Watched Sherlock last night…His Last Vow.
Who was the evil mastermind, Sherlock’s new nemesis? Rupert Murdoch…the Australian newspaper owner.
No sorry, it was in fact someone called Charles Augustus Magnussen, a newspaper proprietor…and as the BBC call him…‘The King of Blackmail’….using his newspapers and information gathering power to influence government policy…allegedly….not meant to be anyone we know at all.
The show opened with him up before a Leveson style panel where you get the idea of exactly what the subtext is underlying the show….over powerful media owners using that power to blackmail people using very unsavoury methods.
Here’s some of the opening lines:
‘Mr Magnussen how would you describe your influence over the Prime Minister?’
‘I notice you’ve had 7 meetings at Downing Street this year…why?’
‘Do you think it right that a newspaper proprietor, a private individual, and in fact a foreign national, should have such regular access to our Prime Minister?’
At which point a caption flashes up on screen indicating Magnussen’s thoughts about the questioner’s weak points that he can exploit later….this one…his ‘disabled daughter‘…nasty eh? Boo Hiss the evil rightwing, foreign, newspaper owner.
‘Mr Magnussen, can you recall if at any point your remarks could have influenced government policy or the Prime Minister’s thinking in any way?’
We also had a drug addled character prepared to use a knife called ‘Bill Wiggins’…’Wiggins’ was a ‘Baker Street Irregular’….only known as ‘Wiggins’ originally…though may have been called ‘Sam Wiggins’. Why change his first name?
Bill Wiggins is a Tory MP….pure coincidence I’m sure….though Joan Collins was squired by another Bill Wiggins who was a cocaine addict… Bungalow Bill as he was known…because he had nothing going on upstairs. The character in the show later turns out to be a cut rate ‘Sherlock’ and becomes part of the team.
Later we have a a security guard at Magnussen’s office who is attacked and may be dead.
Sherlock’s response…on seeing he has some sort of tattoo…‘He’s been in prison..and is a white supremacist…so who cares’.
Bet he wouldn’t have said that about a Muslim extremist….nice to associate Murdoch with such things though..never miss a chance to put the boot in.
Magnussen……when asked how he proves his claims about people …..‘Proof…I don’t need proof…I’m in news…I just have to print it.’
Ah..those terrible, untrustworthy rags.
‘Sherlock’ of course has form:
A fake newspaper shown during BBC One drama Sherlock included an article mocking the Mayor of London’s ‘hair-brained’ plans
In another episode (Hound of the Baskervilles) from an earlier series we had a martinet, ‘rigthwing’ army officer running a secret research base producing chemical weapons…on his book shelf in his office….books about Maggie Thatcher….someone in props having a laugh I expect.
No doubt there are vast numbers of such little lefty jokes placed through out the programmes.
The Game is afoot….with more comebacks from the dead than Lazarus and Jesus combined.