Friday, 9 December 2011

The Alternative TOTP Christmas Canon: Slade - Merry Xmas Everybody

And so we reach the apex, the embodiment of Christmas hitmaking at a time when TOTP was at its height or thereabouts. Because it kept coming back Slade actually got to do this on two seperate Christmas shows, going walkabout the following year, but I've picked out the first because it demonstrates something about the show's technical limitations and those of its production ideas. There's a reason why you don't have a stage invasion at the start of a song, not least on television as the weight of numbers means we even manage to lose a tall man in a big mirrored hat in the crowd, and while the little cheer at 1:53 is a clue that something's happened by the time the director finds Noddy again something both savoury (if it's whipped cream) and unsavoury seems to have happened out of shot, which defeats its purpose. Still, worth missing Nod's big moment to admire the movement of that crane camera at length. Someone kisses Noddy at the end too despite having seen the state of him.


Angelo Gravity said...

The second performance, where Slade are all dressed in white and then walk over to Jimmy dancing around in his Santa gear, is the first thing I can ever remember watching on Top of the Pops - I didn't see the whole show, the telly got turned over and I caught this Slade performance before getting in the car with my dad to go to my grandma's!

23 Daves said...

I seem to remember hearing that the foam on Noddy's face was due to a member of Wizzard throwing a custard pie at him due to the intense chart-related rivalries between the two acts. Can't verify that, though!