Saturday, May 19, 2012

Gary Barlow loves the Queen

While we're on the subject of Sing, Gary Barlow's Official Diamond Jubilee Song, let's just take a quick look at it:

Don't bother hitting the play button, it's dreadful, obviously, and always seems to have an advert for Internet Explorer stuck at the front of it.

What's incredible is that Barlow has managed to turn out a crappy Christmas single that doesn't even have the saving grace of being near Christmas to generate goodwill.

And the video. Oh, lord, the video. At one point, there are angry black people running out the forest waving spears - but don't worry, because Barlow calms them down with his winning smile and mellow tune.

Perhaps Barlow misunderstood the brief, and thought he was celebrating Victoria's Diamond Jubilee, where that sort of portrayal of angry natives being taught how to be civilised by the white man was still - just about - in vogue.

When he's not setting ethnography back a century, Barlow falls back onto cliche - if this is Australia, we'll need a shot of the Opera House; even the opening shot of a slightly stiff Charles muttering with Barlow is what you'd expect.

And then there's the Barlow. For a song that's supposedly about how great the Queen is, it looks oddly like a video about how great Gary Barlow is.

In fact, he's touring the world, looking interested in what the locals are up, listening politely, sometimes joining in, in a good-natured way. Maybe Gary doesn't see himself as the Prince William of Take That. It looks a lot like Barlow sees himself as, if not actually being the Queen, at least as playing her role in the video.