Guide Talk Play Highlights Todays TV AtoZ


Thousands of fictional characters appear on television each week. A very few of them strike a special chord with us as viewers. Some define a time or a place. Others enter our lives and become like family members. And each generation throws up TV villains that we love to hate.

In this four hour special, we'll reveal the stories behind the 100 Greatest Television Characters.

The actors who breathed life into the nations' most celebrated TV personas will spill the beans as to how they brought their creation into being. Was it a funny walk, or a dirty laugh, a dodgy moustache or a woolly hat?

The writers and producers who invented these characters will explain who and what inspired them to put pen to paper. It's a litany of nosy neighbours, rude hoteliers and bullying teachers, not to mention an especially enthusiastic gang of priests blessing a scooter.

Real life cops, docs, soldiers and priests will cast a critical eye over their on-screen counterparts. Would any patient have survived the wise-cracking doctor's shaky surgical technique? Could any law enforcer possibly operate a gun with any degree of accuracy while wearing such a tight leather jacket?

Some TV characters define the era in which they appeared and we'll ask how much do these fictional creations mirror the society which spawned them?
How well does Loadsamoney sum up the grasping eighties?
Can we chart the change in British society through its TV crime-fighters, from the kindly Dixon of Dock Green to the overweight and cynical Cracker?

The programme will also ask what makes a great TV character?
Why do some work when others flop? What does our craving to take TV characters to our hearts say about us? And why do apparently sane people lay flowers at the spot where Victor Meldrew met his maker?

Over four hours The 100 Greatest TV Characters will reveal the definitive roll call of TV talent. From 100 to 1, these are the greatest characters ever to appear on British television, as voted for by you and you'll also have a chance to have your say on the TV characters you love to hate.