Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Coming to your screens soon

I am obliged (as ever) to Dave for the impetus to pen this missive to my friends at the BBC.

Dear Sir

Due to my acute perspicacity, I have observed the trend for the television companies to fill the 8413 channels currently broadcasting with all sorts of banal nonsense, the latest trend seeming to be to send some well known public figure to some place on Earth and have them report on it. I confess to not having watched all of them, being somewhat preoccupied with the series on “How to make your own Grand Canyon” on the Macramé channel, but those that I have seen seem to be lacking in originality and educational depth.

I am not sure what the aims of these programmes are. Most of the venues that are seen as “interesting” have already been filmed and reported on several times, mostly by Michael Palin. Perhaps it is time to for some genuine investigative reporting and for visiting some places that are genuinely fascinating and yet neglected by the media.

May I suggest the lovely village of Kingsley, in North East Hampshire, as a suitable site for in-depth study? We have two churches, a functioning post office, a Saxon village hall and an extraordinary sand pit. There is an active campaign to attract the 2016 Olympics, and a massive leading-edge political campaign to have the speed limit reduced, which is now entering its fifty third year. Apparently there are concerns that someone crossing the main road may be involved in an accident. I have only lived here for twenty years, and have therefore had no occasion to cross the road, but this should not minimise the possible danger.

You will not be slow to recognise the potential in this idea. I would suggest that anything more than a thirteen part series may result in intrusion in the lives of the residents, and therefore judicious editing will need to be a feature of the production.

I suggest that one of the following heavyweight presenters would be most suitable – it would be a shame to spoil the idea by engaging the services of someone not equal to the challenge:
Stephen Fry
Michael Palin
Goldie Hawn
Armando Iannucci
Penelope Cruz
Alexei Sayle.

Please keep me informed. I will not be seeking financial recompense for this idea.

I will let you all know the response. I expect a standard "thanks for your suggestion ... at this time". Anyone got any better guesses as to the reply?


Rol Hirst said...

Dear Mr. Scurra,

Thank you for your suggestion. In fact, we already despatched Anneka Rice to film just such a programme. The last we heard from her, she was trapped inside a burning wicker effigy, being rolled down a hillside towards a pit of boiling tar, while screaming "stop the clock, stop the clock!"

Next week, we're sending Carol Voorderman to do a follow-up report.

Geoff said...

Penelope Cruz?

More likely to be Carol Thatcher.

Murph said...

What about "Kingsley Amiss" as a title?

Anyway I thought that obese scottish twat whose Uncle John played the Saxaphone has already done it in McLard & McLaird's Fat Ugly Bikers Rural Rides in a BSA Twin with Steib Sidecar? Perhaps it was Ewan Macgregor.

Good luck, anyway.

Vicus Scurra said...

The comments so far have been less than encouraging.
Kenneth Clarke would have done it.
Or Thor Heyerdahl.

john.g. said...

What about Zoe? Now she's famous!

Hoosier said...

You're lucky they haven't yet thought of sending Britney Spears and that ungodly bit of fluff Paris Hilton to cover your corner of the Earth.

Though the pleasure of having them the hell away from here might make it worth the effort of writing a letter of my own to the BBC. Now if only I can think of a way of sendng Rupert Murdoch with them....bliss.

ziggi said...

If you're planning on crossing the road sometime soon I could come and film it on my phone, apparently it can do that. I'd have to have a bit of warning first though so I have time to find the instructions.

Vicus Scurra said...

John. I know Zoe is famous, and I have, in the past, been unnecessarily rude to her. I am trying to put this behaviour behind me, and thus will not be saying that the silly bugger won't be able to find her way here - I have been waiting for a Christmas card for 20 months. No idea where she sent it.
Hoosier. Please desist. Don't send us your rubbish, and we won't send you David Beckham and Englebert Humperdinck.
Ziggi. Please desist from encouraging me in inappropriate and unseemly behaviour. I will not be cajoled into attention seeking acts such as crossing the B3004 without very good reason. I am sorry to be harsh, and I can see you are excited by your new toy, but decorum is a way of life in North East Hampshire.

Reg Pither said...

