British schoolchildren are going to be brainwashed this Christmas with a woke version of Jack and The Beanstalk in which a heroine based on Greta Thunberg climbs a beanstalk made of recycled materials, the Dame lives in a carbon neutral cottage and the baddies are climate change denying giants.
Not altogether surprisingly the author of the pantomime is a former presenter from the BBC children’s TV show Blue Peter.
“It’s not PC!” insisted the author, Peter Duncan, when quizzed by Piers Morgan on the breakfast TV show Good Morning Britain.
Pantomime is traditionally the most subversive and irreverent form of theatre — invariably involving male celebrities in drag (the Pantomime Dame) and lots of rude jokes and innuendo for families to laugh at. Panto has been a staple of English theatrical entertainment since the early 18th century.
Lecturing children on the perils of climate change is, almost by definition, not panto because it’s not entertaining, it’s not subversive, and it’s not funny.
My journalist friend and colleague on the London Calling podcast Toby Young tried to explain this point to Duncan on Good Morning Britain.
“Children have pro-green propaganda shoved down their throats wherever they turn: in school, if they go to the museum, on children’s TV, in children’s books. The one area where they could expect to see this stuff being sent up, where they could expect to see Greta Thunberg having the mickey taken out of her was panto. But not any more…”
He’s right – and the problem is increasingly widespread.
Christopher Biggins, doyen of pantomime dames, is often wont to complain that political correctness is killing panto.
His concerns seem to be borne out by some of the productions on offer this year.
One London production is titled Snow White and Her Seven Friends. (‘Dwarfs’ being deemed no longer politically acceptable).
Another is a variant on Peter Pan called Wendy’s Awfully Big Adventure — apparently to remedy the traditional imbalance whereby the main character is male.
It’s well worth watching Duncan’s appearance on Good Morning Britain, if only to watch the very exemplar of a mirthless smile as Duncan gets some unexpectedly tough grilling from Piers Morgan and his co-presenters.
‘Why is supporting climate change a problem? It’s fun,’ he says. ‘You go to these Extinction Rebellion things and there’s a lot of fun and humour’.
‘No there isn’t,’ says Morgan. ‘I’ve interviewed them.’
Duncan tries to laugh and brazen his way out of the accusations that he too is helping to kill panto with PC. As evidence of this, he bizarrely cites the fact that the giants sing a song by (hard-left, Jeremy-Corbyn-supporting rap star) Stormzy.
Then, when that doesn’t wash, he attempts the even more ludicrous defence that ‘climate change is above politics.’
Oh no it isn’t.
Climate change is nothing but politics. Among other things it’s a devious way of using fake environmental problems to scare and brainwash children into adopting left-wing positions – rejecting consumption and economic growth, demanding greater government intervention, reducing personal freedoms like flying on holiday.
As Toby Young says, children get fed so much of that nonsense 24/7 that the very least they deserve on going to a panto is the rare treat of seeing it mocked instead of celebrated.
Duncan was right about one thing though. He mentioned, as his final desperate defence, that ‘even Jeremy Clarkson’ has come round to the climate change cause.
So let me get this straight… Clarkson encounters a dried up lake and thinks “Well, that’s proof that man-made CO2 is driving up global temperatures!” 🏻♂️🏻♂️🏻♂️🏻♂️ pic.twitter.com/ovjnBJEqhM
— Richard Delingpole (@DickDelingpole) November 24, 2019
This, though, tells us more about what a fake bad boy Clarkson is than it does about the evidence for ‘climate change.’ Either that or Clarkson is putting career before principle: perhaps if he didn’t publicly bleat now and again about climate change in between driving powerful cars at high speed and catching flights all over the world, Amazon might not recommission his car show.