It all feels like a bit of a blur right now but, when rumours first surfaced yesterday that BBC Three would be facing the chop due to a lack of viewing figures and budgetary reasons, I could not help but let out a sigh of relief, as well as a sincerely joyous cheer.
Now that it has been confirmed, I cannot help but get a little giddy.
You see, I’ve never been a fan of the likes of Gavin and Stacey, Torchwood, or Him & Her, but I accepted that many people do indeed enjoy these shows, and I have no qualms with that; each to their own and all that.
However, whenever I hear about a new BBC Three show, my immediate thoughts are that it’s probably puerile and infantile tripe. I know, such sweeping generalisations are oftentimes bad (and arrogant) but, under the circumstances of recent years, I think it’s fair to make such a statement. Why? Well, let’s have a look at that, shall we?
The comedy sketch troupe, known as Pappy’s, is comprised of Ben Clark, Matthew Crosby and Tom Parry. They are frequent performers at Edinburgh Fringe Festival, amongst other prestigious comedy circuits, so you would expect a sitcom smothered in their names to be, at the very least, funny.
You would be wrong to presume this.
Badults is an embarrassing portrayal of three insufferable “men” in their attempts to cling onto their fleeting youth. Rammed full with lazy and predictable gags; uninspired, two-dimensional characters; and the kind of vulgarity you’d expect from a prepubescent boy, Badults epitomises everything that is wrong with broad comedies – not that they have any redeemable features anyway…
Comedy shows of late
Badults is just the icing on the cake though, for BBC Three seems to have a habit of mass-producing these lacklustre comedies. From Lee Nelson’s Well Good Show to Bad Education, the general tactic employed seems to be to shout about how random they are with the tact of a proverbial bull in a china shop.
In broad strokes, they’re the lowest common denominator, void of sustenance and any real witticism. Compare that to crowning gems such as The Office, in which we’re treated to [what feels like] real life stories with a comedic edge, BBC Three’s motives are questionable when the same tired old gags are force-fed to the viewer for the sheer sake of it.
British humour has held a reputation for being ahead of the curve for many years, yet now I feel it is more appropriately associated with catch phrases and exaggerated caricatures than anything else.
Dystopian Reality Television
Unfunny comedies aren’t the only thing BBC Three broadcasts though. Have you ever watched Snog, Marry, or Avoid? Don’t.
In essence, it’s a vacuous show in which a vacuous presenter finds a vacuous member of public and reduces their worth solely to appearances. Vacuously. Heavy layers of makeup and fake tan are wiped clean from the participant’s body and redistributed a bit more conservatively. The participant also gets a haircut. That’s about it.
There’s also Don’t Tell the Bride, in which a dim-witted groom to be is put in charge of ruining his vile fiancé’s dream wedding and Sun, Sex and Suspicious Parents, which is essentially a chance for intrusive parents to watch their children come of age in clubbing hot spots.
All in all, I can’t shake the feeling that these sorts of shows make us Brits out to be terrible human beings.
Perhaps I’m being unfair. Perhaps the reason I resent BBC Three so much is because I’m not the target demographic. However, this then begs the question as to what their target demographic actually is…
Reruns of Family Guy and American Dad at 11pm are all fun and games, but what value does the platform actually offer?
I suppose there’s no sense in getting worked up about it because, come 2015, it will be gone and we’ll be ever so slightly better off without it.