Thursday, 25 August 2016

Memo to TV drama commissioners - Agatha Christie is not the only Golden Age crime novellist

The BBC has announced plans to film a total of eight Agatha Christie novels over the next four years. It follows their rather good adaptation of And Then There Were None shown last Christmas. I have no objection to TV versions of British Golden Age crime novels; they usually make for better viewing than modern "cosy crime" dramas such as Midsomer Murders and Sky's Agatha Raisin, and they're far more enjoyable than the likes of Grantchester, George Gently or Ripper Street, wholly modern confections in which the past is viewed through Guardian Goggles, and found severely wanting due to its humungous levels of racism, homophobia, misogyny, Christianity, xenophobia, capitalism and inequality. But why do broadcasters almost invariably choose Agatha Christie? The 1920s and 1930s earned the reputation as The Golden Age of Crime Fiction because there was so much of it - and because so much of it was first-rate. For instance...

Monday, 22 August 2016

Some recent Twitter stuff that made me laugh...

The two worst Olympics-related ideas of the week... and a reminder of what sort of human being Diane Abbott is

Yeah - that's really going to work, because who just wants to represent their own country?

British Muslims are not in danger of a white racist backlash - and many more black Americans are killed by blacks than by whites. Stop telling racist lies.

According to today's Daily Express item, the hate-preacher - who fought tooth and nail for eight long years to stay in the UK before finally being extradited to Jordan in 2013 - now feels that the West is simply too dangerous for Muslims. he told his 58,000 Twitter followers "Muslims living in the West will lose. Sedition and spread of bloodshed will devour them."

Huh?

How "The Most Dangerous Game" (1932) influenced generations of TV and film makers

The only film I have ever enjoyed in which the hero sports a mullett is Hong Kong director John Woo's first American movie, Hard Target (1993).

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

What the BBC's Home Editor said about Anjem Choudary in a news report in May 2015

“It's one thing to ban someone for inciting hatred or violence, but quite another to pass a law that silences anyone who challenges established values.
“I was in Parliament Square today – a statue of Gandhi looking down at me who was jailed for being extremist; Mandela who was jailed for being an extremist.
“History tells us that extreme views are sometimes needed to challenge a very established values that people at the time hold so dear.”
Oh really, Mark Easton? And what "established values" that people "hold so dear" (you can hear the sneering contempt in those phrases) was...

New study shows tall people are more politically conservative - if they are, why are they?

This from a report at the phys.org website:
The taller a person is, the more likely he or she is to support conservative political positions, support a conservative party and actually vote for conservative politicians, according to a new study using data from Britain.
"If you take two people with nearly identical characteristics - except one is taller than the other - on average the taller person will be more politically conservative," said Sara Watson, co-author of the study and assistant professor of political science at The Ohio State University.
The researchers found that a one-inch increase in height increased support for the Conservative Party by 0.6 percent and the likelihood of voting for the party by 0.5 percent.

Shhh! Don't tell BBC Scotland this kid was one of the three finalists on Sky's "Guitar Star" just a few weeks ago!

...so the word "plucked" seems a trifle disingenuous. Still, the kid's always worth listening to, whoever's claiming to have "discovered" him. Here - when he was just 14 - Billy Watman plays his own arrangement of "Bohemian Rhapsody" for three enraptured Guitar Star mentors: Tony Visconti, George Benson and Miloš Karadaglić:

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

What caused the Milwaukee riots - selfish rich people or failed left-wing policies? You decide...

First, there's this resident who thinks blacks are rioting because "the rich people they got all this money, and they not tryin' to give us none" (at 40" in):


Then there's Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke's slightly different take on the problem:

This book was written by two Lib Dems - and the publisher is bringing out a new edition!

Presumably "Don't run as a Lib Dem" is No. 1 on the list...