I was watching the new version of Day of the Triffids on BBC1 earlier. The script is so eye-wateringly terrible and every character so unsympathetic that I am actually rooting for the triffids. Come on, my chlorophyll-infused, flaily friends, kill every last manjack of them.
It's like the Poundstretcher version of 28 Days Later, which was itself not terribly overburdened with budget but at least had a clue, an eye and a decent script. John Wyndham's books have lots of faults (much as I love them) but they don't involve the plotting. This adaptation chose to dispense with Masen's background in favour of some kind of cliched estranged dad story on one side, and worse, a "dark heart of Africa" mystery with a spooky mask for his dead mother, which took place in Zaire. Which is no longer Zaire, so that confused me a bit. Then they junked the creepy emerging horror of the world waking up to blindness in favour of bangs, crashes and whistles and dodgy CGI London in flames.
Also the unconvincing villainous American bird from Spooks turned up as an unconvincing Hobbesian posh bird. Eddie Izzard played a character who had no redeeming features but not in a good way, and was also lumbered with the worst of the dialogue crimes.
The triffids, when they finally emerged from our peripheral vision, were fairly unconvincing giant orchidy, tendrilly things. Fatally, you feel that the director thought they were pretty rubbish and so decided to omit showing how they moved, just as the pathetic, shite, useless script didn't tell you anything remotely interesting about how the triffid biology worked or indeed anything remotely interesting.
Dougray Scott has clearly decided to base his performance on the statues in Easter Island. I think he was in danger of cracking a smile once, but the urge passed in favour of looking permanently craggy and constipated. There was also a rubbish narration he had to deliver and you felt that it was as though someone had told Scott they would still be interested even if he read the phone book and he was out to prove them wrong.
This was clearly made with North American money, because there's little other reason for Jason Priestley to be in there. Oh God, it was so bad. Merely downloading it would be a criminal waste of illegal activity, like being caught speeding in a milk float or shoplifting incontinence pads.
* * *
Actually 90% of telly this Christmas was shite. Even Victoria Wood's special was moribund and repetitive. The best thing I watched was the Swedish TV adaptation of Wallander, which was terrific
* * *
I didn't watch Doctor Who on Christmas Day. I did a mountain of dishes while it was on and then watched Corrie. I think perhaps that was a wise decision. When I watched it yesterday it left me sort of speechless. I spoiled myself silly but I don't think anyone's review quite conveyed the crackiness of it. Even when they said "OMG this is the crackiest thing I have ever seen". There were about five scenes that were terrific and then the rest? Crack.
So. I shall look forward to New Year's Day's extravaganza, hope it's splendid, and above all, hope Russell T Davies doesn't break anything else I love (see Torchwood: Children of Earth, which I loved lots of parts of, but which broke the show, goddammit) And perhaps get roaringly drunk, since I will have finished work for the week by then.
Roll on Moff, who has issues of his own but whose plotting tastes are closer to mine, and roll on Doctor The-Glint-In Rassilon's-Eye.
* * *
As some of you may know, British plugs are different to those in much of the rest of the world, having three prongs instead of two, and a flat back. This makes them difficult to pull out, which is good. And yet...
I was wandering into my dad's
When it didn't stop smarting and my sock was as wet as if I had stepped in a stray puddle of puppy widdle, I had a look and discovered a square hole in my foot about 8mm deep and bleeding. It hurt like a bastard and it's taken until now to heal to a dent. Let me give you a piece of advice. If you are in Britain, please ensure you do not stand on a plug.