I picked up my free copy of the new London Evening Standard this lunchtime. What did they set forth to seduce me back to the Standard? what was the proffering to tempt me to pay for their superior, insightful content?
To get a measure of how bad it is, the first sentence explains - to an audience made up exclusively of Londoners - what the meanings of “Apples and Pears” and “Boat Race” are.
The utter pointlessness of these parenthetical asides is exposed by the headline, which would be utterly incomprehensible for anyone who needs to have rhyming slang spoonfed to them.
There then follows a series of recycled platitudes about Eastenders, platitudes which don’t even benefit from being correct. I mean, Walford is a ”harder and darker” version of London? Rubbish.
Walford is softer than a Lenor ad* and whiter than Streatham. Eastenders isn’t London on crack, it’s London in pantomime clothes, moue-ing and winking at the audience like the old troopers who make up the cast are bloody well supposed to.
Even I know this and my exposure to Eastenders is limited to slumping in front of the Sunday special with a befuddled look as I slowly work out what has happened to the characters since the last time I had such a bad hangover.
Anyway, current appearences to the contrary aside, this isn’t the “Tanya Gold is a breathtakingly bad comment writer blog”. I wish to salute, not insult.
So here goes: Her article is far better than anything Andrew Gilligan has written for years.
*Insider joke alert: Reference solely for the amusement of M. Levine esq, latterly of the Household Cleaning and Fabric Softeners department.