Message left on Channel 4 complaints line: 'Your presenter is a heap of shit. You've got a raving fucking poofter on there -- this is not entertainment. I'd love to talk to that twat. He wants whacking. Ring me back tomorrow and I'll discuss it with you.' The Word, and Terry Christian in particular, tended to divide its audience. Its late-night mix of cutting-edge music and irreverent, what can best be described as 'student' humour won the hearts of millions while bringing an equal number out in hives. There's no question though that the programme helped shape TV for years to follow. My Word is Terry Christian's take on life behind the scenes at Channel 4 in the nineties. He takes no prisoners in this hugely entertaining account of the journey from a working-class childhood in Manchester to the heart of London's television world.
The picture that emerges is not of some leery Manc geezer chancing his arm on national television, but of a slightly leery Manc geezer who has a more sensitive side, is a grammar school boy, is a twice Sony-award winning radio presenter, who is soaked in music, and who has had to battle for all his working life against the prejudices of those who control broadcasting in the UK.
A DJ, broadcaster and writer, Terry Christian got his break twenty-five years ago as the voice of unemployed, disaffected and misunderstood youth on a Gus Macdonald chat show called 'Devil's Advocate'. Since then he has been a twice Sony-Award winning DJ (Radio Derby), the host of a groundbreaking Manchester music show (Piccadilly Radio), presenter of Channel 4's The Word, and a guest on anything and everything from Richard & Judy and Fantasy Football, to Jonathan Ross and Have I Got News for You. He's the author of a bestselling Oasis biography and of 'Reds in the Hood', his account of growing up as a Manchester United fan.