Tuesday, March 27, 2007

TV For A Change

I first started this blog to review tv programmes. I would sit watching a recording, stopping and starting it, taking notes. It all became a bit of a chore. Now I try to get to the essence of things (oh, yeah?), leaving the details for when I do my retirement blog in 2041.

Now we're more involved in the reading and commenting merry-go-round of blogging, we rarely get the time to sit down and watch a programme in full on a single night. They're dispersed in half hour chunks over the week, we only catch up properly over a miniature glass of wine or two at the weekends.

Recent viewing has been dominated by the BBC's series of documentaries on the history of slavery and racism. There's an illustration of the hold of a slave ship which crops up again and again. It's a drawing looking from above down on human beings laying chained together, packed like sardines. You can't see the death and the disease. You can't smell the stench. It looks so neat and ordered, when of course it's inhumanity at pretty much its worst, planned by an ordered mind, a cruel bastard of a mind. A mind which sees other human beings as inanimate objects, tools to be used for making money.

The only programme in the series to make me smile so far featured Ms Dynamite (Ms Dynamite tee hee) travelling to Jamaica to discover some more about the Maroons, escaped slaves who fought and beat a British army of vastly superior numbers. The British didn't know the terrain and were slaughtered. (Thinking of drafted young British men being slaughtered is not the bit that made me smile).

The Maroons leader was a woman nicknamed Nanny, a Jamaican Boudica who as legend would have it used to cushion British bullets in her arse and still come back for more. The arse actually belonged to a scarecrow type decoy but the legend's a good one and is more entertaining than Superman.

The original Maroons were warriors but their descendents look as if they couldn't fight their way out of a paper bag. This, of course, may be deceptive and maybe they could still give a colonial army a pasting. Then again, no, they're too nice for that.

I have opposing feelings for Ms Dynamite. I can't stand her music but perhaps because she is not the most articulate interviewer they could have chosen, I like her. Then again I like the more articulate Moira Stuart who presented another of the films in this series. So it's not inverse snobbery on my part. Oh no. I just like Ms Dynamite and Moira Stuart.


  1. I used to be quite fond of Napoleon Dynamite before he started making Art instead of music.

  2. Welcome, Bock.

    Elvis Costello?

    I was very fond of him a long time ago.