By Abigail Pennson, our reasonable, plain-speaking middle-class columnist slightly to the right of Hitler
FOR as long as any of us can remember, the BBC has sworn to destroy everything great and good about this country. So of course they began with the Queen.
From the day of her coronation they began their assault. The decision to broadcast it to the nation was a deliberate attempt to tear away the public’s natural reverence by exposing the Royals as ‘people’.
Instead it backfired: the young Elizabeth II looked so marvellously regal, such a divine example of monarchical perfection, that the nation realised that television might be better than radio after all.
Frustrated, and forced to put off broadcasting outright pornography until the 1970s, the BBC struck again with a 1969 documentary purporting to show the day-to-day life of the Royals.
It’s been banned ever since at the Queen’s request because it was unimaginable filth. Shown in lurid colour, instead of stately, respectful black-and-white, I am reliably informed that it featured sodomy, blasphemy and unacceptable levels of sexual degradation.
Three-quarters of the nation watched it. Most are now, not coincidentally, dead. It joins BBC shows like The War Game, Scum, and everything by Dennis Potter on the banned list. It must be truly vile, and no wonder she was ashamed.
But even that filth had a positive effect. Seeing the Queen in colour, so gamine yet steely even if she was naked and bloodied, persuaded the whole nation to change into colour to follow her example. And eventually Thatcher was elected.
What came next? It’s A Royal Knockout, a humiliation which directly led to the collapse of the marriages of the Princess Royal, Prince Andrew and Prince Charles in that order. Though it did at least cause Edward to realise the gay thing was just a phase.
And, of course, Martin Bashir’s sewer-dredging 1995 interview with the Princess of Wales, only obtained by his pretence to be the late Mahatma Gandhi.
This weekend? We’re told the Platinum Party at the Palace is a tribute. Really? When it features Stefflon Don and Diana-apologists Duran Duran? Nonsense. It’s another attempt to kill her.
One which I don’t doubt that, like Godzilla over Mothra, she will once again triumph. It is the BBC that will die. The Queen? She’ll be going double platinum.