Steve Goble

Choose life. (Deuteronomy 30:19)

Comedians have a funny old life. Death I mean.

When comedians die, their memory seems to go through two distinct stages.

First there’s the purer-than-pure martyrdom. The general public, wracked with remorse at their loss, express their grief by wrecking the TV schedules, as hitherto unmovable shows get hastily elbowed out of the way for reruns, obituaries and famous people eulogising over what a persecuted pioneer the deceased was. I well remember, in the wake of Benny Hill’s death, seeing one Thames TV executive getting grilled for an explanation of why he had cancelled Hill’s show two years earlier.

And then, a couple of years later, there comes the second stage, and it’s every bit as biased.

Yes, the hatred.

After a year overseas, I have quite a backlog of VHS tapes to catch-up on, so in the early hours of this morning I watched Not Only But Always, which on the face of it looked to be a biopic of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore’s famous “Pete’n’Dud” comedy partnership.

Not Only But Always starring Rhys Ifans as Peter Cook and Aidan McArdle as Dudley Moore
What it actually turned-out to be was a rampantly unforgiving character-assasination.

Of just one of them. The heartless girlfriend-stealing wife-cheating alcoholic one. (the other guy was just a long-suffering innocent, apparently)

Although I enjoyed this film, it left me rather wishing that I hadn’t seen it. Now when I rewatch their old material I’ll always be looking for the signs. I just don’t find comedy funny unless I first believe that the performers are happy.

And who knows how much of it is true? People’s souls are very big, capable of terrible evil and tremendous love on the same day.

It really isn’t fair, or moral, to edit all the good out of a man’s life.

Like we have with Hitler.

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2 comment(s):

At 5:39 am, Anonymous Anakin Skywalker said...

"It really isn’t fair, or moral, to edit all the good out of a man’s life."
- I couldn't agree more.

At 5:12 pm, Blogger Steve Goble said...

Thanks for reading, Anakin buddy.

You sure sound like like the nicest kid in the entire galaxy. There's certainly no way you'll grow up to become to most evil dictator in galactic history.


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