I don’t watch much TV; for me the TV is merely a delivery channel for DVDs. (Living in the shadow of Canary Wharf famously interferes with TV reception anyway.)
But last night in my parents’ living room I was subjected to an obscenely over-emoting hour of unadulterated awfulness called ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. (Which I’d treat as a breach of the Trade Descriptions Act.)
And the low point was some little girl (whose Mrs Worthington mother looked the essence of pushy parenting) doing some screechily unthrilling trilling, and… fluffing her lines. Several times. And bursting into tears.
Well, fair enough. She didn’t get her song out. That’s showbiz, sweetheart: you got your big chance and you blew it. Take it like – well, not a man, presumably, but at least like a performer. You’re going to get a lot of knocks in that business, and you’d better know how to handle them.
Instead – unbelievably – she got the chance to start over. What the FUCK?
Just what message is this sending to Britain’s youth?
That if you screw up, all you’ve got to do is bawl and scream for a few minutes and you’ll get the chance to go again?
I mean, what if this happened in the boardroom? Someone doesn’t make their budget and is facing the sack, but they just sob for a few moments until the CEO gives them another four quarters to get it right? Or on the battlefield? A soldier takes out half his unit with a badly-thrown grenade and then turns on the waterworks until the drill sergeant pats him on the head and gives him another go?
I mean, I’ve been in a situation where the above actually happened – a stressed-out sales chief starting sobbing after missing an easy sale – and no mercy was shown; with a dozen hungry people itching for her job that sales head was expected to take her sacking with a bit of stoicism. The waterworks just made an unpleasant situation even worse. (I admit I didn’t help much, commenting that “Well, that lowered the glass ceiling about a metre.”)
“Britain’s Got Talent” is pure Labour Party television: celebrating the mediocre and the workshy by constantly pretending that everybody’s brilliant and there are no losers, only winners. (BULLSHIT.) “Britain’s Got Talent” is doing British people a real disservice, and the excruciating emotional diarhoea is truly sickening. Sheesh, give me strength.