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Showing posts from January, 2018

Brendan Cole has been given his marching orders from Strictly – and the question on everybody's lips is, “who will be next?”

It was the moment the sequinned rug was pulled out from under many a Strictly fan's feet yesterday (Tuesday) when the announcement was made by the BBC that professional dancer Brendan Cole had been dropped from this year's show.
The shock was double fold. Brendan, who has been with the programme since the very beginning, was a part of the furniture. He was as much our familiar friend as the spinning glitter balls, Dave Arch's band and the sweeping steps down onto the dance floor. In short, he could not, must not, go.
Admittedly he hasn't always been the most restrained of characters when it comes to receiving feedback from the judges. He was always prepared to argue back if he did not agree with their critique – and certainly during the last series there was one particular humdinger with judge Shirley Ballas which was a little awkward to watch.
But I always felt his back chat came from a good place – a passionate wish to give his celebrity dance partner the utmost sup…

Trump/Morgan – the dumbed down interview for these dumbed down times

Love Island, The Only Way is Essex, the X Factor, Big Brother.
Piers Morgan's interview with American President Donald Trump fits seamlessly into this picture of insubstantial, gruel-like televisual viewing, which the masses have proved to have an insatiable appetite for in this current age. It satisfies but still leaves you empty. Exposed to too much, the viewer will become vegetative, start to drool...
The Romans brought in amphitheatres, the gladiatorial ring, in order to keep the people down through entertainment. Whilst huge swathes of the population were baying for blood in the auditorium, their attention was taken away from the important events taking place in the outside world. The result was they were too powerless, sedated on blood-lust, to take action and revolt against a system, which had been thrust upon them whilst their backs were turned.
The huge upsurge in reality TV over the past decade is our own gladiatorial ring, A pact between the mighty and powerful of ente…

It looks like curtains for May but who will take up her mantle? Enter the fireplace lothario

So, if media reports are to be believed, Theresa May has had it as Prime Minister – yet again. She is certainly getting grief from all sides. Within her own Tory cabinet there are calls for her to spell out her stance on Brexit or face a vote of no confidence, whilst the House of Lords start a mammoth 12 day stint ripping apart – sorry, assessing – the EU Withdrawal Bill this week and so far they have said it needs a major rewrite and is constitutionally flawed. A little bit of work to do back in the Commons then.
Even Donald Trump, who had nothing short of a love-in with Mrs May over in Davos last week – to the point I spent the weekend trying to construct their 'couple name' – Tr-ay and M-ump were the best I could come up with – has kicked her to the curb. He said in that interview with fellow narcissist Piers Morgan on Sunday night, that he would have tackled Brexit much better than Mrs May and that he “understood” the British people (heaven help us).
But I'm suspiciou…

Trump has pledged to come to the UK and save Brexit – He's probably got the wrong end of the stick about the President's Club

There has been endless talk of building bridges over troubled water this week from the 'Boris Bridge' over the English Channel to the DUP's proposal of an even larger bridge joining Northern Ireland to Scotland.
But all other bridges pale into insignificance in the face of the one built between Donald Trump and Theresa May at Davos – the World Economic Forum. Not only is the American President's visit to the UK back on – prepare the banners – but he has also pledged to save Brexit with “tremendous trade”.
So what actually went on? Well it all took place in what amounted to a 15 minute meeting between the two leaders - Trump ever the fast worker. The President began by declaring his love for the Prime Minister. He said the US would always be there for Britain. “We love your country” and we “like each other a lot”.
This all appeared to indicate the special relationship between the two countries - which had been all but squandered due to tensions over those Britain First…

As a real-life Jezebels club is exposed and shut down, surely post-#MeToo, these all-male, sleaze-fests will only be pushed further underground

It's heartening to know that in 2018 the public are able to send out a clear message that just because a group of men are rich and powerful and operating in the name of 'charity', they are not licensed to sexually harass women. Sadly, this will not be the end of the matter.
The antics of the President's Club - which appears to have been set up for the chief purpose of enabling the richest and most powerful men in the country to sample the delights of good food, expensive wine and pretty women of an evening, in exchange for a charitable donation - have been busted wide open.
This is thanks to two intrepid female reporters from the Financial Times who went undercover seeking employment as 'hostesses' at the President's Club's latest sordid event held at the Dorchester Hotel in London last week. The women reported back a truly shocking account of how they were treated on the evening which, as is tradition, was attended only by men with the hostesses actin…

This week's must-have purchase - the feminist Ugg boot

Many feminists will feel let down by Germaine Greer this week after she criticised the #MeToo movement. A leading feminist herself, it felt she turned her back on the cause somewhat when she labelled all those who had participated in the phenomenal, online anti-sexual harassment campaign as “whingers”.
Speaking to the media after being named 'Australian of the Year' at an awards ceremony in London, she declared that women should react immediately when faced with sexual abuse or harassment and the #MeToo “business” - as she called it - would not work.
She explained that all the powerful men who were now “in all sorts of trouble” would already be briefing their lawyers. “It's going to be the OJ Simpson trial all over again in spades, it will go on and on, and it will pit woman against woman and I'm really concerned that the women who have given testimony now will be taken to pieces. Because power is power, ultimately, and the people protesting are people who don't h…

Marney and me – a UKIP love affair

Endeavouring to understand the ructions within the UKIP party is a bit like tuning into a film half-way through. There is the love interest, the power struggle, the baddie looming in the wings, but you quickly realise you have missed all the vital groundwork to help you understand exactly what is going on and are not sure you care enough to Google the plot to find out.
I am of course referring to UKIP leader Henry Bolton and his on-off girlfriend, glamour model and party activist, Jo Marney, who have proved a tabloid newspaper's dream over the last few weeks.
Bolton has risen from apparent obscurity to take the place of UKIP leader, after a number of failed attempts to keep anyone in the job for more than 30 seconds, and whilst only holding the post for four months, he is a practical old-timer by UKIP standards.
He wasn't worth more than a passing mention until around Christmas time when he left his wife and his two young children and began a relationship with Miss Marney. Th…

Boris Bridge – the quest to enshrine himself in history continues

We all know when it comes to Boris Johnson's approach to politics it is not about what he is doing now – which is essentially to lurch from one gaff to another, each a little less funny than the last – it is about what he will be remembered for.
He wants to be slotted into this country's political history next to his hero Winston Churchill and to do so, he knows he needs to be remembered for one great thing – in Churchill's case the small matter of the Second World War. In Boris' case...well Boris is still working on that.
No doubt he hopes his latest mad-cap scheme, Boris Bridge, will be the one piece of alliterative genius to secure him historical immortality. This bridge would span the width of the English Channel, uniting Britain with France.
During the Anglo-French conference last week Boris piped up that it was “ridiculous” that the two countries, which are only 22 miles apart, are not linked by road. Choosing to ignore the fact we already have the Channel Tunne…