Thursday, 12 March 2015

Save Jeremy Clarkson

Clarkson-bashing is a harmless and popular British past-time, but it is not altogether fair. Yes, he's a disheveled, grey-haired, 54-year-old who looks more like 64 - due to a lifetime of fags and beer - and yes, he took out one of those much maligned super-injunctions to stop his wife finding out about his affair, but he does have redeeming features and his being on a "final warning" was not really fair in the first place.

Supposedly he used the N-word when choosing a car, using the rhyme eeny, meeny, miney, moe, catch a [redacted] by the toe, etc, but he careful was not to say the actual word, and even arranged for the  whole scene not to be broadcast anyway but some BBC trouble-maker fished the clip out of the bin and sent it to the press. Then he said the word "slope" in reference to a bridge he helped build (he didn't help much if memory serves) and this was deemed to be racist to Asians. Who knew "slope" was racist to Asians? Not many people, probably not Clarkson himself at the time he said it. Then he drove a car with a provocative number place ending in FLK while filming in Argentina. But he did not choose the car - he was just given it and told to drive it; and the Argentinians don't even call the Falklands the Falklands anyway, it's Las Malvinas to them.

So he's on a "final warning" largely on trumped up charges.

On the plus side, he has shown an admirable commitment to public service broadcasting. Sky and ITV have been after him for years. He could have earned far with them than he does at the BBC but he stayed put. He is of course seriously rich, but most of his money actually comes from his commercial sector work, writing for national newspapers and the like. His money does not come out of our license fees. He could probably double his fortune by doing a single car commercial, but he doesn't.

Quite the reverse in fact; he is instrumental in earning large sums for the BBC from the foreign syndication rights of the Top Gear programme. If the BBC sack him the license fee would have to go up.

Clarkson's real problem is that he has an influential enemy, the head of BBC TV - one Danny Cohen.

Danny Cohen: Over-promoted

Cohen has brought us such trash TV as Snog, Marry, Avoid and managed to worm himself into a powerful position at the BBC. He seems to have taken a dislike to Carkson, possibly because Clarkson is not a lesbian, black or a muslim and Cohen is PC on steroids.

And little better illustrates the two-faced attitude of BBC management than the fact that last night on BBC3, while Clarkson is supposedly "suspended", they showed an old Top Gear programme in which Clarkson proposed punching in the head civil servants who impose unnecessary speed limits on motorways, and even gave a little demo of how the punch should be aimed.

So rather than #SaveJeremyClarkson this blog proposes #SackDannyCohen and maybe even give Clarkson the Head of TV job, since he has such a talent for creating TV we can sell around the world. Cohen is certainly not worth the hundreds of thousands of pounds we pay him every year. Clarkson is worth every penny we don't pay him.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well said +1 I love the idea of making Clarkson DG. DC would probably approve as well...