BBC Radio apologizes for Barrowman

Star of 'Doctor Who' exposes himself on webcast

LONDON -- BBC Radio was forced to issue yet another apology Tuesday for failing to control its staff and stars, after "Torchwood" and "Doctor Who" star John Barrowman exposed himself on a live Radio 1 show that also was video streamed over the Internet.

The incident, in which Radio 1 host Nick Grimshaw urged the actor to expose his genitals, aired live Sunday night and generated one complaint to the BBC.

It comes less than a fortnight after the BBC Trust, the pubcaster's governance unit, slammed "systematic failures" in the pubcaster's editorial and compliance standards over lewd material.

A spokeswoman for the Radio 1 network stressed that the camera recording the live webcam of the Switch show had been "quickly covered up by the producer" during the incident and that nothing explicitly sexual had been shown online.

The incident also was removed from the interactive catchup service, she said.

"The show overstepped the mark, but nothing untoward was shown on the Web site," the spokeswoman said.

In a raucous interview with Barrowman reported by wire services, Grimshaw said: "You're famous, we're told, for getting your willy out in interviews. Is this going to happen today? Should Annie (Mac, the show's co-host) be careful?"

Barrowman then asked if the webcam was on, and when told that it was broadcasting live video, he said: "All right, I'll get it out for you then. No problem."

The show's producer moved to obscure the webcam, but listeners and viewers heard Mac screaming "Oh my God!" as Barrowman and Grimshaw laughed.

Barrowman was then heard to say, "I didn't take the whole thing out, but I got my fruit and nuts out."

Barrowman, a rising star on the BBC, with a fan base for his sci-fi shows as well as for his performances in variety shows such as "Strictly Come Dancing," issued an immediate apology, promising that the incident would "never happen again."

"I apologize for any offense I have caused," he said. "I was joining in the lighthearted and fun banter of the show and went too far. I was wrong to do this, and it will never happen again.

"I really appreciate the great support I have received from the BBC over the last few years," he added, "and would never intentionally do anything to undermine the integrity of the corporation."