Peter Rhodes: Ade Edmondson's Bottom and the cupboard of shame
FASCINATING to see Theresa May "locking in" the timing of Britain leaving the EU by writing the departure date into law. I seem to recall that the timing of general elections was locked into law, setting them at five-yearly intervals – until Mrs May thought a snap election would be a good idea. When politics is involved, there ain't a legal lock that can't be picked.
I BET we were all moved to tears at the pitiful sight of senior female TV and radio presenters posing, sad-faced, and brandishing the equality logo to make the point that some of them do not get paid as much as male stars. If it takes another £150,000 a year in their pay packets to make this planet a fairer place, so be it. But in a hard and wicked world riddled with gross unfairness, let's not pretend that these extremely well-paid national treasures are any sort of victims, eh?
IT'S excellent to see Adrian Edmondson getting rave reviews as the pompous old steward Malvolio in Twelfth Night at Stratford. I had lunch with him once in a wine bar in Wolverhampton and I can't recall an interview attracting so much interest, and obvious affection, from customers. It was inevitable that The Young Ones generation would eventually make it to the classical stage; Lenny Henry once told me his dream was to play Malvolio. And then he went off and did a memorable Othello instead. And what Shakespearean role will next beckon Mr Edmondson, still best remembered for those frenetic frying-pan fights with Rik Mayall? Bottom, perhaps?
CHASE Carey, the new boss of Formula One, says he will "innovate and energise" the sport. Good luck with that. But as the age of driverless cars approaches, what is the point of motor sport? Until now, the fascination of racing has been based on the similarity between all levels of driving skills and some connection between developments on the racing circuit and family-car technology. But when travel by car becomes a dull, unskilled business of sitting in a driverless vehicle, where is the attraction in watching a man driving a racing car? Especially when we all know a computer could do it better?
A WRITER to a national newspaper refers to the place where unfashionable hats and gloves are stored as her Cupboard of Shame. At Chateau Rhodes we have a drawer which contains one example of most things you'll ever need. It is known as the Magic Drawer. I bet we all have one.
HOW odd that Blue Planet II (BBC1) saw fit to use subtitles when a French diver was speaking in perfectly understandable English. Curious, too, that the Beeb finds five minutes at the end of Blue Planet II to explain how they filmed a load of fish, but doesn't offer anything after Howards End to explain how the film-makers seemingly took over London and built a Victorian railway.
HOWARDS End. That's the correct title. No apostrophe. I can't explain it either. Nor can I explain why a TV series has been made when a perfectly fine movie of Howards End already exists. Did any other viewers find themselves watching this new series and asking: "Is he supposed to be Anthony Hopkins? Is she meant to be Emma Thompson?"