Adrian Shephard: The Scratched Vinyl Show – The Xmas Edition

In the opening scene a twentieth century orphan sleeps under a christmas tree. The sun peeks in through a hole in the curtains. It is nine o’clock in the morning on a sunny day in February. The christmas tree is still alive.

… believing in the bearded guy … don’t question the present … inherited Maltese memories smell of whiskey and bread … the early morning bars in Plymouth … the pet store massacre … wounded by watership down …

In the key scene a little girl enters the house. She looks around as if she is looking for something. A toy rabbit falls from the cupboard. The little girl walks to the kitchen. She has to stand on her toes to reach the tap. The front door slams shut. An angelic voice is heard singing.

… the man in the radio fights the snake … an english actor smashes the studio to pieces … burning children’s book …

Here you are, the stories told by Adrian are a distant echo of a style of social realism, which depicted the domestic situations of working class Britons, living in cramped rented accommodation and spending their off-hours drinking in grimy pubs, to explore controversial social and political issues ranging from abortion to homelessness. The harsh, realistic style contrasted sharply with the escapism of the previous generation’s so-called “well-made plays“.

But he fills it with characters from the past and the future, each of them a planet of their own, and you the listener are right in the middle, the invisible sun. Yes, listener, you are the only one who can cast a light on these stories.

And while you listen strange objects appear around you, images get projected on the wall and you wish you had a record player that you could spin at the speed of light and while it spins the room around you spins as well  at the speed of light and you know that you’re travelling in time, but in what direction?

… pagan tradition … eating frozen food … incoming messages … the philosopher’s beard … pretending things are real … Bambi is shot in the forest …

In the last scene a car leaves a suburban street. It needs to be stressed that it happens without explosions. The car is not pink. But the car drives all by itself. The owner watches it as it slowly gains speed. He scratches his head. Sweat is pearling on his forehead.

… Acid house Sinatra … plastic organ … playing monopoly … frozen windows …church on the hill … hot gossip in lyotard’s non descriptive leopard jumpsuit … inbred zombies … Vietnam war … billboards … fifty cents … green vinyl …


The closing titles roll over the screen to a Kate Bush song

it’s when you realise that the film was about your life.

But you are not afraid.



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