Too Much Culture

An Apology

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 02/01/2012

Guardian Chess: Lagging the Queen

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 10/18/2011

So to look at this play in the cold light of day, you might think the safe white pawn is due for a classic “Angolan” Knight over at B3. But Black’s Double rooks on the A-Train are filed twice over daily and so untouchable with anything but the irredeemable White Queen put to bed over at A7. If the second white pawn gets bolstered twice on the same quarter, the rooks’ “Half Nelson” is skewed toward the “racist” Bishop. The King is a “Sceptical Hooker” for the Rook and can be flipped without employing the third A-pawn. I’ve seen this play twice in my life. Both times the black Queen clenched for triple play. A truly amazing piece of manoeuvring.

I Will Not Give You The F***cking Time!

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 09/30/2011

Josh Olson, writer of “A History of Violence” gives his opinion on time keeping.

Here’s the thing, I will not give you the f***ing time! It’s as simple as that. You want to know what time it is, you see me walking down the street, you ask me for the time, here’s the deal, I will not give you the f***ing time.

I will give you an example from a few years ago. I was in a bar watching the hockey and thinking about how cool it would be if Viggo Mortensen 69-ed with Maria Bello on the stairs. This a****le comes up to me, a friend of a friend, he wants to know the time. He says he is going to see a movie at eight and doesn’t want to be late. He wants to see ”Titan AE” or some bullsh*t, he clearly doesn’t realise that a film can’t be good unless Ed Harris’ eye is all weird in it. Anyway, I look down at my watch and tell him it’s half seven, so he orders another beer. As it turns out, the time was actually five to eight, the guy missed “Treasure Planet” or some bullsh*t and what’s worse, he blamed me. He said I was the one that made him miss “The Emperor’s New Groove” or some bullsh*t. I got phone calls asking: why did you give Scott the wrong time? Well in truth, I shouldn’t. I should have given him the f***ing time. He should have found out the time for himself and gone to see “Fern Gully” or some bullsh*t!

The thing is I worked hard – adapting graphic novels with cafes in them – and this allows me to afford a watch from which I can tell the time. I also have a phone which has a tiny clock in the top right corner, sometimes I look at that to tell the time, is it too much to ask that people consider buying their own watches or phones? I am reminded of the old story where a man asks Pablo Picasso if he knows the way to the nearest town. Picasso kills the man, because Picasso was having an off-day. In many ways that’s a lot like, that a****le in the bar. I f***ing hate that guy…

…No, I will not give you the f***ing time!

WTH! Fringe Gossip Overview

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 08/26/2011

Too Much Culture has been at the Fringe for a few weeks now. Here is a run down of some of the wicked whispers which have been floating around the festival…

Pleasance watering hole Brooke’s Bar is rumoured to be opening a new drinking establishment in Oxford. The bar will be inferior to Oxford’s more famous Bar.

Controversial ditty writer Twät ‘N’ The Posse have been criticised for handing out stickers baring the face of Jim Jeffries. Images of the Australian funny man’s face have been stuck all over town, in some cases obscuring some rather fine images of male genitalia.

The Foster’s Sprit of the Fringe Award is to be awarded to the month of September.

TheFaultyTowersdining experience have added six new dates to their run. They have also announced plans to return next year for “The Little Mo Dining Experience” where diners can experience the joy of being forced to eat Christmas Dinner off the floor by your abusive husband.

Tickets for Daniel Kitson’s one off show at The Stand sold out in seven seconds after he publicised the tickets via a note on a toilet door.

The Pleasance Box Office have announced to be their most profitable month of the year. A spokesperson said: “We have been seriously struggling all year, things were looking really bleak from January to June, we are delighted sales have finally picked up and predict this October to be our busiest yet.”

Dave’s Best Joke of the Fringe Award has been given to the barmaid at The Loft Bar, here is her winning joke: “Customer: How much is a pint of Heineken / Barmaid: A pint.” A spokesman for Dave said “ha ha, good one.”

There is some theatre or something.

Next year “Puppetry of the Penis” is to be performed in 4D. audiences can travel forward in time to see the performers, now in their 60’s, regretting the decision to appear in “Puppetry of the Penis”

 

The News of the World: The End of a Turbulent Decade

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 07/07/2011

Today The News of the World folded, its last edition will be published on Saturday. Too Much Culture takes a look back at a decade of the paper and some of its more famous stories:

2000: The News of the World launched its famous Name and Shame campaign against paedophiles. The paper would later go on to name and shame those involved in the creation of the Brass Eye: Paedophile special. Ironically, the News of the World’s condemnation of the programme was printed directly opposite a photo of an under age Charlotte Church having sex with a News of the World journalist.

The News of the World’s Anti-Paedophile campaign was however a welcome break from every other newspaper’s pro-paedophile campaign.

