‘Someone had to fight back; shame it had to be these two’: this is the end of the introductory text that appears before each episode of The Revolution Will Be Televised. The ‘two’ in question are Heydon Prowse and Jolyon Rubinstein, and in many ways their self-deprecating introduction isn’t entirely ironic; to a large extent that’s what makes the show so entertaining.
By no means is this show to be taken as an entirely serious piece of political commentary, but the casual element to much of their observation, combined with their often amusing actions, creates a pleasing perfect storm of often funny and usually relevant criticism of the ‘hypocrisy, corruption and greed’ that they see as pervading today’s world.
Their inane and often frankly silly demonstrations provide more of an insight than is perhaps to be expected at first glance. While the sheer exaggeration of their sketch personas and the lengths they go to when dealing with high-street shops and corporate HQ’s creates an atmosphere of hyperbole that is bound to make good TV, a strong point is often made in amongst their many shenanigans.
I may sympathise more with their efforts because I am somebody who is reasonably like-minded to the message being put across by the show and the overall left wing bias presented. However, their line of argument on some issues can be a flaw of the show: they are, as one of my friends described them, “filthy liberals”, and this line of political enquiry won’t appeal to everyone.
Still, I do usually find myself nodding in some kind of agreement at what they’re trying to do and to be fair, they’ve made some bloody good points and delivered some pretty witty responses across the show’s time. The show capitalises on clever editing and finding the right sort of people on the street to really deliver amusing and politically engaging points.
Even more paining is the occurrence of a segment that is just handled in poor taste or just isn’t funny such as a segment on attitudes to abortion in the U.S in a recently aired episode.
Unfortunately this isn’t entirely without exception and certainly some of their attempts at corporate HQ invasion or at provoking the kind of response they desire don’t go quite to plan. Even more paining is the occurrence of a segment that is just handled in poor taste or just isn’t funny such as a segment on attitudes to abortion in the U.S in a recently aired episode. Admittedly this happens rarely and whether it’s a simple faux pas or a fairly big fuck up, they manage to keep it to usually one or at most two skits a show.
When the skits come as thick and fast as they do it’s relatively easy to brush these quibbles aside and enjoy the rest of what’s on offer, but certainly a slightly less facetious line of approach on occasion and a slightly less rushed feel to some of the skits could really take the show to a new level. That said, in many ways this would be uncharacteristic of what the guys do, and with the 3rd series recently finishing it’s clear that they haven’t strayed from the path or sold out.
Essentially, if you like your satire fast and loose and laughs coming at you from pretty much every angle, this is the show for you.
They’ve stuck good and true to their roots of basically being a pair of silly buggers with some bones to pick; some with the world’s biggest corporations, some with the U.K and the U.S’s best known politicians and others with the people that make up the society which we too are a part of. They’re not afraid to try and approach George Osborne with a GCSE maths textbook or to just run off with banker’s money.
Essentially, if you like your satire fast and loose and laughs coming at you from pretty much every angle, this is the show for you. Even if politics or current affairs aren’t your thing, you’ll still probably get a fair few chuckles from these two. If you think it sounds horrible from what I’ve written then maybe best give it a miss, but I’m very much an advocate of try everything once.