Tag Archives: tv

Extreme Fishing With Robson Green: IT’S BRILLIANT

Of all the TV shows I would expect to enjoy, Extreme Fishing With Robson Green would absolutely not make it to that list. One, it’s a show about fishing, which while I would like to do some I have no real interest in. Two, it’s on one of Channel 5’s channels, which means I have to watch Channel 5. Three, Robson Green really irritated me when I was younger, as I never liked Soldier, Soldier and I hated him and Jerome.

Basically it’s a recipe for me completely ignoring it. Which I would have done were it not for a chance encounter a while back and the swift realisation that he’s actually a very entertaining man.

It’s a simple recipe, but it turns out all it takes to get me interested in watching something is to get a man who isn’t terrible at presenting and make him do something he’s genuinely – genuinely – enthusiastic about. I mean, to the point where he runs at people screaming with joy when they catch a fish.

Oh, and you add some extra sprinkles on top of the mixture, which is a Geordie swearing. Always hilarious.

It’s difficult to explain without it just sounding like ‘man trying to catch fish swears and gets loud’ – mainly because that’s what it is – but I assure you it’s captivating. If only to see the genuine – genuine – joy flow out of the man when things go right. Or the furious swearing when things inevitably go wrong, or he messes up.

I’m still going to turn it off in a minute, though. Not really in the mood today.

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The most official (and best) NCIS review ever

I’ve just watched seven minutes of NCIS, therefore I am qualified to review it in an official capacity. Here goes:

Apparently there’s some girl who’s kind of a goth or something, so she’s clearly in IT or is some other kind of tech expert. Anyway, she likes ‘candy’ bars, as far as I gathered. This probably means most of the cases she deals with are about Cyber Surf-Web Hackers from the Underground Systems breaking their way into the secret files of Hershey’s. Sounds fucking shit to me, just like their chocolate.

Then there’s some other people who were far less… loud. And they weren’t goths. So it doesn’t actually look like this is a crime scene investigation show that covers a super-cool band of alternative kids going around eating ‘candy’ bars and solving crime using Wiccan techniques or something. Missed a trick there.

Anyway, at some point the image changed quite bizarrely from a crime scene to what looked suspiciously like my bathroom. From there the show became a harrowing tale of someone bearing a striking resemblance to me brushing their teeth for a bit, while looking quite haggard. It’s the kind of shit that should win a BAFTA. Except seeing as I think it was still NCIS, it’s definitely not going to win one.

I might still be suffering some of the mild confusion I had yesterday. This is definitely not related to both entries being a little rushed.

Anyway – NCIS: 7/10.

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No, but you really should watch The Wire

I fear I won’t be allowed to actually write about this topic, as I will be instantly dismissed by whining little maggots for talking about something that is talked about a fair bit in certain circles. But hey – here’s me trying really hard to care. Trying… trrrrrying… oh, no. I don’t care. I like The Wire and think it is one of the best things I have ever seen – if not the best.

Shock! It’s an opinion more than one person has. Shock! This doesn’t mean it’s invalid. Actually, come to think of it, I do hate it when a lot of people share an opinion. Makes me feel wrong inside. Bastards. I know there are people out there who will dismiss The Wire or anybody talking about it purely because it’s been analysed so very much all over the internets (and in the Grauniad) – to you people, just Read the quote below. If that doesn’t change your mind then there’s probably no hope for you anyway.

Ah, arrogance.

Anyway, I had a point, but that’s been lost in the above ramblings. The Wire is a show about Baltimore police doing policey things, created by an ex-journalist and with input from an ex-copper, both of whom know the area well. Safe to say, it’s brilliant. Like, talk about for hours with people who’ve seen it brilliant. Not eminently quotable, not something that can be dipped into at all and not something you can half watch, but utterly fantastic.

But that’s just me (and all the Grauniad writers seemingly hired just to mention it in every article they write: “Tensions rose in the Middle East after border skirmishes between two nations, just like the time when Bodie refused to give up his corner to Marlo’s crew…”), and I fear that without the ability to see how much my hands can flail while I talk or hear how high-pitched and enthusiastic I can sound (sometimes) this will fall on deaf ears. So read this quote, something I read just the other day from series creator David Simon. Read it, take it in and realise you do want to watch the show:

My standard for verisimilitude is simple and I came to it when I started to write prose narrative: fuck the average reader. I was always told to write for the average reader in my newspaper life. The average reader, as they meant it, was some suburban white subscriber with two-point-whatever kids and three-point-whatever cars and a dog and a cat and lawn furniture. He knows nothing and he needs everything explained to him right away, so that exposition becomes this incredible, story-killing burden. Fuck him.”

