Thursday 14 December 2017

Hotting up at the human zoo

Geordie Shore Tuesday, MTV The Only Way is Essex Sunday, 3e/ITV2) The Meaning of Life Sunday, RTE 1

On Monday I watched a nature documentary about an experimental breeding programme for fame-hungry goons from Newcastle (the goon population there is worryingly small). Geordie Shore it was called. In it, timid Newcastlians were plied with booze and placed near a hot-tub in the hope they would mate.

This episode involved the introduction of a new female goon to the group. She had read all the 19th-century etiquette books.

"I'm going to be loud constantly and I'm going to act up," she said tottering about on massive hooves while wearing a handkerchief.

The males liked her. "Her perky tits and her arse are in perfect proportion," said Jay, a poetic chap who looks like a muscular brush.


The females disliked her. "She comes in like some queen f***ing bee", complained Vicky whose sense of propriety reminds me of Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey. "You don't f****n' do that!" she noted.

The breeding programme seemed to work well initially. "Me and Gary have a special friendship, like the friendship of two small otters sharing a log," cooed Charlotte, but Gary and Charlotte did not build a small dam in the hot-tub. No. They began humping one another.

The zoologists high-fived one-another behind one-way glass. However, when Gary and Charlotte retreated to a secluded area, Holly, who looks like a booby, orange snowman, said: "[Gary] took the pony to the stable and he's feeding it like there's no tomorrow!"

Oh dear! Charlotte thinks Gary is a playful otter and Gary thinks Charlotte is a hungry pony! They're doing it all wrong. No wonder this breeding programme is necessary.

Later, there were more problems. Although the gang's first night out was preceded by their customary mating call ("Let's go f***ing mental!" they chanted), it ended with Gary snogging a random lady and Charlotte weeping desperately.

"Let's go f***ing mental!" might, now that I think about it, be an honest declaration of imminent mental collapse.

Their second night ended with vomiting and falling over. But Vicky also bedded smarmy new-boy Ricci (their names rhyme after all).

Soon, hopefully, we'll hear the tiny patter of Newcastlian toddler feet, and this grotesque breeding experiment will end.

Compared to Geordie Shore, scripted-reality car-crash The Only Way is Essex is classy and charming. The break-away star is endearingly gormless Joey Essex, a man unafraid to stand in his kitchen wearing tight blue Y-fronts opining about tea.

"[It's] picked by specially trained monkeys and contains powerful anti-dioxides," he says, holding out a fancy packet to his chum.

"To think," he adds thoughtfully. "This was touched by a monkey's hand."

Later in a club, Joey can be seen in the background, leering, doing jerky dance moves and firing finger guns.


"I'm going to salt a potato tonight," he promises. He means it literally. He thinks women are potatoes and that sex involves pouring salt on them.

Elsewhere, other great thoughts are expressed. Fake-boobs are discussed: "Arg", a real boob, ponders love as he sadly stalks his ex-girlfriend, and two young ladies discuss eastern philosophy.

As they do dog-yoga with their dogs (small nervous things in leg-warmers), one suggests that some yoga positions may have begun with the dog community. "We done yoga before dogs done yoga," says the other tentatively, almost sure of it.

"Richard Branson, did humans do yoga before dogs did yoga?" Gay Byrne could have asked Richard Branson on this week's The Meaning of Life. Instead Branson waffled about bigger, vaguer issues while Gay twinkled at him. Branson had just returned from a meeting of 'the elders', a collection of worthies including Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter and Mary Robinson.

I dozed off and imagined them hitting the nightclubs together. "I'm off to salt a potato," said Carter. "Let's go f***ing mental!" chanted Mary Robinson and Desmond Tutu.

Geordie Shore HIIII

The Only Way is Essex HHHII

The Meaning of Life HHIII

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