A review of the stuff that comes out of that box which sits in the corner of your room shouting at you.
Made in Britain
Hi. I’m (media personality z). I’m interested in (subject x). So I’ve come here to (y Chinese factory) to see how our world is changing. It is an article of celebrity-led documentary grammar these days to visit a Chinese town that, ten years ago, was just a paddy field with a lonely, yoke-trailing bison in it, but that is now bigger than London, New York and Paris combined. Evan Davis takes his turn with a look at how British people used to make things and now they don't, and how the Chinese are economic supernaturals whose godlike ability to rip-off the Nike "swoosh" will have us pissing our own teeth for the next five centuries. The conclusion he arrives at is ‘we make small batches of really hi-tech bespoke stuff, so it doesn’t matter really’, but he takes a nuclear winter getting there; those giggling eyes of his swivelling strangely in his head as he waffles on about the industrial revolution, comparative advantage and other things that should be obvious to anyone deliberately tuning into a programme that promises to ‘explore Britain’s manufacturing base’. An OK stab, but would be improved if Davis spoke the whole thing in a silly high-pitched voice while wearing a pair of inflatable comedy breasts.
Vajazzling: is it feminism? Is it something else? How are women being objectified these days? Is it possible to be a go-getting career gal and have a family? What are the principles of really great sex, Jeremy? A half hour in, and for one night only Newsnight descends into the straplines of Glamour magazine. One of the most confused, pointless inserts ever ends with Paxman sitting there in the studio like a priest at a condom machine, watching stupefied as three women from the commentariat greedily emasculate him with their possession of vaginas and pompous opinions, and for once, for one night only, there are no deftly-researched facts or snide insights that he can bring to the table that will override the basic facts of biology. These three are women. He are man. The conversation turns to clown porn. Never has J Pax looked closer to tears.
In the week that Sir Al sends his troops to Paris, the show turns into a documentary which seeks to answer the ancient question: “Why do British people use the phrase ‘parlez-vous Anglais?’ when trying to communicate with Frenchies, when that is all the French that they know anyway? Why don’t they just go ‘hello’ and await a response?” After all, as they doorstep Parisian shopkeepers on Hausmann's yawning boulevards, the members of teams Synergasm and AlphaDick’s conversations seldom go like this…
‘Bonjour. Parlez-vouz Anglais?’
‘No. Je ne parle pas Anglais.’
‘Pour quoi vous n’parle pas Anglais?’
‘Puisque c'est très difficile. Il y a trop de verbes irréguliers.’
‘C'est une vraie pitié parce que je ne parle pas français. Pas un mot. Ainsi la communication va être difficile. Nous devrons persévérer.’
COCKNEY RHYMING SLAG
Rob Brydon’s Identity Crisis
Rob Brydon has probably sat in more commissioning meetings than any other human being in history. If he's not being pitched improvisational hybrids like The Trip, it’s a mockumentary (Annually Retentive), a sitcom (Gavin & Stacey), a panel show (Would I Lie To You?), and now a show in which Rob explores his Welshness through stand-up. He interviews Welshmen Howard Marks and Griff Rhys Jones about what it means to be Welsh. He does a stand-up tour of Wales where he does comedy about Welsh stereotypes to kids. Chippy. Leeks. Sheep. Welsh. And in-between, we watch him grapple with his cultural identity in a meaningful way that adds the ‘quest/transformation’ element TV producers crave. Surely a roadtrip across America to ‘discover the American Dream’ can only be two commissioning rounds away.
Rumour has it there is a band called Monsters Of Doom who play vaguely ska-tinged glam-metal in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo, whom Zane Lowe will privately admit that he doesn’t particularly like. This is still the only known instance of The Zipper’s taking against any music at all. That is unless you've heard differently recently? I missed Sunday night's coverage as I was busy buying your confiscated drugs for cheap off a laughing crusty security guard.
Fringes: Stories from the Edge: Cowboy Capitalists - Part 1
For maverick entrepreneur Ian Cox, Africa is the last frontier of free enterprise.
Has a South American Spring Come to Brazil?
The protests there don't show any sign of slowing down.
Molly Crabapple Sent Us Sketches from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s Pretrial Hearings at Gitmo
Drawings from the secretive and odd military commission trial of the alleged mastermind of 9/11.
Costa Rican Drug Addicts Are Killing Turtles and Conservationists for Crack
Jairo Mora Sandoval was found beaten to death with sand stuffed in his mouth.
Talking to Besiktas' Bulldozer Joyriding Fans About Their Role In the Turkish Uprising
Çarşı have united people from all different backgrounds to fight against Erdogan's government.