This section began with the famous clip of John Sergeant interviewing Margaret Thatcher two days before she
John Sergeant began by talking about the work that he has undertaken over the last year; all of which was possible
because of his appearance on Strictly Come Dancing. These include:
- An ITV travel series
- Grime Fighters
- The One show
- History of Indian Railways
Despite all this John claims that the highlight of the last year was appearing with other national treasures such
as Stephen Fry in the Marks and Spencer advert.
John knew that he had done well on Strictly Come Dancing when Peter Madleson came to see him in the final.
Mandleson suggested to him that he should become an MP; John joked that was a stupid idea and that he would make
much more money as a Lord.
John described the craziest suggestion of work since last year was to appear nude in Cosmopolitan magazine for
charity; something he did turn down.
He did however, choose to appear in Casualty as a journalist. He found it amusing that he earnt more money
pretending to be him than actually being him.
John started his career as an actor, appearing in a Alan Bennett play which his parents did not approve of. His
career has moved in and out of showbiz. He noted that he normally found more fame when he made mistakes; such as
the famous Thatcher interview.
John then invited questions.
What did you really think of Thatcher?
Although she was much older than him, John found her playful nature exciting. He described meeting her and her love for being the only woman in the room. She enjoyed being female and John respected her for that. She never went down
to the same level as men, rather she treated the men as school children that she was in charge of. She refused to
apologise for her need to be immaculately dressed or having her hair done each morning; she recognised how
important this was.
How do you feel about becoming a sex symbol?
John finds it absurd that he has become known as a sex symbol, though he finds it extremely flattering. What he enjoyed most was knowing that many men were jealous of his opportunity to dance with such a pretty woman. Its a relationship which he misses.
Have you ever been invited onto Top Gear to drive the reasonably priced car?
John said that he hadn't but didn't really know why.
Which dance did you enjoy the most?
John found it hard to describe anything he did as actually dancing, but that out of all of the routines he enjoyed
the waltz the best. He talked about the conventions of dancing and the need to be respectful of your partner and
not to get too personal.
What is your most memorable and fond moment?
John replied that it had to be the Thatcher moment; the historic opportunity to interview her days before she lost
power. He also mentioned that when he was a student he was fortunate enough to have been in the crowd during Martin
Luther King's famous 'I have a dream' speech.
Do you feel that modern elections focus too much on scandels rather than policy?
John said that he feels stuck between the two. He feels that because policy is now so technical and complicated and
not focused on the big issues of old, such as communism versus capitalism, that people focus on the people instead
as its easier. He also said that politics since the begining of time has been about the people.
What has been the most sad time during your career?
John found Vietnam to be extremely sad but he got through that time by recognising how important it was for the BBC
to be present. He also liked the women.