Posts Tagged ‘Bullshit’

Willie’s Chocolate Christmas

December 23, 2008

unbearable oafs

That Willie arsehole (only on TV because he’s mates with Marco Pierre White) gets a Christmas gig, apparently with a hyper-budget, for reasons we can only grasp at like the blind, intolerable worms they consider us to be over at Channel 4.

Channel 4! Home of morons!

Is he sleeping with Isadora Buck-Tooth, the channel controller? Maybe he’s blackmailing the scheduler, Julian Tit? Are ALL the people at Channel 4 complete wankers?

So Willie, who apparently sells a chocolate lozenge for a living (big bloody deal), gets some people over so he can show off his enormous house, nauseating offspring and revolting wife.

His wife deserves special attention, as it happens, as she’s an example of all that is wrong with this particular class of brainless, born-rich, constantly-on-the-box bastard. She’ so proud of her lobotomised husband and the father of her dribbling kids that she spends the entire episode talking about just how crazy they are, how life is so tough but so much FUN!

She goes about proving just how gruelling her life is by spending the whole hour busy making goodie bags for 20 locals. It’s hardly spending a 15 hour day at the pit. Judging by the size of their manor, life must be a real fucking slog. ‘Boo’. And, indeed, ‘hoo’.

Later on they again demonstrate that money is tight, by cooking an entire fucking lamb for dinner. And, being a ‘crazy madman’, Willie cooks the lamb underground. Just as we’ve seen the Hairy Bikers do before. Just as we’ve seen on TV before, umpteen times.

Apparently, he keeps telling us, this is the first time he’s cooked for his family all year and it feels so cosy to be back for Christmas. At this point, the viewer can’t help wondering why he’d invited a fucking camera crew along, if he wanted the proposed quality time with his family.

Are these people complete unfeeling chancers – prepared to film even the most intimate or private family occasions? Do none of these idiots – Nigella, Jamie and the rest – realise that we see through this pathetic illusion and know full well that they filmed their sentimental, elaborately expensive schedule-grout in October?

I genuinely reckon that they think we believe it’s Christmas because they said it is. They think those of us with a gravel drive instead of a garden will start re-laying it so we can stick a dead sheep under it to cook. They think we’re going to start calling our beef stews ‘tagines’ and they think we’re actually going to make chilli popcorn at some point in our lives.

They can get fucked.

Happy Christmas.

ASDA adverts

September 27, 2007

Celebrities are amazing people. Truly, madly, deeply amazing people. They can brighten our day, make us feel special and turn even the most humdrum act into an exciting, liberating experience.

Take, for example, working for ASDA. To the vast majority of normal people it is a great example of a McJob – mentally and physically demanding, underpaid, patronising and exploitative – but in the hands of Ian Wright it is a joyous task filled with comedy banter, idle conversations and pleasure-bringing to the great unwashed. How wonderful! The job seems to be so much easier and improved with the inclusion of a celebrity fish-seller it makes you wonder why ASDA haven’t sacked their entire workforce and replaced them with washed up TV pundits. Think about it; one roaming camera crew to keep up the quality service and you’ll have thousands more customers flocking through the doors clammering to see Chantelle making pies and Nick Hancock offering wine-tasting.

What’s very interesting about Ian Wright’s behaviour in this advert is that almost everything he does would urge disiplinary action against normal employees. Were a 17 year old shelf-stacker to hustle or entertain customers in such a manner, they would find themselves hauled into the manager’s office and verbally beaten into submission. Were the 17 year old also to be overly familiar to customers, approach children offering them food and disply a lack of knowledge of their subject then you can guarantee that they’d be shown the door.

The advert tells us more about ASDA than they’d like us to know; primarily that they’re tight enough to rely on celebrity association rather than specialised branding. It’s far cheaper to throw a c-list celebrity into a store and let him interact with minimum wage employees (who will not have been paid extra for their involvement) than a considered and creative campaign from a large advertising company. Shoot it on handheld low-grade camera to keep costs down and you can afford to throw even more money at your designated ‘personality.’

At least Ian Wright is a better choice than their previous spokesperson, Sharon Osbourne. Her gurning, patronising spiel about bargains and parental responsibilities just made a nation stare aghast – amazed that anyone could think she was a thrifty shopper, let alone a good parent.

