Sunday, January 21, 2007

The anoyingly innevitable "issue" of big brother.

Richard Woods in the Sunday Times today claims the Jade Goody Big Brother debacle might bring an end to Channel 4. You know what? I think we'll survive. I mean, don't get me wrong I enjoy regurgitated American Sitcoms and soft-core pornography mascarading as serious documentary film making as much as the next chump but Channel 5 does both with such a greater sense of shameless gusto. And CSI is absolute dynamite.

More interesting than this are the comments of Derek Laud (who is apparently 'a popular black former contestant on [Big Brother]') after he was asked, in a fit of grovelling desperation on the part of programme makers Endemol, to state publicly that he didn't think that global-village idiot Jade Goody was a racist (Which has in the last couple of days (or is it years) become the 21st century equivalent of accusing someone of being a witch. Maybe we can dunk her in the Thames and if she sinks the Perfume Shop will sell her fragrance again). Somehow managing to summon some of his no-doubt deep reserves of consternation, Laud managed to state "it was completely contrived and the antithesis of reality TV'.'

I'm sorry, what the flaming fuck?

Anyone who didn't abandon long ago the hope that "reality TV" is anything more than a shamelessly stage-managed carnival needs to be put in the same hospital queue as those Wrestling fans who see their heroes as anything other than beefy dancers and the last four people who think Michael Jackson hasn't had any work done. I mean really, people. On Big Brother for example, they take a days footage from about 8 cameras, probably amounting to over 150 hours of film a day and compress it into 40 minutes of television . From this vast ocean of meangingless talking they build a narrative as contrived as the episode of Hollyoakes on before it. This barely needs telling. The fact that people can manufacture such shock that the show might be (whisper it) manipulated blows my mind.

And while we're on the subject of the salivating faux-outrage of the media and Big Brother, can we just stop for a second and look at our Axis of Evil: a woman famous only for being maybe the most fucking stupid person in Britain outside government, a failed pop-star and a beauty queen come has-been-footballer's girlfriend. Hardly criminal masterminds bringing this country spiralling into a race war hell. As Nick Griffin demonstrates, real racists are smart sons of bitches. Jade and co's actions may be nasty, bitter and spiteful but they are so on the level of any teenage gang that seeks to confirm its own status by outcasting someone else. Race was an easy tool but class is just as important. What is certain is that they are the arse end of any racial prejudice harboured in this country and thus their pillorying only serves as a meaningless salve to our battered national conscience. Their castigators are worthy of closer scrutiny than these pittiable celebrities and their playground bullying.

If I was to dig my tinfoil hat out of the closet I might wonder that the Murdoch press was quite so fixated on this just as Tessa and Tony's old buddy gets an early morning knock from Her Majesty's finest. And wonderfully (for now at least, we'll see what the end result is) the Met seem to have grown a bit of backbone and Tessa, everyone's favourite old dog-wielding northern nazi and (deputy chairman of Channel 4) Lord Puttnam's staggeringly hypocritical hissy fit at police 'theatrics' is made to look as desperate and pathetic as it is. Quote of the day to Len Duvall, chairman of the metropolitan police authority:
“When information comes into the public domain they will need to reflect very carefully on what they have said in the past 24 hours. I think they are going to look f****** stupid. Quite frankly, this is a mess created by the people involved in the situation. This childish, ‘we’re being picked on’ [attitude] is like Big Brother.”



Tom Paine said...

Where can I find that quote, DK? It's a bit ripe for a Labour politician to have said that. No honour among thieves these days, evidently!

Andrew Field said...

It's in the Times Sunday Times interview linked to in the post. Read the whole thing, he has some interesting things to say about his 'colleagues' - Jowell in particular.

And yes, there is a certain grim satisfaction in watching them all squabbling over deck chairs on the Titanic.

Myrddin Wen said...

We could be out of the EU by August...

Oh yeah? So what has happened for the last ten years, exactly?

Over at the ASI, they are posting some of the winning entries of the Young Writers on Liberty. One does not want to put such keen minds off,...