Making an Impression

It’s late and I can’t sleep.

Switched the telly on, to find there’s sod-all to watch. BBC 1 are currently broadcasting The National Lottery Friday Night Draws. Hosted by Ronni Ancona, it’s a pre-recorded 10 minute slot which essentially reads out the results of three lottery draws. None of these draws have more than seven balls pulled out of the magical spinning machine. That means they need to fill some time to pretend it’s worth a show in it’s own right and not just a voice over between real programmes. Fortunately the guest presenter is the aforementioned impressionist, so naturally, she needs to do an impression to provide some light entertainment.

But why?

Why do we need to suffer a badly-contrived pun joke, told in the style of Lorraine Kelly just for the sake of some filler to a show which shouldn’t exist in the first place? It isn’t a natural conclusion that if the presenter is an impressionist, then we should be dealt some crap which didn’t make it into their own sketch show.

I find this rings true for impressionists in general who appear on TV outside of their own take-it-or-leave-it type of entertainment. Take Rory Bremner for example. Every interview I’ve ever watched or listened to has consisted of a collection of tall stories manipulated to fit around his repertoire. Plus the one about John Major. Nothing insightful about the man himself, just the live version of a demo tape (and that includes a couple of interviews with Sir Michael of the Parkinson). Even non-chat shows, such as Have I Got News For You usually ends up with one or two impressionists per series and it’s the same story.

Why do they do it? No other profession appears to come on TV and be mandated to show their day job. I can’t imagine Lewis Hamilton sitting alongside Parky in his “works vehicle”, blipping the throttle every now and again. Give it a rest: just make an impression; don’t do one.