Saturday, 14 November 2009

The Jeremy Kyle Show: A Beautiful Thing

I was on the phone to Aloysius earlier telling him what was on Jeremy Kyle this afternoon. Today’s show was called 'Kyle’s Inspirational Kids’. The funniest one was this 7yr old boy born with his heart up his arse. Kyle is nearly as saccharine and insincere as he is just plain mad-as-a-bottle-of-chips. He did his sitting on the steps thing as well. In the usual ‘I’m your da and your ma’s your sister’ shows he only does this when he wants to carefully extract the contestants’ (and I mean contestant in the strictest sense of the word) incest stained, alcoholic story by empathizing-ing, before laying into them with his own special brand of tongue lashing. I'd hate to be his under achieving son. I am certain this is some sort of hypnotic technique he uses; maybe NLP (Neuro-Linquistic Programming).

But on today’s show he sat on the step the entire time. I don’t know why he did this. I’m sure none of the parade of unfortunates (including a manc Rocky Dennis 12 year old) needed to be put under the influence of Kyle’s mezmirizo parlour trick. Between the contestants pieces Kyle give a little trailer to the next one up. This had him somewhere in the middle of some Yorkshire town (or wherever he films it) sitting on a fountain in a German Army Jacket. He looked like a right down and out brain spastic. Maybe he is now. I’m not up early enough to see if he has any new shows on in the mornings. Maybe he’s been reduced to filming the links for his compilation shows in a grimy Leeds-esque town on his uncles old Panasonic camcorder. Now I remember, I’m sure I saw Graham in the background busking with a tambourine.

Jeremy Kyle strikes me as a sort of carnie for the 21st century. His show’s like the old 19th century carnivals, where folk used to go and watch men bareknuckle boxing or to stare and spit at the baby with the golden face freakshow. Now Kyle has brought the 21st century equivalent into our living rooms. Through the television. Only now we don’t see men fighting or midget freaks (most of the time), now we’ve got men shouting at their girlfriends telling them “the baby couldn’t be mine cos I only ever did you up the shitter.” It’s a beautiful thing.

The other week a woman was on telling her story of how her husband got her to eat the ashes of his dead first wife before killing her kids. I wondered had he got her to eat them too? That would be a family size meal that, wouldn’t it? These shows are not Jeremy’s typical fare either. Instead of having 2 or more guests on shouting the odds, on these specials he does, a single guest comes on and tells their awful (usually: rape, murder, child abuse, necrophilia, beastiality, a combination of the three) stories while being gently prodded by Kyle to not leave any of the venal details out. These take the form of one-man stage plays – like long monologues. These shows of his are like the Vagina Monologues for the noughties. It’s a beautiful thing.

So I told Aloysius about what he was missing on Kyle, seeing he’s carrying out an experiment by not owning, or watching, TV. Some of the best TV of the latter half of the first decade of the 21st century and he’s missing. For shame. For shame. Then I heard this lush mellow come on, on his turntable in the background, which is what he fills his days with now, listening to old vinyl records. I aksed him what it was and it was this:

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