Sunday, January 15, 2006


We're still trying to come to an understanding of why Jimmy Saville has popped up on Celebrity Big Brother. Is he thanking Michael Barrymore for taking the heat off him as the most-rumoured-about light entertainment celeb in the UK by taking the CBB heat of Barrymore for a moment? Or was it just they wanted the - admittedly wonderful - look on Pete Burns face as Saville wandered about the house. Burns and Saville both have their roots in precisely the same vaudeville tradition, but like a chimp and a bison, it's hard to believe they've both evolved from the same point.

Germaine Greer, of course, has been making some cash for herself by condemning the whole series as horrid and bullying. Indeed, she's had quite a lucrative reprise of the arguments she made in The Times last year, where she condemned the producers Endemol as being akin to Orwell's Inner Party:

It would be pompous to suggest that the proliferation of ordeal television is actively promoting a bullying culture in Britain without a lot more work being done on the extent and nature of bullying in schools and workplaces. But it is now up to the British public to decide what should become of cruelty television, and to turn their thumbs down.

What's curious, though, is Greer seemed to be quite happy to take the cash from the Endemol Inner Party to trot out an outrage-by-numbers performance on Big Brother's Big Mouth last night. Germaine, coudl you explain how signing up to add gravitas to the sideshows is meant to encourage people to shun the circus?

Meanwhile, George Galloway turned out to be really good at keeping his head in a cardboard box - a skill he could use when trying to avoid his constituents in the future.
Earlier: The cost of Pete Burn's face