After five series of Emu's World, Rod and the gang relaunched the programme as Emu's All Live Pink Windmill Show on Friday, 13th July, 1984. (By a staggering coincidence, that's 28 years ago today - "today" being the day of upload.) If I'm absolutely honest, this isn't the greatest of the live episodes - those probably came in 1985 - as there were quite a few teething troubles, plus nerves I'm sure played their part. But this is the episode that set the tone for the next three years of Pink Windmill fun, and that tone was "live panto".
So how has the format changed? Well, whereas Emu's World was basically a drama show with a coherent storyline in each programme - only broken by the one or two songs per episode - now there are a lot more distractions. In this particular video, you'll see the series debuts of Robot Redford and Boggle's Kingdom, plus the introduction of a studio audience and their participation. Emu's Spin Quiz, Grotbags's Grotto (a.k.a. the Cauldron Game) and the Post Office arrive for the first time, too. In fact, it all rather has the feel of Saturday morning TV, with Rod regularly breaking the fourth wall and addressing the viewer for the first time.
As for the Pink Windmill kids, in previous series they were many, but have now been trimmed down to ten regulars:
Quite a lot of hearsay and guesswork has gone into that. Can anyone help confirm any of it? Or, even better, tell us where they are now?
The songs, incidentally, are Can't Stop the Music by the Village People and The Beautiful Briny from Bedknobs and Broomsticks (with a little Yellow Submarine thrown in). Many thanks to Louise for lending me this tape.
(Please remember that this is an old VHS recording, so don't go expecting 1080p HD quality. I'm fairly certain that this video isn't commercially available, and I've uploaded it for its historic interest only. That said, if you are a copyright holder and object, please don't hesitate to contact me.)