Posts Tagged ‘Television’

Just a Thought: De Burgh Spoils Breakfast

April 24, 2009

Had to share this lovely item, depite it being over a week old now.

Chris De Burgh appeared on BBC Breakfast to sing a tribute to the families of the Hillsborough victims in their week of grief, happily coinciding with his new album release, Footsteps – which judging by the snippet we heard is, as expected, bloody awful. In the clip, De Burgh manages to soil the memory of Byrds classic, Turn Turn with that trademark yawning vocal.

From his feigning shock at the presence of a 12 string, his outright destruction of a Beatles classic, his bizarre acapella tribute to ther scousers and the fawning smiles of Silverton and Turnbull, everything about this seems designed to curl the toes and put the viewer off their tea and toast.

Or maybe it’s just me.

Enjoy – and see you on the new site – if I don’t click the wrong button and blow it up over the weekend…

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The Friday Question: Booze-Time Stories

April 24, 2009

Image by BP Perry

Welcome to Booze Britain!

That’s right! From the cradle to the grave, we Brits are drinking ourselves stupid in an orgy of boozy indulgence not seen since the heady days of the 18th century. Indeed, we’re so drunk, television has had little choice over the last few years but to document our inexorable slide into alcohol-induced insanity with a series of programmes such as Drinking With The Girls, Booze Britain, Street Crime UK and Brits Abroad. And they’re all ace because they hold a window up to our souls, and show us who we really are – pissed-up dregs hockling mashed-up kebab into a gutter with our trousers round our ankles.

Huzzah!

So to celebrate the coming together of this country’s two favourite pastimes of drinking far too much and television, we here at your rather woozy Watch With Mothers invite YOU to share your most interesting boozed-up experience.

Did you go out on the lash and end up married to a small family car? Were you astounded to wake up the next day with your head stuffed up your own anus? Or did you simply eat lots and lots of dog dirts, resulting in blindness and paralysis?

Let’s have no morbid stories, please, we’ve all got plenty of those. Instead, let’s stagger into a wall, pull down our flies, think we’ve flopped the old fella out when we haven’t, and piss boozy anecdotes all down the trouser leg of Friday.

WWMers: Mine’s a pint!

The Apprentice Lookalike Fun – Week 5

April 23, 2009

kimberly The Apprentice 2009

You wanna see balls? Well, I’ll give you balls right now!

‘Business owner and believer that no dream is too big’ Kimberley Davis bears a canny resemblance to ‘1970s childrens’ dolls’ the Cabbage Patch Kids.

I guess you could say Kimberely wasn’t the first all-American, cotton-headed vegetable to grace our screens.

Drinking With The Girls

April 22, 2009

Drinking With The Girls Cherry Healy BBC Three

Cherry Healy fronts a moderately entertaining documentary, if you can call it that, in which she seeks to discover ‘the real truth about women and booze’. She succeeded in finding out that women drink booze and little else, but still, this was a half-decent hours worth of entertainment from BBC Three. Better than My Life As An Animal or Snog, Marry, Avoid anyway. Mainly because it was this new Cherry Healy character fronting it and not that vain hair-do woman Dawn Porter the channel usually relies upon for insight-free docu-pieces.

Opening with a montage of Daily Mail headlines about bingeing and a few helpful shots of girls falling over onto tarmac, we also witnessed Cherry puking violently into a latrine, a roman-shower shot we’d ultimately see repeated a few times throughout the show’s runtime – sometimes from different angles so we could consume the deeper meaning inherent in the act.

Cherry outlined her quest: to go out boozing with female drinkers from different demographics.

20-Somethings
Hitting the road and arriving at Blackpool, Cherry meets Leanne and her pals, all slightly put-upon young women, Leanne a single mother with quite obvious signs of depression – that aspect of her dipsomania only covered in one three sentence interview. There was no time for it, as the Editor needed to kicked in with his procession of images framing what were once called ladettes throwing booze down their gullets, rubbing their groins against retarded males with manga haircuts and ultimately falling over car bonnets with their tutus round their ankles. The experience makes Cherry cry for a couple of seconds, then move on to her next night out.

Underage
14 year old Rio and her pal explain that they like to get pissed in the park after drinking heavily at home. Cherry joins them in Rio’s bedroom where they down what they’ve nicked from Mum’s cabinet through a straw. Impressively, they manage to quaff Lambrini, neat vodka, neat Bacardi and a glug of Baileys before asking Mum if they can make it home for half ten rather than the Draconian ten pm curfew that’s currently in place. Cherry explains that this is different to how she was at their age. The Lambrini would be Pinot Grigio and she’d buy it with money from her ample allowance, back in her day. I’m making presumptions there, as I have every right to do.

