Tag Archives: Mike

Glee 206: A kiss is just a kiss

I know we don’t watch Glee for its gritty realism. I accept that in real life, high schools aren’t crammed with elderly-looking kids who all have Broadway-standard singing voices. A certain suspension of disbelief is vital in Glee-land, we understand that. But the writers mess with this too much, provoking even uncritical fans into yelling at the telly, ‘AAARGH! That’s just SO unrealistic.’

This week I give you:

  • An all-boys school in which gay students are not only warmly welcomed, but are leaders of the pack.
  • An epidemic of students – female as well as male – imagining the football coach to stave off premature arrival, and calling out her name, yet!
  • Coach Beiste claiming to be forty.
  • Puck returning from juvenile detention centre with an orange tan and a certain plumpness around the cheeks. Did he have some work done while in there?
  • The least plausible make-out scene ever in the history of television (between Tina and Mike).

So wrong it's right.

I checked the credits to see if two writers shared this week’s episode, as the main storylines were of such differing quality. But no – step up, lone writer Mr Brad Falchuk, clearly a fellow wrestling with the effects of strong medication. He holds responsibility for the Grilled Cheesus debacle, but also wrote the wonderful Preggers episode in Season 1, in which the football team did All The Single Ladies. In this current episode how could the same person who gave us the superb storyline between Kurt and Dave-the-Bully also give us the face-palmingly awful Coach Beiste plot? I’m afraid I have no answers, only questions.

Continue reading

Comments Off on Glee 206: A kiss is just a kiss

Filed under Glee

Glee 204: Sweet lady kisses

After the behind-a-cushion cringe-fest of last week’s ‘Grilled Cheesus’ (which traumatised me too much to review), this week’s Glee was a cracking return to form. There was even a lesbian kiss, always a joy. As in all the best episodes, the plot was wafer-thin. They had to perform duets to win a meal at the excellent-sounding Breadstix restaurant (where, Santana explained, ‘they are legally obliged to keep bringing you breadsticks’). I think a Breadstix would do well in Brighton. Anyway, as there was no story I will just bring you some highs and lows.

The songs – At last, some decent tunes: a marvellous Mercedes/Santana River Deep – Mountain High, which is so obviously a Glee-type song you wonder what took them so long. Gotta love Santana’s jazz hands. And I thought Tina and Mike’s duet, in which he spoke his words like Rex Harrison, worked really well. But these all paled into insignificance next to…

…Kurt and Rachel together  – at last! The moment fans of high-end camp have been waiting for. All gimmicks shoved aside, Kurt and Rachel perched on high stools and ripped into the Streisand/Garland mash-up with great verve. Channelling his inner Judy – actually never very far from the surface – Kurt looked more relaxed than ever before. And this was easily Rachel’s least annoying Barbra impersonation. Marvellous! Mr Qwerty, who is just gay enough, leaped from his seat applauding.

That kiss – Wearing their cheerleaders’ outfits, Brittany and Santana twined together on the bed. ‘Ahh,’ sighed Brittany happily, ‘Sweet lady kisses.’

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Glee

The Archers: Driving me Mental

I was chatting to my friend Fanoflinda the other day, and she said something extraordinary. She said she had changed her mind about something. As this had never happened before, I bade her speak on.

‘You know how I’m always complaining about the mental health storylines on the Archers?’
‘Yes, you never stop.’
‘How everyone with a mental health issue – Mike, Helen, Pat, Alistair, Eddie – has a few weeks of a problem in its most clichéd form, before it abruptly disappears following a magical radio-land intervention of a very brief therapy course, or a couple of tablets, or simply having realised that things aren’t so bad after all?’
‘I do remember you mentioning this, yes.’
‘And how I lamented that these things should be more realistically portrayed? And how terrific it is on the rare occasions when they are?’
‘Such as Jack’s Alzheimers’, we chorused together.

Fanoflinda is, as you may have guessed, a mental health professional herself. Her dearest wish is to be employed by Vanessa Whitburn as the Archers psychiatric story-editor. ‘Frankly I’d have a lot more to do than that cushy number, the agricultural story editor. He just has to remind them about beets every so often, then goes back to eating cheese and reading Playboy’.

Betty will tell you: it's no joke working in a pub.

‘So what have you changed your mind about?’
‘It’s Jolene. She’s in the throes of post-bereavement depression. Very natural, very well-played, very accurate. People take months, years, to get over something like this.’
‘And?’
‘And it’s boring the bejesus out of me. It would be better if she’d got over it by now.’

Ain’t that the truth. Someone being permanently depressed doesn’t make good radio. Yes, I know you’re going to say what about Marvin in Hitchhikers, but Marvin wasn’t trying to run a pub. Listening to Jolene being depressed as she pours Shires onto the floor and breaks glasses and forgets to greet people is about as much fun as listening to one of Bert’s poems.

