Monday, January 30, 2006

Armando Iannucci; Time Out Rate-Hate System

I bring exciting news for those of you who have been ignoring the back page of the new smaller-but-fatter The Observer recently. I accidently caught sight of the back page of the news section in a mirror yesterday, and discovered to my great joy that it had on it a column by Armando Iannucci, about whom the internet will probably tell you a lot. They've been very funny, and if like me you have a mortal fear of the back page of a newspaper that doesn't contain either pictures of Sven or adverts, then you can avoid confronting your fears by looking here, here, here, and also here. Great.

Now, those of you who live in London will no doubt be aware that Time Out hates everything. Be it plays, art, books, music (in single, album or live format) or films, they think it's beneath them to show any sign of enjoyment. They've even invented a ratings scheme specially to systematise their disdain. They mark everything out of stars, which is conventional enough, but not five stars, oh no, they mark things out of six stars. This allows them to have the unattainable sixth star sitting there blankly at the end of the row, its very existance mocking all forms of artistic endeavour. Honestly, they had a meeting about this; just look at the minutes below:

1 Apologies (none given)
2 Belittling the Arts (6-star rating system to be implemented, mwhahahaha)
3 Wasting Perfectly Good Ink on that Knobshine Christian Subnormal with the Megaphone at Oxford Circus (motion passed: full steam ahead, cap'n)
4 Off down the pub then everyone? (motion pashed)

However, they've only gone and given a film six stars in the last issue, haven't they? You'd think this would undermine my argument, wouldn't you? It doesn't, because they felt that they had to point out the rarity of the award by putting '(six stars)' in words after the six stars themselves. It was probably not an event for which they'd planned.


  1. That's a good explanation for their hitherto-inexplicable idiotic six-stars system.

  2. What was the film that they gave 6 stars to? Was is 'Hidden'? I've seen that. It was good, but not six stars good. Maybe 4 and a half. Or even five if you pushed me, but not six. Everyone else seems to love it though.