Wednesday, June 2, 2010


We saw one of those series (on library rental CDs), series that I suspect arise within one of the regrettably advanced cabals of the BBC aimed at the “education” of the lower classes. In one of the episodes the crime to be solved by our politically correct Chief Superintendent involves heinous behavior by one of BBC’s favorite targets, the C of E. In one scene we are outdoors at a church, having been inside to glimpse both soaring architecture and sinking degradation, when the camera “significantly” pans over a stone column inscribed upon which are the words GOD IS LOVE. The context is not, as it were, to assert the truth of that phrase but, rather, to point to the hypocrisy of clergy and believers—because, by listening to the dialogue between the PC CSI and his laudably lower class DI (that’s a detective inspector for laughably naïve Americans) we already know how we are supposed to view religion generally—thus as something below the salt, but that phrase, in turn, would not be seriously used because another favorite target of such shows is the nobility or anything even resembling it. And a third one, of course, is anybody engaged in trade. But, alas, we wouldn’t use that phrase either because that’s another dismissive slogan used by upper classes of yore. Therefore “trade” today means big business with showy wealth on display.

Now, mind you, in fairness to the BBC, it is more like the civilization itself and not uniform in its ideology. Advanced cabals are opposed to others that frequently succeed in bringing us better entertainment. In addition to CSI WhatsHisName, we are also treated to Miss Marple. Indeed she has been brought us by faceless BBC folk I heartily approve of (BBC-sage, let’s say) and, later also by the cabal I’ll gladly do without. In the first series Miss Marple, who has a very dark view of humanity indeed, is shown as she was written (manner of speaking). In the second and later version, she is made to seem younger, lighter, and always seemingly with her tongue in her cheek. Her dark side has vanished. The cabal must have shuddered at the first Miss Marple; lordy; Marple might actually teach the lower classes something that might be called “morals.” Double-shudder. This would not do, would not do.

BBC-sage has also brought us Ruth Rendell—and done in the clear. And Ruth Rendell, while a woman of our time, wears a very serious expression on her face; she has an unfailing eye for the fallen state of humanity—any class—under, lower, middle, higher, or the highest. We none of us escapes that dark vision, one that speaks of other and these days rarely publicized aspects of God we’d best keep in mind as we slurp our life with all the gusto that we can.

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