05/12/2010

Catty Men


Carefully edging forward - what laws do I SKIRT around?

Ok - here's a question: what do the following Celebrities have in common?
Alan Carr, Graham Norton, Louie Spence, Gok Wan, Paul O'Grady.

Right - they're (all, or mostly) outrageously camp, filthy-joked, sneeringly-voiced, bitchy, over-paid, under-talented media items. Famous for being all those things I just typed - and bugger-all else.

Currently this tawdry little crowd are infiltrating most 'mainstream' TV and radio airtime, to the extent that one has to wonder at this latest flood.
It seemed to start a little while back: We were tested with Dale Winton's Radio persona (mildly irritating, although his TV presence warm and unthreatening) - as this was 2008, I wonder if media bosses noticed the pull - and decided to vamp things up a bit?

After-all, our British media history has been liberally peppered with the homosexual double-endre.
Remember being left cold by John Inman? - When 'Are you being served' was but one of an enormous batch of British sit-coms whose humour-value unfailing missed by a million miles any thoughtful ideas about what was funny.
Or cringing at Larry Gayson - who Straight, Gay, Martian, Black, White (whatever) could never be described as funny.
Or wincing at Julian Clary's jokes, but finding his saving grace the sheer scatological nature of his comment, at least the laughs came?

So, if the content is funny - then the delivery style may enhance that. OK so far. But what about Messrs Norton, Wan, O'Grady, Carr, Spence? No 'content' here, per-se, just a style - a style that favours sneering, that takes the extremes of earlier 'alternative' comedians, washes them out a little, and hangs them onto a character as vehicle for any other tosh the media can think-up that needs a current-fashion 'type' to push it.

Why write about this at all? Because I HATE it. Because, we're teaching yet another sub-group how to act and react. And I see it echoed on the streets - just like the ladettes, the lager louts, the head-shaven ear-ringed 50 somethings, the orange-tanned would-be essex-types. It is so apparent now, the trashier we make our TV, the more brash and arrogant UK society becomes - because 'life', for want of a better choice, IS imitating 'Art'.