Bless, bless, bless the 12-year-old work experience kid who was asked to find a photo of “the man who presents The Krypton Factor” for today’s Irish Times’ TV page; didn’t said 12-year-old then duly come up trumps with the smiling fizog of its original presenter, the mild-mannered-as-an-art-form, Gordon Burns.
Personally, I prefer not to see this as an error, but simply an ‘accidentally-on-purpose’ reminder of ITV’s lost gravitas. The decision to reactivate The Krypton Factor should have been a positive one, a move towards edifying television; instead, it feels no more challenging than the return of that other 70s & 80s’ staple, Mr & Mrs.
And then there’s the professionally opaque Ben Shephard himself, a man whose talent for TV presenting really shouldn’t have taken him any further than those near-death insurance or hearing aid adverts you see during the breaks in Countdown. His blandness isn’t even irksome enough to activate recognition in picture researchers, for crying out loud. It just isn’t the challenge it used to be – unless you get a decent Krypton Factor score for straightforward patience.
But thank you, anyway, to the Irish Times for this lovely little mistake – if only for the gentle reminder of a gentler but more intellectually aspirational era.