Clive James's Postcard from...

Clive James' Postcard from... (sometimes shortened to Postcard(s) from...) was a TV travel documentary series written and presented by Clive James, originally broadcast between 1989 and 1999.[1] In each episode James visited a notable world city, exploring tourist hotspots and commenting on the city's appeal in his trademark wry comic style, as well as conducting interviews with famous inhabitants.

Clive James's Postcard from...
GenreTravel documentary
Written byClive James
StarringClive James
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series9
No. of episodes18
Running time50 minutes (BBC)
Production companiesWatchmaker Productions (ITV)
Carlton (ITV)
Original release
  • BBC1 (Series 1–6)
  • ITV (Series 7–9)
Release4 January 1989 (1989-01-04) –
19 September 1999 (1999-09-19)

The first six series (1989-1995) were produced by the BBC, while the further 5 episodes (1996-1999) were produced by Watchmaker Productions (co-founded by James) for Carlton Television (ITV franchise). In the United States the show aired on PBS.[2]

In a 1992 interview James said that Postcards was his most personal work.[3] He had previously been a columnist for The Observer newspaper between 1976 and 1983, contributing travel diaries which were later compiled into the book Flying Visits.[4]

Following James' death in November 2019, all 13 episodes of Postcards produced by the BBC were rebroadcast on BBC Four between January and March 2020 (not in chronological order).[5]

Episodes edit

In the first series (1989), James visited Rio de Janeiro, Chicago and Paris (where he interviewed Beatrice Dalle).[6] In the second series (1990) he visited Miami, Florida, meeting Don Johnson and Gloria Estefan, while other episodes brought him to Rome, Shanghai and Los Angeles. In Rome James talked with Vittorio Mussolini[6] and Leonard Bernstein, while in L.A. he met Dudley Moore and Kirstie Alley.[6] The third series (1991) focused on Sydney[7] and London,[8] the two cities with which James was most associated during his life.[9] Whilst in the latter, he talked with Michael Caine, Victoria Wood, Peter Cook and Terence Donovan.[6] The fourth series (1993) brought James to Cairo, where he met Omar Sharif.[10] In the fifth series (1994) he travelled to New York City (where he met Richard Price and Ivana Trump), while the sixth (1995) took him to Bombay[11] and Berlin[12] (where he interviewed German singer Meret Becker). In 1996 James went to Hong Kong (where he met Maggie Cheung, Chris Patten, Lord Lichfield and Kai Bong Chow). In 1998 he went to Las Vegas, the Melbourne Cup, and Mexico City. In the final episode in 1999 he visited Havana.[13]

No. Episode First broadcast Channel
Series 1
1"Postcard from Rio"4 January 1989 (1989-01-04)BBC1
2"Postcard from Chicago"11 January 1989 (1989-01-11)BBC1
3"Postcard from Paris"18 January 1989 (1989-01-18)BBC1
Series 2
4"Postcard from Miami"17 May 1990 (1990-05-17)BBC1
5"Postcard from Rome"24 May 1990 (1990-05-24)BBC1
6"Postcard from Shanghai"31 May 1990 (1990-05-31)BBC1
7"Postcard from Los Angeles"27 September 1990 (1990-09-27)BBC1
Series 3
8"Postcard from Sydney"30 May 1991 (1991-05-30)BBC1
9"Postcard from London"31 July 1991 (1991-07-31)BBC1
Series 4
10"Postcard from Cairo"21 November 1993 (1993-11-21)BBC1
Series 5
11"Postcard from New York"19 January 1994 (1994-01-19)BBC1
Series 6
12"Postcard from Bombay"21 February 1995 (1995-02-21)BBC1
13"Postcard from Berlin"7 March 1995 (1995-03-07)BBC1
Series 7
14"Postcard from Hong Kong"27 August 1996 (1996-08-27)ITV
15"Postcard from the Melbourne Cup"4 November 1996 (1996-11-04)ITV
16"Postcard from Mexico City"2 December 1996 (1996-12-02)ITV
Series 8
17"Postcard from Las Vegas"5 May 1998 (1998-05-05)ITV
Series 9
18"Postcard from Havana"19 September 1999 (1999-09-19)ITV

Clive James in... edit

Not to be confused with the Postcard from… series, James had previously made three city-based documentaries under the Clive James in… title for London Weekend Television.[1] A fourth was made in 1995 by Watchmaker Productions, his first travelogue since moving back to ITV from the BBC.

No.TitleOriginal air dateChannel
1"Clive James Live in Las Vegas"25 July 1982 (1982-07-25)ITV
2"Clive James in Dallas"27 December 1985 (1985-12-27)ITV
3"Clive James in Japan"26 December 1987 (1987-12-26)ITV
4"Clive James in Buenos Aires"4 December 1995 (1995-12-04)ITV

References edit

  1. ^ a b "Clive James – Filmography". BFI. Archived from the original on 5 March 2019. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  2. ^ O’Connor, John J. (24 July 1995). "Postcards With Quite An Edge". The New York Times. Retrieved 11 January 2020.
  3. ^ van Panhuis, Bert (5 June 1992). "Negen persoonlijke prentbriefkaarten van Clive James". Trouw (in Dutch). Retrieved 11 January 2020.
  4. ^ James, Clive (1984). Flying Visits: Postcards From The Observer, 1976-83. London: Jonathan Cape. ISBN 0224022121.
  5. ^ "Clive James". BBC. Retrieved 19 March 2020.
  6. ^ a b c d "Clive James' Postcards – All Seasons". TVDB. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  7. ^ James, Clive (30 May 1991). "Postcard from Sydney". Clive James. Series 3. Episode 1. BBC One. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  8. ^ James, Clive (31 July 1991). "Postcard from London". Clive James. Series 3. Episode 2. BBC One. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  9. ^ Jeffries, Stuart (27 November 2019). "Clive James obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 January 2020.
  10. ^ "BBC Two - Clive James, Postcard from Cairo".
  11. ^ "Clive James – Postcard from Bombay (1995)". BFI. Archived from the original on 27 November 2019. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  12. ^ "Sunday Documentary: Clive James – Postcard from Berlin". BerlinLove. 19 October 2014. Archived from the original on 8 June 2018. Retrieved 24 February 2020.
  13. ^ "Island of dreams turns sour; Clive James: Postcard From Havana ITV, 11.15pm". Daily Record. Glasgow. 18 September 1999. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 24 February 2020.

External links edit