Lucy fails the chat show challenge
The Lucy Kennedy Show (RTE2)
As we're only too well aware, these days television will throw a chat show the way of any half-wit capable of reading an autocue without dribbling or falling over and splitting their skull on the camera.
If you need verification of this, look no further than the dreadful Charlotte Church Show on Channel 4, or irritating mockney songbird Lily Allen's disastrous outing on BBC3 last year.
Still, I'll stand a night of drinks, with a couple of packets of Tayto thrown in, to the first reader who can tell me why anyone ever thought giving Lucy Kennedy her own chat show was a good idea. Answers on a postage stamp, please.
As any fool knows, excepting the fools in RTE who gave the green light to this post-Christmas turkey, presenting a chat show is a lot harder than it looks. That's why so few people are good at it.
So is finding the right words to convey the sheer badness of The Lucy Kennedy Show. We could try lazy, shoddy, inept or embarrassing, any of which would describe various portions of the show. But if you're looking for a good, solid, blanket word to cover all bases, I reckon excruciating will do the job as well as any.
There was the excruciating and unfunny opening monologue, delivered in that klutzy, amateurish style that supposedly makes Lucy so endearing but which, in reality, merely irritates to the point where your teeth itch.
There was the excruciating and embarrassing sketch featuring Lucy as Amy Winehouse, bringing "dim" newsreader Bryan Dobson up to speed on world affairs.
There was the excruciating non-interview with Ryan Tubridy -- ironically, the only person working for RTE who knows the first bloody thing about how to present a proper chat show.
Tubridy, ever chivalrous, allowed for the fact that Kennedy (who appeared to be terrified) hadn't a clue how to handle him, yet he couldn't have been going through the motions more obviously if he'd poked his own poo with a stick.
There was the excruciating encounter with the insufferable PJ Gallagher, a man who's well capable of being excruciating all by himself, without a helping hand from anyone.
Kennedy, adopting the same 'technique' she used in the charmless and tacky Livin' with Lucy -- ie, curled up on the sofa, head cocked winsomely to one side -- cackled like a burning witch every time PJ came out with a "f**k" or a "s**t" (and with Gallagher, the latter commodity is always near to hand).
Someone in RTE has obviously decided that Lucy Kennedy deserves to be fast-tracked to TV stardom because she's cute, scatty and loveable. Well, I have an eight-year-old daughter who's cute, scatty and loveable, but I don't expect to see a contract from RTE dropping through the letterbox.
To be fair to Kennedy, it's not entirely her fault that the show is such a disastrous mess. The bulk of the blame belongs to co-writing sibling comedians Kevin and Anne Gildea for the script.
Incidentally, the female Gildea also popped up in a Panel-style section of the show, while Kennedy's father, John, has been handed the role of resident pianist.
Ah, yes. . . there's nothing like keeping it in the family. It's just a pity they didn't keep it in their own living rooms.
The Lucy Kennedy Show *