Dead Ringers is another of those BBC exceptions which proves the rule.
That it is an exception is perhaps proved by the fact that I actually find it quite funny - which for a Radio 4 comedy that isn't I'm Sorry, I Haven't a Clue is pretty rare.
Here are my favourite bits from this week's edition:
Evan Davis: Hello, and welcome to the exclusive leaders' interviews here on the BBC. I know Paxman's already interviewed the leaders on prime time TV but I like to do everything Jeremy Paxman does, only two months later. I'm joined by Ed Miliband. Hello.
Ed Miliband: Thanks Evan. That's a great question.
Neil Nunes: BBC Radio 4. And now 'Book of the Week' and Prince Charles reads from his collection of 'black spider' letters. This week, 'Hospitals'...
HRH Prince Charles: Dear Minister for Health, I must complain in the strongest possible terms about the spending cuts to the NHS. I've visited many hospitals in my time and I've noticed simple ways of saving money. For example, why not dispense with the expensive red carpet that seems to be outside every hospital I've ever been to? Apart from anything, they're a trip-hazard. I just don't understand. And why on earth waste money painting hospitals quite so often? There's a constant smell of fresh paint wherever I go. I say to Camilla, who's in charge of their decorating budget, bloody Fergie? And surely the staff need to work harder. Every hospital I've been to, people simply wait around, grinning and waving. I want to shout, "Get back to work, you lazy bastards!", but Camilla doesn't think it would be a terribly good idea. Not once do these grinning fools ever ask about the boil on my back. I've had it fifty years now and it's impossible to get treatment despite visiting three hospitals a week. Why the hell do they think I keep coming in? Yours, HRH, Charles.
Bradford local TV presenter: You're watching Bradford Local Television, bringing you all the news straight from Bradford...Bradford, quite near Leeds...Be upstanding and make the sign of the Big Brother Eye and prepare for a message from our glorious leader...
George Galloway: Salamu alaykum. Peace be upon me. To my loyal subjects, I wish you all a long and fruitful life. May the dove of happiness flutter over your house and go off to crap on the State of Israel. I have come amongst you because I have discovered something vile, something repulsive, something sickening - a rottening stench corrupting our precious city. This:
Bradford local TV presenter: A voting card! Galloway, protect me!
George Galloway: Once again, our city comes under the threat of democracy.
Bradford local TV presenter: Galloway, be praised! - for his head is shiny like the sun, his beard is long and lustrous and his Jaguar car is without scratches!
George Galloway: That is why I say to my people tonight, enough is enough. Democracy will not be allowed to spread its tentacles into Bradford. So from midnight tonight I am declaring Bradford an independent state. (Canned applause). Thank you, my people for that spontaneous outpouring of joy. As per my announcement, we will drive out the settlers who have entered our land, who have taken our precious resources - settlers from Rochdale, Huddersfield and North Halifax. And to keep the tribes of Bradford pure, men will now, by law, have to have arranged marriages with women born within the A6177.
Bradford local TV presenter: Praise be the Bradford ring road!
George Galloway: We will throw off the yoke of the oppressor to create a utopia in my image which will last a thousand years. Oh, and remember, if you are looking for a new carpet or underlay, Dedma Carpets on the Oodley Road, crazy madhouse sale continues right through this bank holiday weekend.
Funny the way Galloway was done as half Scottish, half Pakistani.ReplyDelete
Just listened (tx to Craig for the link). It was all very funny. I'd have paid for that. Rhona Cameron... not so much.Delete
Wow, somebody is fed up. That's far more direct and cutting than anything I ever expected from a BBC show. If any political figure is something of a special love case at the BBC, it's Galloway. He puts on a good show (makes for good tv), holds all the approved Socialist, Old Labour thoughts, and is an unabashed "critic of Israel" the way so many Beeboids wish they were allowed to be on air. Some of them are aware he's a nasty piece of work underneath the blustery facade, but they mostly admire him for what they see as speaking truth to power and standing up for the oppressed.ReplyDelete
There will be nasty comments on the insider message boards this weekend, you can be sure.
The gasps of shock (along with delight) from the audience were very audible - and damning of the BBC. It's great that they've finally taken the piss out of the odious demagogue; it's disgraceful that it took until April 2015 to do so.Delete
The new W1A had its moments, too.ReplyDelete
Another rarity is Clare in the Community, quite simply the best comedy writing and acting around at the moment.ReplyDelete
All the previous series are on CD, and there's a new series starting in May (on R4), I think.
You honestly won't regret the time spent listening!
I will give it a go, Hector. I've heard good things about it before but never got round to listening.Delete
You have a major treat in store.Delete
What sets it apart from the competition is that the writers have mastered the trick of writing for radio itself, not merely producing funny lines - it's something only a select few have ever really managed: think Ted Kavanagh and ITMA, or Galton and Simpson with Hancock's Half Hour.