TV Book Show Didn’t Leave Me Happy & Gay

I wondered if I should pop this post on this blog, but I have done on both my others and I couldn’t really let the last 25 minutes of TV I have endured slip by with out comment. Despite the fact that it’s been one of the most hyped shows in a while I missed ‘The TV Book Show’ last night (because I am a Dancing on Ice addict) but have just watched it first thing this morning with my cup of coffee and toast and have come away in a rather bad mood. You may wonder what this has to do with Great Gay Reads by the book choice this week was Sarah Waters and also one of the presenters is Gok Wan. Tenacious links but hey ho I need to see who else was enraged?

For those of you who have no clue what I have started rambling about we have had a big book club on the television for a few years now called The Richard and Judy Book Club. It’s been a huge hit here in the UK and has seen all the books become best sellers and has made a lot more people get into reading. It was only a ten minute segment on their channel 4 chat show but it was a blissful bookish ten minutes perfectly pitched with the author talking, two celebrities debating the book with R&J and then a book groups opinions on the book. Delightful!

Richard and Judy left Channel 4 taking their book group and a whole heap of money with them and so now Channel 4 have produced a similar show only now we get 25 minutes and five presenters which to me sounded like a dream, until I just watched it.

I am going to forgive the fact that all the presenters seemed a bit too smiley, nodding and talked over one another trying to be the star or the funniest because it was the first show, mind you surely they had rehearsal time. I don’t think we needed a discussion about how David Spikey says ‘book’ for a minute or another minute long chat about how posh Chris Evans thinks Jo Brand has gotten whilst Laila Rouass and Gok Wan pout obliviously the latter livening up for the occasional flirting moment aimed at Nathaniel Parker. Cringe worthy but still forgivable for a first show.

What I cant forgive is the fact that Chris Evans (we all know autobiography sales have dropped so clearly the marketing people on the book show haven’t their fingers on the bookish pulse) got a whacking great ten minutes to talk about himself his book, followed by a segment on unused words The One Show did last week and the actual book choice got a minute of Sarah Waters talking (which was ace) before the book got a quick three minute chat which was summed up by the line ‘it’s worth a read really’.

What really made me frustrated was that for the money the public will have spent on the book (unless its from a library) it is just not right that they are repaid with such a limp small discussion, well chat. What bothers me more is that a book like Sarah Waters ‘The Little Stranger’ takes a long time to read and when you are aiming a book group at parents and people who don’t read as much because they are busy with children, work etc as well as discerned readers its just a disgrace when people invest so much time in a book to be treated to that. (I might even send a strongly worded email its riled me so, for the people in control are sure not to read book blogs if the show was anything to go by.) I might wait a week and see how things go in the next programme. I am really quite annoyed about it though can you tell?

I mean, if I was making the book show I would get rid of the ‘hilarious aren’t we’ or ‘pouting’ panel and get in some book addicts who would happily be paid less (hint, hint, me) and who would enthuse about all things bookish (and not need to have written questions and notes in their copy – yes Mr Spikey I mean you) rather than spend four minutes discussing a book they had to read, and didn’t seem to like without giving any good reasons as to why, to earn the channel and themselves some cash. I would also bring back the Book Groups and their wonderful thoughts on the books. There am done… I feel better now.

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~ by greatgayreads on January 18, 2010.

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