COCKED! DOWN DOG! MAD DOGS! MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE! THE NEW YORKER PRESENTS! POINT OF HONOR! SALEM ROGERS!
The flagship Radio 1 Breakfast Show, now enjoying massive ratings (only narrowly pipped to the post by Radio 2's Terry Wogan) after the departure of Sara Cox a few years back.
Chris Moyles' motormouth attitude, sometimes abrasive behaviour to listeners and disparaging remarks to guests isn't to everyone's taste, but personally I find him the most enjoyable breakfast listen at the moment.I was a fan of his fantastic afternoon show, and the Breakfast Show hasn't really changed the hit formula. The show has the best production team backing its host, with Chris' longtime sidekick "Comedy Dave" particularly amusing, along with the high-quality of celebrity guests that the flagship show attracts.
The only thing that can frustrate me about the show is the reliance on studio banter to fuel everything. While the banter is undoubtedly a highlight most of the time, it's unfortunate that the show doesn't have more genuinely involving games/quizes/competitions to sustain itself. Those it does have are okay (again, typically lending themselves to banter -- as with the Monday Night Pub Quiz) but when there is the occassional clunker it seems to take months to drop a crap feature! One such example is the recent Beep Beep Busters, a spoof of Blockbusters using audio clips of Roy Walker. This is a weak follow-up to Carpark Catchphrase, but is still lingering in the schedule...
But overall, the combination of a strong team, frequently funny banter, top quality guests and Chris' love-it-or-hate-it style is a winner in my books!
Rating: 4 / 5
10 am - 1 pm: Jo Whiley
Jo Whiley is the longest-serving Radio 1 presenter in the daytime, and her show is a more relaxed affair. Typically it features entertainment news (including movie reviews with James King), and the celebrated Live Lounge with the musical stars occassionally singing some great cover tracks.
There is the odd competition sprinkled throughout, and a celebrity guest interview at midday (usually) but the show is mainly dominated by Jo, who comes across as a very old-school DJ. Undoubtedly a nice person with a relaxed style and genuine love of music, but also too safe and repetitive for my taste.
Rating: 2.5 / 5
1 pm - 4 pm: Colin & Edith
The newest additions to Radio 1, Colin Murray and Edith Bowman, host the early afternoon show with the emphasis on interactivity with listeners and chat usually aimed at those who remember 70's/80's retro TV, music and film.
On paper this should be a show aimed squarely at me, really, but Colin and Edith's faux sexual chemistry just leaves me cold. The fact both presenters have strong accents (Colin, Irish; Edith, Scottish) also means listening to them isn't the most relaxing thing to do and their vocals can quickly become irritating. Particularly when you notice home many times Edith says "eh" in a sentence. I counted 5 times in a single sentence once!
Both are relatively new to radio, having done TV work previously (and currently) so there are also lots of moments that just show up their inexperience with the format. The competitions and "chemistry" throughout the show is never very memorable, meaning the show only really raises a chuckle when they mention some facet of pop-culture from the 80's that strikes a chord with me...
Rating: 2 / 5
4 pm - 7 pm: Scott Mills
For many, Scott is the natural successor to the Breakfast Show whenever Moyles leaves. He has definitely earned his stripes deputizing the role for years, and even got his Radio 1 start on Early Breakfast before 6 am.
Scott's show is dominated by practical jokes, spoof phone calls, and unique features/games that listeners tend to embrace (the best example being Laura's Diary, wherein team member Laura had her school love-life exposed to the nation in daily chunks).
There's no denying the quality and quantity of fresh material in Scott's show. He's clearly someone in love with the possibilities and fun you can have on radio, and perhaps speaks to the younger demographic better than any other DJ in daytime.
However, the downside to Scott's show is that the team dynamic is decidely low. Scott's usual sidekick is sports reporter "Chappers" who proves good value most of the time, but only rarely offers flashes of brilliance for Scott to riff on. The rest of the team are pushed into the background by the number of phone calls and games, with only Laura coming to the fore recently as "comedy stooge" in light of her diary features' popularity.
Rating: 3 / 5
Overall, Radio 1 during the daytime is in a bit of a state. Thankfully Moyles and Mills bookend the day in fine style (in the crucial timeslots most people listen to while travelling), but the mid-section of Whiley, Colin and Edith let everything down.
Whiley is just too straightlaced and old-hat these days. Strangely, Sara Cox (who I hated on The Breakfast Show) has occassionally filled in for Jo to excellent effect. It's always interesting when another DJ performs better with another show's format. Cox has clearly improved since her days on Breakfast during her weekend shows.
As for Colin and Edith? I preferred a dose of surrealism from Mark & Lard in the afternoons a few years ago, but C&E's real fault lies in their inability to craft a worthwhile show. Colin is quite quick-witted s, while Edith is just the amiable presence to back him up. Whoever decides their show's format needs to shake things up with some decent features and games.
So there you have it, Radio 1 circa mid-2006. I have no idea what happens after 6 p.m -- as far as I can tell Zane Lowe shouts a lot and there's an overuse of Bangra music!