BBC host of show on Scottish history blasts critics as "grumpy old men" from the Muppets

Historians in the News

PRESENTER Neil Oliver described two leading Scottish historians as the "grumpy old men" from the Muppets yesterday after they criticised the BBC series A History of Scotland, which he hosts.

The first five episodes of the history show wrapped up last night with the final parts to be screened late next year.

A series of top historians contacted by The Scotsman yesterday said they had not bothered to watch the show or had disliked what they had seen.

Several, including Professor Allan Macinnes and the leading historian Tom Devine, questioned why Mr Oliver, a broadcaster and journalist but not a professional historian, was presenting the programme.

But last night Mr Oliver responded: "Every time I hear those two men's names it makes me think of the two grumpy old men on The Muppet Show. They truly are the Statler and Waldorf of Scottish history."

Statler and Waldorf are the two elderly men making caustic comments from the box at the Muppet theatre.

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