This was supposed to be a piece on the Chiswick Book Festival until I tuned into Louis Theroux’s post Yewtree programme Looking back on Jimmy Savile on Sunday.
Firstly let me state that Theroux has always puzzled me with his faux ingenue fly on the wall style; to sum it up Louis (off the back of his Dad) has made a career of filming lunatics & editing the results as entertainment of the mass(ive). Frequently immersing himself with these psychotics, hoping they will in an off-guard moment forget who he is (and the film crew), to deliver the critical money-shot to trail the program/series.

Wicker ed

Is he unique? No as I still remember his more chic antecedent Alan Wicker’s chilling documentary on Papa Doc (Duvallier) and his TonTon Macoute (Haitian death squad). However Wicker was high production and maintained his objectivity (and safety), through his BBC sang-froid documentary approach. In contrast Theroux takes the post-modern (structured reality) low rent grime approach. I have always found this uncomfortable viewing as Theroux’s camera often veers headlong into the psychosis vortex; more heat than light it’s a world full of crazy greys.

Real politique

In the race to the bottom, sadly (structured aka living with the Kardashians) reality TV has become de rigeur: it attracts millions & is relatively cheap to produce … a sound man, cameraman & maybe some lights.
An honourable mention goes out to Nick Broomfield who pioneered this genre and was often writer, interviewer, cameraman, lighting & sound-man.
Theroux has ruthlessly mined this rich voyeuristic seam for 18 years often under the auspices of the BBC. His latest oeuvre Looking back on Jimmy Savile was an hour long kinda mea culpa, where Louis garnered more precious screen time and self-aggrandisement, by trying to understand the folly, in his research light myopic genre of film making.

Reasonably-priced Angst

In a film that should have been more about the victims & their stories, we were swamped with images of an angst-riven reflective Louis, driving a reasonably priced car, contemplating at a safe distance, the ripples from the havoc and feebleness of his brand exploitative TV.
Honestly, I don’t give a flying fuck how he felt as he has single mindedly and cynically derived a living from these situations for decades, merely for our titillation & ultimately his ratings. The fact that he missed the media scoop of the noughties did not make me in any way sympathetic. There is nothing investigative and alot exploitative about Louis’s brand of journalism; mercifully it finally karmically came back to haunt him.
However I have to respect his bemusement, as he allowed several victims airtime to say how they had watched his original film, wondering how the hell Leeds barrow boy Saville could so easily run rings round & dupe an Oxbridge graduate; If you’re not looking for sumut you won’t’ find it, though Saville’s grooming of establishment connections, ability to generate money, laced with a liberal dose of the characteristic British Hypocrisy may have had somut to do with it?
There’s a memorable shot where Louis laments the loss of his friendship with Saville. Personally, I found his Jim will fixit it world patronisingly psychotic; his chavvy dress and affected banter, head scratchingly creepy.

Nice Clubbing

The fact is, like the FA the BBC is a club with extreme light touch policing; outsiders are not welcome, let alone people asking penetrating questions as to the conduct of the club members. In recent times, the FA have been shown a similar lack of rigour wrt its palsied recruitment (Sven, Allardyce, Hoddle the list goes on).

ows about dat den? License to bugger

The fact that both are largely funded by the taxpayer is viewed as a necessary but inconvenient truth, as its guardians zealously guard their domain, rights and privileges from the great unwashed , who submissively fund their egos via their oh so comfortable lifestyles, under pain of imprisonment! A recent example of how little things have changed has been the Top Gear aka Clarkson debacle.

There’s no Action

Will a government of any complexion do anything much about this contempt? Probably not as they are beholden to the meejah for self-promotion … Murdoch still remains at large after judicial exposure of the criminality of his News International; we still await anyone going to prison for the major public scandal that is Hillsborough.
In the meantime lives will continue to be ruined, children will continue to be buggered by these establishment perves; the successors to Saville and his ilk.

Simply …? horrific!