One of the BBC’s longest serving stars has been poached by ITV1 in a audacious coup that will be seen as another humiliating blow to the corporation. ‘Testcard Girl’ and her co-star ‘Cuddly Clown’ kept viewers on the edge of their seats throughout the 60s and 70s as millions wondered what the next move would be in their on-going game of noughts and crosses.
‘Now the climax of this drama will be taking place on ITV1’ boasted ITV entertainment boss Paul Jackson. He added that the Testcard was ‘inspirational, quality television to which people of all ages can relate’.
The television critic of the Times, Simon Leitch, said, ‘This can only be good news for ITV. Programmes after the 9PM watershed have been problematic for them of late, and falling advertising revenues needed to be halted by a brave move like this one.’
However some feared that ITV may take Testcard Girl downmarket. ‘Apparently there are plans for her to get a couple of piercings and to be playing Grand Theft Auto instead of noughts and crosses. And there are rumours of a ratings-grabbing split between her and the clown.’
ITV will begin the series by re-showing the Testcard from 1972 followed by ‘Testcard Classics’ from the 1960s. Highlights of the Testcard will be repeated later in the evening on ITV2.