Monday night I think it was, the 9.0 watershed had arrived and with it a complete dirth of anything worthy to watch on TV... so I did the only thing a sane man can do in such a situation. I spurned all thought of improving myself with a good book and channel hopped my way out of boredom.
This may say something about the state of my mind at the time but I settled for Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome showing on one of ITV's alternative cable channels. Admittedly I only watched about an hour of it before sleep overcame me but I have say, hand on heart, despite the awfully dated eighties soundtrack and production values I quite enjoyed what I saw. I'm sure most of my enjoyment came from a sense of nostalgia - I remember going to see this film at the cinema with my mate Tris sometime after we left Art College.
Looking back on it now I'm astonished at how camp the film is, how subliminally homo-erotic. Men everywhere oiled up and dressed in bizarre cut-away leather costumes that would have been far too provocative for Priscilla Queen Of The Desert. Dirt, grime and sweat beading every curved and rounded bicep. And through it all Mel Gibson staring out at the camera with that knowing look that says my eyes are bluer than anybody elses and that's why the ladies love me.
It's strange to reappraise Tina Turner's performance too now that the obstacle of her music career is all but removed. She's not bad. Not bad at all. She has real presence and charisma. I remember not really liking her in the film at the time. I think everytime she duck waddled on the screen I kept having flashbacks to Nutbush City Limits... and let's be honest, when a woman old enough to be your granny is on a huge screen before you wearing a skirt shorter than the BNP's MP list the last thing you want to be thinking about is Nutbush.
Anyway, the film seemed rather apt for these modern politically grey times. All is in disarray. Nobody knows what they want or how to get it. They just know what they don't want. They don't want another hero. They just want life beyond Thunderdome.
As I type I am having visions of Nick Clegg sitting astride David Cameron's shoulders in some bizarre homage to Master-Blaster. But does that make Gordon Brown Mad Max? And who the hell is going to be our Auntie? Is our little Barter Town going to be run forever on pig shit?
I don't know. All I know is today I am breaking out the leathers and walking around talking with an Australian accent. There's got to be a better world out there beyond the desert. There's just got to be.
Care to help me find it?