Thursday 20 April 2006

Whatever happened to British satire?

Whatever happened to British satire? From ten years ago, when it became clear that Major was going for a full five-year Parliament, he and his “government” were subjected to a nightly torrent of the most hysterical abuse as prime-time, mainstream entertainment. This was the culmination of something that had been building up ever since the unexpected Labour defeat in 1992 had made both the real Left and the pseudo-Left as aggrieved as the pseudo-Right had felt since the fall of Margaret Thatcher. Like many of my generation, the mention of Major’s name still calls to mind the all-grey Spitting Image puppet rather than the man himself. It is not necessarily that all, most or even much of this was very good, or even any good. It might not have been funny, but it was certainly, shall we say, memorable and affecting. By contrast, today’s efforts are just drivel.

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