The DYR blog

The blog with general chat about all things from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s plus news about new features and developments on the website.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Charity event: Pop and Proms in the Paddock

The Princess Alice Hospice presents a fabulous fundraiser 'Pop in the Paddock'! Get out those retro clothes and be ready to boogie the night away as the paddock at Sandown Park Racecourse comes alive with music and dancing on Saturday 28th June. Three great acts - one great night of music, fun and glittering fireworks. Just pack a picnic and a few bottles of wine (or POP open a bottle of champers!) and let us do the rest! Find out more and buy tickets.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Very Best Of Friday Night Live DVD

Network has announced that it is to release The Very Best Of Friday Night Live on DVD on 2nd June 2008 for a recommended retail price of £19.99. This 2–disc set contains the highlights of this successful show, released for the first time in any format.

Hosted with the usual flair and impeccable timing by Ben Elton, Friday Night Live (later known as Saturday Night Live due to a schedule change) featured the first ever appearance of Harry Enfield's “Loadsamoney” character. Other treasured comedians featuring in the show included Stephen Fry, Lee Evans, Moray Hunter, Jack Docherty (who co – wrote the series with Ben Elton), Josie Lawrence, Hugh Laurie, Jo Brand (in her television debut), Josie Lawrence, the immortal Dame Edna Everage, Robbie Coltrane and many more.

The Very Best Of Friday Night Live (PG) will be a 2-disc release.

Monday, May 12, 2008

BBC Narnia stories re-released on DVD

BBC Worldwide has announced that it is to re-release its 1989 adaptations of C.S Lewis' classic stories Prince Caspian and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. As Disney's cinematic version of Prince Caspian heads to our screens in three days time you can pretty much guarantee that Narnia fever will be sweeping the nation. What better way to fill the DVD void in the mean time than snap up this marvellous, late 80s adaptation?

The digitally re-mastered DVDs will be available for £9.99 from 16th June 2008.

BBC Worldwide will also be releasing the full The Chronicles of Narnia: Collector's Edition boxset on DVD for £19.99. The boxset includes adaptions of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Silver Chair in addition to Prince Caspian and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader plus a disc packed with special features. All DVDs will also be available to buy seperately.

Win The Herbs and Parsley!

Created by Michael Bond under the guidance of renowned animator Ivor Wood, 'The Herbs' and 'Parsley' set a precedent for their contemporaries in the 1960s. The fantasy characters that make up the mix are a delightful blend of humans and animals who dwell in the magical walled garden of an old country manor. Under the watchful eye of Sir Basil and Lady Rosemary, accompanying Parsley is his best friend, Dill the Dog, the rather sour Sage the Owl, Tarragon the dragon and many more.

We have two copies of this magical DVD collection (worth £14.99) to give away. If you fancy adding a big pinch of seasoning to your DVD catalogue all you have to do is recommend DYR to your family and friends. All participants will be submitted into a free draw. The Winner will be drawn 30th May 2008

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Win the Wombles!

Well-established British heroes, The Wombles were known for helping the environment by collecting and recycling rubbish in useful and clever ways.They were really just hoarders rather than folks consumed by the guilt of their Carbon Footprint, but thinking of these burrowing fellows as pioneers can't do any harm! The good news is that you can seek inspiration for your 'green' activities with a brand new box set featuring 60 episodes of the classic series. Released on the 12th May 2008 priced £14.99 The Complete Wombles features 300 minutes of outstanding animation.

We're giving two lucky winners the chance to scoop up this fabulous box set themselves. To enter, simply recommend DYR to your family and friends. All participants will be submitted into a free draw.
The Winner will be drawn 30th May 2008.

The best (and worst) of 1999

Here are the biggest news, sport and entertainment stories of 1999…

The UK prepared to celebrate the new millennium in style with the Queen's official opening of the £758m Millennium Dome. It was well over budget and had received bad reviews but was still much anticipated. Unfortunately, the Millennium Wheel must have fallen foul of the Millennium Bug as its opening was delayed due to technical faults. The Millennium Bug in general turned out to be a big fuss about nothing as the nation’s toasters and hairdryers managed to cope with the change in date and not spontaneously combust! As for the people, lots went to large organised events in city centres, many went to pubs and clubs, some went to street parties, and others simply opened a bottle of bubbly at home.

Another reason for many to celebrate in ’99 was the government’s introduction, for the first time ever, of a legally-binding minimum rate of pay for all workers in the UK. Set at £3.60 an hour, about two million people benefited from the move; their wage packets being increased by up to a third.

