Remote Control - Saturday 07 September 2013

How is Ade still on TV-land?

By The Newsroom
Monday, 9th September 2013, 11:50 am
Surely Ade Edmondson should never be on television again
Surely Ade Edmondson should never be on television again

In April 2010, Ade Edmondson told the Daily Express that he had quit comedy.

I’m not sure he was ever in it.

Pulling faces hasn’t worked since the Talkies arrived and blew away the golden age of slapstick.

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But he seems to believe he can eke out a career as a sensible narrator over depictions of Britain’s economic and social development.

On Tuesday he presented Ade on Adland (ITV).

The whole concept can only have been dreamt up by a quorum of Nathan Barley-type characters in Shoreditch over a Dirty Martini and Red Bull before they headed to a lap dancing club.

What next Sven on Svengalis, in which the former Notts County and Goran Eriksson delves into the likes of Simon Cowell’s mentoring skills.

Or Ca on Catastrophies where the former Royal Family writer Caroline Aherne discusses the 20th Century’s natural disasters.

Anyhow, you’ve seen the programme before in other guises and it would have been good if they’d taken Ade Edmondson out of it.

His costumed sketches that links the ads were abysmal – like junior school kids copying Horrible Histories.

So we got all the ads you’ve seen before: Tony Hancock telling us to Go To Work on an Egg, before he became the public face of Beeching Cuts that decimated the national railway network.

There was a nod to the rise of snacks at schools and subsequent obesity after Thatcher abolished free school meals for all children in 1980 .

The bizarre but wonderful adverts of Leonard Rossiter and Joan Colins giving us slapstick Cinzano.

A wonderful statistic on the rise of wine from seven bottles a year in the early 1970s in every household to 35 now. I’m pushing that average up and I am by far and away the best empty wine bottle recycler down our street. It even talked about the new wine regions of France – I prefer my wines to come from the region of around £5 a bottle.

And there was the quite bonkers clip of woman being introduced to frozen peas, where the packet would have filled the hanging plastic section inside the fridge that constituted a freezer department when I was a kid.

“Peas eh Mrs Ross; have you had them before?”

It was all a far cry from the first advert, on the day ITV was launched in 1955 with sea lions balancing pints of Guinness on their noses.

Meanwhile, Private Eye’s Going Live sketch was played out perfectly on Sky Sports News for football’s transfer window.

Some amphetted-up (I assume) presenter in the studio talking to a reporter outside a dimly-lit training camp – who had nothing to add because nothing had happened.

And he was surrounded by pallid urchins who looked like a malnourished Victorian skuttlers gang.

I bet none of the poor on-the-spot journalists went home with their wallets.

Or watches.

And the only thing to come out of the whole tawdry affair was the font for the players’ names on the back of Real Madrid shirts is unusual.

And Barry Bannan, who left Villa for Crystal Palace, is the worst dressed man this side of Moscow’s nouveau-riche. His ensemble was a mock denim sleeveless jacket over a mock leather jacket like Saxon fans wore in the early 80s. But you knew this cost a pretty penny.

Alan Burrows