Tag Archives: Ryan Tubridy

Friday Night Shite

This season of The Late Late Show has continued its recent trend of receiving poor viewing figures, with last Friday’s programme coming sixth in the weekly ratings. RTÉ’s flagship show usually tops the ratings, but this season has seen a dramatic fall in viewers. An RTÉ spokeswoman cited last Friday’s clash with the international football match between Ireland and Andorra as a reason for the decreased figures. Although the fact that people would rather watch such a tedious game is probably more of an indictment of The Late Late than anything.

The lack of interest in last Friday’s show is particularly puzzling given the calibre of the guests involved on the night. Glamour model Jodie Marsh treated the audience to a display of her newly toned physique, and was so scantily clad and oiled up that people seemed surprised that a video camera and a Premiership footballer were nowhere to be seen. Apparently bodybuilding is her latest attempt at fame after years of failing to emulate the success of fellow Z-list famous tart, Jordan, in being a famous tart. To aim so stupendously low with your life’s ambition and still fall short is fairly pathetic. The woman is a waste of decent matter that could instead have been used to make a tree or a rock, or one of those lizards that can lick its own eyes. Those things are awesome.

After putting up with the aforementioned bronzed wretch, everyone in the studio seemed in need of a good laugh. Which is why it was so unfortunate that Des Bishop was invited onto the show. Des thought of one joke about a water heating system about eleven years ago and has failed to come up with a better one since. And the original joke wasn’t even that great. Instead he has since embarked on a crusade to save the Irish language, seemingly convinced he can do so primarily through shouting banal observational comedy about the Irish. Did you hear the one about Irish people loving the craic? It was shit and unfunny because Des Bishop told it.

Having somehow not surpassed its quota of excitement for the evening, The Late Late next unveiled not one, not two, but three completely irrelevant people. Paul Carberry is famous for not being allowed to do his job as a jockey because he’s always banned for being pissed. He was accompanied by his sister and a third individual who may have been a horse trainer, or possibly the owner and handler of Paul himself. His habit of getting out of his chair every thirty seconds to feed Paul a sugar lump was disconcerting to say the least. Perhaps this is the point at which the programme lost most of its viewers. Horseracing is something of a niche sport, seeing as it only arouses the interest of fat alcoholics from Meath and Kildare who run out of greyhounds and English football clubs to bet on during the week and need an even more boring way of gambling away their children’s inheritance while they stand around talking about the Fianna Fáil glory days and the inventive ways in which they like to beat their wives.

All in all then, an incredibly unimpressive collection of people to have to endure on a Friday night. However, no matter how entertaining the guests may be in a given week, there is one shrewlike, table-slapping, mincing common denominator that makes watching The Late Late only slightly preferable to peeling off your own skin with a butter knife, simply because the latter would take a bit longer. The fact that Tubs has managed to carve out a successful career in broadcasting is an unfathomable mystery akin to that of the disappearing planes in the Bermuda Triangle, or how Colin Farrell got that accent growing up in Castleknock.

His obsession with the 60’s and anachronistic mannerisms give him the air of a particularly snooty twelve year old who’s acting out an episode of Mad Men in his head while everyone else looks on and sees not a suave, debonair sophisticate but an officious, self-important little shit. Tubs’ stilted manner, forced geniality and awkward demeanor whenever anyone deviates slightly from the script is painful to watch. The longest running chat show in the world, and a veritable institution under the steady hand of the twinkly-eyed Gaybo, has become tired and turgid under Tubridy.

As an aside, given the current economic climate it’s hard to believe that the show is also sponsored by The Quinn Group, a bunch of mercenaries who made their Celtic Tiger billions through hawking cement, insurance and misery to the Irish people. It’s nice to see that despite being in debt to the tune of about €5 billion, Seanie still has a few quid to pour into this quagmire of trite, pointless conversation that we’re subjected to on a weekly basis.

It’s safe to assume that The Late Late won’t be cancelled any time soon, so maybe the best thing to do is look around for a more suitable host. Although the way this country’s going at the moment, in a year or two we might see The Late Late presented by Jedward. Brought to you by Anglo Irish Bank and filmed in front of a live studio audience of the four people who haven’t emigrated to Australia yet. “Like, OMG, please stand for our first guest, Uachtarán na hÉireann, Martin McGuinness!” That butter knife is beginning to sound pretty good after all.


