Real fans know that sport is much closer to the arms industry than the entertainment industry, but us poor saps are endlessly told that we have to accept lunchtime kick-offs, Martin Brundle mincing down the grid trying to get a word with Jensen, Russell bloody Brand in the Guardian, all because “sport is part of the entertainment industry”.
What if it was then eh? How about reviving a few entertainment classics (and not-so-classics) and seeing how sports top performers would get on.
The Roker Roar would be but a whisper compared to the cheer around the country if Fawlty Towers were revived in its full glory. Basil would be played by Jose in one of his more exasperated moods, “What do you mean, we have no centre-halves? The Chair of the Rotary Club is having dinner here tonight! Tonight!” Rafa was born to play Manuel, with his tenuous command of English, “Everton is small club, no?” Arsene would don the drag we are all waiting to see and take on Sybil, “Pretentious? Moi?” Ellen McArthur as Polly would rescue them all in the end.
Harry Redknapp is almost too obvious a choice as Norman Stanley Fletcher, as is Sir Alex as Mr MacKay (hairdryer included). Clean cut Chris Coleman must possess a geography O level, so he gets Godber, with Joey Barton typecast as ‘Orrible Ives and Stuart Pearce all bug-eyed naiviety as Bunny Warren. Mr Barraclough is earmarked for Gerard Houillier after his touching trust in Robbie Fowler’s explanation of the touchline snorting incident, with Gordon Taylor as Governor Venables nicely leading into Terry Venables as genial Harry Grout. The Guardian’s very own Russell Brand can get a bit of much needed exposure as Lukewarm.
Preposterous blusterer Peter Kenyon nicely steps into the Captain Mainwaring role, supported by Second–Choice Steve as Sergeant Wilson. On parade, we find dodgy Cockney Private Walker played by dodgy Cockney Dennis Wise, miserable Private Frazer played by Alan Hansen, Stupid Boy Pike played by Stupid Boy Lampard and Bobby Charlton in the role of aging, decent, but confused Private Godfrey. “Don’t Panic! Don’t Panic! It’s just like when we faced those Italians at Istanbul in 05” - Corporal Jones is a role made for Stevie G, with Glenn Hoddle as the Verger.
On other channels, we might view the much-missed gentle romantic comedy of The Love Boat, with Cristiano as the scampish steward pursuing, not entirely whole-heartedly, a haughty Russian Princess love interest played by La Sharapova, whilst kind, but firm, Purser Gary Lineker is tracking down stowaway Theo Walcott. The ship itself is captained with a paternalistic twinkle in his eye by Bobby Robson. With Ricky Tomlinson signing books and Ralf Little flogging a dead horse in celebrity football, Big Sam takes on Jim Royle, supported by Kevin Nolan as Anthony and Mick Quinn as Twiggy. Venus, Serena and our very own Paula Radcliffe line up as Charlie’s Angels (Hmm… might need a name change) and Batman and Robin reunite as Roger Federer and Andy Roddick don the silly costumes.
Beats Super League live from the JJB though doesn’t it?
MouthoftheMersey February 14 2007