This weekend like Paul Walter we watched Friday night with Jonathan Ross and Parkinson.
Jonathan Ross was anarchic. I find the programme, and his Radio 2 show, entertaining,
It started off well with one of my favourite comedians Eddie Izzard, who was fab as usual and apparently in Ocean’s 13. Then it was Janice Dickinson, who was just OTT, and slightly crude, which set the tone for the rest of the evening.
John Barrowman and Andrew Lloyd-Webber were next and interviewing Janice seemed to take JR to a new level of smut. I do find Jonathan’s near the knuckle comments a bit much when he’s interviewing John Barrowman, but simultaneously I think Barrowman is an entertaining person to listen to. Unlike Lloyd-Webber, whose innuendo about Sarah Brightamn was just… gross…
So the next day it’s Parkinson. I’ve heard many people criticise Michael Parkinson for being sycophantic towards his guests, and that they find the programme difficult viewing. Personally I think there’s room for both the Ross and Parkinson style. Chat shows are entertainment, not investigative journalism or gladiatorial combat, and Michael Parkinson is still one of the best. He wasn’t afraid to confront Piers Morgan on his Sunday Supplement radio show the other week.
Anyway the first guest was George Michael who came across as quite sensible and agreeable. When he was interviewed on his own that was. While he can be a bit of an idiot with regards his personal life, I have to agree with him that having paperazzi camped on peoples doorsteps is a bit much. “George Michael charged by police” is news. “George Michael opens front door of own house” frankly isn’t. While I accept Piers Morgan’s point that a big sector of the public are interested in celebrity coverage and gossip masquerading as news, I don’t see how harassing people in their own homes adds anything to the coverage.
I do disagree with him on one thing, I don’t think being gay has anything to do with the treatment he has received, because I don’t think reigning in his flamboyant lifestyle would be being untrue to his sexuality.
Stephen Fry was the second guest, and we were looking forward to listening to him, but unfortunately some things he said set George Michael off, and he would not shut up. I appreciate that the press has given him a hard time, but we really wanted to hear what Stephen had to say.
On Sunday it was the Television Baftas. I think Brenda Blethyn should give a masterclass in how to present awards because some of the people were dreadful. Joan Rivers was also good- she either knows her UK celebrities or had prepared well for her 30 seconds of speach time. The worst was an award won by Jonathan Ross, where Kelly Osborne and Kris Marshall droned and mumbled their lines like a couple of schoolchildren. John Simm looked sour when he missed out on the best actor BAFTA to Jim Broadbent, but perhaps the Life on Mars team had had their hopes built up too much by the media. Maybe not, as they won the award voted for by the general public.