Pain in the Áras

The presidential election is now just over five weeks away and the past few days have seen a lot of activity from potential candidates. Considering the fact that the country is in such a state of turmoil at the moment, it is disappointing to say the least that we are being provided with such a bland and uninspiring list of contenders.

The office of President is not a particularly challenging role to fill. It consists mostly of shaking hands with people, pretending to care about things and deciding which of your opulent gaff’s drawing rooms you want to retire to for your evening glass of sherry. The one quality the position does call for is diplomacy, and it is in her sensitive, measured and intelligent approach that Mary McAleese has excelled during her two terms. The idea of some of her prospective successors representing our country on the international stage is worrying.

Some of the candidates are inoffensive enough, but aren’t exactly inspirational. Mary Davis has done tireless work for charities, and would probably be better off continuing her hands-on work rather than filling a figurehead role. Dragons’ Den’s Seán Gallagher seems like a nice enough guy, and is an intelligent entrepreneur, but doesn’t really have the credentials to rise to such a prominent position. His Cavan accent would also make presidential speeches a nightmare to listen to.

There are also a few contenders for the Áras whose election would be actively damaging to the country, one of whom is Fine Gael’s Gay Mitchell. Despite recently denying membership, he has been strongly linked to both the Dignitatis Humanae Institute and the Iona Institute. These poisonous right-wing groups operate under a pretense of fostering Christian values while pursuing their ultra-conservative, discriminatory agendas. Mitchell has also attracted controversy for a letter he wrote appealing for clemency for an unrepentant anti-abortion fanatic who murdered a doctor and his bodyguard outside an abortion clinic in the US. So aside from being an utterly charmless individual, a mediocre politician and a fairly dull person intellectually speaking, the man is also a throwback to the Ireland of the 1950s and has no place in any position of esteem in a liberal 21st century state.

You would think that a right-wing moron like Mitchell would be the worst candidate, but he pales in comparison to our newest entrant from Sinn Féin, a known terrorist, a despicable human being and best mates with well-known nobleman Baron Gerry Adams. There is no need to go into detail over Martin McGuinness’ past. Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows what he was involved in in this country, and the amount of pain and misery he has caused. Fintan O’Toole wrote an excellent article outlining how ridiculous his candidature is.

On Pat Kenny’s Frontline programme this week, former Tánaiste Michael McDowell also reminded us of the chilling fact that if he were to be elected, the former IRA man would be the Supreme Commander of the Irish Defence Forces. This is one job application where his vast experience in this field counts against him. Let’s hope that if he does win the election, he’ll just refuse to turn up like he has done with his seat in Westminster since 1997. The man, and I use the term loosely, is an embarrassment to this country, and his temerity in attempting to become our first citizen is an insult to his victims and their families.

It is unfortunate we have such a low standard of candidate this year, since there are plenty of Irish people out there who could make a decent run for President. How about President Bono, who could rule by proxy from his tax haven and help Ireland lead the way on the international stage in providing aid to Africa, using the same three chords over and over, and building shit hotels? Or President Tubridy, who is already an expert at making tedious conversation with international luminaries. Although as far as I know Conan O’Brien was never President so Tubs would need to steal someone else’s act before taking the gig. Maybe Dustin the Turkey, latterly preoccupied with his budding musical career, could revive his political ambitions to compete in his third election? If Fianna Fáil nominated him, he’d surely perform better than any human stupid enough to associate themselves with the party.

Assuming none of these possible challengers announce a late charge for the presidency, it looks set to go to either Michael D. Higgins, or, if he manages to obtain the signatures required to get on the ballot, David Norris. Both are intelligent, articulate men who would doubtlessly do a fine job, and I would be happy enough to see either win. I suppose the country just isn’t ready to accept as President a small loudmouth puppet made famous by a pathetic excuse for a singing career, and whose opinions are even more ridiculous than Gay Mitchell’s. I guess Dana will just have to wait another seven years.