“It’s a fine old English tradition – once you’re too old and decrepit to do it yourself, you start a committee to stop everybody else doing it.”
I’ve been watching one of my favourite British 80′s comedies on DVD – The New Statesman, a popular satire on Margret Thatcher’s Conservative Party. Conservatism under Thatcher had become a bizarre marriage of extreme and ruthless free market economics (‘there is no such thing as society’, she once famously said) and ‘back to basics’ Victorian style sexual morality. Of course, everybody guessed what sexual hypocrites such Tories likely were, and soon after John Major had replaced Thatcher, and had embarked on an even more puritanical tone, an increasing number of Conservative M.P.s were exposed by the tabloids cheating on their wives, ‘cottaging’ in public toilets, engaging in extreme sado-masochistic sex games with rent boys, and even leaving their wives for 17 year old prostitutes.
Here’s an episode of the New Statesman satirising Conservative sexual hypocrisy, and which features an amusing portrayal of a femiservative (appears towards the end of part 1). The ‘New Statesman’ of the title of the show is ultra right wing M.P. Alan Bastard (pronounced B’Stard), played by Rik Mayall.
I’m watching the series in order from the beginning. The show ran for four seasons, and this is episode 3 of the first run. I recall watching an episode in which Bastard takes a party of teenage schoolchildren around the House of Commons – cue some unapologetic pre-paedohysteria jailbait jokes (if my memory serves me right). If it’s on YouTube I’ll post it later once I’ve watched it.