TV Review with Ian K

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From fairly early on one of the things that television has done well has been the ‘talk show’ where famous personalities have been interviewed by a celebrity host.

Dee Time, Parkinson, Harty, Aspel and Company are a few of the many talk shows which have featured famous people being interviewed firstly on their own and then becoming involved in a chat with the rest of the guests.

In recent times, it has become more about the interviewer looking amusing than about learning something meaningful about the guests. This is particularly true in the case of the Jonathan Ross and Graham Norton shows. However one of the most famous old talk shows was Face to Face where the journalist John Freeman interviewed one person for the duration of the show. In a way the Piers Morgan programme which returns for a new season on Friday at nine o’clock harks back to that show. These single interview sessions are between Piers Morgan and only one celebrity. Interspersed with their chat are a few segments which feature important people from the celebrity’s life talking about their experience of them. One gets the impression that the programmes are more about finding out about the celebrities rather than a Piers Morgan extravaganza. Coming from a journalistic background Piers is often able to get his guests to reveal more about themselves than they would on say Jonathan Ross’ show. The first guest in the new series is Esther Ranzen who started off her television career as Bernard Braden’s sidekick before hosting the famous That’s Life for years. Esther has done a great deal in her life not least helping to set up Childline. It remains to be seen if Piers can get us to know more about the real Esther ...