If ITV’s nadir this year was the disgraceful Stars in their Eyes revival, the BBC have excelled themselves with a Sunday stinker created by Matt Lucas called Pompidou. No wonder it has been buried in a 6.30pm BBC 2 slot! I can only presume it is some kind of a tribute to old silent comedies, but unfortunately for Lucas, people like Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton were actually funny, whilst this was a total embarrassment. Benny Hill four decades ago did silent routines that ticked the funny bone, but this show is virtually devoid of humour.
Lucas plays some kind of eccentric aristocrat called Pompidou who has hit hard times but that also seems to also be the problem with the stories, which feature all the characters mumbling akin to the Flowerpot Men. Barring a funny first minute with a puppet dog that made me laugh, the remainder of this turkey is so bad that I wouldn’t even screen it on the wards of Broadmoor. This garbage comes from the same broadcaster that buried the comedy genius of Count Arthur Strong late on a Tuesday night. Words fail me, but David Walliams must be having a good giggle seeing his former performing partner resorting to such desperation. Do catch Pompidou this Sunday to see how bad it really is. It takes my award for stinker of the year: – so far!
Oh dear, oh dear! Bear Grylls is the latest person to put his career on the line by joining ITV, and his Friday night show with a bunch of Z-list celebrities being put through meaningless survival challenges is just awful. Surely Grylls, maker of fine programmes for the Discovery Channel and Channel Four could not be that desperate for the money? By the way, why does every “challenge”-type show, be it studio or outdoor-based, feel the need to offer us up allegedly familiar names that must eat away heavily at programme budgets. Fair enough for Celeb Big Brother or I’m a Celebrity, but please put a stop to this soon, because viewers don’t really care, as witnessed by the fact that this rubbish called Mission Survive could barely muster three million UK viewers over the last two Friday nights. ITV are so desperate that this rubbish is even repeated on a Sunday night!
I’m so pleased that Channel Four have pressed the button and ordered a second series of their Indian Summers drama. It’s richly deserved the kudos, and you are left scratching your head why it, and the fantastic Wolf Hall on BBC 2 have not had the ratings rewards that they deserved. Meanwhile there’s news that Maggie Smith is leaving Downton Abbey in this autumn’s series. Funeral time then, as her character must be aged around 130, unless the whole show is wrapped up after six seasons, which Smith suggested might well be the case.