Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Rumpole is adults only

Well, I've reached the last episode of the DVD boxed set of Rumpole, bought at Easter for under fifteen quids. I notice it's currently classified as '12' but this is about to change - at least in Plymouth, anyway, where Rumpole will be strictly adults only stuff.

If Leo McKern's character merely dismembered his clients with a chainsaw, or enjoyed anal sex with members of the higher judiciary, no doubt all would be well and our children encouraged to watch. But Rumpole does something on screen more perverse by far; he smokes. He smokes in his room in chambers, he smokes in Pomeroy's Wine Bar, he smokes at breakfast in the Easi-Bite cafe, he smokes in the lobby of the Old Bailey, he smokes in prison visiting rooms and when he returns home at night he smokes in his own home too. On top of which, he drinks an 'unhealthy' amount of poor quality claret. And he has little time for the abstemious puritans with faces like day-old pollock who would have him stop eating meat, stop smoking and drink only elderflower cordial.

But it seems the anti smokists have created something that would have that old socialist rogue John Mortimer chuckling. It's termed 'smoking porn' and apparently features persons not necessarily naked but just smoking. It's something of a growing sexual fetish, appealing to those for whom taboo behaviour takes a sexual dimension. Classifying all films featuring smoking as '18' can only accelerate this tendency.

I'm glad I've got my Rumpole boxed set already; in future, shop staff will no doubt bestow that look of knowing complicity on the shifty little Onanists guiltily handing over Rumpole discs at the counter. And God only knows what unknown lubricity I will induce standing outside the station, cigarette in hand. It really doesn't bear thinking about.


Manganese said...

You've lived a sheltered life (doubtful) if you think it's the anti-smokists who invented smoking porn. I don't believe there is a single human act or state of being that doesn't have fetish appeal for someone, somewhere.

I remember an article, that was written many years ago, by the smoker Petronella Wyatt who wrote about the sexiness of smokers. She cited her hero John Wayne as an example...who sadly, ironically and rather unheroically, died from lung cancer.

You're right about one thing though - reclassification of the Rumpole series because he smokes is depressing. The loons really are running the madhouse.

Demetrius said...

I saw a report about a museum photoshopping a picture of Winston Churchill to remove the cigar. Daft, all totally daft. And I am a non-smoker. The daftest thing about it all is that there is now far worse stuff in the air than tobacco smoke ever was.

English Pensioner said...

People all around me smoked when I was young, it didn't in any way encourage me to follow suit. However, if I'd had thought it was being discouraged or hidden, I'd would have been tempted to start out of shear bloody mindedness.

I'm still waiting for a doctor or some other busy body to ask me how many units of alcohol I drink each day, as I want to try the "Inspector Morse" line: "I don't drink units, I drink bloody pints"

Anonymous said...

I went out and bought it after you mentioned it in your blog, what a breath of fresh air it was.
Thanks again.
John Gibson

Elby the Beserk said...

Well I could name a Judge in Oxford who thinks that anal rape and aggressive sodomy is all part of the spectrum of "normal" sexual behaviour. Perhaps it is, in the professional classes of North Oxford, as inward-looking and self-regarding bunch of hypocrites as anyone would not want to meet.

Elby the Beserk said...

I see also that a famous picture of Churchill has had his cigar airbrushed out - as did Brunel, another full time cigar smoker.

It's no more than lying. No wonder Labour are so comfortable with re-writing history.