Dear Mrs Scurra,

Thank you for filling our autumn schedule - truth be told, Daz, Kaz, Laz, Maz and Rupert had run out of ideas.
"Crossing 'The Road' with Graham Norton" will be out in September, "How Clean Is Your Sandpit? with Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands" is planned for October and "Villages Hitler Missed and Other Mistakes of the Third Reich with Timmy Mallet" is being run up the flagpole with the old DG as we speak.
P.S. According to our records, you have not paid your television licence since Mr MacMillan returned from our Berlin licensing office to proudly display his to the waiting media. Pay up or we'll send round Ms Feltz.

Vicus Scurra said...

Reg is just pulling my leg. I am tempted to reciprocate.

Richard said...

Have you a village pond? Rick Stein will doubtless soon be round to fricassé the incumbent fauna in a nice jus. You won't be able to move for Porsche 4 x 4s as Fulham decamps en masse down the A3.

homo escapeons said...

Let us face facts. We as a species tend to ignore in droves anything tainted by the mindnumbing effects of Investigative Reporting.

Most would click over to celebrate the zany antics of David Hasselhoff demonstrating the unique senasations and forbidden pleasures of do-it-yourself colonoscopic probing using only everyday household materials found in your kitchen, at the local car boot sale.

It matters not whether the subject matter is a charming village such as Kingsley, unless a nekked Sienna Miller was given a 15 minute lead to hide somewhere in the village before Colin Farrell was released.

That being said, if the tall foreheads at the BBC could conscript the services of a well rounded panel of experts on reproduction and locomotion such as Desmond Morris, Samantha Fox, Prince Michael of Kent, and Barbara Woodhouse, to describe in plain English and in great detail, WHAT will eventually take place, most likely on all fours, once Colin locates his prey.

I should think that any travelogue with the bar raised higher than this would receive less than an 8 share on a Tuesday afternoon time slot.

Dave said...


At this moment in time we are minded to thank you for your suggestion.

We believe your needs will be met by the new BBC97 channel, and its cutting-edge documentary series: 'The land that time forgot: English villages and their idiots.'

zoe said...

john, i am not bloody famous.
vicus, if i can make it up to leicester, wherever that godforsaken place is, to have a pint with john and keith, could you be arsed to join us ? and no, i have no idea where kingsley is. all i know is that it's not in belgium.

(that way i can give you the 4 christmas cards that keep coming back to me that i have here.)

Vicus Scurra said...

Richard. Indeed. Does Kingsley have a pond?, you ask. Does Crewe have a railway station? Does Kent have a coastline? How could you not know?
Donn. I find your cynicism disappointing. Things are not so bad here that what is on television is dictated by what is popular. Were that the case, then Saturday evening fare would be nothing but tripe.
Dave - does that mean that you or I get to star in the series opener?
Zoe. I do not fancy the prospect of being "arsed". I am not, as you know, judgemental, and if that is what your other friends do, then fair enough, but I will not join in, if that is OK. If you meant "bothered", and if so I am disappointed that a well known author does not avoid ambiguity, then my presence in Leicester is not beyond the bounds of possibility.

I, like the view said...

"dear sweet vicus

we know you didn't want any money, but our very generous cheque is already in the post

now you may retire, gracefully, or ungracefully should you so choose, to a destination of your choice

unless you haven't already

lots of love

auntie beeb"


Vicus Scurra said...

ILTV. You should work for the BBC.
(Is your surname 'Thribb', perchance?)

john.g. said...

Vicus, you and Zoe coming to see me and the old git for a pint, I can't wait, my round!

Vicus Scurra said...

John, I am orgasmic with anticipation.

Arabella said...

Please, while you're at it can you ask the people at BEEB America, (third broom cupboard on the left, the one with the reel to reel) to stop sending multiple copies of bloody Monarch of the bloody Glen over here? Thanks

I, like the view said...

dear vicus, you have such an enquiring mind; as do I!

look what I learnt today:

"Of the private life of EJ Thribb, the woman behind the myth, very little is known. A retiring person, she jealously guards the secrets of her private life, a privacy shared only with her friend, Keith, and Keith's mum. It can certainly be said that her inspiration owes something to the constant interchange of debate and theory she shares with these close companions but it is impossible, from the fleeting glimpses of her South London world, to assess fully its influences on the poet and her work."


oh, and I need a job