Tonight’s BBCtv… in 1968 

12 October 2014

G 19681012 BBCtv

BBC1 Olympic clock 1968From the Radio Times for Saturday 10 October 1968 comes this run down of what you could be watching. Things worth noting:

  • Part 5 of “The Mind Robber” Doctor Who serial at 5.20pm. For once, this is a Patrick Troughton adventure that still exists in the archives. This particular serial was unpopular with the viewers at the time – it is very, very strange – but has since become seen as a classic by fans
  • The 1968 Mexico summer Olympic Games begin tonight, with the opening ceremony being shown live by geostationary satellite for the first time in Europe. The programme is simulcast between BBC-1 (with the viewers) and BBC-2 (with colour). The standards conversion, from 525-line colour NTSC to 625-line colour PAL and 405-line monochrome (plus 819-line monochrome for France and Wallonia) must’ve kept the technicians at Eurovision on their toes
  • This was the third time the summer games were held outside of summer due to the host country’s climate
  • This was your only chance to see this episode of Marty in full. Only some individual sketches from the series now still exist

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2 responses to this article

Arthur Nibble 12 October 2014 at 2:10 pm

As can be seen by BBC2’s programme at 7.40, back in the day Romania used to be spelt Rumania.

Nana Mouskouri is now 79 and she’s still playing gigs – currently finishing her ‘Happy Birthday’ tour.

I wonder how many guest stars have ever been described as lanky? Poor Jim Dale gets the treatment in the Val Doonican Show listing.

Jesse J. Tripp 3 November 2020 at 2:25 am

Okay, “The Mind Robber,” as I heard, was between “The Dominators” and “The Invasion.”

“The Dominators” was the final story of Henry Lincoln (soon-to-be writer of the very controversial Holy Blood, Holy Grail) and Mervyn Haisman, who left the show, never to work for them again, still allowing characters like the Brigadier to appear. And during the Steven Moffat/Matt Smith years, the Haisman Estate allowed the return of the Great Intelligence to Doctor Who. I actually prefer Russell T. Davies’ era, though, for it’s realism in some parts.

The eight-part epic, “The Invasion” was the start of UNIT, as the show goes full James Bond for the first time, trying to stop a technological psychopath, Tobias Vaughn, from using the Cybermen to take over humanity.

The 1968 “Summer” Olympics (I used the quote marks ’cause it was in October, but you know the reason) was filled to the brim with crisis after crisis, from the Tlatelolco massacre, when the Mexican student movement was crushed completely to the two American gold medalists raising their fists in the air as a protest message for human rights.

1968 was a crazy year for the Olympics. And if you thought 1968 was crazy for society, 2020 makes 1968 look like a classic Bing Crosby TV special!

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