TELEVISION / A fat lot of good
Wednesday 12 May 1993
Hard to fault our boys' physique, though. Basically, there appeared to be two ways to develop as a Sumo wrestler. Either you adopt the Japanese method, disciplining both the mind and the body by means of traditional Oriental arts, developed and refined over thousands of years. Or you follow Terry, and eat a lot of fried eggs. The programme indicated that, as for all athletes, diet was the key consideration: for Terry, the consideration was whether to eat the bacon before the sausages or after.
The programme got its comic mileage from watching Steve, George and Terry struggle against the indignity which comes built in with Sumo. After all, real men don't wear Pampers. And real men certainly don't spend their time trying to get a significant grip on other men's Pampers. When it came to self-assertion in the face of these overwhelming odds, it was George the Geordie who had the clearest advantage.
To call him tattooed would be an understatement. Rather, at some point in his life, he seems to have decided to get an entire copy of the Dandy reproduced on his torso and arms. This kind of thing goes down fine around Newcastle, but the only people wearing wrap-around tattoos in Tokyo are gangsters, which meant that George was both frightening the tournament audiences and also finding it difficult to get served in the local bars.
That last detail took on greater significance as the competition wore on. Just before the team was ignominiously carted out of the ring by Australia, Syd the coach was advocating 'shock tactics'. Steve told George, 'Just for one day, be Mr Nasty.' Terry thought he'd sink a bit of sake beforehand, just to loosen up, but on the morning of the bout, he was still queasy after the sake he had sunk the night before. Too hungover to get drunk, Terry was clearly, by now, some way outside Olympic guidelines on pre-match preparation. The message was, for British Sumo you need a strong stomach. Certainly to watch it.
Something like the principle of Sumo informs Coltrane in a Cadillac (ITV), in which two large objects are forced together - in this case, Robbie Coltrane and a big car. But the result is more pleasant to watch. Last night, Coltrane's trans-American journey breezed across Utah, Colorado and Kansas. All the while, Coltrane told jokes and pulled off a trick rarely seen on television - making his reservations felt while keeping an open mind.
TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success
tvU2’s latest record has been accused of promoting sex between men
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Which country would be hardest to invade?
- 2 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 3 Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao live: Mayweather puts on defensive masterclass to win by unanimous decision
- 4 Floyd Mayweather's mouthguard costs $25,000 - enough to fly to Las Vegas and back 18 times
- 5 Royal baby girl born: Duchess of Cambridge's second child will be a princess thanks to Queen
Daredevil, Netflix, TV review: Marvel wins first fight in bid for television domination with Charlie Cox's superhero vigilante
Grace Dent on TV: Peter Kay's Car Share actually made me laugh out loud
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
London Marathon: Best running songs from Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar to 'Uptown Funk'
The highly NSFW poster for Gaspar Noé's Love makes Nymphomaniac look like 50 Shades
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
Indonesia executions live: 'Hysterical' families heard prisoners being shot dead by firing squad
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns