herald

Saturday 18 August 2018

Gerry had it... poor Tubs hasn't

WHAT would Gerry say? I can only imagine gregarious Gerry's reaction to news Ryan Tubridy is dropping the papers review from the radio show he inherited.

The segment scouring the papers made Gerry's show what it was, and it was beloved by his legions of housewife fans.

The quiet shelving of the section is being undertaken as part of a rebranding of the show following the massive drop (100,000 would you believe) in listeners.

It's been suggested that Tubridy's love of privacy may be behind the changes.

But this latest move is just another nail in the coffin of poor ol' Tubridy's show. He's had 18 months to prove it, but the fact is he just doesn't have the personal empathy needed to relate to ordinary working people in the way that the warts-and-all Ryan did.

Privately educated Tubs is too aloof, and lacks the pathos and humour to make the show work.

Of course, the biggest difference between Tubs and Gerry was that Gerry was never happier than in the company of others.

He loved the craic, enjoyed beer with pals, including journalists and editors, and cops and I dare say a few old rogues as well.

That would be Tubridy's concept of hell. He could think of nothing worse than being stuck in the middle of a group of hacks sharing a pint of the black stuff.

He prefers the company of his talent agent Noel Kelly.

Don't worry Ryan, you'll have all the privacy you want quite soon, I reckon.

His new producer, Paul Russell, has a major job on his hands to reverse the rot -- or else Tubridy could be bound for BBC radio by necessity, not choice.

When he assumed Gerry Ryan's daunting mantle, Tubridy publicly confessed that it would be a big task to fill Gerry's shoes.

The task has been bigger that he imagined, or, indeed, can accomplish.

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