 2002: The news of the World broke the story that Angus Deaton was involved in match fixing on Have I got News For You. The paper revealed Deaton had received almost eighteen pounds from team captain Ian Hislop , to be given question in advance and to ensure Ross Noble would be on his team. Deaton admitted the allegations and left the show simply saying: “I regret what I have done, but Ross is great, I genuinely don’t know where he gets his ideas from sometimes. A monkey in a tank? What’s all that about?”

2005: Posh and Becks sued the paper for making accusations about their marriage. The couple took umbrage to the headline claiming: “Posh and Becks on the rocks.” As anyone knows, Posh and Becks are usually served neat.

2006: The paper was sued by Ashley Cole for printing a story about him that wasn’t true. At the time a News of the World spokesman said: “It has taken all of our journalistic skill and determination to uncover a story about Ashley Cole which is not true and we are proud of what we have achieved”

2008:The paper alleged that Max Mosley had been indulging in Sado-Masochistic sex with a woman dressed as Prince Harry. The F1 boss won litigation against the newspaper after it was revealed the costume was meant to be of popular stand-up Carrot Top. Mosley then went on to sue Joe’s Kinky Costume Emporium for providing him with inferior sex-play costumes.

2011: The paper was forced into closure after allegations of phone hacking. The paper had supposedly hacked the phones of grieving families and war widows. The paper will be published for the final time on 9th July. A shame, it was about to start its serialisation of previously unpublished pages from Anne Frank’s Diary.

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 07/06/2011

The Writer’s Festival is in full swing giving advice to both aspiring writers and those entrenched in the industry. Too Much Culture eavesdrops on the drama Q&A, although the following advice applies to comedy, drama and “Sirens”.

“Writing is all about killing your babies…”

“Seriously have you ever tried writing with kids bothering you. Sometimes its like ‘yes I know you’ve done a drawing of a cat, but that won’t help me write this hard hitting drama.’ Of course I don’t really mean kill, I mean ‘keep out of my f***** face for a few hours.”

“Don’t get it right, get it writ…”

“Oh no, sorry, that should be ‘don’t get it right get it written’ dammit, I knew I should have waited and made sure that sentence was perfect before I typed it out. I’m such an idiot sometimes.”

“Keep stage directions as brief as possible…”

“Always try and keep stage directions to a minimum. Sometimes I will submit entire scripts with little to now stage directions. One script for “The Accusation” just reads: “Something cruelly tragic happens to a well know British character actor.” That was the whole script, simple, clear and direct. That’s what we should all aspire to be as writers.”

“There is no such thing as writers block…”

When I first started writing, some of the older writers sent me out to buy some tartan paint, some sky hooks and a writer’s block. When I got to the hardware store the guy behind the counter laughed his a*** off at me. A writer’s block isn’t an actual thing. I learned that one the hard way.”

“Know your audience…”

“When “my first children’s drama first aired I asked for the names and addresses of everybody who watched it. I then sent them a questionnaire asking if they liked the show. Its important to know your audience, and ignore the controller of ITV if he calls you dangerously obsessive.”

“Find your voice…”

“Not many people know this, but all the episodes of my dramas are meant to be read in a high pitched Irish accent, but do the BBC listen to my notes? No.”

Too Much Culture’s Annual Picks of the Fringe

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 06/22/2011

Its that time again, Too Much Culture takes a look at the hot shows to see at the Edinburgh Festival. Book now to avoid disappointment…

The “Cheers” Drinking Experience

Sometimes you want to drink where everybody knows your name, and now you can do just that thanks to the “Cheers” dining experience. Chat with Norm, hear Sam’s sports stories. The creator of the interactive experience which also brought us the Britass Empire Squash Experience said: “We haven’t asked anyone if we can do this… But that’s okay isn’t it? Isn’t it? Nah, it’ll be fine.”

The Headliners

The headliner return to the Fringe for their twentieth record breaking year. This year their poster features famous politicians’ faces photo-shopped onto the poster of “The Human Centipede: 2”

Bare All Improv!

You won’t miss this group of bright young things. They’re daring poster features all the performers nude. But when you get there all the performers are all fully clothed. Returning for a third year of “anything can happen” fun Bare All Improv is a must see for fans of wacky comedy and extremely misleading visual metaphors.

Drinky Quizzy Fun

Seven of the best stand ups at the Edinburgh Festival, late night and plenty of booze playing a quiz. The intention of this night is to be a raucous hour of silliness and unprofessionalism. That said if any commissioners do want to make it into a TV Show, that would be great.

Agrophilliacination

A fusion of ballet, street dance and modern dance, Agrophilliacation promises to be an experience as unique as a dance show can be.

