NIPPLE TO THE BOTTLE - GOOD MORNING BRITAIN
Original Broadcast Date: 19/05/1983
Troupe: About to be christened SmaX
Dancers: Lulu, Patti, Sue , Tanya Lee and Patricia McSherry
Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq_cwZq4qP4 ____________________________________________________________________________________
As far as I’m concerned, Breakfast Television is just something that is on in the background, as I crash around the house, desperately trying to find two matching socks and a shirt that doesn’t look as though it has been trampled on by the local rugby team. But had I been watching Good Morning Britain on the 19th May 1983, my attention would surely have been captured, as Sue , Patti and Lulu made a rare appearance on ITV….
Also with them were Tanya Lee who had joined the troupe during 1982 and Tricia McSherry who had debuted with them soon after their TOTP stint had ended, having previously appeared in Dee Dee Wilde’s Pans People. For a while after leaving TOTP, the troupe used the name 'Night Moves' but, as Sue explains, had decided that a new name was required, and it was left to the viewers of Good Morning Britain to christen them – SmaX - though personally I think Forbidden Fruit was a much better name.
The only time I have seen Nick Owen this excited is when Luton Town won the League Cup!
The song was a minor hit for Grace Jones, which charted better overseas than it did in the UK.
When they performed this, Patti was just a month short of her 33rd birthday which is quite old for a dancer, although you wouldn’t know that from this performance. Of the two newer girls, I think Tricia looks the more comfortable although they both perform well. Tanya looks very similar to Lulu. I don’t know if it was planned or not but I like the shadow effect on the back wall, and their costumes meet with my approval as well.
Well as the new girls perform though, I think I would have preferred it if our original trio had of got a couple of blokes in and tried to recreate Ruby Flipper. Legs & Co was a tough act to follow and it might have been better to go in a different direction. Whether there was much demand for a mixed troupe in cabaret I don’t know.
It wouldn’t surprise me if there were quite a few blokes late for work that morning.
I will score this 8 out of 10
Well I like Forbidden Fruit too. I absolutely love the Lilac to Pink graded skirts and the ladies look wonderful including the new recruits. The choreography fits like a glove and I like the hairstyles including the radical Sue. I'm still a 9/10 for a very smooth and easy on the eyes performance. I always wonder whether the ladies missed any tricks at this late stage to regain their crown but I really don't think so and I just lament the sadly shrinking marketplace which had lost touch with its organic roots IMHO
Some Dancers who gave a good time, broke all the rules, played all the fools, yeah yeah yeah they blew our minds
Yes i also had no problem with the name `Forbidden Fruit` and it did capture their newer racier image, shame then that they dismissed it. Put it this way, i preferred that to the eventual chosen name of SmaX.
As for this, well i really like it. Patti & Lulu looking raunchy, but annoyingly silent leaving all the talk to headgirl Sue who handles the situation well, with Tanya chipping in with the odd word. Does anybody else think that Trisha has a look of Cherry about her, no, well maybe its just me then.
The cornflakes would have gone down well that morning watching the provocative dance moves. I particularly enjoyed the mock hair pulling move and indeed the costumes.
In the thread from four years ago i gave this a maximum. On reflection that may be a tad high. So im knocking that back to `9.25 out of 10`. Its an entertaining 4 minute clip that i play often.
Last time I was of the view that while this routine has an appeal it isn't a style to be too oft repeated and I'm still in that corner. Of course context means a lot and its juxtaposition with the early hours perhaps adds a certain jarriness to its edginess, but then I always was a slow starter. Seeing the cabaret performance, when the sun was so well over the yardarm as to have disappeared entirely, I'm sure it would have felt much more at home. Either way its still an 8 and the spokesperson is still my Dotd.
Cabaret dancing girls are not what you’d normally expect at breakfast. I remember watching this on tv at the time and the girls certainly made my breakfast snap, crackle and pop!
They all look great and I thought they demoed their new style and dance moves really well – it was certainly a shift away from the Legs & Co way of doing things. It’s all 80’s hair and make up now and quite a raunchy look that’s enhanced with the stockings.
Shame Sue is the only one permitted to speak. As Nick had a few questions he could have directed each of them to a different member of the troupe and we’d have got to know the new girls a bit better.
If I’d have phoned in, my name choice for the girls would have been Syn-ergy.... so there’s a real lost opportunity that I’ll take the blame for.
I love this piece, the girls look fantastic, nobody should look that great so early in the morning, the routine is raunchy and has great rhythm, and the new girls seem to fit in well.
I could listen to Sue's voice all day, it's beguiling in a lovely way, and Lulu's cheeky little looks are wonderful. 9.75/10 and honorary DOTD just has to be Sue. My vite fir a name would have been 'Wow!' because it's about all I could utter after watching that. No wonder poor old Nick Owen was a bit hot under the collar!
What has come to mind having watched this again is how the girls moved forward with the times and how much TOTP missed having not had them around for coming on two years by this time. They looked great, contemporaneous to the time and routines to match. We all know the dumping of a regular troupe was related to the emergence of readily available video and costs but TOTP sold itself out in my view and never recovered. These girls were always far more than the sum of the part they had in the show. What a tragic waste.
I recall this clip being recovered a while back and it's very welcome we are able to view and discuss once more. The timeline would suggest, the outfits and their style is all very different from their residence dancing days and they appear as always to be up to speed. The new team members look from this clip to be good choices and fit in well with our original ladies who are still carrying the torch.
Always good to hear edgy Grace Jones being used as the track for this appearance, Nick obviously after quoting the phone number (wonder how many called in) had to go and ask equally edgy Denis Healy MP opinion about all of this and matters of state. 8/10.
