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Hot Metal. Richard 'Dicky' Lipton (Richard Wilson). Image credit: London Weekend Television.

Hot Metal

Biting newspaper satire by Andrew Marshall and David Renwick, set in the offices of the once high-brow, now populist tabloid, Daily Crucible

1986 - 1988  (ITV)
13 (2 series)
Robert Hardy, Geoffrey Palmer, Geoffrey Hutchings, Richard Kane, John Gordon Sinclair, Richard Wilson, David Barrass, Caroline Milmoe
Andrew Marshall, David Renwick
London Weekend Television

The Daily Crucible, a respectable daily newspaper, is facing its final edition; its straight-forward, totally-honest approach to reporting the news has won it much attention, but made it deadly dull and with ever-diminishing sales figures.

Enter Twiggy Rathbone, tycoon owner of Rathouse International who's ready to turn the high-brow paper into a popular, sleazy, high-selling tabloid. He installs editor Russell Spam to do his bidding and 'promotes' the incumbent, Harry Stringer, to the role of 'managing editor' - a largely vanity role but holding what will become an increasingly difficult public face of respectability...

Our Review: Truly fierece at times, this biting satire presents an excellent parody of a certain popular newspaper and its Antipodean owner, with a wonderful performance from an over-the-top star in a dual role.

Wonderfully emblematic and indicative of many of society's struggles through the 1980s, but barely any less relevant today, the best part of 30 years on.