Sunday, 30 November 2008

Reviews from Verbal Issue 20 ( uncensored)

A bit fucked off that all the jokes in this review were edited out This CENSORSHIP~! maskes it sound as if i am fair and unbiased and that is not a notion i wish to cultivate. I have reinserted said jibes in itallics.

Kelly’s Heroes

Kelly: A Memoir
by Gerry Kelly with Don Anderson
(Gill and Macmillan)

A book that’s better on the show, than on the man himself. An opportunity missed,says Ciaran Flanagan.

Here’s a secret that UTV and BBC Northern
Ireland don’t want you to know, but that I
feel is my duty to get out there. Every single
television programme ever produced in the
province of Ulster has been produced by
using an ancient magical Celtic formula that
Verbal Magazine can now reveal to you - the
reading public.
What you do is take the phrase “Northern
Irish Version of….”, and then just add the
name of an existing television programme
at the end. (The only exception to this is
Give My Head Peace - a programme so
baffling that it defies analysis of any kind).
Go on, try it. Talkback (Question Time).
Town Challenge (It’s a Knockout). Suss
(Crackerjack). Dry Your Eyes (Little Britain)
and of, course Kelly. It would be very easy
of me to say that, clearly, some chancer at
UTV saw The Late Late Show in 1989 and
thought “I’m having me some of that.”, but
that would do the man (and the show) a
disservice. Over nearly 20 years the Friday
night chat show has become a staple for
many thousands of viewers. The Kelly Show
is an Institution. But, then again so is Long Kesh.
Anyone expecting an in depth look at the
man himself had better look elsewhere.
Kelly deals largely with the show’s more
than 15 year run on Friday nights, looking at
his life before that only very briefly. It talks
about early hardships (alcoholic father,
mother working all the hours God sent, etc.)
and gives some details of how the talk show
came to be; starting with his initial primary
school teaching career and his early
broadcasting work presenting Good Evening
Ulster alongside Gloria Hunniford – which,
curiously, came about as a result of a case
of mistaken identity. And that’s about it
After that its all about the show, and if you
like the show - great! If you don’t like the
show this will be a little more arduous. A
show like Kelly lives or dies based on the
quality of its guests, and unfortunately, for
every Shirley Bassey or Garth Brooks, there
are a dozen Big Brother contestants or soap
opera cast offs. I once saw an interview with Sid Little( of Little and Large fame), so boring and unfunny , that i went blind out of contempt.
Gerry does defend his position in the
book and to be fair his reasoning (cost,
and availability) does ring true. There is
some mild excitement in the form of bomb
scares and death threats but nothing world
shattering. In short: this is a book about
the Kelly Show, and if you are a fan of the
show, then you’ll be a fan of the man and
his book. If you have something better ( im sorry ,had) to do on a friday night. Look elsewhere.

Thursday, 27 November 2008

A Thanksgiving Treat.

Having been involved in some poorly acted and blocked theatre pieces over the years , it gave me great pleasure to come accross this little gem from Macy's Thanksgiving parade 1988 . It has all the charm of of a school play, with features such as a token Black Man , Doctor Dooms langer, and a retarded Hulk, all to the theme music from Back To The Future. Tremendous

Also at the 1.34 mark ROBOCOP~! appears from nowhere , pulls a lever and then fucks off without saying a word.

Happy Native massacre and land steal day America

Monday, 24 November 2008

Charlie Brooker is my Hero.

Try as i might to not watch the X-Factor, it just seems that with EoghinMania(tm) running wild that i have to deal with ill informed 13 year olds explain to me why he is the best thing since sliced bread. Leave it to good old Brooker to sum him up in perfect fashion .

It's Eoghan Quigg. Eoghan Quigg. That's not a name, that's a Countdown Conundrum. It looks like what happens when you hastily type a URL with your fingers over the wrong keys. If they still allowed text voting, he'd have been out weeks ago.

Or maybe not. Because the moment Eoghan bounds on stage, he triggers a dormant maternal instinct in millions of grandmas up and down the nation, enough to overcome any spelling barrier. Last week an elderly neighbour aahhed herself to death halfway through his performance of Anytime You Need a Friend. Because Eoghan's got a baby face. And I mean that literally, as in someone's grafted a baby's face on to the front of his head. Tiny
little eyes and a ruby-red mouth. He's like a cross between the Test Card clown and a crayon portrait of Jamie Oliver. Weird. Eerie. Like the spectral figure of an infant chimney sweep that suddenly appears in an upstairs window, gazing sadly at your back as you walk the grounds of a remote country mansion on a silent Christmas afternoon; alerted by an indefinable chill, you turn and, for the briefest moment, his wet, sorry eyes meet yours... and then he's gone.

That's Eoghan, the ghost of X Factor present. Even if he gets voted out, I'm frightened I'll still spot him intermittently in the dead of night, popping up on screen during old black-and-white films, pleading through the glass like a kitten in a microwave. Swear to God, if he's not gone by New Year's Eve I'm having my television exorcised by a priest.


While were on the subject , why has no one pointed out how much he looks like wee Jimmy Krankie? A point that would be better illustrated if i could find a decent fucking picture of him.