Tuesday, 29 January 2008

One time only TV script amnesty

This post is a call to end the terrible crimes being committed against TV audiences.

Up and down the country, people are being assaulted in their own homes - on their own sofas. It's time we asked those who carry the weapons of TV script cliches to hand them in - for their own safety as well as that of their viewers.

The list below is not exhaustive, and I ask you all to help us identify the most dangerous slogans being wielded on your television. However, this is a good starting point, and we call on TV researchers, writers, producers and executives to simply hand over material containing these weapons and walk away, no questions asked.

1) I'm giving it / he's giving it 110%.

because the universe is broken and 100% no longer represents the whole?

2) Strictly Come Ice Skating / Masterchef has changed my life.

Yes. Have you seen that film 'Sliding Doors'? No? Oh well ...

3) Winning this competition means everything to me.

Alright if I run off with your kids then, as you won't be needing them anymore?

4) Getting to the final would be like a dream come true.

Wow - you have cool dreams. Mine involve being at the wrong airport. Without my suitcase, and then I have to fly the plane. But I don't know how. And the controls are made out of vegetables ...

Your assistance in completing this list will help ensure the safety of future viewing generations - or, in the words of so many c-list celebrities: Words can't express how important this is to me.

Of course.


trousers said...

"Well, it's been a real rollercoaster ride this week!"

Stray said...

oh! trousers ... don't say it outloud! It's toooooo horrible. That actually made me shudder.

Definitely going on the list ...

But Why? said...

Anything which is totally unique, presumably to distinguish it from those things which are a bit unique if you squint at them from an acute angle, or those things which are very unique, or the slightly unique. Or perhaps they're totally unique, but only on a Wednesday when there's an "r" in the month... I wouldn't know, I thought something was either unique or it wasn't...

That, and inappropriate use of carnage. Piles of dead people or discarded limbs strewn around town - yes, by all means, use carnage, but a bit of litter and some broken windows after a few teenagers get drunk hardly equates, does it?

Boris said...

Ooh, this could get very unpleasant.

My personal most hateds at the moment are "I've learnt such a lot" and, with a lip tremble and hand over red eyes "I'm soooo glad to be going home, I really miss my family". Or how about "Is that your final answer?" Of course it is, they just said it three times didn't they. And who cares anyway?

Remember, the "Reality" in reality TV is the reality of low costs and low prodiction values. I hate them. They are cynical, voyeristic and somtimes verging on abusive. In fact quite a bit like TV dinners!

Please make them stop and let's have some top notch programmes back like the A Team, Night Rider and especailly Bay Watch!

Boris xx

PS that last bit was Boris speak for " I don't know what the answer is to this sad state of affairs"

Kahless said...

I'm with Boris on "is that your final answer?" for the nth time.

I hate the lotto catchphrase "in it to win it" as well.

And now you have got me thinking about those phrases that really get my goat at work, like ...

"we're swimming with sharks now"
"big fish in a small pond"

Stray said...

ah, yes but why?, I was confident you'd have something to contribute ...

Master Melancholy actually turns to watch my reaction when someone says, for example, "whiter than white ... "!

Boris - you're right ... David Hasslehoff is the only one who can save us ;)

I do feel sorry for people who are only able to learn life's simplest lessons of cooperation and sharing through having to eat a kangaroo's testicles ...

Kahless - my particular hatred in the work-bullshit stakes is when these daft phrases tare promoted to the status of verb in a sentence. A la "Could you just blue sky this for me?" being a particularly virulent form.

Er no. No, I couldn't.

Misssy M said...

Can I have an embargo on the most overused phrase of the reality TV generation:

"At the end of the day..."


Political Umpire said...

Oh yes, the tele cliche. It's fair to say that, although I am proud of my country of nuture, New Zealand tele in my youth (1980s in particular) was prone to the inferiority-complex cliche, especially in sporting programmes. For example:

"Whaddaya thoughts?"

"This victory will put Nu Zilland on the map!" (said so often my brother and I figured the country must now be the size of North America, Canada inclusive).

"How do you feel?"

For some sanity I recommend Richie Benaud, doyen of all sportscasters (cricketing presenter for more than 40 years to the uninitiated). Despite being a former Australian captain he never once said "We" when talking about the Australian team. He also stipulated: never say "tragedy" or "disaster" ("the Titanic was a disaster, the Ethiopean famine a tragedy, neither bears any relation to a dropped catch"), never read out something written on the screen (blind people will be listening to the radio broadcast, it may be presumed) and in general avoid the bleeding obvious.

But why has another classic example, to which I would add 'new innovation' (could there be an old one?)