If there’s one person that I’m simply sick of seeing on my TV night after night, it has to be Graham Norton. I actually used to enjoy his original show, So Graham Norton, back in the day; at the time he was best known for his recurring role in Father Ted, his schtick was relatively fresh, and his unrelenting campness set him apart from the rest of the Friday night schedule. Plus, he was only on once a week — not enough exposure to get on viewers’ nerves. But when the show went from one to _five_ nights a week, Norton lost virtually everything he had going for him.
V Graham Norton, while loosely the same format as its predecessor, has none of the charm of the original Friday night spectacle. It is an empty temple of camp, adrift amidst an ocean of stereotypical, garishly baroque _faux_ gayness, with Norton cast as captain or cult leader or whoever he’s decided to dress up as this time. And not only is everybody else ripping off his tune (is there a queer quotient for late night entertainment now? — it sure seems that way) but Norton himself is at it for over half an hour five times a week. The same dried-up formula. Five times a week.
And they all go a little something like this:
>Here’s tonight’s guest — the late Judy Garland. First of all, Judy, tell me about your latest film. Mmm. Really? Out on Friday you say? Gosh. Hey, look at this — it’s a website run by a 48-year-old American pervert who likes to dress up as you and poo on the floor. And he’s on the phone now! Crazy! I wonder, has anyone in the studio audience ever done a poo? Hands up! Yes, you, the bloated, cackling sea cow. What’s that? You once pooed on a willy?!? Outrageous! Look, Judy, I’ve got a polaroid of a willy here! Hold it up! Ha ha, look everyone, Judy Garland’s holding a willy! Tee hee! Chuckle! Snort! (Repeat to fade.)
Thanks to Charlie Brooker’s Screen Burn column in last Saturday’s Guardian Guide (from which the above segment was pilfered) one need never have to suffer through these antics ever again. The only trouble is, how to avoid hitting the dreaded mine that is Graham Norton whilst channel surfing every night?