“But why is it so huge?”
I have been constantly amazed by how much more is said and done on British television than on North American mainstream cable since I moved here, a great deal of which occurs before the watershed of 9pm. Gordon Ramsay’s cursing alone is enough to make your hair curl. One night just before 11, I clicked past Russel Brand’s show and there was a stage full of enourmous naked people dancing around for no apparent reason. There is never an opportunity missed to show a naked bum during advertizing either. And this is on the 5 terrestrial channels not cable!
I think the boundaries are so much further stretched here that when someone does cross the line, there’s an air of zero tolerance about it. I did turn off the Brand/Ross show before it was over but sometimes I can’t even tell when they’ve crossed the line. Jeremy Clarkson streotyping truck drivers as prostitute murderers went right past me as did him flipping the bird to an American Highway Patrolman in last week’s show.
The other issue too is that unlike the CBC in Canada who’s funding comes from general tax revenues, the BBC is funded directly from our pockets with a bill of about £130 a year or so. Any time you buy a television set, the purchase gets reported and shortly after you get a rather snotty letter demanding that you prove you’ve paid your licence fee for the year. Jonathan Ross earns something like £19 million a year so the public, perhaps justifiably, feels that he needs to be held to a higher standard. Considering how everyone jumped on the bandwagon without having even listened to the show is kind stupid tho.
I had heard that Dara O’Braian from Mock the Week might fill in for Ross.