JOHN Logie Baird’s gift to the world has been a window on so many era-defining events. The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth. Man takes his first step on the Moon. The funeral of Princess Diana.

What did 2022 have for us? Two fat blokes having a sweating competition. Or to give the bumping of gums its official listing, Piers Morgan interviewing Donald Trump to mark the launch of new channel TalkTV.

The Prez and Piers schmoozed, they bitched about Harry and Meghan, they talked about the size of Vladimir Putin’s red button (smaller than The Donald’s, obv). Mostly, though, they sweated. Where was the interview held, the gates of hell? Had there been smellovision the aroma would have been gammon.

That TalkTV was having a launch at all should have come as a surprise. Only a year ago the plug had been pulled on the channel because the sums did not add up. Now they do, apparently, despite the mega bucks being paid to Morgan and the rumoured fat fees for regular contributors.

Last June’s disastrous launch of GB News set the bar pleasingly low for TalkTV. Basically, as long as no-one soiled themselves or set fire to the studio (and you would be surprised how often such things happen on TV) they were on to a winner.

Not that it looked that way to start. In the first few minutes of The News Desk with Tom Newton Dunn the sound was out of synch. At the launch of GB News this had been the first sign that things were going pear-shaped, fast. Surely cruel fate could not strike twice? Alas, some whizz kid fixed the glitch within minutes, much to the annoyance of watching critics.

The screen was busy, strewn with type and labels “DEVELOPING STORY”, “THE LATEST”. Not many ads yet, just fillers with bashful journalists telling us how delighted they were to serve on the good ship TalkTV.

After a busy hour of Newton Dunn, which included Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar on impressive form as a news commentator, it was time for the main act, Piers Morgan Uncensored. Here was a journalistic big beast so mighty they had to build a whole new studio across town to accommodate him. I seem to recall something similar happening when King Kong was shipped to New York.

While GB News looked like it was filmed at the bottom of a well, Morgan’s set at Ealing Studios was light, bright and jolly. The creation of Emmy-winning production designer Jim Fenhagen, who fashioned the look of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, it clearly cost a few bob. The leccy bill come autumn will be a doozie. Better start putting the 50ps in a jar now, people.

Morgan looked right at home, but he had looked the same way at Good Morning Britain and that had ended in hot tears of rage and a flounce out.

In an opening monologue/rant he quoted Winston Churchill, George Washington, and Christopher Hitchens, and called Meghan “Princess Pinnochio”. On and on he droned about snowflakes and wokeness and Mr Potato Head being emasculated. Were we having that much promised Piers-led fun yet? Erm …

Three months later, or at least it felt like that way, it was time to see the first part of his much trailed encounter with Donald Trump.

First things first, was the former president going to run again? Trump wouldn’t say, just as he wouldn’t say in every other interview he has given, including his chat with Nigel Farage.

Trump only looked under pressure when Morgan tackled him on last year’s attack on the Capitol and his continued claims that the election was “stolen” from him. But again, we had heard it all before.

READ MORE: Suited and re-booted: Can Piers Morgan powerslam his way back onto our TVs? 

Yet a minute later Trump’s non-committal answer was being presented on TalkTV news as a “world exclusive” confirmation that The Donald’s 2024 run was on.

That “no BS” promise that Morgan made earlier had not lasted long. Wonder if we’ll soon be saying the same of his tenure at TalkTV. 


TalkTV available on Sky channel 526, Virgin Media channel 627, Freeview channel 237, Freesat channel 217. Streamed via Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung TV Plus, YouTube, and