Saturday, January 05, 2008

The death of innocence: Mail discovers not all TV is live

The Daily Mail is outraged - outraged - at the discovery that Jools Holland's Hootenanny isn't actually live at all, but prerecorded. It's found some people who have managed to get through the last twenty years or whatever it is believing that all those people have nothing better to do on News Year's Eve than sit around watching Jools play boogie-woogie piano, and it feels their pain:

It meant the Hootenanny was riddled with anomalies that left many people baffled and angry.

And it came at the end of year in which the BBC was embroiled in controversy over faked programmes misleading the public.

But who's actually "mislead" by this? Frankly, the programme never sets out to decieve - as the list of "anomalies" the Mail lists demonstrates. It suggests that having Kylie on the programme while she was in Melbourne on New Years Eve, and David Tennant while he was elsewhere, was a "mistake" which revealed the programme was on tape, rather than just an indication of who was around at the time it was programmed.

The actual upsetment seems to be restricted to some people who post to the Points Of View message board:
"I personally find all this a complete insult to the viewer. The Hootenanny would work just as well without all the constant 'lying' about the time/date."

But it's not lying, is it? It's a programme for New Year's Eve, going out on New Year's Eve. It's tailoring the programme for the viewer. And what does this poster want? The programme to be renamed "the shortly before Christmas hootenanny" and to have the big count-down to 7.38pm on December the 20th instead of midnight on New Year's Eve.

The hilarious bit comes at the end:
This is the second time that the Hootenanny, a festive spin-off from Holland's Later With ... show, has sparked controversy.

Five years ago, British rapper Ms Dynamite left viewers baffled when she appeared on the programme at the same time as performing at the Hogmanay celebrations in Edinburgh.

So, in two decades, only twice has anyone cared that it's been recorded. Funny that.

Thanks to James P for the link.


Simon said...

So the Mail decided to find out what the stars were doing on New Year's Eve instead as proof it was recorded? They should have just read the BBC press office programme information release, specifically the bit which reads "The Hootenanny is an idealised New Year's Eve party with a line-up that would surely be impossible to deliver on 31 December. The stellar cast and audience are, therefore, assembled to record the show in mid-December."

Chris Brown said...

Is this not why he did that bit with the TARDIS at the start and end of the show?

Anonymous said...

Personally, if I was still sober enough on New Year's Eve to think "Hang on, that man just made a comment which suggests it's still 2007 despite us being 26 minutes into 2008", I'd be more concerned with taking a long hard look at my life than with running to the Mail. And I'm surprised to discover this sort of person watching the Hootenany anyway. Surely Natasha Kaplinsky's Inoffensive New Year Big Ben Extravaganza is more to their taste, rather than sets from Kate Nash and Seasick Steve?

Martin Belam said...

Even funnier, if you go to the BBC's message board to check out the second quote the Mail uses from a 'furious' viewer, it actually ends with "At least the man in the big red coat is real" and was clearly meant as a sarcastic jibe at any numpty who was complaining this wasn't transmitted live. The Mail just axed the sarcastic end and treated it as a genuine complaint. They do know the Queen doesn't do her spot live either?

Anonymous said...

What I don't understand is why any of you care what the Mail "thinks"?

Anonymous said...

Captain Pant: Why, the unintentional humour value, obviously. You must be new here.

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