BBC Unveils its Red-Button Interactive TV Schedule through August 27th

--Characters from "EastEnders" Broadband Video Spin-Off to Tweet to Viewers

The BBC has announced the line-up of content that will be available through its red-button interactive TV service through August 27th:

  • Starting August 25th, viewers on Sky, Virgin and Freeview can press red to access highlights of BBC Radio 4's Edinburgh Fringe showcase, hosted by Mark Watson. The highlights program includes footage from two open-air editions of the Radio 4 panel game, "Just a Minute," interspersed with stand-up comedy from "Just a Minute" comedians, Miles Jupp, Doc Brown, Tom Wrigglesworth, Abandoman, Andrew Lawrence and Susan Calman. The highlights show is available on Sky and Virgin around the clock from 6:00AM, August 25th through 4:00AM, August 28th. On Freeview, it is available at the following times: 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10AM-3:50PM and 5:10PM-7:50AM (26th), August 25th; 9:10AM-3:50PM and 5:10-9:45PM, August 26th; and 12:00-8.45AM and 10:45AM-12:00PM, August 27th. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • On August 19th and 20th, Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers can press red to access Edinburgh Festival coverage from "The Culture Show," "The Review Show" and other sources. The coverage is available on Sky and Virgin 7:55PM-4:00AM (20th), August 19th and 7:00PM-4:00AM (21st), August 20th. It is available on Freeview at the following times: 7:55-9:45PM, August 19th; and 12:10-2:00AM and 11:40PM-2:10AM (21st), August 20th. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • Sky and Virgin viewers will be able to access the program "A Summer of Melas" (see the article published on itvt.com, August 11th), from 6:00AM, August 16th through 4:00AM, August 23rd. Freeview viewers will be able to access it at the following times: 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10-11:50AM, 5:10-9:45PM and 11:10PM-6:00AM (17th), August 16th; 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10-11:50AM, 5:10-8:45PM and 10:10PM-6:00AM (18th), August 17th; 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10AM-3:50PM and 10:10PM-6:00AM (19th), August 18th; 9:10AM-3:50PM and 5:10-7:45PM, August 19th; 2:10-6:00AM, 6:00AM-7:50AM, 9:00AM-12:00PM, 1:00-3:50PM, 5:10-7:20PM and 9:30-11:30PM, August 20th; 4:25-6:00AM, 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10AM-2:20PM and 10:10PM-6:00AM (22nd), August 21st; and 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10AM-3:50PM, 5:10-7:45PM, and 8:40PM-4:00AM (23rd), August 22nd. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • From 7:00PM, August 27th through 2:00AM the next day (and also on August 28th and 29th, with highlights becoming available on August 30th--though the BBC has not provided broadcast times for those dates), Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers can press red to watch coverage of the Reading and Leeds music festival. "Viewers will have a choice of up to three streams of music recorded live from the festival, plus we'll be showing extended sets from more than 30 bands including Guns n' Roses, Arcade Fire and the long-awaited return of The Libertines," the BBC states in its press materials. "As well as performances from the Main and NME/Radio 1 stages, fans will be able to feast on performances from breakthrough artists playing the BBC Introducing Stage." (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • Following the BBC Two series, "The Great British Bake-Off," Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers will be able to press red to view a bonus show that is part of a campaign to raise money for the charity, Children in Need. "After watching judges Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood challenge the contestants to bake some of their best recipes on BBC Two, Red Button viewers can watch the judges bake each of these recipes to a winning standard and learn how to do it themselves," the BBC states in its press materials. Sky and Virgin viewers will be able to access the show 8:55PM-4:00AM (18th), August 17th; 5:35-6:10PM, August 21st; and 8:55PM-4:00AM (25th), August 24th. Freeview viewers will be able to access it from 8:55PM to 4:00AM the next day on August 17th and 24th. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • During BBC Two's August 20th Prom broadcast and BBC Four's rebroadcast later that night (7:30-9:20PM, August 20th and 2:20-4:10AM, August 21st), Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers will be able to press red to watch the so-called "Maestro Cam," which will provide a close-up view of conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen. They will also be able to listen to commentary from Peter Stark, series consultant for BBC Two's "Maestro" series. The following day, during a broadcast of a Prom concert by the National Youth Orchestra (6:40-8:30PM, August 21st), they will be able to press red to access "Prom Com"--commentary on the concert from leading orchestral musicians. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • For the first time in its eight-season history, the entrepreneurs-pitch-VC's reality TV program, "Dragon's Den," is offering a supplemental show via the red button. According to the BBC, the red-button show features behind-the-scenes footage and insights from the show's five "Dragons" (VC's), and enables viewers to "find out why the Dragons chose to invest, and discover how the entrepreneurs feel once they've escaped the rigors of their trial by fire." The show will be available on Sky and Virgin from 7:55PM to 4:00AM the next day on August 16th, 22nd and 23rd; it will be available on Freeview 9:55-11:00PM, August 16th; 7:55-8:30PM, August 22nd; and 9:55-10:30PM, August 23rd. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • After each episode of the series, "Mistresses," Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers can press red to access a quiz based on the show. Viewers will be "presented with a series of dilemmas that the Mistresses face in series three," the BBC states in its press materials. "Katie's mother (a.k.a Joanna Lumley) will ask the viewers how they would react to the situation if they were in the character's shoes. At the end of the quiz viewers will then get to find out how like the Mistresses they are." The quiz will be available on Sky and Virgin from 9:55PM to 4:00AM the next day, August 19th and 26th; it will be available on Freeview 9:55PM-12:00AM, August 19th and 9:55-11:50PM, August 26th. