Some accuse Britain of being a mawkishly sentimental nation. So what better rejoinder could be offered to that than the BBC’s New Year’s Eve fireworks display, when an army of drones spelled out the letters ‘NHS’ in the sky. As Big Ben struck midnight yesterday, actor Giles Terera recited a poem more twee than a tea commercial, eulogising the country’s supposed ‘achievements’ in 2021. For nothing screams progress like a Hamilton actor performing a YouTube star’s piece about COP26 on the Millennium Bridge.
Emphasising every word as if it were crafted by Shakespeare himself, Terera did his best with a structure that managed to rhyme ‘vaccination’ with ‘nation’ and Tom Daley’s ‘cardie’ with ‘camaraderie.’ All the usual nods were there: Marcus Rashford’s free school meals. Drink. Our NHS heroes. Drink. The Glasgow climate change conference. Drink. All we needed was a stammering Hugh Grant and an Oasis backing track to round off the Brit-Popping vibe, given the strong echoes of the London Olympics.
Forget 2022: it appears that half the cultural elite want to turn the clock back to 2012.