Posts Tagged ‘Politics’

Homeland Season 6 – Tom Secker on Porkins Policy Radio

Published January 19th 2017

This week I joined Pearse to talk about the beginning of the new season of Homeland, and how it isn’t quite what we expected. The entire 6th season is set between the US presidential election and inauguration day and while the president-elect is female, she is no Hitlery Clinton. Instead she is a peacenik who wants to withdraw from Syria, and believes the domestic terrorist threat is overblown. Meanwhile, a young Nigerian-American Muslim is arrested after making videos about the history of terrorism in the US, including the assassination of Meir Kahane in New York in the early 1990s. We discussed this case and why it’s odd that a CIA-assisted series would be drawing people’s attention to it.

ClandesTime 096 – Unreal

Published January 8th 2017

Unreal is a gripping and brutal satire of reality TV but it is much more than that. While this might sound like a drama about a trivial subject, the content of Unreal makes it one of the most serious and important TV series of recent years. It follows two female producers as they make a romance-themed reality show, highlighting the degree to which they’re willing to manipulate the contestants in order to produce ‘good TV’. The psychological and moral impact of this on the production crew – particularly the junior producer Rachel – is quite awful, and she rebounds between depression and megalomania as a result. This week we take a deeper look at this series, examining its commentary on what constitutes ‘entertaiment’ and how that is made, through its complex politics of gender and race to the constant use and subversion of stereotypes.

Jimi Hendrix FBI File

Published January 3rd 2017

The FBI’s file on James Marshall Hendrix aka Jimi Hendrix is a brief but entertaining example of the Bureau having too much time on their hands and not enough to do. After Hendrix was arrested in Toronto in 1969 ‘after a quantity of marijuana was found in his shaving kit’ the Canadian authorities asked the FBI for help finding an excuse to deport him. Hoover’s men duly obliged, though they found virtually nothing.

Carol For Another Christmas – Tom Secker on PPR

Published December 24th 2016

Pearse invited me on his radio show to discuss the 1964 TV movie A Carol for Another Christmas. This was the first in a series of TV films designed to promote the United Nations and sponsored by the Xerox corporation. A Carol for Another Christmas is a remake of A Christmas Carol, only this time the protagonist’s three visions (of Christmases past, present and future) convince him to abandon his isolationist beliefs and embrace the UN’s vision of international affairs.

ClandesTime 095 – The CIA and Top Chef

Published December 22nd 2016

The CIA finally jumped on the cooking-themed reality TV propaganda bandwagon in 2010 when they hosted an episode of Top Chef. This week we take a look at the episode in question, how it flattered the CIA, and how Top Chef has involved numerous government agencies and departments. We round off looking at some of the reasons why cooking programmes make for effective propaganda.

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