Posts from August 2003

29
Aug 03

Britain’s Best Sitcom

Do You SeePost a comment • 268 views

Britain’s Best Sitcom is what the BBC want you to pick, using that pollster-friendly method of listing 100 items in order to glean a Top 100. For once though the method is appropriate as the list feels horribly exhaustive as is: the knowledge that programmes even more mediocre than Kiss Me Kate exist and have only been kept off the list by its arbitrary limitations makes you fairly grateful.

The presentation leaves something to be desired though – the A-Z of sitcoms offers summaries that manage to eradicate whatever tiny mote of fun remained to each show, and the idea of actually thinking through a vote left me despondent. There are unlikely to be too many surprises in the final rundown either, and the whole exercise smells more than usual of Bank Holiday spacefiller. (Of course I’ll still watch it.) Most interesting factlets: the number of episodes each sitcom ran. Porridge got only 21, Sorry! managed twice that, and the human mind was not built to contemplate quite how many Last Of The Summer Wines have now been made. There’s something faintly sick about the irony that a show based on three old codgers should have clung to life with such horrid tenacity while a hundred twentysomething rom-coms have mercifully bitten the dust. (Who’s for a write-in campaign for Babes In The Wood, by the way? Oh. OK then.)

Weblog Response

Do You SeePost a comment • 597 views

Weblog Response: to make up for the lack of a comments function, here’s an ILX thread dedicated to Do You See? If you’ve got anything to say about anything on this blog and you want to do it publically, here’s where to go. (We’ll be putting this link somewhere prominent, as it’s a rolling thread.)

Weblog Response

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 305 views

Weblog Response: To make up for the lack of a comments facility, if you’ve got something to say about The Brown Wedge and want to make it public, this is the thread to do it on. (We’ll be adding this as a permanent link somewhere prominent, as it’ll be a rolling thread.)

Weblog Response

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 345 views

Weblog Response: To make up for the lack of a comments facility, if you’ve got something to say about Pumpkin Publog and want to make it public, this is the thread to do it on. (We’ll be adding this as a permanent link somewhere prominent, as it’ll be a rolling thread.)

Weblog Response

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 329 views

Weblog Response: To make up for the lack of a comments facility, if you’ve got something to say about NYLPM and want to make it public, this is the thread to do it on. (We’ll be adding this as a permanent link somewhere prominent, as it’ll be a rolling thread.)

TEH BUZZ

TMFDPost a comment • 205 views

THE BUZZ.

More Zenda action

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 333 views

More Zenda action: the other thing that struck me reading it is how difficult the sexual codes now are to understand. Early on in the book the hero visits an inn and flirts with a lusty wench: there’s a bit of banter on the stairs and the hero says “so I gave her something of no value”. A kiss, thinks Tom. But then he and a friend return to the inn later and there’s much discussion of this girl’s charms and seductive abilities with the hero acting very knowing – perhaps it was more than just a kiss, hmm. One of the villains insults the hero by implying he’s shagged the Princess (who is pledged to his double!) and the hero flushes at a point well-scored, but then later the hero goes into paroxysms of thank-heaven-i-did-not-do-that-to-which-i-was-sore-tempted chestbeating. WHAT IS GOING ON!!! I’m assuming all this stuff would have been transparent to the Victorian reader but it’s baffling to me. At least with modern popular fiction you know that the wild mushroom risotto isn’t some kind of euphemism for bum sex.

Malic acid transforms candy from a snack into a form of commercially acceptable child masochism

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 306 views

Malic acid transforms candy from a snack into a form of commercially acceptable child masochism
Great sub-head from an old (1999) and longish Wired article about Extreme Sweets and ver kids that wuv them. Yesterday I saw a new device on my newsies counter that dispenses the usual sour liquid via a roller-ball – like deodorising your tongue. On acid. Kids – they’re great aren’t they?

Mike of Clap Clap Blog crushes my dreams like a tiny flower

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 310 views

Mike of Clap Clap Blog wrote in especially to crush my dreams like a tiny flower. My dreams of putting together compilations like Sk8mania 2003 Dudes or whatever it’s called. From his actually behind-the-desk perspective the job is a fucking nightmare of contractual wranglings and Pisas of paperwork, which in my heart of hearts I think I probably knew.

Clap Clap Blog is good! I hadn’t seen it before, I’m more out of touch than I pretend with the music blogoverse. Mike dives two-footed into the whole rockists/’popists’/Sasha Frere-Jones argument that was exercising so many of the Great and Good this week. I had a lot to say about it, but no sooner had I started to formulate my replies than the real world (o horrors) intervened and I was plunged into a two-day horror of laptop failure and work paranoia. Now over, thankfully.

The one thing I will take up is this pernicious idea that writing about pop has no impact, because pop has ‘already won’. Well yeah, lots of people buy it and hear it, but are they the people who are reading music writing? (I think on these utilitarian grounds there’s way less point in saying that the new Flaming Lips album is good than the new Timberlake single is, because the ‘music writing audience’ is already favourably inclined to the Lips). The main thing though is that it depends who your readership is. If you have these Napoleonic ideas that the whole world could be reading your stuff then yes by all means go hell for leather promoting obscurities and turn back the pop tide. But most of us on the Internet know who is reading, fairly precisely. NYLPM has about 100-150 daily readers and maybe another four or five hundred occasional readers – they are interested in reading things that will provoke them into downloading this pop single instead of that one. And I’m not even writing for them – I’m writing for the 25 or so I know personally or well on ILM.

Most bloggers are the same, I’d guess. When John Darnielle put together his R.Kelly “Ignition” opus (a highpoint of this year’s pop writing, no question), I’m sure he wasn’t thinking “Hey there’s this hot new R Kelly guy whose stuff you need to know about”. He was more probably thinking, “Well, I love this song and I want to say why, because I know the people reading me will be lukewarm or downright suspicious of it.” That’s why I write about pop, too.

can i tell you how much i love britney

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 250 views

can i tell you how much i love britney, first the deeply odd, voyueristic, slime green coloured images in W, that looked v. 60s, but the factory porno, marriane faithful on smack, riots and destruction rather then the lesile gore act she used to pull.

then there was this

britney in marriage white.
madonna in johnny guitar black.
kissing and gender bending like the elder is giving her soul and sex to her protege.

you know its a rip off of Xtina, but it goes further, it goes wider and its hotter.
deeply hot.