Boring Academy Of F****** Tedious Awards
I cast one worthwhile vote last week - for Green Wing which won a BAFTA in the one category voted for by viewers. So James, who is one of the writers that their speech-maker forgot to thank (nothing new there, then), owes me 10 pence for the phone call and 40 pence for my time. The latter amount is because the BAFTA internet voting form wanted more information about me than I would normally reveal on a first date.
If you vote for a Channel 4 programme and one that probably qualifies for that dreaded soubriquet 'cult comedy' and it actually wins, then it's a bit like waking up on 6th May and finding Charles Kennedy in 10 Downing Street.
Sadly, that was almost the only joy of the evening.
This was the most lacklustre BAFTAs I can remember. For some reason the evening never achieved lift-off. I've never seen so many gags die the death. It didn't help that there were lots of shots of a stony-faced audience and at one point there was a loss of transmission which suggested the director had slit his wrists and pulled the plug.
Some very important awards were relegated to short clips of 'awards presented earlier'. These included an award for the admirable John Snow and Best Drama Series for the wonderful Shameless which were treated as though they were awards for Best Rostrum Cameraman and Best Second Assistant Director.
David Frost was awarded the Fellowship but failed to get the traditional 'stander' from the audience. He told some good but very old jokes, like your grandfather does at Christmas. But doing cock jokes about floppy discs is hardly cutting edge. The very youngest viewers were probably asking 'Daddy, what's a floppy disc?'.
Still, at least it came from the stage of my beloved Drury Lane, a stage that the young Willie Lupin once swept in front of a producer, director and choreographer who were sitting in the stalls. I remember thinking that if I were to dance with that broom while singing Broadway Baby the three of them might leap out of their seats shouting 'a star is born!' and I'd find myself starring in a West End musical.
But with my singing and dancing it was never going to happen. On the other hand, if I hadn't ignored the choreographer's hint in the pub that he wouldn't throw a blow job back in my face I might have gone down as the biggest overnight success story in musical theatre.
Note: I was going to put a picture of the BAFTA statue on this piece but I once had dealings with the lady who designed it. I don't wish to imply that she was difficult or temperamental but, if she's still alive, I'm sure she'd sue the arse off me. So instead, a screen-grab of the BAFTA award-winning Green Wing, now wowing them in America, New Zealand and other discerning countries, with a DVD available from all good retail outlets in the autumn and a new series next year.