“Television is known as a medium, because it is neither rare nor well done.”
I just had three clips deleted from Youtube, because the production company involved protested I was violating their copyright. Of course I WAS violating their copyright, and they’re perfectly within their rights. I just figured they wouldn’t mind if an old show they made, which isn’t on air anymore, maintaining some kind of tenuous presence in the public’s mind.
(Actually, yesterday was Youtube Trouble Day — just as I embedded that great clip of Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra, the person who’d Youtubed it disabled embedding, doubtless peeved that I had likened the teen Nancy to a mythological cave creature. I thought I’d taken the sting from that epithet by complimenting her on blossoming into the flower of young womanhood seen in the Some Velvet Morning promo, but apparently “Hubertblues”, if that really is his name, was not placated. Sorry, H.B.)
Don’t worry, the video clips were not things I’ve used on this blog, because I like you guys too much. The show, which I’d worked on extensively, was really… not too great. I’d posted what I thought were the best bits, partly for the relief of separating them out from the truly unwatchable baloney appended by the production company.
But since this anonymous co. has messed me around, and since they were truly nightmarish to work with, I am retaliating, pointlessly, with some brief character sketches. These might prove useful as an awful warning for those contemplating careers in television, they might be amusing to anybody in the Scottish television industry who can recognise the personages referred to from their descriptions, but mostly they are a VENTING OF SPLEEN.
Oh, and one or all of them may in fact be entirely fictitious, just to keep the libel lawyers sedentary.
(1) The puffy figurehead: he tore a strip out of one of my colleagues for daring to have lunch. All the bad stuff happened on his watch, so I’m holding him responsible even though I doubt he knew about ANY of it. I bumped into somebody who used to work for him, who said he’d blatantly stolen their ideas, and “can’t bear to be contradicted, runs the place like a private fiefdom and hands out promotions like sweeties so he’s surrounded by people under-qualified for their jobs.” Enough of him.
(2) The weird, quiet, passive-aggressive fortysomething who still lives with his mum. Used the opportunity of a production job, which he seriously sucked at, in order to give himself a writing job, which he UNBELIEVABLY sucked at. NOBODY would have hired this guy to write ANYTHING, except this guy. Of course, he was biased, but he was probably also dumb and tasteless enough to have hired himself as writer even if he’d been a stranger. Basically this guy was responsible for both the slipshod management of the show, the unpleasant pressure, the derelict artistic direction, and also he was directly, personally responsible for actually GENERATING most of the garbage we had to use in the episodes just to fill out the running time.
(3) The creepy, creepy, creepy minor functionary who failed to perform his meagre tasks worth a damn but rose up the microcephallic totem pole irresistibly, like damp, inserting covert smut and vile misogyny into this ostensibly child-oriented, ostensibly educational, ostensibly entertaining show. Nobody’s mind was actually dirty enough to catch all the innuendos he was inserting, so that a heavily-disguised reference to anal sex with a little girl actually made it into one episode.
(4) The lackadaisical technician who executed his duties so listlessly and uncaringly, you would think he was in a MacJob, as opposed to Living The Dream of working in Teevee and working in a craft that has brought pleasure and beauty to millions. Not a particularly horrible person, just a devotee of the mediocre and a soulless servant of the crass.
The ex-employee I met later summed it up, saying that bottom-feeding independent companies trafficking in what Graham Linehan calls “funography,” are just BAD PLACES TO WORK, which still doesn’t really make sense to me. It seems like even that misguided show and that wretched company could have been tolerable with different people in charge — it’s incredible to me that you could find such a concentration of offensive idiots ANYWHERE. In some cut-throat environment where only the most ruthless prosper, none of them would have the smarts to survive. In a caring milieu where the dopey and inept receive nurturing and affection, their obnoxious personalities would have them kicked out into a blizzard.
I have to assume that the only reason they are all alive and working together is because their attempts to murder each other have all miscarried due to base incompetence.