While I appreciate the fact that The Only Way In Essex (or TOWIE as people insist on calling it) has brought a lot of people out of the gutter of wearing sportswear and taught them how to slick their hair over with the soaked appeal of the ‘wet look’ I can’t help but wonder where it’s heading.
I tried watching The Only Way Is Essex last night to see what all the fuss is about and once I’d come round from the estuary English coma it knocked me into I realised that the whole thing is about lifestyle, it completely echoes efforts across the pond like The Hills (I think that’s what it was called, it was on T4 on a Sunday when I was too hungover to change channel). The whole thing is very corporate and idealised and it’s just not how the majority of people are able to live their lives. It reminded me of the credit card yuppies of the eighties and nineties who just charged everything to their card to make them seem like a big shot when really they were serving as a clerk or assistant somewhere.
I think what people need to recognise is two fold; if you are from Essex you want to avoid this stereotype as much as possible, the characters are single dimensioned jokes and it’s all quite embarrassing, you are your own person, not Arj (or is it Arge?). If you aren’t from Essex then you need to appreciate that the majority (as in anyone who isn’t funded by ITV) doesn’t live like that in Essex, or even in Billericay, or Brentwood, there are good honest hardworking intelligent people trying to do what they can and be who they can be and not got caught up in this latest parade.
Saying that I do enjoy the disgusting bastardisation of the English language, it gets me totes emosh.