Wednesday, 1 April 2015
126 Clunk Click
First watched : 1973
Hmm ... yes....well... what do we say about this one ?
Well it was one an odd proposition from the off, a variety-cum-chat show hosted by a professional eccentric , normally a disc jockey, and named after the slogan for a public safety campaign on seat belts that he was fronting. The show pandered to Savile's ego by giving him a chair-cum-throne to sit on with tacky gimmicks in the arms.
For obvious reasons there isn't too much footage around but you can find bits here and there such as Pan's People's appearance ( above ) which drew complaints from Mary Whitehouse about their revealing dresses. The selection of the Song for Europe in 1974 to be sung by Olivia Newton-John took place on the programme and it's notable how cowed and uncomfortable - though he was always clumsy when he had to engage in normal conversation - he seemed when interviewing a beautiful adult woman.
The other thing that strikes you about the interview extracts is how religious he was, with frequent references to "the Good Lord", particularly evident in a toe-curling encounter with a young Yuri Geller. You can't imagine any modern day host being allowed to proselytise so much. Cynics who say this was just a part of the "front" for his nefarious activities off screen know nothing about Catholicism. Jimmy Savile didn't run punishing marathons in late middle age just to throw people off the scent - there were far easier ways to do that ; they were an attempt to balance the scales with God, do enough good works to make up for his sexual weaknesses. We can't know whether it was successful.
The show lasted for two series before it morphed into Jim'll Fix It.