Kenneth Henry’s One man Character Cavalcade

More ingenious characters from the star of that thing… Y’know, the one that used to be on BBC 2… No not that. He was on it with the other bloke, no not him, but the man who looks like him…  He also did that thing on the Radio? No? One of his characters has a Welsh accent, anyway.

The Disturbing Bagpipers

The Disturbing bag Pipers will be performing throughout the Fringe. They can be heard playing directly outside a venue in which you are trying to enjoy a show. The Disturbing Bagpipers can also be found blocking your path to a venue when you are on a strict timetable and right next to you when you’re trying to f***ing eat.

Puppetry of the Penis

Yep…

So get booking, and Too Much Culture will see you at the festival.

An hilarious Private Eye cartoon about The Turner Prize

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 05/05/2011

The Nominees for the Turner prize have been announced, Private Eye’s resident art’s cartoonist Sponk gives his hilarious perspective on one of the artists.


In Celebration of Victoria Coren’s Poker Column

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 04/25/2011

Inspired by Victoria Coren, Too Much Culture spends the easter weekend playing poker…

I’d like to share with you a play I saw while over in the states. It’s a classic example of how if your river is running dry, don’t twist on the stream in the hope the button will receive a flat call.

So this is how it played out. From the cut I had KD QD. The big blind double tapped a second out of the trap and I (Hoping a Tennessee run would topple Player 1’s Palestine Double-Play) twisted straight for the Dover-Sole putting my 10S to bed over a 7S wand. I don’t need to tell you what happened after this, the KH and QH dipped into the pot early tantalising an early twist out of the raise for 5000, which was of course sent up the river. Player 2 scuppered a perfect 10H split in favour of keeping his blind hand crippled.

Needless to say, once this hand had got soggy even a swift use of the double re-raise he couldn’t get all the 5’s out of the Adriatic steal. But holding a weaker pair out of position will do that to you.

Sometimes I wonder if using the Flat call and raising by 6000 isn’t just as ridiculous as checking for a 1000 call and reversing up the slip stream. But I suppose we all feel like that at after seeing this kind of play.

A Brief History of “Offensive” Comedy

Posted in Uncategorized by tneenan on 03/21/2011

Barry Cryer once said “deconstructing comedy is like dissecting a frog, sexy as f***.”* And while he had a point sometimes some analysis of comedy is necessary. It seems there has been a great deal of discussion about offensiveness in comedy recently, so “Too Much Culture” thought it might be interesting to take a look back at the last thirty years of “offensive” comedy.

Lenny Bruce 1961

In 1961 Lenny Bruce was arrested for obscenity for using the word “HarveyPrice” on stage. Bruce was found guilty by three high court judges, despite expert testimony from fellow artists Woody Allen and Bob Dylan. Dylan spoke of Bruce’s behalf eloquently, stating how use of shocking language is “Crucial for pushing artistic boundaries” and how “that kid does look a bit weird anyhow.”

Tommy Cooper 1984

Who would have though when Tommy Cooper stepped out onto the stage at the London Palladium  he would create one of the most daring pieces of comedy that stage had ever seen. Half way through his routine Cooper suddenly goes silent and slumps to the ground. While this form of challenging comedy is now commonplace with stand-ups such as Stewart Lee, and Ted Chippington, back then it was meant with baffled confusion. Cooper has not worked since.

Heil Honey I’m Home 1991

The sitcom about a disgruntled Hitler living next door to a Jewish couple only lasted one episode. Thousands of complaints flooded into the BBC, attacking the shows uninspiring lighting design, shoddy direction and absence of clear protagonist motivation in the second act.

Seinfeld 1992

There is no denying Seinfeld is one of the most beloved sitcoms ever, but the show tested its fans loyalties with the episode called: “The Don’t Have a W*nk Contest.” The episode features eighteen uses of the word “masturbation” seven uses of the word “W*nking.”

Brass Eye 2001

Chris Morris has always been a challenging creative force. But the Paedophile Special of Brass Eye proved too much for some. The Daily Mail headline read: “Ban This Sick Filth.” Which was ironic as the opposite page featured a 15-year-old Charlotte Church being sexually assaulted by five paedophiles accompanied by the headline: “The Daily Mail Completely Endorses This.”

Russel Brand / Jonathon Ross 2008

The kings of controversy, Brand and Ross caused a whole heap of trouble with their mischievous phone call to Andrew Sachs in 2008. Brand resigned from his job, the producer in charge of the show was demoted, while the corpse of Alexander Graham Bell was exhumed and publicly flagellated. A spokesman for the Pope also made a public apology for his creation of the concept of sex.

Ricky Gervais 2011

Ricky Gervais’ 2011 Golden Globes performance was a little too much for some people. Gervais clearly didn’t care who he offended or how badly some of his material was written. In fact you have to admire his bravery and willingness to deliver devastatingly bland wordplay and be damned with the consequences.

*or something like that