My god, this magnificent folly just continues to delight. Although, if it really was a magnificent folly, Dr Gillian Magwilde would have knocked it down by now. She's the kind of woman you imagine always breaks wine glasses at dinner parties, and is the very last person you'd invite round to view your just-finished St Paul's Cathedral modelled in matches.
That said, apart from the trail of smoking devastation she leaves in her wake, her team's track record is quite good.
- Episode Two: They win the American election
- Episode Three: They rewrite the history of Boudicca
- Episode Four: They bring peace to Iraq
To be fair, there were moments when Episodes Two and Three felt like normal television. Then Dr Gillian would say something about "love being at a forty-degree angle", or smash a vital relic, and all would be well with the world.
Some themes are emerging:
Budget There's a hilarious moment in Episode Two where a stately home is supposed to be on fire. But all they can manage is to set fire to some gravel quite near the house. Guffaw! And the future US President gives a speech to an obviously empty lecture hall. Fingers-stuffed-in mouth with joy!
Sexism Dr "Dolly" Parton is suposed to be the new Gene Hunt. Isn't sexism funny, we're supposed to think. Instead, when he tells Plucky Young Viv how it's impossible to look at her without imagining her naked in the shower, soaping herself up, we shudder. He's also remarkably fond of her breasts, which is strange, as she doesn't seem to have any. He also larks about his intercontinteal mucky webcam exploits. Eeee! When Viv complains of being letched over by someone else, he slides closer and offers to show her what real letchery is like. Eurck! Eurck! Eurck! I really don't think television is ready for the "Lovable Dirty Old Man".
Is it day or night? Some episodes are shot in the summer pretending to be winter, some in the winter pretending to be summer. But no-one knows exactly when the sun sets from week to week - is it 4pm or 10pm? So a daylight scene could be later that evening or the next day or who knows when? There's a lovely moment in episode four where no-one seems sure, so one of the characters yawns ambiguosly - yes, ambiguously! - to suggest either "it's getting late" or "I've been sat on this bench all night". Brilliant! And yes, people do sell balloons all night.
Only On TV Dialogue! At the end of this week's episode, Doctor Gillian announces "I've an Etruscan Spear in my hand, and I'm not afraid to use it!". Words cannot describe. But then, all of Episode Four was monster tosh. "There's a killer snake on the loose!" and "You mean Ali could be working for the cultists?".
Actually Episode Four was terrible beyond measure. And therefore almost as joyous as the pilot. Like a music video, characters would change location according to their lines. So, one moment Kamil and Gilly are in an antiques shop, the next they're in a nicely-lit street so he can say "My ancestors had streetlighting when yours were in bearskins".
The ending was nonsense. It featured a lot of people pointing guns at each other, Dr G throwing a priceless artefact in the air, an ancient prophecy, a little girl wanting to go to the toilet, hopeless location confusion between "Are they in the hotel or the museum, or both at the same time?" and the line "Do you want to go to hell?".
It's quite something when the least ludicrous bit of an episode of Bonekickers is the giant snake.