Anorak News | Swear Box

Swear Box

by | 7th, January 2005

‘HERE now is the great puzzler of the modern age: “SO WHAT IS WRONG WITH EASTENDERS?”

‘Any old rubbish? Any old rubbish? Any, any, any old rubbish..?’

The Express is not alone is wondering this and asks some the country’s leading experts on soap opera problem-solving to see if they can give a satisfactory answer.

Julie Birchill says it has a lot to do with the “smugness” of London. “Showbiz expert” Rick Sky says the plots are “dull”.

And Howard Jacobson opens up a new line of reasoning, asking: “Who on Earth still cares about EastEnders? It began as rubbish, was conceived as rubbish and still is rubbish.”

But even erudite and deep-thinking Jacobson must admit that it was better rubbish when Arthur Fowler swept rubbish on the mean and depressing Walford streets.

But while debate rages, the BBC, which produces the show, seems to have cracked the code. The problem might just be that there’s not enough swearing.

So, it’s testing the waters by broadcasting a show which, the Mail says, contains no fewer than 8,000 obscenities, including 3,168 mentions of the f-word and 297 of the c-word.

While many wonder what kind of person is so appalled by swearing as to count each expletive in Jerry Springer – The Opera, many viewers are phoning in to complain.

And this is odd since at the time of writing the show has yet to be broadcast on BBC2 on Saturday night at 9pm – a time when many of the young it is aimed at will be in pubs calling each other the f-word, c-word and w-word.

Which begs another question – are the great and good guilty of judging before they have seen and heard the evidence?

It appears so as the Mail says that the BBC has received 15,000 complaints, while the Sun adds to that figure another 5,500 people who have voiced their displeasure to Ofcom, the media regulator.

Which might be shock to some, but is encouraging news for the BBC who in a bid to engineer viewers’ interest in its flagship show may choose to rebrand it as Cockney Wankers.

And stick it on after the watershed, right before the 10 o’fuck news…’

Posted: 7th, January 2005 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink