Sunday, July 04, 2010

Rev review rant

Rev is, by all accounts, quite good. The pre-publicity was promising. Post-performance reviews were upbeat. I would have liked to have seen it.

I have not yet been able to see it.

I didn't watch it when broadcast, because 10pm is a silly time for people who have to get up at 5.45 the next morning. No matter, I thought, I would wait to watch it on Virgin TV catch-up.

Except that the next day it wasn't available on catch-up. And when it finally did get there ... it's in HD.

It's in frakkin' HD.

H bloody D.


This is a 30 minute sitcom, you morons. What sad obsessives watch a sitcom for the effing HD?

No one, is the answer. No - one. At all. Ever. In the history of the world. Has watched a sitcom and thought: "you know, this would look better in HD."

But I think I have the answer. A sneaking suspicion. It's those TV people again - you know, the ones who work for the greatest public service broadcaster in the world and have no conception of what TV programmes actually are, so doing silly things like ruining the end of Dr Who with a plug for Graham Norton is quite acceptable. Programmes are televisual product, that is all: no finesse or understanding is required. HD is the new technology: it is policy to push the new technology. Rev is a new series: it is policy to push new serieses. Therefore, Rev must be pushed in HD. Stands to reason, doesn't it?

These are the same people who about ten years ago were assaulting our screens with those endless stupid adverts for Comedy Monday, where police pursue some comedian who has made the mistake of being funny on a day that isn't Monday, because the BBC has decreed Monday is Comedy Monday. The logic, in their tiny brains, is impeccable. Two Pints is (allegedly) comedy; Goodness Gracious Me is (very definitely) comedy; therefore we'll put all our comedy shows on Monday evening so that they can all be watched by people who like comedy. "There's a time and place for comedy. Save it for Mondays." It still makes me wake up in cold sweats.


Rev is available on iPlayer, so all is not lost. I would have liked to have been able to watch it with my wife but apparently it's not to be. I suppose she could watch it at the same time on the PC in the living room and after we could compare notes. Technology, eh?


  1. Nobody watches HD programmes just "because" they're HD. That's placing technical quality over content quality, which is stupid. However, if your chosen content is available in multiple technical qualities, it makes perfect sense to choose the best one.

    People do say "this sitcom would look beter in HD" because that's what HD does - it makes things look better. As someone who can view HD, I'd like everything I watch to be filmed in HD. That's not just me as a technology geek - my parents have found that regular TV in HD looks great.

    Your complaint should be "I'm annoyed that Virgin TV catch-up didn't give access to the non-HD version as well", not "I'm annoyed that Rev was filmed in HD".

  2. > However, if your chosen content is available in multiple technical qualities, it makes perfect sense to choose the best one.

    But no sense at all to show it only in a format that most people still don't have. That's just cynical and abusing a dominant supplier position. However, as most catch-up options offer both HD and normal (ND?), and episode 2 was available in ND (only), I suspect episode 1 was only HD because someone got it wrong. I try always to assume stupidity before malice, except when assuming the latter is more fun.


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