Thursday 7 September 2023

O Shit There's Two Of Them!

Sadly, They Both Escaped from Toyland

Time for a bit of titillation for the senses and time off from my usual bollocks. First off, I must apologise to my non-UK readers, as this post will make no sense at all. Anyway, I was browsing the omniscient/omnipresent app, YouTube when I espied a video that captivated my interest. I'm sure my readers are well aware of this video platform. Like most stuff on the netty, the content of YouTube is not worth a view. That said there are nuggets of gold if you are prepared to dig. The video to which I'm referring is not a golden feast/fest for the optic organs. Nevertheless, it did capture my jaded attention.

The subject of the video concerned the life of two British 'comedians', Mike and Bernie Winters. The brothers were born in 1926 and 1930 respectively to working-class Jewish parents, in London. From an early age, they became interested in the 'Performing Arse' (surely sum mistake?). Sadly, they decided to form a comedy duo and during the 1950s they managed to obtain exposure on the new-fangled tele thingy. Alas, they became a feature on the tele throughout the 1960s and well up into the 70s. At that stage, the brothers had a falling out, and the less 'funny' one of the pair fucked off to the US leaving behind the goofy one. Said goofy one then managed to 'star' in a tele show costarring with a large dog. This televisual debacle lasted but two years.

The video droned on for eight minutes and was narrated by a gentleman with a mid-Western American accent. The video praised the duo for their long and (un?) funny career and interspersed within the video there were relevant photos and video clips. The narrator gushed about how the pair was iconic and beloved by the British audience. This is not how I remember the double act - they were even less funny than others of their ilk. Remember, 'Little and Large' and 'Cannon and Ball'?    

Unfortunately, I grew up in an age when these two unfunny prats minced upon the screen and after viewing this misleading video, I felt an urgent need to comment. Here goes: 'Absolutely awful. Useless pair of old hacks. Hackneyed unfunny routines. How they managed to become mainstream is an enigma wrapped in a puzzle. A drain on legitimate humor everywhere'.  

I decided to check other comments placed on this very video. Here are a few snippets:

'There was a joke doing the rounds, years ago.... Which were the two worst winters of the past 50 years?' Ans....Mike and Bernie....they were about as funny as toothache.'

'You cannot have the word comedy associated with these two. Out of 10 for comedy, they would be the only duo to get a minus score. They were awful.' 

'I remember Mike & Bernie Winters. The lobotomy didn't help erase the memories.'

'I never understood how they got on TV there was nothing funny going on - ever.'

'As funny as cholera!' 

And so, it goes on in a similar vein. As said it was inexplicable to why they were such a success. And then it came to me in a flash. They were good mates of Lew Grade. Nuff said..........

After this touch of whimsy, I promise to put forth material with a little more substance and dare I say it, gravitas. Watch this space (cadet?). Arse.



  1. There were only 2 telly channels, BBC and ITV until BBC2 came along.
    BBC2 was the posh channel showing posh sports - tennis, horse riding, cricket, etc. and serious music and serious documentaries. It was good.
    The two pleb channels were run by posh persons who gave the plebs the pabulum that the posh persons thought the plebs would appreciate - shite.
    This did wonders for the social life of young folk. Better to congregate under a street light on a cold winter night than watch that stuff, and later, once employment or grants came along the pub.
    For the parents who had come through the War into post war gloom the low resolution, a stunning 405 line monochrome, telly was a wonder and they would have watched anything, or had it on as background while knitting or doing a hobby. Films like Saturday Night And Sunday Morning, This Sporting Life, Kes and Alfie portrayed the era accurately.
    For a more humorous depiction of the times watch Tony Hancock - Sunday Afternoon At Home. Funny but true.
    The comedians were dire. Dress was ludicrous panto style, catch phrases were rife and laughs were got by falling down, pulling a gurning face or both.
    They were cheap. Good comedians were expensive, "rude" and very clever. But they knew that it was better to perform in theatres to an ever changing audience rather than squander material in a couple of nights of telly with tens of millions of viewers what would keep them going all year.
    I hated weekends. This when the nadir of this shite was presented on telly, and Monday morning school loomed.

    1. Bloody eck Doomhammer, I thought I was alone with such morose laden thoughts- clearly not. I agree with your thesis. Tele, for the most part has always been shite. And yes, 'Bread and Circuses' come forth. That said the Beeb did produce some wonderful dramas. As a young man I was enthralled with 'I Claudius'. I have the series on DVD and intend to have a marathon session with my beloved son when he comes up in two weeks' time. No doubt a few ales will be imbibed. I get it, Graves' interpretation is a little strained at times. Claudius was never the avuncular character, as portrayed. However, Graves gets the broad strokes right and his interpretation is very entertaining. As for the actors. What can I say? Suburb, and classically trained. Anyway, Kiwi tele transcends and tests the humanity which lurks unfettered (steady Flaxen) within the deepest recesses of our very soul. I'm starting to wax lyrical; however, a constant diet of 'Reality Tele' interspersed with game shows all interrupted every 7 mins by adverts is enough to turn anyone's' intellect into glue. Nuff said.

  2. Man, blaming Brit-Telly? Well, there are obvious reasons to complain... BUT underneath the line on a pretty high level ! You should be so greatful, not beeing brought up in any other fckn earthling´s territories. You had Mrs Rutherford´s Ms Marple, Marty Feldman, Monty Python, Mr. Bean, Falty Towers, Douglas Adams, Sasha Cohen.... plus, plus really visionary non comedy stuff, like "the prisoners" (with Roger the ball) or Dr. Who and why not The Avengers (Diana Rigg was soo cute) Hammer Studios, James Bond, Harry Potter... and so on... And then the music - the Brit-Invasion was the best that happened to my country since Beethoven. And then those marvelous directors, like Mr. Charles Chaplin, Hitch, Kubrick, R. & T. Scott, Nolan (ok - Tenet is shit)....
    Before I could see some worth seeing homemade stuff on german Tv, I had to do it on my own - that immediatly after broadcasting was prohibited from screen and I had to escape to theatre and finally to print for survival. Cheers lucky chaps - someone still loves Britain
    (doubtless - this wheel is turning backwards too - but still culture to be envious on).

  3. Yea, Brit tele had its moments, no doubt (see above). And yet it does not excuse the mountain of dross produced. Let us be frank. The powers that be are not really interested in the morass of humanity. Keep them somnolent and passive. Let them eat cake and watch bollex. All else is commentary- go see and become entertained, or at least, free. Hope you are well Josh.