Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Sex Pistols on the Today Programme - 1st December 1976

On the 1st of December, 1976, the Sex Pistols, along with their entourage, known as the Bromley Contingent, appeared on the Today show on Thames Television as a last minute stand-in for Queen, who had cancelled. According to the Wikipedia page for the programme's host, Bill Grundy,
The interview began when Grundy proceeded to introduce and provoke the band, with tongue firmly in cheek. He joked that he was under the influence as he introduced them - "...they are as drunk as I am!" Initially, he received mocking but relatively innocuous responses from Glen Matlock. However, Steve Jones, when asked by Grundy what the band had done with the £40,000 given to them by their record company, said: "Fuckin' spent it", an obscenity which was overlooked by Grundy at the time. Following this, John Lydon, in response to a question about Mozart, muttered the word "shit" under his breath, but when asked, said that it was nothing but a "rude word" and asked Grundy to proceed with the interview. Grundy insisted that Lydon repeat what he had said, which Lydon did, with Grundy then mocking Lydon.
Next, Grundy jokingly made advances on Siouxsie Sioux, who appeared as part of the band's entourage, by saying "let's meet afterwards shall we?" An angry Steve Jones responded by calling Grundy a "dirty sod" and a "dirty old man." Grundy further goaded Jones to "say something outrageous", a challenge that Jones met by calling Grundy a "dirty bastard" and a "dirty fucker". Grundy mockingly responded "what a clever boy" and Jones retorted "what a fucking rotter." As the show ended and the credits rolled, Grundy mouthed "oh shit" as the band began dancing to the closing theme.
 Although Today was only shown in the London ITV region, it became a national story due to coverage and comment by the tabloid press. As a result, Grundy was suspended for two weeks and Today was cancelled two months later.

Queen would never have sworn on TV, now would they?