GMTV 

24 May 2004 tbs.pm/2027

ALBUM GMTV

GMTV – Good Morning Television
National: 0600-0925 all week 1993-2010 (lost identity)

 

Good morning, sunrise

As with all ITV applicants, GMTV failed to provide most of what it promised in its licence application – even down to its original name, ‘Sunrise Television’.

Eschewing the cozy sofa and familiar faces that TV-am had used to make breakfast television work, GMTV had promised to be more news driven and to present its programmes from a set designed to look like a dining room, with presenters sat at the kitchen table.

This idea actually looked very good – if patently false – but the viewers didn’t warm to the idea. And they would have to – GMTV had valued its licence so highly that they had no opportunity to make money without substantial increases in viewers. Instead, the viewers were turning off.

Soon spotting its upmarket mistake – ITV can never manage to be as highbrow as Auntie, nor go as low as the younger opposition – GMTV went for what ITV breakfast knew best.

GMTV became TV-am as soon as it could, adopting programmes, style, presenters and content from the defunct broadcaster. A safe, middle-Britain answer. Non-innovative, but popular. GMTV learnt the lessons that TV-am had during its formative years when it faced bankruptcy every morning. But whilst it took TV-am years to get the mixture right, it took GMTV only months to workout what TV-am had already known and to remake themselves in their predecessors image.

A shame, then, that they bid more than four times the amount that TV-am did for the same franchise in order to offer the same service. A shame both for TV-am and for those who thought GMTV would be a money spinner.

GMTV itself would become defunct in 2010 when, after ITV plc purchased the remaining 25% of shares that it did not already own, the brand replaced by Daybreak and the company integrated into the rest of ITV plc. All that essentially remains of GMTV is a company that owns a piece of paper proclaiming it to be the holder of the Channel 3 breakfast franchise.

On Screen

GMTV

GMTV

The initial appearance of GMTV was as the closing advert each day on TV-am. TV-am were proud of how professional they were being allowing their successor promotion time.

But then staff were moving over as well.

GMTV

GMTV

The initial appearance of GMTV in its own right on its first day was marked by these two pictures.

The ident is formed by stalls at an open-air market. Though clever, it didn’t quite work

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

GMTV

A later, more whizz-bang version of the ident, still using the sun symbol as the focal point, with the ‘sun’ bouncing on ‘water’ and the lettering appearing in orbit. It certainly works better than the market-stall ident.

Their initial identity was very similar to TV-am in many ways. This also has some similarities, but is beginning to drift away from the original breakfast station’s ideas of identity.

One thing that does mark this ident out, though, is repetition. Perhaps because the difference (on weekdays anyway) between GMTV as a company and their programmes is something lost on many viewers (though that was oddly less true for TV-am), the company likes to repeat this ident as often as possible – in the middle of programmes as well as to top and tail.

Maybe this causes the blurring – TV-am branded its programmes with its own symbol, but the programme names – Daybreak, Good Morning Britain etc – were given a higher billing.

Even I don’t know for sure what GMTV’s equivalent of Good Morning Britain was called; and even I defaulted to calling the entire thing simply ‘GMTV’ – no matter what actual programme is on.

You Say

1 response to this article

James 16 May 2017 at 4:55 pm

I just called the whole thing GMTV even when watching the kids programes I didn’t say GMTV Kids GMTV:2 on the other hand was better(it didn’t start until 4th January 1999 shortly after ITV2’s launch)

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