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Thread: Jonathon Meades

  1. #1
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    Default Jonathon Meades

    So, I have been enjoying Off-Kilter, all the little riffs and wilfully tangential chatting in the deadpan style. I have not seen Magnetic North though.

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    Most of his programmes are on youtube if anyone didn't know: http://www.youtube.com/user/MeadesShrine

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    Most of them are absolutely brilliant. You just need to be handy with a dictionary whilst watching. He's sort of a hero of mine already. Amazing that he used to be on BBC2, isn't it?

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    Oh yes...though like Tony Hancock trying to read Bertrand Russell, as has been said, a dictionary would come in handy. But who bothers? His style of delivery and dry wit is are a treat.

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    Quote Originally Posted by four_five_one View Post
    Most of his programmes are on youtube if anyone didn't know: http://www.youtube.com/user/MeadesShrine
    Thanks.

    Yeah they are great. It's nice to see a polemicist who is unashamedly intellectual and opinionated and still entertaining.

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    A mate's been badgering me for ages to watch him, but I always thought he'd be a slightly less hammy Brian Sewell. How wrong can you be? Saw the last of the off-kilters (lured in by scottish football clubs theme) - pure unadulterated genius. Something worth watching agaiin and again, I'd guess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crackerjack View Post
    A mate's been badgering me for ages to watch him, but I always thought he'd be a slightly less hammy Brian Sewell. How wrong can you be? Saw the last of the off-kilters (lured in by scottish football clubs theme) - pure unadulterated genius. Something worth watching agaiin and again, I'd guess.
    Yeah! He is a bit like Brian Sewell mixed with 20% Chris Morris.

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    There's definitely a Brian Sewell touch & a bit of rather self-conscious wackiness but some of his stuff is great. The programme he did on Nazi architecture where he pointed out how fundamentally immature it all was - he described Hitler's Eagles Nest as like the treehouse of a megalomaniacal child I think - took the wind out of any concept of a cool evil dangerous Third Reich by laughing sarcastically at their utter ridiculousness. Worked brilliantly. Haven't been a Nazi since
    ** pandemonium ad asbo **

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    He's great. Only seen the first Off Kilter so far, but Magnetic North was brilliant, highly recommended. I've got a boxed set of his stuff going back a couple of decades, all of which is good. There's a nice recent-ish one where he talks about his dad and his childhood, which was quite cool - a chance to see how the circumstances he grew up in shaped his way of looking at the world.
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    Quote Originally Posted by viktorvaughn View Post
    Yeah! He is a bit like Brian Sewell mixed with 20% Chris Morris.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/MeadesShrine

    There's something to him that I often want to disagree with, but I'd rather have that from an auteur who isn't afraid to refer to the Teutonic Knights as engaging in "faith based belligerence initiatives" or say "i'm referring of course to Betjamen the topographer, not Betjamen the poet" than some more blandly pointless talking heads.

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    I love the fact his brand of original TV is so popular, his off-kilter shows were top of the iplayer most watched list I think. Hopefully that tells the beeb what they need to know, when I read recently they were doing surveys about 'what viewers expect from different kind of programming', the dickheads. Formalism is exactly what we don't want. His episode about the Isle of Lewis was my favourite of all the shows I've seen of his.

    His novels are hilarious too!

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    You need to read Private Eye this week.

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    Default Heads-up: Bunkers, Brutalism and Bloodymindedness: Jonathan Meades

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03vrphc

    Sun 16 Feb on BBC4:

    "Two-part documentary in which Jonathan Meades makes the case for 20th-century concrete Brutalist architecture in an homage to a style that he sees a brave, bold and bloodyminded. Tracing its precursors to the once-hated Victorian edifices described as Modern Gothic and before that to the unapologetic baroque visions created by John Vanbrugh, as well as the martial architecture of World War II, Meades celebrates the emergence of the Brutalist spirit in his usual provocative and incisive style. Never pulling his punches, Meades praises a moment in architecture he considers sublime and decries its detractors."
    Ness Rowlah

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    Cheers for the heads-up Ness, that sounds great.

    Anyone else read/ing Museum Without Walls? I'm most of the way through, it's pretty great. Only real gripe is that he often ends up repeating the same fact, joke or anecdote two or three times, but I think that's just a side effect of it being a collection of nearly 20 years' worth of essays and film scripts that were never originally intended to be published together.

    On the subject of brutalism specifically, he namechecks Owen Hatherly a couple of times in a generally approving way, which I think is interesting given the latter's Marxism and the fact that Meades, whatever you think his politics really are, is clearly no socialist. Then again, he (JM) is pretty scathing about Thatcherism and utterly excoriating about New Labour in general and Blair - the "Christian bomber" - in particular.

    Great stuff, on the whole.
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    The fourth ep in Meades's informal series on dictators and architecture went up on BBC iplayer the other day: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0007z31

    This one's about Franco. Well worth a watch - especially eye-opening on the package tour/Benidorm phenomenon towards the end.
    Doin' the Lambeth Warp New: DISSENSUS - THE NOVEL - PM me your email address and I'll add you

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