tue 25/02/2020

tv

The Culture Show: Henry Moore, BBC Two

Josh Spero Henry Moore, Reclining Figure (1951)

What emerges from tonight’s Culture Show on Henry Moore, which examines how the sculptor exploited the media (and vice versa), is not the difference between the media of sculpture and television but the similarity.

Read more...

The Berlusconi Show, BBC Two

Gerard Gilbert

Imagine if Rory Bremner had been banned from British television for the past 20 years, and Gordon Brown had put pressure on the BBC to get rid of Question Time because it had been critical of him. In the Italy of Silvio Berlusconi these things happen.

Read more...

Glee, E4

Adam Sweeting

Rarely has a TV series been so easy to like and so tricky to define.  If you shoved High School Musical, American Idol and The Breakfast Club in a blender, you'd be in the right ballpark, though you still wouldn't quite have captured Glee's unique tone of sweetness, campness, tragic teenage confusion and satire.

Read more...

Requiem for Detroit?, BBC Two

Adam Sweeting

The only time I've ever been to Detroit was in 2004, in pursuit of assorted rock stars on the Vote for Change tour. Reader, it was weird. The atmosphere in the deserted streets was deathly, as if an invading army had swarmed into town, committed hideous atrocities and then moved on.

Read more...

Cutting Edge: Too Poor for Posh School?, Channel 4

Jasper Rees

OK, let’s flop it out into the open. Let’s show the cards I was dealt way back when. Those boaters you saw at the start of Cutting Edge's Too Poor for Posh School? I may well, in another lifetime, blameless aeons in the netherworld of one’s past, have been seen wandering along a high street on a hill north-west of London underneath one of those. The tailcoats worn by pews full of adolescents on Sundays? Yep. Once upon a time that was oneself.

Read more...

Inside John Lewis, BBC Two

Gerard Gilbert Inside John Lewis: Middle England's favourite department store meets the credit crunch

There must have been gnashing of teeth and the rending of heavily discounted garments in the marketing departments of Marks & Spencer, House of Fraser et al, when they realised that their commercial rival had been granted a three-hour advertisement on the BBC, but then there has always been something about John Lewis that seems to elevate it above the ruck and maul of the high street. What that something was – and whether or not it was purely mythical – was the subject of Liz Allen’s...

Read more...

A Band for Britain, BBC Two

Jasper Rees

We know the grammar now by rote. Some local institution is on its uppers. A traditional way of life is threatened by changing times. Sic transit etcetera and so forth. What’s wanted is a shot in the arm, a kick in the seat, preferably administered by a famous well-known celebrity star, one if at all possible followed at all times by their own bespoke camera crew.

Read more...

Women, BBC Four / Dispatches - Cameron Uncovered, C4

Adam Sweeting

You don't have to be female to wonder where the feminist revolution went.  You only have to look at the not-very-private lives of footballers and the gaggles of wannabe WAGs flinging themselves in their path, or the way female pop stars seem to relish the requirement to dress up (or down) like porno queens, to wonder if it isn't high time somebody wrote an update of Kate Millett's Sexual Politics.

Read more...

The Lure of Las Vegas, BBC Two

Veronica Lee

“The Mob made Vegas,” says its mayor since 1999, Oscar B Goodman. And he should know, having defended plenty of mobsters in his time when - he and I are equally quick to point out - he was a defence attorney and didn’t know what they were really up to.

Read more...

Five Days, BBC One

Gerard Gilbert Flags of our Fathers? It's day five in Five Days

Benjamin Franklin once said that fish and guests start to smell after three days – and something similar happened to BBC One’s latest “event drama”, Five Days. The odour was that of decaying promise, and, if duty hadn’t called, I probably wouldn’t have hung around until the final episode of Gwyneth Hughes’s week-long saga. Not that it was boring exactly – in an unhurried,...

Read more...

Pages

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

Flesh and Blood, ITV review - Vivien's new love affair...

“Everybody lies,” says property developer Tony to his PA and secret lover Natalie. “Even your mum probably.” And of course he’s not wrong.

...

DVD/Blu-ray: The Winslow Boy

Though set in a handsomely-realised 1912, many of The Winslow Boy’s period details seem disconcertingly contemporary, from aggressive...

Alina, Sadler's Wells review - I think therefore I danc...

It’s common to see the term “vanity project” applied to self-produced shows by...

'You’re Jewish. With a name like Neumann, you have to b...

It was during my first week at Tufts University in America, when I was 17, that I was told by a stranger that I was...

Be More Chill, The Other Palace review - more exhausting tha...

This latest musical theatre exercise in “geek chic” has been...

Berlinale 2020: My Salinger Year review - 70th edition of th...

There’s an undeniable romance to mid-'90s New York. Absent of the...

Masculinities: Liberation through Photography, Barbican revi...

The exhibition starts on the Barbican’s lift doors, which...

Locke & Key, Netflix review - comic book adaptation stru...

The comic book of Locke and Key, written by Joe Hill...

Imagining Ireland, Barbican review - raising women's vo...

Recent politics surround the EU and nationhood, fantasies of...

Alexei Sayle, Oxford Playhouse review - return of the politi...

It has been seven years since Alexei Sayle last toured, with radio shows and books detaining him elsewhere, but he's back with a bang. As he walks...