Lisa Markwell: Beware ad people selling 'event TV'

Notebook

Share
Related Topics

Television is not supposed to be an event. It's the electronic babysitter, the goggle box, the flickering distraction in the corner that you nod off in front of. So why is it that everything from Coronation Street to the Lost finale is being billed as "Event TV"? Surely it couldn't be a ploy by advertisers to stop us from recording shows to watch at our convenience and fast-forwarding past their sales pitches, could it?

We would believe, from the insistent promotion and trailers, that if we don't watch sociopath Tony Gordon go rampaging round Weatherfield in real time next week, that we'll be missing out. Sorry, this is a soap opera we're talking about, which is on at the time most people have their supper. Tape it and watch it later. It's not as if the denoeument will be announced on the News at Ten and spoil things for us. (Well, I say that. The level of self-importance on ITV1 is such that it wouldn't entirely surprise me.)

Perhaps I'm grouchy because I got up at 5am yesterday to watch the last-ever episode of Lost on Sky1. You know the one – it's the mind-warping plane crash drama that has delighted and infuriated for six long years. It really was Event TV in one sense, because it was being shown simultaneously in eight countries. Any fan not watching along with everyone else ran the overwhelming risk of reading spoilers on Twitter, Facebook and any given news website, as the show happened.

I learnt my lesson from a rare incidence of real Event TV – the party leaders' debates during the election. By making the mistake of watching the third one five minutes behind everyone else, having paused it to make a cuppa, I was befuddled by the snappy tweets unspooling.

Now, even the adverts themselves are, we're told, Event TV. That much-heralded John Lewis ad, for instance. And now Nike's World Cup offering in which Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney see their lives unfold in glory or obscurity depending on a match decision. They say "Write the Future" is the message. No, "buy our shoes" is the message – if you watch it, even at x6 on Sky+, you'll notice plenty of almost subliminal shots of footie boots, swoosh nice'n'prominent. There's no escape.







Save it for the beach (or the bedroom), Venus



Two men – one a fashionable thirtysomething, the other a buttoned-up sixtysomething – have both told me in the last 48 hours that they are finding it difficult to go outside. Hay fever? Fear of sunburn? No, no. They are suffering from that other summer affliction – the inability to look away when faced with the vast acreage of cleavage and legs that is currently parading around our streets and parks.

I can't feel their pain, dirty young and old leches, but sunshine does bring out the worst in us, sartorially. I'm dumbfounded that any woman feels comfortable in a skirt too short to sit down in on the train (what happens when she walks up the station stairs?) or in a flimsy glorified bikini top (so skimpy that I feel I should follow behind with a cardi for when the halter-neck gives way).

I get it, the good weather is joyous, but there's a time and a place for everything. (This includes men. Don't even think about taking your shirt off in a conurbation.) The worst crimes against summertime fashion marry these beach ensembles with high heels or, worse, cowboy boots. So it's not all about feeling free and breezy then, is it? It's just "Look how hot I am, and I'm not talking temperature...nudge, nudge".

Venus Williams's chosen outfit for the French Open falls firmly into this category. It would be an error to wear this self-designed, scratchy, sweaty black lace basque to a party, never mind play tennis on the world stage in it. Ladies, everyone can tell when someone has long, slim legs or an impressive embonpoint under clothes, you know. Do us all a favour, and I include the lads, and save it for the beach. Or in Venus Williams's case, perhaps, the boudoir.







Is this really the last we'll see of Griffin?



Must you leave so soon, Nick Griffin? What's that you say? You're stepping down, but not until 2013? Well, talk about puncturing our party balloons, Nick. It's just typical that the kind of good news we need to distract us from swingeing spending cuts turns out to be a red herring. Mr Griffin reckons it'll be time for a younger man to lead the BNP after the party has spent 18 months implementing administrative and political "building blocks". That may well be true, but it will take us to, er, autumn 2011, Nick. Perhaps his adviser is to diary-planning what Bob Bailey is to canvassing.

Of course, he might be looking around and feel that a spell in the political wilderness – yes, even further into the wilderness than where the BNP currently resides, post-election – could do his long-term career prospects a world of good. Go away, and come back stronger, he may be muttering to himself. After all, Diane Abbott's getting more press than she's had in ages, by stirring herself from talk-show sofas. Now Oona King, who left politics after George Galloway displaced her from her Bethnal Green seat in 2005, is back to stand as a candidate for London Mayor.

Don't know what you're waiting for, Nick. If you bugger off now, you might be back in time to make some noise for the next election. Or, let's face it, be first in line when they resurrect Celebrity Big Brother.



React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper / Office Co-ordinator

£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...

Recruitment Genius: Designer - Print & Digital

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...

Recruitment Genius: Quantity Surveyor

£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales / Telemarketing Executive - OTE £30k / £35k plus

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Yarl's Wood in Bedfordshire, Britain’s largest Immigration Removal Centre  

Thanks to Channel 4 we now see just how appallingly Yarl’s Wood detention centre shames Britain

Yasmin Alibhai Brown
 

If I were Prime Minister: I’d ensure ministers took mental health in the armed forces as seriously as they take physical wounds

James Jones
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003