Thanks for all of the comments so far. The more I think about it, the less I like the name SmaX. It sound like a name for a biscuit or a chocolate bar but not a dance troupe.
I am led to believe that Denis Healy's secret documents were a plan to restore Legs & Co to national television. Had Labour included that in their manifesto, they might have done better in the following months election.
I have to say that the link at the top of the page is working fine for me, CT but I am glad you were able to find an alternative one. Maybe it depends on the browser or something although I am probably the least technical person on here so I wouldn't have a clue really!
Nowadays the closest Nick Owen gets to Forbidden Fruit is reporting an apple heist near Pershore, but lucky old him back then: and he knows it! I too would have preferred the girls settling on that name, or failing that - considering not just the morning hour - prefixing SmaX with Sugar would have counterbalanced the street edge to continue the quintessential legacy of the former troupe. But as stated that was not their mission, and think what one may of the final choice it does suit the harder direction seen here in a modern new beginning which looks totally delectable in black corsets and purple and pink rah-rah skirts that I'd defend to the hilt on any crummy let's-have-a-pop-at-the-eighties show. And Golden Nuggets it gets even better when with delicious delay it's revealed that they're wearing stockings!
Plenty to suckle on and no mistake. After the head girl fills us in nicely it's on to a choice of track in too much tune-poverty to Grace TOTP in poppy 83 whether Legs & Co were still in residence or not, so it's something fresh from the off. The cold timbre and raunchy undertones of the performance step right on the pulse of the strict rhythm. The new recruits certainly have the physical credentials but being present in the only available item vs hundreds that came before means that they can't quite gell in my mind no matter how they acquitted themselves. But if only the reinvention had found their way to a regular slot on The Tube they'd have gone down a storm! I agree with OGW that Tricia looks the more assured and one thing the new incarnation does maintain is the blonde-brunette balance.
A few routines I've given a 10 to wouldn't get it now and and this so far unique opportunity for a complete ratings revaluation happens to be one of them. In hindsight the thrill of it surfacing caused me to get a little carried away over four years ago; it's still a clip to be treasured but though the dance titillates it isn't top notch and I'm reducing it to 9.25/10
Not one I've watched in a while but certainly an interesting snapshot into the post TOTPs world of Legs & Co which is still relatively unknown. I can't quite fathom how this appeal could have come about but its great publicity all the same and would probably have raised a few eyebrows and i can't imagine anything like this being allowed on todays breakfast TV. Hopefully at some point the missing second part will be made available as its current status is 'not digitised'
Anyway, its a decent dance routine given the limited floor space, the costumes are rather nice, with the cheeky stocking reveal being cleverly integrated and not overdone.
Thanks for all your reviews so far. I am hoping to receive some more soon.
I was expecting this to drop a bit from the scores of 4 years ago, which it has, but it is holding up quite well and could be a contender for the coveted 2nd place spot on the table.
Even viewing all these years later it still feels wrong to be watching Legs (SmaX) on breakfast television amongst all the early morning Alan Patridgesque knitwear. The studio seems so bare and cold. And try as I might I can't get it out of my head that the audience in 1983 would have been woofing down their Weetabix while hoping the Austin Allegro was going to start. The girls put on a good show but the performance lacks a certain atmosphere. The dance itself has a militaristic approach with formation steps, and I'm not sure about the unsmiling faces (or the song), a bit too Hot Gossip for me. Legs usually avoided all that joyless stuff, unless the routine especially called for it. Though I do appreciate the desire to go in a new direction, it's just not for me.
Nice to see most of the original Legs still dancing in 1983. Maybe not the best song to dance to if you wan't to give a new non-disco image, nevertheless Legs still give a really good performance and I must say that Patti, Lulu and Sue are looking really well.
Ahh, Nick Owen. A man suited to the aging process- he was even old when he was young. Afflicted by a bad back, as were the vanquished opponents in that 1988 Littlewoods Cup Final, OGW.
In style and fashion, 1983 was so far advanced from 1981 that viewers may well have felt a nostalgic glow to the sight of Legs & Co. after only 18 months away from the screens. Big hair's taken hold of Lulu and does in some respects make her the least recognisable of the three regulars. With or even without Nick Owen's introduction, might some viewers have been struggling to recall the irregulars or would they have conceded the 80's effect have taken a grip on Gill and Rosie?
Sue has ears! The pixie cut does suit her and it's good to see she didn't go all Eighties with hair even bigger than the style chosen for her "I'll Find My Way Home" farewell. She's especially perky for the time of day and gives no hint of having to be up with the lark at Sleep O'Clock to reach Camden Studios. "Good Morning!"
Good to hear a confident Tanya chip in with a few words during the chat, wearing, like the rest, costumes which are thoroughly up to date and slightly raunchy for early morning TV back in the day. Interesting colour scheme as far as the skirts are concerned with pink for the new dancers, purple for Sue's experienced colleagues and with a hazy mix of the colours worn by the head-girl between the sides.
The routine itself carries a hint of controlled aggression with what looks like a hair-yanking move seen a couple of times during the introduction and, as it's the 80's, the chance to forsake the need to actively look for and smile into the camera in favour of a more sultry (and only slightly severe) expression. Overall, I think it would have been easy to drop the 'look' and the dance move attitude of this performance straight into a TOTP edition of the time (the 1,000th for example) and make for a perfect fit. Those Moves were as much of the right time as the Night time.
Since the Feb. '83 launch,TV-AM's viewing figures were notoriously dreadful and it's tempting to think that the presence of Night Moves had the initial effect of improving the ratings long before Roland Rat and his 'preventative' ears emerged from the sewer.