Tom Peterkin: True to form, there was the Robert Burns quote

Alex Salmond opened his new weekly chat show by promising big. Famous politicians, 'stars of stage and screen' and business figures would be appearing on Kremlin-backed RT with the former First Minister.

Alex Salmond promised big in his first weekly chat show. Pictured: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Offering a platform for those with big ideas, Mr Salmond pledged to find out about the “personalities behind the public figures”.

True to form, there was the obligatory Robert Burns quotation as he adopted the persona of a sort of hame knitted Andrew Marr.

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“O wad some p’wer the giftie gie us to see ourselves as ithers see us,” the former SNP leader declared, for some reason or other.

Despite the controversy raging over Mr Salmond’s decision to appear on a pro-Putin broadcaster, it would be churlish not to acknowledge that he had managed to assemble some big ticket guests.

With the harassment scandal gripping public life, the Labour peer Baroness Helena Kennedy made the case for more women in politics.

All female parliamentary candidate short-lists to promote gender balance and an end to bullying behaviour by whips were among the suggestions made by the eminent QC. Mr Salmond revealed that when he was in power Baroness Kennedy had turned down his offer to be a “minister of the Crown”. She knocked him back to run an Oxford College.

Then it was the turn of the Conservative MP Crispin Blunt to chat with roving reporter Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh about Nicola Sturgeon’s apology to those convicted of same-sex offences in the past. This was merely a warm up for the star attraction – Carles Puigdemont, the deposed Catalan president. “Democratic dynamite” Mr Salmond promised.

There followed an impassioned discussion about Catalan independence and a challenge for Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to accept the results of the forthcoming Catalonian election. Mr Salmond signed off with a denunciation of the Spanish state, police violence and interference with the democratic process.

Funnily enough, he chose not to mention Russian abuses of power. “O Wad some p’wer the giftie gie us to see ourselves as ithers see us.”