Because it really is that good.


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Ruining TV, one show at a time

Here follows an important public service announcement. You would do well to pay close attention to this PSA. Your very soul may depend on it. Either that or half an hour of your enjoyment could be ruined. Anyway.

The last series of Scrubs starts on British TV this week (I think). E4, I believe. If you like Scrubs, like I do (schmaltz is good sometimes) then you may well want to steer well clear of this. If you value your sanity in any way then just avoid it. It’s really, really shit. You may not have liked it before – it is an easy target to dislike – but now you’d really fucking hate it. If you did like it – even though it is an easy target to dislike – this will kill it for you.

At this point I intended to go into some detail as to exactly why it’s shit, but I can’t concentrate or be bothered. It’s too painful. Or something. Rest easy in the knowledge that if I’d bothered to write it it would have been the very best paragraph of this entry – if not the very best of this whole week. Maybe even ever. Who knows? Not me, because I’m not writing it. Anyway.

I am basing this entirely on seeing one episode, I should point out, but I think the judgement is entirely valid. Mainly because I’m always right, but also because it’s clear for all to see from one episode that the whole formula has been shat in. The series has needed to die off for quite a few years now, but it didn’t deserve to go out like this.



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Lots of stuff, lacking in ownership

I got to thinking about my bed, and how it’s shit. It’s creaky and noisy and not very comfortable (though tell that to Commander Snoreathon who seems to be loving the comfort it offers right now). In a perfect world – even in a less-shit world – I would have a bed better than this. But that would involve purchasing a bed, and that got me thinking – there are many things I have used throughout my life that I have never, at any point, purchased myself. I am 27 years old and I have never bought a bed.

I hadn’t bought a bin until a few months ago, when I broke that duck, and we all know the hilarious novelty I saw in buying two wooden spoons. As for the Pyrex dishes I picked up the other week? Well, they made me feel like more of a real person, even if I personally haven’t used them at all. Snore-o-9000 has, of course.

I’ve used washbins (those things for dirty clothes, FACT FANS) since forever, yet I’ve never actually bought one. I’ve used sofas since I was wee, but I’ve never invested in one. I’ve had a couple of my own chairs, but I didn’t hand over the dough for either.

Thinking about it, I’ve never even bought a plate, or a bowl (cereal kind, not Pyrex kind). I bought a few glasses because they looked funny, and I’ve had many mugs from charity shops (they’re just better). I did once buy a desk, but my landlord reimbursed me for that so I’m not sure if it counts. There are a lot more things I could think of, but I’ve probably lost 99 per cent of my crowd by now.

Basically, if everything I didn’t buy myself was to be taken away from me right now I’d be left rather wanting. On the plus side I would still have my TV and game consoles, so there is always that. My priorities: right.


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Stop looking over my shoulder, goits

Seems this didn’t publish earlier when I pressed ‘publish’. Soz.

A five hour train ride isn’t a great deal of fun, surprisingly because it takes five hours. But I’ve found there is one great way in which you can make the journey just fly by. Step one is to take some form of device that can play movies on it, so you can watch a selection of movies, or TV shows or whatever else you want to watch. This means there will be a screen on which you are watching moving images – a key point of the plan.

Step two is to make sure there’s somebody sat within your peripheral vision – but this can’t just be anyone, it has to be a particular kind of person. The kind of person I’m talking about, of course, is the kind who will insist on watching things over your shoulder. It just makes the journey FLY BY when you have some gormless oaf who can’t do anything but stare, mouth agape at the fact you have a colourful screen projecting the moving images of famous people you might know of.

While it does make the journey FLLLLYYYY BYYYY, I would still like to punch every single one of these nosey morons in the face. Except for the ones who are bigger than me, or ones who look stabby. I find it intensely annoying, and it’s made all the worse when they comment on what’s on the screen either to their friends or to me. TO ME.

Arseholes. Stop it.

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It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia: you should watch it

It’s a show where a small, angry, bearded man threatens “I will smash your face into a jelly!”. The person he is threatening is a 10-year-old child. It’s a show where a father forces his son into becoming a prostitute in order to pay off a debt to the mob (“No rules”). It’s a show where issues like Israel and the Palestinian territories or North Korea are tackled in… none-too-subtle… fashions. And the new series starts this week.

