So, the James Corden Confused.com advert. Just when I thought I was out… they pull me back in.
I am as impervious to James Corden’s supposed delights as I am to the people complaining that I’m not funny anymore. To me he seems affable – a great fella to have a pint with. I wish him no specific malice and I’m happy that other people find him funny.
To me he is a mystery, his supposed funnies as baffling as quadratic equations. I did not enjoy Gavin & Stacey, I did not watch Horne & Corden and I have never seen him in a game show.
Apparently he’s a pretty good dramatic actor, though the only things I’ve ever actually enjoyed him in are hilarious sci-fi pisstake Cruise of the Gods and Doctor Who (in two episodes that were pretty much sci-fi pisstakes.) Apart from a Tango advert from about 50 years ago, that’s it.
By all accounts Corden has gone to America to be a talkshow host. And that’s all well and good. Alas, that hasn’t stopped him appearing on my television every seven or eight seconds in this godawful Confused.com advert. Time was someone went to the States they stayed there, to the great relief of everyone in Blighty (cf. Piers Morgan).
Now, a digression. This is by no means the worst Confused.com advert there is. There are fully seven years of writing on this website about Confused.com adverts and, lest I remind you, a lot of them involve a wiggly cartoon with an enormous vagina. Or a Nicky Campbell lookalike screaming in your face while you eat your potato waffles and try to recover from another day of drudgery. Or a horrible ‘for-cash’ vlog by a man called Amazing Phil who is not amazing and, for all I know, may not even be called Phil.
No, the James Corden Confused.com ads are not the worst. But they are as debilitating as a nauseous hangover at a toddler’s ballpool party – shouty, loud, annoying and wearying. People on Facebook and Twitter and Sky and The Sun seem to exist in a constant state of shouting these days. They’re not shouting anything that makes any rational sense, just expressions of their approval, annoyance or surprise.
Think Chris Kamara, a burbling proto-human who communicates with shrieking roars and a creased forehead. Or Keith Lemon, displaying his appreciation of Holly Willoughby’s breasts by leering and pointing at his cock. Dapper Laughs, with his vocabulary consisting of ‘bruv’, ‘slut’, ‘bants’ and ‘rape’.
Just imagine a world where people communicated in audio emojis, honking their feels at one another while brandishing an iPhone. In a recent survey I did 93% of Facebook posts that people shared consisted solely of the word ‘scenes’, in the vast majority of these cases that single word was enough to garner around 45 Likes or similar expressions of approval. Meanwhile one in three comments contained the sarcastic words ‘what a time to be alive’, apparently because there is no other way in the English language to express sarcasm these days.
LOL. Saying ‘amay-zing!’ in about four syllables and a high-pitched voice. Taking a photo of a slimy burger and chips you paid £15 for and subtitling it with ‘nom’ or ‘winning’. Ignoring the fact that most people who have ever claimed to be ‘winning’ are total losers, the random declaration of such a thing seems to be the accepted medium for a Uniladding, Ladbroking, Nandos-ing generation. Perhaps it’s a symptom of the fact that we need to subtitle everything that happens in our lives, an existence mediated by Snapchat filters and Instagram hashtags.
“Just call me Mr Greenlight.” Brilliant. Whoever came up with that really earned their money. Barking at a dog. LOL. Awkward, Brentish asides to an uninterested passenger. Amazeballs.
That all we aspire to in life is some traffic lights changing in our favour – and this is worthy of a whooping “I’m the King of the World’ acclaim – is a kind of party political broadcast for 2016, perhaps the shittest year since the Black Death.
The fact that the soundtrack to this James Corden Confused.com advert is a song by a man who was killed in a car crash sums up the whole blithe vacuity of the whole enterprise. Which seems to be James Corden in a nutshell.