Students
Where’s that? Only Sheffield Hallam University! Your host Swine’s place of higher education and the scene of his worst period of alcohol abuse is where Cherry ends up next and horrible, cloudy memories surface in this viewer. To make it worse, Cherry was taken to Shag – an evening at the Sheffield Leadmill that seems to actively attempt to murder attendees with pints at 80p, double vodka and red bull at a quid and two-for-one alchopops. I was too busy trying to repress images of myself rolling around in my own vomit to actually absorb any of this part of the show.

30 Somethings

A civil partnership was the next destination of choice as Cherry went to a lesbian marriage between two tattooed ladies. A good time was had by all, because 30 somethings tend to know their limits a little better than those a decade younger.

Mums and Mid-lifers
Even more responsibly, the Mums in the next sequence managed to run functioning households before going out dancing and returning home slightly tipsy. The Editor must have been furious by now at the lack of upskirt shots he could throw in, accompanied by that song that goes ‘here come the girls!’
Single widow Ann was also well-behaved, despite drinking a hell of a lot of liquor and starting every day at 11.30 in the morning, but that’s because she’s old enough to pace herself.

Grannies
And finally, Cherry took a tipple with the Red Hat Ladies of Torquay. These old birds went on coach trips to taste wine and were less able to binge because of their need to spend a penny every five minutes. Jean, the ringleader, was an admirably batty old bird and more than likely the apple of many a Torquay-based older gent’s eye. And who can blame the silver foxes when there’s mature totty like Jean wandering around the UK’s South coast?

The documentary eventually wore itself out as it went along, parallel to how the advancing years of the participants caused their hunger for the grog to dissipate in time. From the outright chaos of kiddie-drinking to the measured, cheeky imbibing of the older generation, the process off slowing down was bound to happen before the show ground itself to a halt.

So, to keep the tempo up right to the bitter end, that shot of Cherry hawking her colon out of her mouth thanks to too many double vodka and cokes was distributed equally throughout the show to prick the interest when the ageing lushs got tiresome.

And just when you thought it was all over, right at the end and before the closing credits…

vomit Cherry Healy BBC Three Drinking With The Girls

Just a Thought: The Fall and Rise…

April 21, 2009

reginald perrin martin clunes

…of Reginald Perrin.

I was just wondering how WWM readers feel about the resurrection of this classic sitcom, with Martin Clunes as the eponymous Perrin?

Apparently David Nobbs has not only given his blessing, but has also co-written the series along with Simon Nye – the fellow who wrote Men Behaving Badly.

A bit of a contrast in quality there.

It’ll be interesting to see how this turns out – either good against all odds or dead on arrival, one suspects.

Clunes in place of Rossiter – can the two even be mentioned in the same breath? Clunes is a decent comic actor and possesses some lovely dogs, but Rossiter was close to genius when it came to his portrayal of the despairing suburban hero. Will the man with the big lips be able to pull this one off?

Your thoughts, WWMers…

Quite Like: The Inbetweeners

April 21, 2009

The Inbetweeners E4

Nick T recommended this little gem – hidden away in E4’s dark and sweaty corner – and was largely ignored. But yesterday, lagging behind the times like the blinkered and dismissive old sod I am, I found the first series on Catch Up and tore through the first two back-to-back. And he’s right. Each episode of The Inbetweeners is a brief sojourn in bad taste with the odd moment of expertly-judged excess.

I think the reason it gets away with the relentless boner, wank, tit, shagging and shitting jokes is that it’s set in a school six-form where the predominant source of humour tend to be the sights, sounds and smells of bodily functions. What the writers get just right is the repetition inherent in the average 16 year old’s speech patterns. Especially the way one teenager will go beyond the realms of logic and through the wall of inanity and out the other side in their pursuit of comfirming their quarry is a bummer. Or a ‘bum-der’, which I learnt yesterday is a mixture of a ‘bummer’ and a ‘bender’.

At thirty years old I find The Inbetweeners funny, so logic dictates that the twelve year old me would most likely worship it, catching every episode on VHS for posterity, maybe even editing out the ad breaks to make the viewing process flow.

But 12 year olds don’t do those things these days. They probably sideload epishots onto their e-Phones and share them with friends in their emmy-sens messengers services, before going out and filming themselves happy-slapping emo-goths. The ‘orrible little shits.

Just a Thought: Desperate Housewives

April 20, 2009

I’d never seen this before, though I recognised some of the actors. Kyle McLaughlin from that Twin Peaks, a lady from the TV series Superman and another one from pictures of her bottom in The Sun, which caused me to look at her face after a while.

My first impression is that it’s complete and utter shit. Everything’s so garish and bright and super-real, like the first twinklings of a hastily consumed microdot at the exact moment you discover all your friends have left you alone in a strange pub. The actors themselves are all clean and symmetrical like children’s painted wooden blocks and the acting follows suit.