I love It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia. I wouldn’t claim it to be the best comedy show Of All Time Ever, but I would claim it to be refreshing in how little it cares for the usual standards of decency and how it balks at the usual American obsession with schmaltz. It also abandons the normal US concept of having characters with any redeeming qualities whatsoever – these people are arrogant, idiotic bastards. But you still love them. While swearing is still out of the question (except in the excellent Christmas special) and nudity is a no-go – it is still American TV, after all – it really is a show where… I don’t want to say this, as it always sounds twatty… but it’s a show where no topic is taboo.

Dumpster babies, the financial crisis, drug addiction, suicide, abortion, gun control, steroid abuse, setting Sweet Dee on fire and many other things I can’t think of right now. It’s always good. It’s always funny. It’s not necessarily clever, but it can surprise with its subtlety at times. The rest of the time it’s just a sledgehammer of ‘laugh like a wanker’ comedy that I can’t get enough of. It’s perfect drinking comedy, it’s perfect sober comedy and – though it’s not perfect comedy – it’s really bloody good.

I’m very much looking forward to its return, and I recommend it heartily to any and all. Here’s Charlie singing a motivational song, in order to motivate you to watch the show:

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The time I was on TV (aka: easy blog entries)

I, like I assume many of you lot, sometimes enjoy rooting through my Facebook profile to look at old photos, stupid stuff on my info page and, probably best of all, my videos. Your best bit might not be the video section, but then you don’t have this in yours:

I have never watched it. Well, I have watched it, in part and without sound, in order to edit it down to a shorter length for my NCTJ course. I haven’t watched it properly at all though. Why? Well, I don’t want to hear myself say “stunt twins”, nor do I want to hear that thing about “brands” of carpet, whatever the hell that means. And I certainly don’t want to look at my stupid, shiny face with insane eyebrows.

But hey, it amuses me that this exists, so I thought I’d post it here for the benefit of those who haven’t seen it before. And for the benefit of me, so I don’t have to do a proper blog entry today.


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Eating fried chicken, watching shit TV

There was a magical time back in the way back when, when I would blunder home in a drunken stupor and watch crap television while eating fried chicken. This is both part of the reason I am in the state I am in today, as well as at least 50 per cent of the reason I am such a fatty today. It is also about 75 per cent of the reason I know about as many pointless, shit TV shows as I do.

I watched Grounded For Life and laughed (I also thought the daughter was pretty. She wasn’t). I watched The District starring Craig T Nelson and thought it was gripping television. I looked forward to Norm, starring Norm MacDonald. But there was one thing I could never remember – I saw it, it stuck with me and I remembered it, but I never could put my finger on what it was.

Then, one day while browsing the usual nonsense I do to pass my time, I came across mention of the actor Jay Mohr. I remembered his face from an episode of Scrubs. I looked him up on Wikipedia. Suddenly, this show I remember seeing a film executive ranting at someone before dying of a heart attack became clear in my mind. It was called Action.

I downloaded Action, and have been watching episodes here and there, wherever I have some time to kill.

It’s not bad. It’s just not very good. But at the same time, it makes me feel warm inside. I think I’ll watch the rest of it. Then I shall have to download Norm, just to keep up appearances.

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FREE LCD TV! (not really, but something boring about shopping instead!)

Shocked you may be to learn this, but I am not what you would call ‘a shopper’. I don’t just not shop for things until I really have to, I actually let stuff like clothing fall to pieces before I will replace it. Some would say this is thrify, but they are idiots. I do this because I despise shopping. I never browse. I never want to aimlessly walk around for hours on end, comparing tops and going “I want it, I can afford it and it will work out as a sound – and fashionable – investment. BUT OHMYGOD SHOULD I BUY IT I DON’T THINK I WILL OHMYGOD” thirty two times in the space of four minutes.

Transport me to the world of online shopping though, and things are a little bit different. Make that online shopping for electronics and technology and you’ve got yourself some bona-fide nerd levels of interest going on. Case in point: I spent two hours this morning doing nothing but traipsing through reviews and prices for televisions, just because I may, as some point in the next month or two, be able to pick one up for cheap.

It’s not even a certainty, yet I’ve spent hours of my day doing pretty much nothing – even less than when I’m playing games or watching TV or films – because I’ve… sigh… enjoyed it. I’m not hugely technically-minded, but I know what the numbers and acronyms stand for. I can see why it might confuse people, but not me. And as a result, I want to read about the difference in performance between a 10m HDMI lead and its gold-plated equivalent. I want to know how the TV can be hung up on the wall. And I do care that the contrast ratio is less than I expected it to be.

So yeah. Turns out I do like shopping. Damn.

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