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It was compelling. It was absorbing. It was gripping. And that made it brilliant.

Discounting anything sports related or anything from The Beach Boys back catalogue, it was quite possibly the best thing I have ever heard. I am of course not talking about Richard Bacon's stand-up show. That in itself was something of a disaster. I'm referring to everything that surrounded it. The concept. The build-up. The post-show reaction. This was Bacon at his best. Almost unmissable radio. You could hear his fear as he waited backstage, just seconds from his big moment. Goodness knows how he held it together to continue broadcasting his radio show. I remember being petrified waiting to take my French Oral exam. I would never have been able to present a radio show at that moment. And I am really good at talking into a microphone. But to give Bacon his dues, he did it. And then he did his routine.

My goodness it was bad. It was like listening to someone dig a grave with spoon. He wasn't going anywhere good or fast, yet he kept going. And going. And going. As a general rule, I don't laugh at something if I don't think it's funny. I didn't laugh much last night. If at all. It's hard to know whether the Bacon died due to the constraints of having to perform on the radio or whether he was just out of his depth. It doesn't really matter though. The bare facts show it wasn't great. And that's heart-wrenching.

I mean, it seems really unfair that in years to come this will be looked upon in the same way as we look at 19 Keys or the day Richard met Barack Obama's barber. But that is sadly what will happen. Uploaded to YouTube will be 13 minutes of pure cringe. The comments will fly in, 'WTF is this??!!', 'OMG this guy died ha ha ha', 'I wonder what this guy is doing now?!', 'This is brilliant!'. The latter from a Mr D Wallace.

Of course this has a massive impact on me. As I said in my last post, Bacon's performance would make me look good. Or bad. I can already imagine the conversation with my wife, "Jon darling, is it true that you used to parody this guy?", "Yes Jordan, that's right.", "You really are a very strange man. I don't think I want you to father our child." The thing is, my soon to be former-wife - and all others who look at the performance in isolation - will miss the bigger picture. They won't see the five hours of brilliant radio that surrounded it. Plus the blogs and the newspaper previews and the TV interviews and Bacon's twitterings. They all helped make it what it was. Enthralling.

Richard Bacon is lucky. He experiences this all the time. The reason he was fired from Blue Peter always obscures the fact that he was the 23rd best presenter of the show. And that's really unfair. On John Leslie. So Richard knows how to handle misinformed criticism. But what about me? I haven't got that experience. I am going to look stupid saying, "You really had to be there." No one wanted to be there. Not even Bacon.

So I need to think carefully about what I am going to do now. For the next week or two people will be aware that there was a bigger picture. They can listen to it on the BBC iPlayer. But when that's gone and we are left with just the video evidence, Richard Fakeon may have to be locked away. Which is probably a good place for him. The novelty of that name has quickly worn off and now I cringe more when I hear it than I would watching the Richard Bacon Final Farewell Tour DVD.

But it's all good. Because I don't think Richard Bacon needs me now. I made him look good for a few months, but over the last two nights he has made himself look good. So I think my work here might be done. Tremendous.

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15 comments:

  1. THAT was compelling and absorbing and brilliant!! reckon its up there with your best work, "was like listening to someone dig a grave with a spoon" hahaha genius lee, just genius!!! :)

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  2. I agree with Nick - he was so moved that he bestowed four capital letters on your post - which is possibly the highest score in the Kennedy Rating System. Your post was compelling and absorbing, it was also beautifully written, well done.

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  3. THANKS MARC, forgot to say that the picture is also hilarious

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  4. This was a really enjoyable read, well done. Keep it shh!

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  5. Superb review, just brilliant. For me this review has become part of the Richard Bacon Edinburgh experience.

    I have said it before and I shall say it again - as close to genius as I have encountered and this was even closer.

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  6. Hi. Terrific blog entry, it was very funny and very insightful with regards to it being the whole experience that made it brilliant. Thanks :-)

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  7. Unfair on John Leslie!! LMAO!!!!

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  8. Read a lot about RB's effort and this is by far the best. Brilliant Stuff. Mike D, Bristol.

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  9. You're so right Jon. Put into the context of the programme, it was mesmerising. On it's own - enough said. But RB says he was told to slow down his naturally quick delivery. Big mistake, as he had to think about that as well as everything else. That's why his speech sounded constipated.

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  10. The Guardian Sucks29 August 2009 at 11:46

    How is this http://bit.ly/13tUu4 the guardian review and this blog just blog? Guardian piece was boring, obvious and lazy. This blog had a really interesting angle to it, it was funny and beautifully crafted. Absolutely brilliant read! Keep it up.

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  11. That was Brilliant! Really enjoyed reading it. Captured the event and the moment brilliantly

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  12. Great post! Goodbye Fakeon.

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  13. Many thanks for the comments. Much appreciated. And if that's the real Danny Wallace, then I'm Richard Bacon. But cheers.

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