Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tell me the truth about love

The last two weeks have seen Sebastian Faulks claim we've learned all we know (or think we know) about love from novels and Charlie Brooker claim we've learned all we know (or think we know) about love from the idiot box. So who's right? In the words of Harry Hill, there's only one way to settle it: FIGHT!!! My money's on the latter - there may be some violent tendencies lurking under that Faulks' real-ale-enthusiast's craggy exterior, but Brooker could knock a man down with mere words.

Faulks On Fiction certainly has its flaws - its narrow concentration on the British novel is narrowed further by virtue of the dependence on illustrative footage from television adaptations, and it flits too quickly from book to book. Such is the way of these things, though, and the narrative Faulks weaves in moving between different novels and characters is illuminating.

It's much the same story with How TV Ruined Your Life. It's flawed in that they might as well have gone the whole hog and given Brooker his own series of half-hour themed rants rather than trying to pretend the focus is TV (there was almost as much new sketch-type footage as there was old clips in the last instalment), but there's no disputing that when he's in full irascible flow he's irresistible. I do wonder what Konnie Huq made of his enthusiastic savaging of the ideas of love and soulmates, though...

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