Format wars. Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD. Betamax vs VHS. Occasionally a good old-fashioned format war will bring consistency to markets but more often than not it floats a big troublesome turd to the top, resulting in a lot of scumbags standing around and applauding the bobbing, stinking expensive stomach-sausage.
This particular dead-otter has been floating in the Channel 4 pan for a few years now and has formed a poo-tea so rich and pungent, The Waiting Room has gleefully started serving it to it’s most needy of patients.
Not to be confused with the (soon to be Google’d) 1983 film “Wine Me, Dine Me..” by David J. Frazer, ‘Come Dine With Me’ is the TV-toddler born of ‘format television’. It has all the characteristics of every successful reality show ever made ever in the modern ‘ever’ history…
1) Contestants voting on one another for eventual victory or loss a la Pig Mother, Rastaway: Check.
2) Nosing around other people’s homes a la Changing Brooms, Louse Doctor, Location Vocation Locomotion: Check.
3) Creation of a multi-course meal for scoring by consumers a la Martyr Chef, Greedy Steady Cook, Can’t Cook Won’t Cook, and the Cook Report: Check.
In an almost perfect example of scheduling, this daily weekday scheduled programme also takes the post-hangover hours of Sunday 4:00pm to 6:30pm, sinking its teeth into the those alcohol poisoned zombise, stretched out on the nation’s sofas like they have done for a good proportion of the last 20 years. This tight time zone and it’s savage demographic is known universally as ‘The Zomnibus Zone’.
Previous successful Televisual Zomnibus Opiates shown during the Sabbath have been the popular cockney miseryskag ‘EastBenders’, Chester’s cathode-ray answer to More magazine ‘HollyNorks’ and creepy teen horror ‘Dawson’s Crack’, and now a new kid is on the block ‘Come dine With Me’ on More4; all perfect viewing for burned eyes and emulsified internal organs.
Narrated by Dave Lamb, a sarcastic acid tongued Big Brother type, and joined by a malicious editor, half the laughs and entertainment are down to skilled post production of the vapid and plain-idiotic scumbag contestants.
Each week five contestants fart it out for £1000 pounds scraped out of the producers arse, if only the prize money was five times that amount, we’d see all out war; a war we’d watch over and over again. For a bit. Once. Every Sunday. Maybe £1000 is the right amount after all, enough to be bothered about, but not enough to murder for. Maybe.
The mix of each group of ‘contestants’ is always very rounded, complete with the usual suspects; the researchers have years of Endemol shitewater to wade through so the selection has a format everyone is familiar with; one egoist, one scruff, one mutton, one eccentric, one ‘Evil-Doer’, etc etc. We’ve all seen this product mix before. It’s a comfort blanket. And you only see the sad lot for 30mins at a time, for five episodes. Ahh, every week we can let out a huge impacted guff and move on. Secretly hoping for a further build-up of reality gas in our widescreen bowels. And like any successful bout of TV flatulence it comes back again and again. While sitting on the sofa. Avec beer-guts. While troffing left-over kebab.
Lets all continue to get fucked up on a Saturday night, if only to allow our catatonic and lifeless forms to slump in front of this Sunday’s round up of ‘Come Dine With Me’.