The short version of the story is that while recording a show the pair decided to prank call the Actor Andrew Sachs (probably most fondly remembered as Manuel, the Spanish waiter in The Fawlty Towers sketches) and during this call swore & there was a mention of Russell Brand sleeping with Mr. Sachs’ Granddaughter.
Russell Brand has since resigned from Radio 2 broadcasting and made a public apology. Jonathan Ross has also apologised and since been suspended, the show was also not broadcast. There is an investigation under way.
Mr Sachs has decided not to inform the police (yeah, they probably don’t read the news) and says he isn’t going anywhere with this as he is not out for revenge.
His Granddaughter, Ms Baillie however is apparently “Thrilled” that they have been suspended and feels that justice has been done, she also said that Brand & Ross were “Beyond contempt”.
OK, so maybe it’s just me again, but is this all just a tad over the top? Somewhat blown out of proportion?
So they made a prank call. They realised and admitted that it was a silly thing to do and that while they got caught up in the moment, they went a bit far, but to sack them for that seems insanely disproportionate to the ‘crime’.
They are both known for their ‘colourful’ language and attitude and their sometimes close to the knuckle humour, after all isn’t that why they are so successful? Is it not this same trait that has now got them into so much trouble that has kept audiences faithful to their shows for so long? Can the BBC really afford to lose them?
Of course I realise that just because someone is successful doesn’t mean they can do exactly as they please, but they have both apologised and admitted that they were foolish for making such a prank call. A prank call that it must be remembered they didn’t try to hide. They knew that their voices would not be concealed, their names would be known and I believe they sincerely thought it would be taken the way it intended, as a joke. Their biggest mistake as far as I can see was that of being poor judges of character.
Prank calls can be really nasty and the general public are exposed to this on a daily basis with little or no protection. The police are never interested in the really scary prank calls that people are hounded by, threatened by, abused by and scared by. The best advice I have heard anyone get in response to reporting a prank call on a mobile phone is the suggestion of getting a new number.
Those that scare & humiliate random (and not so random) members of the public know they will get away with it, yet two celebrities do it with humour in mind (and let’s face it, nobody was harmed or terrified by this) and they stand to lose their career because of it. Chalk up another point for our selectively unbalanced system.
Is this really the crime of the century? Highest unemployment for who knows how long, fuel prices, food prices, energy price increases, hundreds of new & crazy rules & regulations created, many on a daily basis, our private lives being snooped, rights being removed and that’s not to mention the other global problems that we are faced with, but put all that aside as we have to deal with the Brand & Ross crime first.
Let’s release known terrorists, let’s lock up pensioners for not paying Council taxes, let’s let the frail freeze to death, let’s fine children for throwing a chip on the floor to feed a seagull, but first let’s sack two celebrities who must make up a considerable portion of revenue for their bosses for making a prank phone call.