Jul 2, 2009
The Brits discover hyperbole!
I've only been back in London a few days but my overriding observation is how widespread — how humungously ubiquitous, how overpoweringly omnipresent, how gobsmackingly knock-my-socks-off pervasive — the use of hyperbole has become. Everyone on the TV is caught up in a competition to out-do one another with superlatives. Is the Michael Jackson story big? Its ginormous. How ginormous? Its massively, unbeliveably globe spanningly massive etc etc. The same goes for the Odeon cinema chain's boast of being "fanatical about film." I'd always assumed that went without saying: the enthusiasm of a cinema chain for the medium of film. But no. Everything goes to eleven now. I'm guessing it has to do with a forcible expulsion of the English reputation for understatement but its coming across as if someone at the BBC has sent around a memo instructing all presenters to give it a little more oomph, a bit more welly. There's something a little over-compensatory about it, to this Brit's ears, but then maybe I've been away too long.