It’s an awful advertising campaign; misleading, simplistic and exploitative of their workforce. Much like the company itself.

“Asda has been criticised for misleading advertising, using suppliers who are known to have illegal employment practices, ignoring planning regulations and destroying greenbelt land, lack of serious environmental policy and blatant greenwash. With its ‘strategy of consolidation’, copied directly from Wal-Mart, Asda pursues an aggressive takeover policy of small towns, wiping out local competition and local jobs. False claims by the company about ‘value’ and ‘convenience’, have been challenged, along with the exploitation of every opportunity to push impulse buying”

Corporate Watch

Picture the Loan

August 16, 2007

Money. Boy, it can be a bugger sometimes can’t it? There’s never enough to go around. There’s never enough to cover all the bills and still buy that new luxury car, family holiday and all the technological products that you desperately need to make your life fulfilling. Never mind. In years past people would have worked to afford their products or possibly gone without, having realised the sliding scale of income and outgoings have to at least partially balance.

Not any more though. Now you can have all the trappings of a materialistic lifestyle within days, with one easily arranged loan from any number of highly dubious, unregulated money shops. There’s Freedom Finance, Norton Finance, Intelligent Finance, Clearway Finance, Lombard Direct, Marble Loans, Loans.co.uk… there are now so many adverts for these fuckers on daytime television and across the board on cable that they’ve practically become a programming genre of their own.

The adverts are a mixed bunch. Some target those who’ve had bad luck in the past by using heavy-handed yet desperately amateur, metaphorical imagery (it’s raining on those in debt but the sun shines for those with a loan) while others bombard your senses with clip-art representations of desired material possessions. What binds them all though is that they are run by unscrupulous thick-necked bastards operating a bizarrely legal scam out of a shitty one-roomed office somewhere in a forgotten B-town in England. They’re not about helping you consolidate your debts, they’re about trying to get their mitts on your house when your financial guard is down.

Top of the pile for me is Picture Loans with an advert that simultaneously demonstrates the flippant and highly irresponsible approach they have to money management whilst treating their audience / potential customers like idiots. If we are to believe their advertising, they want people to make highly uninformed financial decisions on a whim, to willingly offer up their homes as collateral to afford a holiday and bind themselves to 25 year contracts with a company who think having ‘no paperwork’ for such a monumental decision is a virtue.

Just look at the advert above, or the second example that is at the end of this article, to see their dangerously casual approach to money. On both occasions the loan amount is decided in the moment, as if they were choosing the colour of new bathmat and the couples are so excited by the prospect of being given more money that they fail to realise they’re going to be paying back near double what they’ve borrowed.

“Yes” they all say “we’ve got a mortgage… and how much will that be a month?”

The casual indifference with which home ownership is presented is truly terrifying. It’s not a home, nor an investment, nor a nest-egg for your children – it’s a simple tradeable asset that you can cash in when your Ford Mondeo becomes more more than three years old. The couple in the advert below are actually filming themselves on a camcorder as they gleefully sign away the children’s inheritance, as if in years to come they can proudly pull out the projector and show the whole family exactly when they fucked up their futures.

The reason why these adverts are so wrong is simple; their key audience is the gullible, the stupid and the financially disastrous but they can’t put them on the telly as they’re unappealing. Instead they transpose the characteristics of the common moron onto the middle class, as if to say “hey, look, they’re just like you – or just like you want to be. If people with a nice house and abundant family can treat £25,000 as if it’s nothing then you can too.”

Picture Loans, and all those companies like them, are bastards. Quite how they can legally co-exist alongside the countless news reports and articles about the rising debt problem in this country is beyond me. They’re the equivalent of the dodgy man talking his way into your Grandma’s house before conning her out of her valuables… they target the desperate, the weak and the stupid and they do it under a pretence of wanting to help.

Then again, there’s always the argument that if you believe this shit in the first place you probably deserve everything that comes to you…

Hills Have Eyes 2 / 28 Weeks Later

July 17, 2007

Begbie and loads of infected freaks 

If you’re going to make a genre movie, or a sequel to a remake of a genre movie whilst going out of your way to avoid cliches, you’ve got an uphill struggle ahead of you. If you’re Wes Craven, you don’t need to avoid cliches, as you invented the cliches in the first place. If you’re a little-heard-of Director tasked with following up a zombie movie which itself avoided a few of the usual trappings then what do you do to make your new movie relevant? That’s it, you try and comment (with bloody heavy hands) on today’s political climate.