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • Following broadcasts of the comedy series, "That Mitchell and Webb Look," digital viewers can press red to access a collection of bonus sketches. The bonus content will be available on Freeview 9:25-10:00PM, August 17th. It will be available on Sky and Virgin at the following times: 9:00-9:55PM, August 16th; 9:25PM-4:00AM (18th), August 17th; 9:00PM-4:00AM (19th), August 18th; 9:20PM-2:20AM (21st), August 20th; 9:00PM-4:00AM (22nd), August 21st; 9:00PM-4:00AM (23rd), August 22nd; and 9:00PM-4:00AM (24th), August 23rd. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • Sky, Virgin and Freeview viewers can press red to access video highlights of the BBC Radio 2 show, "Weekend Wogan." The highlights will be available on Sky and Virgin from 6:00AM, August 16th through 4:00AM, August 18th, and from 6:00AM, August 23rd through 4:00AM, August 25th. They will be available on Freeview at the following times: 12:00-3:50PM, August 16th and 17th; 6:00-7:50AM, 9:10AM-3:50PM, 5:10-9:45PM and 10:40PM-7:50AM (24th), August 23rd; and 9:10AM-3:50PM and 5:10-8:45PM, August 24th. (Note: Not available on Freesat.)
  • Sky and Freeview viewers of the BBC's preschooler digital channel, CBeebies, can press red to access interactive TV games based on "In the Night Garden," "The Green Balloon Club" and other CBeebies shows. The offerings available to viewers on each of the two platforms are slightly different from each other--which, the BBC says "has enabled us to offer the best games tailored to each system." (Note: Not available on Virgin or Freesat.)
  • On weekdays, around the clock, Sky and Virgin viewers can press red to access "Video Choice" on the BBC News Multiscreen application. The feature consists of a two-minute package of highlights which is billed as featuring the day's best picture stories, and which is put together by BBC News's On Demand team. On weekends, the daily highlights package is replaced by a topical video interview, entitled "Five Minutes with...," or by "OddBox," a show described by the BBC as "a round-up of the week's weird and wonderful videos." (Note: Not available on Freeview or Freesat.)
  • The soccer news and results show, "Final Score," will be available via the red button to Sky, Virgin and Freesat viewers 7:00-10:00PM, August 17th and 2:30-6:00PM, August 21st. It will be available to Freeview viewers 2:30-6:00PM, August 21st. Meanwhile, the soccer round-up show, "The Football League Show," will be available through the red button on Sky, Virgin and Freesat 1.20AM-12:00PM, August 22nd.
  • In the run-up to Formula One motor racing's Belgian Grand Prix, digital viewers will be able to press red to access coverage of all on-track sessions, including Friday and Saturday practice and qualifying sessions. They will also be able to access re-runs of classic Grands Prix. Then, during the race itself, they will be able to access a choice of three streams featuring split-screen in-car camera feeds, leaderboards and rolling highlights, with the option of listening to either network or BBC Radio 5 Live commentary. Finally, after the race has been run, digital viewers will be able to access a post-race analysis show, and, the BBC says, highlights will probably also be available the following day. (Note: red-button coverage of the Belgian Grand Prix begins 3:00PM, August 25th; the BBC says that some services will not be available on Freeview.)
  • Sky, Virgin and Freesat viewers will be able to press red to access live, non-video coverage of the third and fourth cricket Test Matches between England and Pakistan, including commentary from BBC Radio 5 Live, stats, photos and a scorecard. Red-button coverage of the third Test Match will be available 10:45AM-7:00PM, August 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st and 22nd; and coverage of the fourth Test Match will be available 10:45AM-7:00PM, August 26th and 27th. (Note: Not available on Freeview.)
  • Sky, Virgin and Freesat viewers can press red 5:00-9:00PM, August 16th, and from 6:00PM, August 22nd through 5:00PM, August 23rd, in order to access "The Super League Show," a round-up show featuring highlights of the weekend's Rugby League action. (Note: Not available on Freeview.)
  • 8:00-9:00AM and 4:00-5:00PM daily, through August 20th, digital viewers can press red to access highlights coverage of the Youth Olympic Games from Singapore. The highlights will also be available on Freeview 8:00-9:00AM and 9:00-10:00PM, August 21st and 8:00-9:00AM and 4:00-5:00PM daily from August 22nd through 26th. In addition, Sky, Virgin and Freesat viewers will be able to press red to access replay coverage of the event at the following times: 9:00AM-4:00PM and 6:30PM-6:00AM (17th), August 16th; 9:00AM-4:00PM and 5:00PM-6:00AM (18th), August 17th; 9:00AM-4:00PM and 5:00PM-6:00AM (19th), August 18th; 9:00AM-4:00PM and 7:00PM-6:00AM (20th), August 19th; and 9:00AM-4:00PM and from 5:00PM to 6:00AM the next day from August 20th through 26th. This coverage, and all the sports coverage listed above, is offered through the BBC Sport Multiscreen, a 24/7 red-button application that provides up to five screens of extra coverage as well as round-the-clock headlines.


In other BBC news: The corporation said last week that the lead characters of "EastEnders: E20," its youth-oriented broadband video spin-off of its long-running soap opera, "EastEnders" (note: for more on the show, see the article published on itvt.com, April 12th), will communicate with viewers via Twitter. In addition to following the characters directly on the microblogging service (@manlikefatboy, @badgal_naz, @ollymanhall, @stevie4olly), viewers will be able to see their tweets on the E20 Web site and access a weekly recap of those tweets on the BBC "EastEnders" blog. "EastEnders: E20," whose second season will premiere on the "EastEnders" Web site September 7th, consists of 10 14-minute episodes that will launch on the site every Tuesday and Thursday.

Region: 
UK/Ireland