ZANG TUMMM TUMB ARTICLES “the first draft of history”

THE MAX FACTOR

“When we suggested a computer instead of a human being as a TV presenter, Channel 4 were delighted. A computer! No hangovers, no union disputes, no gossip column stories… and no salary! It seemed so perfect. Nobody could have foreseen the trouble wed have with him…” Peter Wagg is the producer of The Max Headroom Show (Saturdays, 6.00pm)—Channel 4s newest pop video programme, a collection of ‘the best of the new and the old videos, linked by a bizarre stuttering character whos apparently part machine, part human being. Is he really a computer copy of a human brain? Is he a man with make-up? Is he just a puppet tailed up with a bit of computer graphics?

“Max is all these things,” says Peter Wagg darkly, “and more…”

In fact his creators refuse to divulge how he works. “A trade secret,” they say. “Hes a series of techniques joined together.”

They claim instead that Max was first created from the brain of super-sleuth journalist Eddison Carter and rescued from the corrupt Network 23. He was simply glad to be alive and of some small use to his rescuers. But Max has taken to media stardom like a duck to water, and Peter Wagg is afraid that it has turned his head…

“He really is very difficult. All we want him to do is be jolly on the telly and introduce the videos. But hes rather political and keeps getting digs in that arent in the script. And hes so vain.”

But initial reaction to the Max Headroom Show has proved too favourable for his creators to pull the plug on him now and, if Max gets his way, his show will soon be shown all over the world.

“Its world domination or nothing now,” says Peter Wagg, sadly. “Im afraid weve created a monster.”

PERSONAL FILE

NAME: Maximum Headroom 2.3m

BORN: In Finchley, North London.

STARSIGN: Vegetarian.

PREVIOUS JOBS: Re-location manager for a lemming colony.

WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU WERENT A TV PRESENTER? Kill myself.

FIRST RECORD EVER BOUGHT: Digital Watch Tunes, Volume 2, by Bronco.

ARE YOU GOING OUT WITH ANYONE? Come come now. We hardly know each other! Just get on and do the interview. ‘They want me to say that Im happily

married and in love with my wife. Hah!

HAVE YOU EVER HAD A SUPERNATURAL EXPERIENCE? I ate a Big Mac once without taking it out of the box…

BEST THING ABOUT BEING A CELEBRITY: Being invited on the Terry Wogan Show.

WORST THING ABOUT BEING A CELEBRITY: Meeting Terry Wogan.

WHATS IN YOUR POCKETS? My pockets? No, theyre definitely not ‘in.