All the critics seem to disagree with me when it comes to horror films, so balls to them in their Islington and nouveau-Hackney homes, pumping out a word an hour of drivel. With these movies a viewer needs to automatically lower their expectations to the level of their stinking feet, otherwise disappointment will generally smack them headlong in the face.

The fun of a horror film is that it’s the opposite of high art. Very few horror movies can be said to be masterpieces. Maybe The Shining. Maybe Night of the Living Dead. American Werewolf In London, but in that instance we’re veering towards horror/comedy, which is a different kettle of fish. Beyond that, it’s pretty much semi-wooden acting, jumps and  gore, and thank crikey for that, says I.

So the critics savaged Hills Have Eyes 2. Hackneyed scripts they said. Expected shocks. And these things, they reckoned, combined to render it worthless. Only one or two stars. 11% on rottentomatoes.com

Well, bollocks. It’s a no-nonsense stomp through a script that’s only even present to transfer us to the next set piece. And those set pieces include a pair of mutant testicles getting flattened by a sledgehammer, a brain being finger-tweaked and an eyeball being thumbed out – which is all fantastic stuff. This is the point of the genre.  Admittedly the rape element is a bit much, but we forgave the EvilDead for that, so we can forgive this.

If an auteur (like Romero used to be) manages to squeeze in a clever analogy to a horror film, then so much the better – I take my hat off. But when the central premise is the analogy, a la Land of the Dead, the whole things fall apart and we’re left discussing how there were too few zombie maimings.

Speaking of a dearth of zombie maimings, the only memorable zombie death in 28 Weeks Later was the helicopter scene, ruined by the use of rapid editing and CGI.

Add to that the fact that the film was a complete mess, featuring an American army as aggressive as the zombies (apart from the good guys who end up the saviours of the Brits, obviously) and the presence of a ‘lead’ zombie, and you have yourself a disappointing wreck.

If I rent a horror film or spend my hard earned down the local multiplex, I expect rubbish. Please deliver.

Big Brother 8 – 18.6.07

June 18, 2007

 Charley Big Brother 8

Thank fuck Shabs has gone. She was actually starting to cause me medical complications; so unremittingly illogical and affected was she that I was finding myself mentally rewinding back through pyschobabble comments in conversations just to assure myself that, yes, this is really a genuine psychopath I am watching. MIND (the charity for mental health) have openly criticised Channel 4 for allowing a Looney Tune onto their show. The psychologists on ‘On the Couch’ have clearly been briefed on damage limitation here, I mean Shabs could have genuinely lost it live on air, we’re not talking about the odd burst of random giggling here, we’re talking about a woman on all fours with someone’s bollock hanging out of her mouth.

If you care to go on Youtube and do a bit of research you’ll already know that a few weeks ago Shabs appeared on ‘Britain’s got Talent’ in a scene so mortifyingly toe-curling, my shoes nearly burst open. If this isn’t bad enough (it really is, watch with restraints) she also appeared on Channel 4’s embarrassing illnesses. Her ‘embarrassing illness’ was a bit of an itchy head, yet she pitched this medical irrelevance as if she had eyes for fucking nipples (or vice versa if you like).

This twat knows no bounds, you’ll see her again, probably on the news but I’m bracing myself for the gutter press to leak the story that she’s starring in an adult version of Happy Feet.

So, the new contestants. Frankly I don’t mind any of them, though how on earth how Billi has the balls to call himself a male model is beyond me. You could open a manhole with that nose. In addition he has the figure of Britney Speares, cameltoe included. Liam seems a nice straightforward sort, Jonathan could become a handful I think but at this stage, fine. Brian too seems okay, despite his Christopher Lee playing Dracula haircut and unashamed intention of doing something so disgusting to those twins I should imagine their father is muttering at a kitchen knife.

The rest of the housemates haven’t really done anything to cause a radical rethink of my recent blog on this topic. Laura, Nicky and Carole are odds on to win, I still don’t mind the Greek bloke despite his musical accent, Tracey is still barking like a rutting stag all the while gurning like Jim Bowen with cataplexy, Seany remains a prize blue-eyed berk and Chanelle is still a worrying combination of both the Barbies, the doll and Klaus Marie.

