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Friday 30 December 2011

Looking Back.

I guess it's inevitable that at the end of a year people start to look back on what has gone before? But, there are some aspects of this "tradition" that have really started to grate with me.

One of these aspects is all of those tv "best of 2011" programs that appear over the festive period. Whilst i accept that some of them are ok, the vast majority are excruciating. The main reason is not always the actual content of the program itself either, but more to do with the presenting style.

Do these programs and the presenters really expect us to believe that what we are seeing is done live? If not, then why do they persist in acting as if they were?
All this talk of Christmas presents, supposed spontaneity and false jollity really doesn't cut it i'm afraid.

I saw a particularly bad example earlier this evening. Well, i didn't see the whole program, as i just couldn't bear to watch it all.

On the BBC there is a daily, weekday program called "The One Show". I happen to watch this show, or at least parts of it, most evenings. But, the "best of" show they had on tonight showed up the worst examples of what i am talking about here.

There were buckets full of false jollity, fake presents and scripted chat. And all as they counted down the shows Top 20 moments of 2011. Of course, none of these shows are complete without the obligatory celebrity guests, either "live", or filmed are they?
All the boxes were ticked and consequently, i switched off.

The best examples of this kind of show, where all they do is basically string a load of old clips together, are the ones where there are no actual presenter(s). The main reason, for me anyway, being that whenever there is a presenter, there always seems to be the need for that person to make some kind of joke when introducing that next clip.

Personally, i blame Dennis Norden.
For those who don't know who he is, he used to present a program called "It'll Be Alright On The Night', way back when. This program was essentially a string of clips of tv presenters, actors etc making mistakes when filming and then swearing.
Sounds hilarious doesn't it?

I'll admit that when that program first aired, all those years ago, it was original and funny. But, as with all these shows, the joke soon started to wear a little thin.
For me, the main reason was that Dennis Norden used to try to be funny between the clips, when all you wanted is for the next selection of clips to start.

This "tradition" continues right up to the present day with such hosts as Bruce Forsyth and those on the "best of" shows. And, would you believe it, "It'll Be Alright On the Night" has been resurrected once again with a new host? Just to rub it in a bit!

Of course, these "best of" shows are easy to make and are also cheap programming for the respective tv stations. After all, all that is required is a producer to select the clips, an editor to put them all together and hey presto, you've got a show.
Then you just get the shows presenters to stay behind one day and record the links between the clips and read the script from an autocue. And don't forget to decorate the studio with some token Christmas decorations, to set the scene.
You don't even need a real audience, although some shows do go to this trouble.

So, i'm not expected them to go away anytime soon.

But, could we just leave out the "jokes" next time around please?

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