Tuesday 4 January 2011

An Ambridge Scandal

[NOTE: The following will make no sense at all to many readers of this blog, but sometimes a man has to speak out...]
For most of my sentient life, I've been listening to - or at least aware of - The Archers, Radio 4's strangely addictive 'everyday story of country folk' (it's no such thing of course) and, like most who fall under its spell, I intensely dislike a great deal about it. It's always a love-hate thing, and the hate is always at its strongest immediately after a 'special' episode, i.e. one of those in which they decide to arbitrarily kill off a character. The elaborately overhyped 'special' that marked The Archers' 60th anniversary has, sure enough, left me seething. In it, having quite skilfully constructed a cheering tale of birth and reconciliation, the writers then threw it away with the ludicrous story of the fatal trip to the roof of Lower Loxley, culminating in the most blood-curdling scream heard since the heyday of Hammer horror - this was Nigel Pargetter falling to his death from the roof of his ancestral home, and I am frankly furious about it. Not only was this part of the episode very badly written, with characterisation thrown to the wind (and it was a windy night up there on the roof, also frosty) and what was going to happen laboriously telegraphed at every step - it also deprived us listeners of one of the more attractive male residents of Ambridge, where most heterosexual men are drudges, boobies or crooks (or, increasingly, asexual). Even after years of marriage to the ghastly emasculating Lizzie, Nigel, a basically decent chap, was still full of spirit and fun - and now the harpies who run The Archers have killed him off, for no reason at all. As when they did the same to John Archer, I now intend to boycott the programme - though I know it won't last, I'll be drawn back in. I always am.


  1. Bad vibes all round Nige, the portents for the year of the Dabbler do not look good, the Sibyl must be consulted, quickly.

    Dies irae, dies illa
    Solvet saeclum in favilla
    Teste Nige cum Sibylla.

  2. It's just because he was called Nigel IMHO

  3. He did a Rod Hull then.

    Nige, I can't help feeling you rather brought this on yourself by making the fundamental mistake of listening to the Archers.

    You say it's 'strangely addictive', but for myself, I've always found it strangely... um, what's the opposite of 'addictive'?.... strangely that, anyway.

  4. I know I know, I blame myself, fool that I am...

  5. Joey Joe Joe Jr.5 January 2011 at 19:08

    I only ever listen to it nowadays if I happen to be driving. And that's because I was so frantic to change the station when I heard the 'dum-dee-doo-dee-dum-dee-doo' at 19:02 one night that I crashed the car.

  6. There may yet be hope (though I suspect this might just possibly be a spoof)...