It’s no wonder punters are leaving the Bull in droves. I just hope Jolene doesn’t drive us listeners away too. What she needs now is a session of CBT, or a couple of Prozac, or alternatively just realising how much everyone loves her via Harry’s Facebook group.

Posted by Qwerty.           See more Archers posts here.

10 Comments

Filed under The Archers

The Archers: A riot of ennui

And cut! Grandma, can you tell us how you did that pattern on the top? Wake up, Grandma.

Everyone’s got their favourite. I’ve got loads. My most recent is from just the other day. It’s the one where Josh films Jill making steak and kidney pie. He might just as well have painted a wall and set the camera to record it for fifteen minutes. If I tell you that the only vaguely interesting thing that happened was Kenton referring to the pie as ‘snake and pygmy’, it’ll give you some idea.

Boring episodes of the Archers. Lord knows, there’s an embarrassment of riches to choose from. All which feature the flower and produce show, for instance; and there’s so many of those, is it any wonder that Bert Fry has taken to phoning in his surprise at being awarded a rosette for the biggest marrow? All which centre around harvest festival, Easter or other Anglican red-letter day, and their counterpart, any based round a service in St Stephens, can be added to the teetering mound of mundanity. And naturally, any one in which Tom reveals that his sausages are organic. The presence of Tom alone counteracts any other possible excitement. He neutralises heists, earthquakes and Lilian’s giggle at a stroke.

Fanoflinda recalls fondly a particularly soporific episode in which Phil (god rest his soul) and Jill were showing holiday snaps. ‘Look at Jill in that hat!’ the poor actors were forced to cry. You could hear the sounds of their careers being flushed down the toilet – or you would have, if the flushing loo sound effect hadn’t been deemed too interesting.

Continue reading

15 Comments

Filed under The Archers

The Archers: Why Vicky’s patio heaters warm my heart

Foarchers logor years, us die-hard Archers listeners have had to get our jollies from just one or two vaguely entertaining characters, their appearances doled out in meagre helpings across the week. We had to rely for light relief on the occasional dirty laugh from Lillian, or a gnomic interlude involving cider and Joe Grundy. Now, suddenly, the show’s been inundated with wall-to-wall personalities. We’ve got Vicky, Jim and Wayne going head-to-head in a consolidated attempt to turn the Archers from a soap in which there are seven dull characters for every interesting one, to the other way round.

Those of you who haven’t visited Ambridge since Nelson Gabriel popped his clogs won’t recognise the place. When you last saw Mike the milkman he was a steady sort, married to solid Betty who knew that no situation was so fraught it couldn’t be righted by one of her barm cakes. Now Betty’s buried in the garden (natural causes), and Mike is married to Vicky, who he only knew for two sex-drenched weeks before popping the question in a haze of testosterone.

Vicky is to Betty what Jordan is to Thora Hird. Vicky is big, brash, brassy, and yes, I’m going to have to say it, common. Vicky, who has infiltrated herself into village life faster than one of Eddie’s ferrets, has a swooping Brummy voice that could shatter Mike’s milk bottles. Numerous references have been made down the Bull to her fun-loving personality and womanly figure, which must make Jolene, classic barmaid with a heart of gold hidden under a large décolletage, and previous title-holder of most-mentioned bosom in the village, seethe into her Martini and coke. Vicky is everywhere, all the time, all over the place, like, well, Martini. We suspect even Mike must be getting fed up with her steam-rollering over everything in her jolly, loud, Bette Midler kind of way. I mean, just how good in bed must she be to override all other requirements of middle-aged companionship? Don’t answer that.

 Now Vicky has struck up an unlikely friendship with Linda Snell. True, they are both outsiders whom no-one else can stand. But in every other regard, they are nothing alike. In a scene of exquisite excruciatingness, the sort the Archers does so well, a gushing Vicky invited Linda and Long-Suffering Robert (to give him his full name) to dinner in her newly tarted-up garden. You could tell from Linda’s sniff after being given the full tour that we weren’t just talking about a few pelargoniums. That sniff spoke volumes. That sniff told us there were fairy lights and baroque benches and screens and ornamental grasses and decking and water features, and poor old Betty turning in her grave under a tree in the middle of it all.

Best of all, there were patio heaters, and Linda, a long-time eco-warrior sat under them, perspiring with rage. Just as L.S. Robert reached to switch one off, along bustled Vicky in full fig, and, assuming her guests were feeling cold, turned it up. The ensuing social awkwardness was sheer heaven and one of the reasons why the Archers is right back on track.

 Next time: Why Wayne Tucson is King of the Road (and a Man of Means by No Means)

 Posted by Qwerty

6 Comments

Filed under The Archers