Thursday, April 28, 2005

Odds Stacked Against Pam.

Down The Bush and Blair

The appeal of the British pub is generally misunderstood by most Americans. We suppose it's more of an experience than a business formula and as only 10% of the US population hold a passport and half of those are in the armed forces, it's not really surprising the lure is lost in translation.

We see pubs as individual cornerstones of local community and heavily defend all prohibition, banner waving, goody two shoe protestations to the contrary. Houses of ill repute, ladies of loose virtue, bottle and gun swinging layabouts and your token law enforcement officer, i.e. the sheriff hardly describes The Vicarage, Blaby.

When it comes to American comedy, with the exception of "Cheers", the boozer has been replaced by the coffee shop. Friends, Frasier, the list is endless and last nights primetime, network viewing did not deviate from the formula with Pamela Anderson's sitcom "Stacked."
Did anyone know she was a comedienne? Neither did we.
The plot has Pam and her short, fat and extremely busty assistant running a book and wait for it, coffee shop aided by a boy next door type who fancies Pam, now there's a twist and a divorced literary intellect who on last night's episode shagged a writer after a book signing only to be labelled a "groupie" by Pam the following day. That's the comedic level. I'm not sure what the aged astronaut character has to do with anything, forget Jack Nicholson in Terms Of Endearment. We can only assume the NASA gags go down well in Houston and Cape Canaveral and we all know who's the boss in Texas and Florida.

Surfice to say channel surfing and finding "Coupling" on BBC America was a gift. Busty blondes, sure and probably more nudity and off colour language than your average American can stomach, don't mention the Superbowl, but the decidedly clever script had us in stiches. Just on a side note most of the hilarious action did take place in the pub.

One show that has been surprisingly successful here and is still repeated is Benny Hill. We were thinking of pitching Bill O'Reilly a new spin co starring Heidi Cortez and Mini Me. The ratings would go through the roof.


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