It might just have been because it was the first one, but 10 o’clock Live didn’t seem too impressive last week, with the show veering between Jimmy Carr’s one-liners, the farcical but unfunny Abu Qatada scene and Charlie Brooker, Lauren Laverne and David Mitchell struggling to combine incisive political insight with humour. As I said, maybe all this is wrong and last week’s show wasn’t enjoyable simply because it was the first one, as despite little change in the format or type of content, last night’s episode was very impressive.
What is unique about the programme is that it is so blatantly partial. In last night’s episode Brooker and Mitchell both made references to being liberal, and the team do not even attempt to appear balanced. In last night’s episode Charlie Brooker had a go at the Sun (perhaps the night’s highlight) Jimmy Carr tore apart the NHS reforms, Lauren Laverne mocked the Republican candidates (admittedly something easy for almost everyone to do). The only member to play at not being progressive was David Mitchell in the Falklands debate. 10 o’clock live is also not afraid to be controversial in a left-wing way, as opposed to the anti-PC crusade of the likes of Jeremy Clarkson, with Charlie Brooker’s attack on the monarchy last week, and constant slurs against the right-wing tabloids.
As the political views of Mitchell and Brooker are similar to that of this blog’s, this article is not complaining – it is celebrating the existence of such a programme. What will be interesting, however, is seeing whether succeeds with a general audience like perhaps Have I Got News For You, or if it is simply a niche programme for the politically-minded Guardianista.