Of course, apart from being shit, the look of the show is entirely deliberate. It’s meant to be cod-surreal, a bit ‘weird,’ but the acting is so knowing it completely lacks any subtlety. What wit that may have existed in the first place is condensed unto an unblinking blob of soulless drudgery.

I’m very sure that the makers of this tripe knew they’d cooked a turkey; this is born out in the tooth-grinding score which seeks to emphasis the whole ‘ooh, isn’t this weird’ aspect by employing a pizzicato plinking, plonking string section to imbue every scene with a supposed quirkiness. It’s unbelievably awful. It’s so loud that, even if you wanted to hear the script, your ears have to strain round the pumps of some bored session muso earning his living on his cacky cello.

In one scene the tempo of the score sped up every time the shot featured a male, only to drop to its heartbeat pace when the female mugged into the middle distance. This drone is there all the time; it’s gradually fed into the beginning of scenes and ends them with a self-satisfying ‘plong!’ But it’s also oddly hypnotic and I’m convinced that the incidental music is the key to the programme’s ongoing success.

At first it’s mildly irritating, then it becomes intolerable and all of sudden, your tea is cold and you’ve dribbled all over your pants. The only reason I saw 15 minutes was because I was channel hopping and happened on it. You see, I saw the last 15 minutes; I made it to the end – it was the music that made me do it.

I still don’t understand.

My Life As An Animal: Pigs

April 20, 2009

My Life As An Animal BBC Three

My Life As An Animal is a show in which two seemingly intelligent people, untainted by mental illness, agree with BBC Three Producers that they will live with pigs for a week. They do this either because they’re so desperate to be on television that they’ll happily smear themselves in wet, gluggy manure to get there or (less likely) they’ve been badly advised on what the content of the show will be.

The format can be broken down like this:

  • Two Members of the Public meet Terry Nutkins
  • He tells them what pigs do.
  • They watch pigs snuffling about all day and doing very little.
  • MotPs are thrown into the pig pen where they live for a week.
  • They make friends or enemies with pigs, snuffle a lot and eat pig-feed.
  • They watch pigs get killed in the now-compulsory abattoir shot.
  • The end.

So – a sublime journey. How deeply will the human psyche be probed? What valuable information will we gleaned as we make adults scamper about on all fours, sleeping in straw and making grunting noises?

The contestants, Richard and Lyndsey, began by being ordered into clothes from a wheelbarrow that had been smeared with pig urine and poo. ‘It smells!’ they cry, stating the profoundly obvious. And they continue to state the obvious throughout the show.

– ‘This is literally a pigsty’
– ‘They smell’
– ‘They keep banging into me’
– ‘Urgh, it smells round here’
– ‘Oooh, it really stinks’

Richard – the first contestant – appeared to enjoy the process. He learned that ear-sucking on a waxy lughole is the very tenderest of intimate expressions among piggies, and he set to work nibbling ears like a pro. Soon enough he was kipping among them like he was one of their own, having grown worryingly close within a matter of hours.

Lyndsey, a Radio Five Live DJ, had a harder time living as a pig for a week. There were tears and tantrums during the early part of her stay when she realisd she’d be sleeping among them. She wanted her own sty, she complained – not realising that would obliterate the whole point of this stupid outing. Later, when a piggy nipped her on the lower leg she roared like a baby and demanded she get to go home. But then, persuaded by the crew, she got back into it and spent the rest of the day running around haystacks. The soppy cow.

Aside from that, ‘having totally immersed themselves in their pig-lives’, they watched pigs do sex and then snuff it in a slaughterhouse. They swapped places so that Lyndsey could see she’d actually got the better end of the deal as she sampled the non-organic pen. But still it was impossible to work out what we’re meant to have learned. Something about farming techniques? Something about human nature?

Whatever it was, it completely escaped me. The suspicion is this is another outing in which the title and concept are all, and that the actual content of the show doesn’t actually matter.

Did it not occur to anyone that the idea is completely and morbidly pointless? ‘It’s a new low!’ they seem to be shouting over in BBC Three-land. ‘Let’s celebrate it! Here – smear yourself in some shit!’

Watching the show, when the contestants complained – particularly Lyndsey who took to punching her stymates on the snout – you wanted to grab them by their lapels and dash their heads against the nearest trough, screaming at them that, as they’ve decided to live like pigs, they should stop complaining (in human) about how much they hate it. And what’s more, if they were going to do this bullshit experiment properly, they should be stark bollock naked. And the only human contact should come from the farmer. And if it was unwelcome contact they wouldn’t be able to complain beyond a terrifying, shrill squeal.

But then you realise that hidden camera footage of an obese farmer boning a mute, naked media type in a cold field wouldn’t make great television – but then, neither does this shit.