Hello everyone. It’s good to be back. I don’t know about you, but I am kicking myself for falling for a prime piece of hype. I blame myself; I work in this industry, I should know better. But when I saw a headline screaming: ‘£1 million find on Antiques Roadshow!’, visions of Del Boy and Rodney danced before my eyes and I excitedly mentioned the programme to my family. This was a must-watch event, a once in a lifetime TV moment and I didn’t want to miss it.
Earlier in the week, the BBC reported that Antiques Roadshow would screen the first ever object to be valued by a show expert at £1 million. The item of interest was kept under wraps and kudos to them because I didn’t get a sniff of said closely-guarded secret until the show aired last Sunday at 7.15pm on BBC1. According to the BBC, fine art expert Philip Mould made ‘the find’ and broke the news to the owner at a venue in Gateshead. The owner knew it was valuable, but, said the press release, the actual value ‘shocked’ apparently.
At home, my family all wondered what it could be: an Old Master bought for a tenner at a car boot sale? A piece of old China handed down from generation to generation? An old Roman coin found at the bottom of a garden? Answer? None of the above.
Instead, the reveal was…..a design model of Anthony Gormley’s Angel of the North sculpture. The model was one of a number he made to win over sceptical councillors ahead of the statue’s commissioning. And why was it valued at £1m? Because a larger design model had recently sold at auction for £2m. The model on Antiques Roadshow was OWNED BY GATESHEAD COUNCIL. It had been in council offices for 13 years! What a disappointment. "Is that it??!?" my mum cried in disbelief. "You made us watch this…for that??!!?" said my sister. What could I say? I tried to explain that I’d been taken in, but my family were having none of it and took their frustration out on me.
I’m resolved never to fall for anything that cheap and underhanded again. I’d expect a move like that from a digital broadcaster desperate to get viewers watching some sort of salacious celebrity tat – I certainly don’t expect it from Auntie and most definitely not for Horlicks-and-comfy-slippers TV such as the likes of Antiques Roadshow. What annoys me is that this tactic simply wasn’t needed; the show has been storming the ratings in recent weeks, beating ITV’s much-trumpeted drama Britannia High into the ground. Ever seen The Real Hustle? It tends to air on BBC Three and demonstrates confidence tricks, flimflams, hoaxes, frauds and various other nefarious deeds for a trusting public so that we can avoid becoming victims. May I humbly suggest they add ‘The Great Antiques Roadshow Rip-off Scam’ to that series?
Today I am mostly lovin’ – I am still loving watching the Tina Fey as Sarah Palin Saturday Night Live skits. Absolutely hilarious! She totally nailed that impersonation.
Today I am mostly hatin’ – That bloomin’ Garnier Nutrisse advert with Davina McCall. Aaaaaarrrrrrrrrrggggggggghhh!
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