Fucking Charley is now the most awful housemate of all time. She seems unable to leave those melted plastic armpit implants alone, she fiddles with them perpetually. Sometimes one will poke out of her shirt like a dead otter’s head, always accompanied by an intense frown she’ll half heartedly try to drop it back into the position intended by nature. She always fails of course, hickory is more flexible. She’ll have someone’s eye out you mark my words.

Speaking of words, or to be more accurate, belt-fed mortar bursts of aggression being fired out of the mouth of the Gorgon, who is incandescent with rage because someone failed to respect her bogies, how does she manage to find time to inhale mid-oration? I’m convinced all that hair is some sort of crude third lung; it’s the only possible solution.

(She still has a cracking little botty though.)

The one housemate who has let themselves down most this week has to be Ziggy. He really doesn’t like any male competition at all, which is a fucking weird. He strutted about like Bernard Matthew’s pride cock for the first few days, his gander was goosed when the two new male housemates arrived but was visibly relieved when he found out that they (claimed) to be fairies.

He was just settling back into his alpha male role when four new male housemates arrive. This was too much, he looked physically sick as each one walked in and proverbially smacked the end of his engorged member sharply with the back of a cold spoon. The way he reacted to this threat was fascinating, and, dear reader, you must try and catch him at it, it’s so much fun in a despatching an injured fox way.

Ziggy gave me and I’m sure you, the impression that he was quite, well, poshish. Well spoken suburban type, clearly with an ego that spies on his self-consciousness with military precision but, nonetheless, more coherent than is necessary.

Now watch him talking to the new ‘lads’, he went from Lord and Lady Hamilton’s Lawn Tennis clubhouse in Royal Tunbridge Wells to selling pornographic postcards on the Ol’ Kent Road. This wasn’t a case of downward convergence; this was a 35 stone wide boy plummeting to his death from the top of Bow Church.

I’ve lost whatever respect I had for him; frankly, he may as well have just scrawled a schematised drawing of Che Guevara on his chest with one of his stools.

Big Brother: Diary Room UNCUT

June 6, 2007

Diary Room 

I’m going to keep this one really short as I don’t want to add too much to the already numerous reviews of this seminal piece of TV, nor do I want to be instrumental in turning this blog into another reality TV bitch-off. Therefore this will hopefully be the first and last time I personally write about this pop-culture gulag we seem to love to hate so much…

That said, I do want to really briefly talk about the late night ‘Diary Room UNCUT’ edition that I watched last night in my hotel room.

‘Uncut’ is a tag that advertisers and programmers like to use to lure us into thinking there will be footage not suitable for the normal broadcast contained within. This is not true. This is Big Brother; when you’ve already screened the footage of a Rotherham slag and her romantic encounter with a wine bottle there is very little left that could fit under the banner ‘not suitable for normal broadcast.’ Bar the occasional racist limmerick, there is nothing that these voyeuristic hawkers won’t show to garner more ratings, therefore the subtitle ‘Uncut’ is a very large misnomer.

Unless, that is, ‘Uncut’ simply refers to the footage they haven’t already used yet. The pauses, the yawns, the dull conversations… and in that case ‘Uncut’ is technically correct, although will never live up to it’s lurid promise.

All the above is irrelevant, though, as the show is very clearly ‘cut.’ See those little shots of the corridor changing colour, or the focus shifts to cameras in the garden? We editors call those cutaways and we use them to hide edits within the same shot. Big Brother Diary Room Uncut is the reality TV equivilent of an Oliver Stone movie; it is remastered fact and trimmed truth and I find the use of the word ‘UNCUT’ in the title baffling. It’s like calling the show ‘Big Brother Diary Room with No Strobes’ and then having half an hour of epileptic-baiting flashing lights.

I can only assume that the creators of said show simply decided that ‘UNCUT’ was a great and provocative title, and didn’t give any thought to the dictionary, relative or generally accepted meaning of the word. In any instance.

Next week they start the new spin-off show: Big Brother in the Nude. Contrary to the title it won’t feature any nudity, or indeed anything about Big Brother. Instead it’s a bit of footage of the outside of a house in Limmerick, and then a music video by Sister Sledge. Fucking great TV.