Once upon a time
, in a country far far away (oh OK, in Britain
), there was a television music programme called Top of The Pops
. This became something of a national institution, but ultimately it failed to notice that the times, they are a'changing
and ratings slowly began to slip. In a bid to prove that the bosses at the BBC
were listening to the word on the street
), in the mid 1970s the show was spiced-up by the addition of a female dance troupe
These were Pan's People, five young women who were probably responsible for a million teenage wet dreams every week. They weren't spectacularly wonderful dancers, the choreography was never red hot and the girls themselves weren't drop-dead gorgeous but that was all part of the appeal. They had that girl next door at the school disco air about them, and as their popularity soared, so did their exposure on TV. Their costumes got skimpier, the camera lingered longer on their jiggly bits and Top of The Pops' ratings went through the roof.
Sadly, all good things have to come to an end, and by the mid-80s the
political climate was such that semi-naked women prancing around the
nation's TV sets were no longer approved of. Top of The Pops was
repackaged and rebranded (this was the 1980s by now),
and Pan's People were quietly dropped from the show.
All was not lost! Due to the marketing appeal of nostalgia, the
BBC are now rehashing their old TOTP programmes
(they've got 35 years worth to choose from) and rebroadcasting older sequences as Top of The Pops 2, which I am now sitting watching, and enjoying Pan's People in all their glory. Ahhh, happy days...