On the darker side of the year, London suffered 3 nail-bomb attacks in 2 weeks and was, for a time, gripped in fear. Fortunately, the police quickly tracked down the perpetrator (who claimed he was a Nazi) and sentenced him to life in prison. Another sentenced to life in prison was Tony Martin, the farmer who shot a burglar who was in his house. Given the circumstances, many saw his punishment to be unfair and huge campaigns were set-up to free a man who people felt was a victim, not a criminal.

Lawrence Dallaglio was another one not celebrating the millennium after being stripped of the captaincy of the English national rugby team. Tabloid newspapers alleged that the clean cut, saviour of the game had took and dealt drugs whilst at university and the unwelcome publicity was enough for the Rugby Association to act; something they may have regretted when a lack of evidence (surely they should get this before publishing stories?!?) led to him being cleared of the charges. Football wise, Manchester United won the premier league for the 5th time in the 90s, making them the new undisputed heavyweights of the domestic game.

In the entertainment world, the leader of the Staines Massive, Ali G, launched his career as part of the 11 O’Clock Show on Channel 4. Masquerading as a simple, streetwise ‘gangster’ (who lived with his Gran), Sacha Baron Cohen made fools of political figures by asking questions about drugs, violence and sex and getting them to show how out of touch they were. Over on the BBC, the licence money was well spent on the big-budget natural history programme ‘Walking With Dinosaurs’; viewers being fascinated to see genuinely realistic looking computer generated dinosaurs roaming the earth.

The British film industry got back to business with Guy Ritchie’s ‘Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels’. The mix of professional actors with real East End villains (even football hard man Vinnie Jones got involved) was a success and the box office took millions as people went to see the story of a group of London lads desperately trying to come up with the £500,000 they owed. Another movie hit of 1999 was ‘Fight Club’ featuring Brad Pitt (that’s all I can say about that though as the first rule of fight club is that you don’t talk about fight club!).

For a full rundown of the of the best selling 1999 music

…alternatively, 90s music charts for every year of the decade.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The best (and worst) of 1998

Here are the biggest news, sport and entertainment headlines of 1998…

Politically, there was real progress in Northern Ireland when, after 30 years of violence and nearly two years of intensive peace talks, an agreement was reached. The ‘Good Friday Agreement’, as it was called, laid down a future of friendship and harmony and led to British Prime Minister Tony Blair and the Republic of Ireland's leader, Bertie Ahern, receiving acclaim from all corners.

The much talked about ‘Human Rights Act’ received royal assent, meaning that the UK had to fall in line with the ‘European Convention on Human Rights’. Amongst other things, it gave a legal right to life, a fair trial and freedom of expression; prohibiting discrimination, torture, and the death penalty. Some saw it as necessary for a civilized society whilst others saw it as yet more interfering European bureaucracy.

Another arrival from Europe causing debate was the 43rd Eurovision Song Contest. This year’s competition was held in Birmingham and hopes were high for UK entry Imaani and her song ‘Where Are You?’. She pulled off an admiral 2nd place behind Israel’s entrant, male-to-female transsexual Dana International. The winner attracted much post-contest hype and publicity, then everyone remembered that it was only the Eurovision song contest anyway. As for Imanni, the fact you don’t even recognise the name tells you all you need to know about her subsequent music career.

Also giving hope to the UK (well, the English part of it anyway) was World Cup 98 in France. As always, fans were hoping / praying / begging that this would indeed be the year and, as near always, things went a little bit wrong. England were the victims of penalties again (this time to Argentina) and, new face on the block David Beckham was the victim of his own temper. Having been sent off for a silly kick at one of the Argies, Beckham got blamed for everything and was hated by everyone (including, probably, Victoria).

No doubt Jim, Barbara, Anthony, Dave and Denise, of the Royle family, would have been watching the World Cup from the comfort of their sofa in their council house in Manchester. Who would have thought that a TV show about other people watching TV would be such a success? Actually, they didn’t just watch TV, they also smoked cigarettes, made cups of TV and broke wind! It’s doubtful whether Jim Royle would have been impressed with American cult import ‘South Park’ but the rest of the UK certainly got into it; millions tuning in every week to see “Who killed Kenny?” (many more may have tuned into find out who had killed Beckham!)

The cinemas saw a swing back to America for the big successes of the year with no noticeable UK films coming out in 1998. The bloody ‘Saving Private Ryan’ was a second world war hit starring Tom Hanks; the story involving a group of soldiers with orders to safely take home a Private James Ryan to his mother, whose other 3 sons have already been killed. A lot less bloody and a lot more singing and dancing was the re-release of ‘Grease’. The high school love story coming back to the big screen 20 years after its original release (this time with enhanced colour and digital sound).

For a full rundown of the of the top selling 1998 music

…alternatively, a guide to the best 90s music for every year of the decade.