'This is King Charles, just calling to say you won't be needed at the Coronation.' 'I know it’s you, Boris,' I reply

THE call comes from his mobile number. He doesn’t bother to disguise his voice. And still he’s surprised to be called on his lie. 

‘Prince, sorry King Charles here,’ he says, sounding entirely like Boris. ‘Just a quick call to say you won’t be needed on Saturday after all, so if you can have your tickets ready I’ll send a courier round.’

‘I know it’s you, Boris,’ I reply. ‘It’s not Boris,’ Boris says. ‘You’re calling from Boris’s phone,’ I say. ‘And?’ he says. ‘And you’re Boris,’ I say. ‘Fuck,’ he says.

‘What are you after tickets for? You and Carrie are already invited,’ I say, perplexed. ‘Well two reasons,’ he says, the pretence dropped but still resenting that I lacked the good grace to play along.

‘First, you shouldn’t be there and nor should bloody Truss. Makes me look less important when I’m two prime ministers back. Puts me only two away from Brown, and he was a total loser who got kicked out after barely three years.’ I say nothing.

‘Second, I’ve promised a few oligarchs I can get them in. Not all Russian – one Qatari and a US cryptocurrency bro. Thought my sheer charisma would swing it, but everyone’s acting like the guest list is sacrosanct. I can’t even get fucking Meghan’s ticket.’

‘This is the first coronation in 70 years,’ I say. ‘You can’t just turn up with a load of mates and talk your way past the door staff. There are snipers on every roof.’

‘Yes, but when I say promised I mean, you know, promised. Trousered the cash. Spent it,’ he admits. ‘So I need four tickets chop-bloody-chop.’

‘What?’ I say, outraged for His Majesty. ‘There’s no way you can march in there with four uninvited strangers.’ ‘Six,’ he says, ‘but I’ve picked up two extra tickets already. Theresa fell for it.’

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Mad Men: was it overhyped shit that did nothing but inspire Don Draper wannabe dickheads?

WHAT was Mad Men? It was the moment before you needed to binge-watch more episodes of Mad Men. Also it was overrated shite. Here’s why: 

It inspired Don Draper wannabe dickheads

Don Draper isn’t a role model. He’s a womaniser, a problem drinker, a dickhead boss, and an emotionally-repressed wreck. Unfortunately for people who take their media at face value, he looks cool. If your colleague gives rambling, pretentious speeches about bollocks products or your boyfriend drinks Canadian Club, that’s this show’s fault.

You’re not supposed to love adverts

Adverts are the infuriating, manipulative bursts of bullshit that crop up in front of stuff you’re trying to enjoy. You should not be made to sympathise with the creative process that goes into them, even if Peggy worked really hard and came up with a killer idea at the eleventh hour every single week. Her basket full of kisses can suck a dick.

It was historically accurate until it wasn’t

Mad Men was renowned for being a stickler to historical accuracy. Everything from the pens to the furniture to the clothing was meticulously researched in order to transport the viewers back to the Sixties. Except this slavish attention to detail is ignored in the very first episode when Don brainstorms a Lucky Strike slogan years after it existed.

Big boobs are not a character

Joan had big boobs, and that’s Joan. She attempts to use them to get a good marriage, proves capable despite them, is pimped out to a client because of them, and eventually quits because nobody respects her due to her big boobs. It’s a powerful lesson that you can’t overcome your own voluptuousness and a great example for women.

Season six

Even freaks who enjoy Mad Men agree that season six was its nadir. Don’s faltering steps to self-improvement come crashing down as he bangs the neighbour, Pete’s marriage falls apart and Peggy stabs her boyfriend. The show was running on bourbon fumes until it returned to its strength: boring scenes in wood-panelled rooms.

Nothing fucking happens

Some praise Mad Men for its subtle character revelations and novelistic progression. These people have read no novels. Nothing ever fucking happens in Mad Men; it’s just men walking on and out of offices, getting pissed and being sexist. Occasionally a minor character is caught up in a subplot that has no consequences, then it’s back to lingering shots of Jon Hamm’s beautiful face looking mildly troubled. For 92 punishing episodes.