I was just decanting the milk-sodden leavings at the bottom of my offspring’s breakfast bowl onto Thursday’s Times prior to putting them in the bin when I noticed this:
Bush to get Mashed
By Adam Sherwin
THE BBC has persuaded the creator of the 1970s television series M*A*S*H to turn his fire on the Bush Administration.
“The BBC has persuaded … to turn his fire on the Bush Administration” It can only have been my shock at this unprecendented act on the part of our national broadcaster that caused me to emit a most unladylike snort.
President Hillary Clinton is in the White House, and George Bush is on trial for crimes against the American people …
By this time a second snort, that some misunderstood as laughter, had caused an errant Shreddie to entangle itself in my nasal membranes. In fact my distress was solely a result of my deep sympathy for members of the “reality based community,” as I believe they term themselves. Poor lambs. These recurring fantasies are a great comfort to them.
…in Abrogate, a one-off radio comedy written by Larry Gelbart. Radio 4 is rushing the “merciless” satire to air in tomorrow night’s Friday Play slot. Radio Times acclaimed the play, saying that “every line is a barbed swipe, a dazzling barb that hits home”.
Every single line! So there! With a write-up as jut-jawed as that we can safely assume that it was awful and the Radio Times knew it was awful.
Gelbart was the developer and chief writer on the M*A*S*H television series which ran from 1972 for 11 years.
Gelbart has grown angrier with age. Abrogate is set during an imaginary congressional hearing which is “sifting through the debris of the post-Bush regime to discover what, if anything, went right”.
UPDATE: Richy in comments says, “You’ve got to hand it to the BBC. The originality required for this kind of drama and the sheer fortitude necessary for battle against pre-existing stereotypes really does enforce upon you the value of public broadcasting.”