The Eurozone crisis explained. OR: How not to get distracted by smurfs doing star-jumps

The Eurozone crisis isn’t, by common consent, a sexy topic rich with comic potential. Important, yes. A rib-tickler, no. So kudos, immense kudos, to comedian John Finnemore who performed a pretty acute summary for BBC Radio 4’s The Now Show this week. In just 6 mins and 35 secs. Enjoy…


(Available on YouTube here.)

And a brief supplementary, if I may…

What has happened to genuinely good satire on British television? Last week, it was left to US comedian Jon Stewart to skewer (not unaffectionately) the hyper-ridiculousness of the UK’s jubilee celebrations. The 10 O’Clock Show was intended to fill that niche within our schedules, but sadly relies instead on taking clunking swings at obvious targets. A couple of years ago, at the end of the 2010 general election campaign, I lamented the lack of intelligent political comedy.

Yes, we have Have I Got News For You (but it’s a bit stale these days). And yes, we have Armando Iannucci (hurray for the forthcoming new series of The Thick Of It). But after that…? Is it simply the case that only Radio 4 audiences are trusted to be news-savvy enough to cope with subtlety, with irony, with nuance? I’m sure there’s an audience among fans of the telly-box too.

Just one plea: don’t revive A Stab in the Dark, Channel 4’s failed attempt to re-cast That Was The Week That Was, which co-starred none other than… Michael Gove.

* Stephen was Editor (and Co-Editor) of Liberal Democrat Voice from 2007 to 2015, and writes at The Collected Stephen Tall.

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