show was a blub fest to match anything in the Channel 4 show’s history.
Those producers spending a long hot summer of bruv in BB HQ – a TV and film stage just off Borehamwood High Street – certainly know how to manipulate an audience.
This time it was the tried and tested letters from home routine. Tears flowed as the BB prisoner housemates received news from outside.


KYM Ryder is back in Coronation Street – this time with two brothers who are set to rock the Rovers.
I met up with them all yesterday on the Corrie cobbles, where there’s quite a bit of excitement about the new Weatherfield arrivals.
Earlier this year I spoke to Kym for a TV feature just before she starred as singer Michelle in four episodes.
She later cracked open a bottle of champagne when her agent rang to say Corrie bosses wanted her to become a regular member of cast.


THE hot ticket today is for the recording of the last ever Top of the Pops.
A one hour special will be screened on BBC2 on Sunday evening as the veteran show reaches the end of the road.
Stars past and present are gathering at BBC Television Centre in west London for the farewell edition. Jimmy Savile, the man who hosted the very first programme in Manchester 42 years ago, is already at the studios.


LET’S start at the very beginning. A very good place to start.
How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? Well, you can find out on BBC1 this Saturday night, with more details in tomorrow’s M.E.N. Television page feature.
The Sound of Music is, arguably, the greatest musical story of all time. The original Broadway show was turned into that classic 1965 film starring Julie Andrews – and is still one of many people’s favourite things.


IT was a Monday lunchtime much like this one when the phone rang.

Jill Dando had been attacked outside her house and was feared dead.

I noticed my hand shaking. Exactly seven days earlier, almost to the minute, I’d met Jill and spoken to her for a forthcoming feature.

The tape of what was now one of her very last interviews was sitting on the desk beside that phone, still to be transcribed.

A little while later came the newsflash confirming Jill’s death