Television Personalities


Often misquoted, this is an accurate transcription of the interview which went out live on 1 December 1976.
The original Sex Pistols line-up are seated - from left to right as the camera sees them - Johnny Rotten, Steve Jones, Glen Matlock and Paul Cook. Bill Grundy sits to their left. Standing behind the Pistols are the punk hangers-on from the Bromley Contingent, Siouxsie Sioux, Steve Severin, Simon Barker and 'Simone'.
Grundy introduces the band to the cameras.

GRUNDY (To camera) They are punk rockers. The new craze, they tell me. Their heroes? Not the nice, clean Rolling Stones... you see they are as drunk as I am... they are clean by comparison. They're a group called The Sex Pistols, and I am surrounded by all of them...

JONES (Reading the autocue) In action!

GRUNDY Just let us see The Sex Pistols in action. Come on kids...

[Film of The Sex Pistols in action is shown; then back to Grundy.]

GRUNDY I am told that that group (hits his knee with sheaf of papers) have received forty thousand pounds from a record company. Doesn't that seem, er, to be slightly opposed to their anti-materialistic view of life?

MATLOCK No, the more the merrier.

GRUNDY Really?

MATLOCK Oh yeah.

GRUNDY Well tell me more then.

JONES We've fuckin' spent it, ain't we?

GRUNDY I don't know, have you?

MATLOCK Yeah, it's all gone.

GRUNDY Really?

JONES Down the boozer.

GRUNDY Really? Good Lord! Now I want to know one thing...


GRUNDY Are you serious or are you just making me, trying to make me laugh?

MATLOCK No, it's all gone. Gone.

GRUNDY Really?


GRUNDY No, but I mean about what you're doing.

MATLOCK Oh yeah.

GRUNDY You are serious?


GRUNDY Beethoven, Mozart, Bach and Brahms have all died...

ROTTEN They're all heroes of ours, ain't they?

GRUNDY Really... what? What were you saying, sir?

ROTTEN They're wonderful people.

GRUNDY Are they?

ROTTEN Oh yes! They really turn us on.

JONES But they're dead!

GRUNDY Well suppose they turn other people on?

ROTTEN (Under his breath) That's just their tough shit.

GRUNDY It's what?

ROTTEN Nothing. A rude word. Next question.

GRUNDY No, no, what was the rude word?


GRUNDY Was it really? Good heavens, you frighten me to death.

ROTTEN Oh alright, see if... [inaudible]

GRUNDY (Turning to those standing behind the band) What about you girls behind?

MATLOCK He's like yer dad, inni, this geezer?

GRUNDY Are you, er...

MATLOCK Or your granddad.

GRUNDY (To Sioux) Are you worried, or are you just enjoying yourself?

SIOUX Enjoying myself.

GRUNDY Are you?


GRUNDY Ah, that's what I thought you were doing.

SIOUX I always wanted to meet you.

GRUNDY Did you really?


GRUNDY We'll meet afterwards, shall we? (Sioux does a camp pout)

JONES You dirty sod. You dirty old man!

GRUNDY Well keep going, chief, keep going. Go on, you've got another five seconds. Say something outrageous.

JONES You dirty bastard!

GRUNDY Go on, again.

JONES You dirty fucker! (Laughter from the group)

GRUNDY What a clever boy!

JONES What a fucking rotter.

GRUNDY Well, that's it for tonight. The other rocker Eamonn, and I'm saying nothing else about him, will be back tomorrow. I'll be seeing you soon, I hope I'm not seeing you [the band] again. From me, though, goodnight.

The cheesy signature tune plays [later copied and incorporated into the beginning of Television Personalities 'Where's Bill Grundy Now?' song] and the credits roll. Rotten looks at his watch, Jones starts dancing to the music, and Grundy mutters an off-mic 'Oh shit!' to himself.
The story made the front pages of the following morning's newspapers, amidst howls of outrage, including the now infamous Daily Mirror headline - 'THE FILTH AND THE FURY!'. The Pistols had cemented their place in television folklore.

Bill Grundy interview
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