Arts: I Confess: A cheap affair with Anne Diamond and Nick Owen? Paul Morley on his sordid passion for Good Morning

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The Independent Culture
There's not much I'm really ashamed of. Guilty is another matter. I feel guilty about Good Morning. . . with Anne and Nick (BBC 1), because I always used to watch This Morning (ITV). I feel I'm being unfaithful to Richard and Judy. Like I'm having a cheap affair with Anne Diamond and Nick Owen.

I'm addicted to the surreal relationship between Anne and Nick. They're like cousins meeting up at Christmas. The idea that they're supposed to have sexual chemistry makes me squirm. I'm frightened that, oh God, they're going to touch.

I'm obsessed with the details. The way Nick behaves like the only man at a party full of women, believing he's charming. I cringe when he delivers a sports joke or wears a flash tie. Everyone in the studio comments on it, and Nick pulls a stupid, smug face and says, 'I rather like it.'

I once wrote that Anne's bizarre taste in clothes rivals the late Judy Garland. I didn't mean that this was a bad thing. I can't wait to see what colour combination of yellow, purple and brown velvet she'll be wearing. It goes with her personality traits. She's a Stepford Wife, unquestioning of the world around her. When she professes ignorance you think she's kidding, but she's telling the truth. Yet she has power. Good Morning is one of the last refuges of live TV - that's why it's got edge, why it's compulsive - but when things go wrong, Nick is laid-back while Anne gets upset and angry. You watch her with the offending party, and you think, 'Mate, you may be on the way out.'

Those who slag them off don't understand. They're condescending to an audience who know that Anne and Nick are banal, just background as you do something else. It's meant to be empty, obvious magazine-TV.

(Photograph omitted)