Game of Thrones, Sky Atlantic
It’s time for Episode Two of the fantasy filth series. We flit about for a bit, checking everyone still has lovely hair (they do), and then we crack on with the story. Back in the north-North, and Samwise Gamgee, or whatever Jon Snow’s companion is called, is beginning to harbour complicated feelings about girls, which is going to lead to some pretty rapid limb removal by my reckoning. He wants to, er, borrow one of the daughter-wives and spirit her away from this dark and dreadful dad-diddling forest, and take her somewhere safe. His genitals, for instance. Jon Snow say NO.
In the desert, Iain Glen and the Khaleesi lounge around languidly, too dehydrated to jump each other, when the mood is killed further by the return of one of their messengers, minus that important bit at the top of his neck. This grief is a bit wearing, so we move along. On board a boat somewhere, there’s some more disappointing sex, but I had to avert my eyes because it involved Alfie Allen, and, y’know, *gag*.
It’s a quick scene change to some rhythmic blowjob stuff in a brothel and……HANG ON A MINUTE. Is anyone actually going to speak in this episode? Do a little plot or character development perhaps? Once again it’s up to Tyrion to do the talking, questioning the legitimacy of Joffrey’s reign and the public relations implications of last week’s baby slaughtering. He uses his power as Hand of the King to swap staff in favour of those less down with infanticide. Seems like an alright sort of chap to me.
Arya is still on the run, doing a passable imitation of one of the lads from One Direction. She has befriended someone else who is hiding from the wrath of the Lannisters – a true heir to the throne and reveals the fact that she is Ned Stark’s daughter. And a girl, obviously. Alfie A goes back to his father, where he is abused in time-honoured fashion, “You look like a girl” etc. He also tries it on with his sister. On a horse. It’s fine though, because he didn’t realise it was her, and thus no-one goes to prison.
There’s more plotting, tribes move closer to war, and we unravel further intricacies of old allegiances. There’s a sense of growing urgency, of losing control and…..Jon Snow runs through a forest, hears a baby crying and gets bashed on the head. See you next time, for a very urgent installment of WinkyWatch.
Derek, Channel 4
Hmmm. This is an odd one. Set in a retirement home, this new ‘comedy drama’ follows Derek, played by Gervais, and his co-workers. Derek has learning difficulties, and the resulting performance is not as jarring as I’d been led to expect. The overall effect is very strange though. The home looks like an amalgamation of every care home, ever, and whoever is responsible for the props and staging has done a bang-up job. The realness of it though, is neither comedy nor drama, it’s just a fake documentary, and I can’t understand the purpose of it.
Karl Pilkington plays Karl Pilkington in a rubbish wig, but the rest of the cast are pretty good, it just isn’t really going anywhere. Which is very often the feeling you get when working in a care environment. It’s not bad, it’s not offensive, but then again the fact that you can see it trying so hard to be real means it is hard to find it emotional and touching either. As someone who regularly bursts into tears the second the sun rises in the Lion King, I felt like I might be quite susceptible; but I couldn’t get over the fact I was just watching Ricky Gervais and his mates pretend to be the kind of people in the kind of place that quite often make you feel genuinely very sad.