Images nicked off Andrew Wood at TV Forum Another ‘Participation TV’ channel (i.e. scheming, conning, shite shite quiz channel) launches this week. ITV Play is replacing Men & Motors on Freeview. All I can say is:
- at least Men & Motors isn’t much of a loss
- at least it will have Quizmania on it
- at least it has really pretty idents!
People who have read this blog for a long time may know that I am interested in all of this television presentation nonsense. When I was a wee nipper, I found ITV regions fascinating. I just did, don’t ask me why. It was probably just the shiny logos.
It wasn’t only television logos either. Apparently my first word was ‘gas’. According to my parents I often pointed at the logo on the gas van and shouted ‘GAS’. I guess it’s one way to learn how to read.
If a station relaunched with a new set of idents, I’d usually end up watching the channel all day just to take it in. Sad or what? Imagine my delight when I discovered a few years ago, through the wonder of the internet, that I wasn’t the only one.
Anyway, when I was younger, some idents really scared the crap out of me. I remember a particular Channel 4 ident that was used to introduce its American Football programmes. It always made me jump because the ‘4’ figure made a loud grunt. Numbers don’t grunt! I can remember actually having nightmares about it.
But the scariest ident of them all was surely the rotating ITV Schools one. I’m not too sure why I was so frightened by it, but it seriously gave me the willies. I remember once actually running through to tell my mum when I managed to sit through it!
Maybe I was worried that the rather hefty-looking ITV logos would spin off course and hit me. Perhaps I couldn’t comprehend the advanced computer graphics. Everybody knows that CGI dates horribly. But despite the fact that the ITV Schools ident is almost twenty years old, I think they still look amazingly good even judging by today’s standards.
There is an excellent feature on TV ARK all about the making of this ident. It sounds like it was a truly massive task. It’s amazing to think that they would go to so much bother just to create a way to introduce some television programmes!
When I was six, the spinning ITV Schools ident and ITV Schools itself was gone forever. So I wouldn’t have to be scared by the evil ident, right? Well imagine my shock when (at the tender age of six, remember) the brand new Channel 4 Schools ident ended up being this freaky thing. The spooky countdown music (which I now actually think is pretty cool) sounded like an accompaniment to a drowning. This is music for introducing schools programmes! Did they not realise that children would be watching?!