Archive for March 28th, 2013

Pumpkins and Pompeii

I watched that crap TV show about the end of Pompeii last night.

Jeez, it was shit.

Took an hour to say what could have been said in 10 mins. Endless repeats, belaboured non-points, selling ancient news (Pompeiians killed by pyroclastic flow) as ‘new discoveries’ and breathy build-ups to rubbish ‘climaxes’.

Truly the BBC thinks we’re all fucking idiots these days.

pumpkin in pompeiiThe only bit I enjoyed – and I really, really enjoyed this – was one of the reconstruction scenes where a young Roman boy is seen carrying a pumpkin… a vegetable that would not be brought back to Europe from the New World until the early 16th century.

What makes it even juicier and funnier is the obvious care taken by the show researchers to get the right seasonal vegetable into the reconstruction. They knew Vesuvius erupted on August 24th, so they clearly chose something that they thought would be appropriate for an end of summer harvest.

You can imagine the conversation at the production company:

Young metrosexual researcher: “What vegetables get harvested in late August? Anyone know?”

(Slightly) older townee: “Er, dunno. French beans? Potatoes?”

Young metrosexual researcher: “Nah, don’t think so. Arthur off Eastenders dug his up in the autumn. I remember cos it was pissing with rain in the show.”

(Slightly) older townee: “All right, then: Pumpkins. I know that’s right cos they’re always eating them in autumn in America. Had some pumpkin pie on holiday in Boston once.”

Young metrosexual researcher: “Thanks. At least if we use the right vegetable we won’t get tons of pedantic crap about the wrong season from reactionary cocks in Tunbridge Wells.”

[If you have access to BBC iPlayer and want to see it for yourself, it’s at 05:35 mins here]

Posted on 28th March 2013
Under: Cucurbits, Rants | 7 Comments »