Saturday, May 14, 2016

Bard for life

To commemorate the 400th anniversary of his death, who better to present a brief guide to "the king of the bards" than Philomena Cunk, the idiot savant of Charlie Brooker's Screenwipe? Over the course of an enlightening half-hour, we learned that Shakespeare had a childhood, he invented computer games and Hob Nobs taste like thatched roofs. I'd never thought about comparing Hamlet to Liam Neeson action flick Taken, but thanks to Philomena I'm now convinced of the latter's superiority.

Her material presented to camera was hilarious, while the encounters with Simon Russell Beale, Iqbal Khan and others were excruciatingly awkward - it's a wonder Diane Morgan was able to stay in character. You'd hope for more programmes along similar lines, but, as happened with Ali G and Chris Morris before him, the format probably has a short shelf life because people will soon cotton on to what's going on and either refuse to engage with her or (worse) knowingly play along with it.

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