TV times: Sarah Parish

TV times: Sarah Parish

Actress tells us about her small-screen favourites

Sarah Parish has a long TV CV including Mistresses, Doctor Who, Cutting It, Merlin and W1A, and is set to return for a second series of Bancroft, whose intriguing tagline is 'mother, daughter, police woman, killer'. In our TV Q&A, she tells us about Succession, Starsky & Hutch and shoulder pads …

What is your first memory of watching TV?
Tom and Jerry. Our first TV set was just black and white. I used to sit so close to it my hair would stand up on end.

Which programme that's no longer on screen would you love to see return?
Top of the Pops. It was such a great programme. I want to see what bands look like! See how they perform. And watching some of the studio audience dance was always amusing!

You're a prime-time chat-show host: what's your ideal line-up of three guests?
Do they have to be alive? I'd love Gene Kelly to be there. Also Joni Mitchell and Julie Walters.

Which sitcom have you laughed at the most?

When was the last time you felt scared while watching TV?
When I saw a Christmas ad played on the 1st of November.

What's the best TV theme tune ever?
Starsky & Hutch.

In an ideal world, which show (past or present) would you have loved a part on?
Succession. As an actor you dream about those sorts of scripts.

What was the last show you binge-watched and what did you love about it?
Succession. I loved how brave it was. It was full of opinion and bold choices and challenging characters.

Who is your all-time favourite fictional TV character?
Alexis Colby!! The clothes, the lines, the outrageous campness.

Bancroft airs on ITV, Wednesday 1–Friday 3 January, 9pm.