Smithy aka James Corden is a British comedian who isn’t terribly funny but does have a lot of front. And back. And sides. Especially sides.
You can watch his spot at the British Sports Personality of the Year Award, from which the Becks scenes above are taken, in full below. But be warned: it goes on rather a long time and features a lot of sports stars you’ve probably never heard of if you’re not British.
There’s also a lot of kissing of foreheads and tops of heads by Corden – which is a peculiar habit of British football fans when they’re feeling happy and affectionate but afraid of your actual lip contact (footballers here used to snog each other properly after they scored a goal, but now mostly do the forehead thing their fans do).
There’s a kind of double irony seeing Corden do this to Becks in bed in the context of their domestic girlie grooming/nesting send-up – especially since it looks really quite tender. Becks in particular plays it ‘straight’, eschewing campy insurance policies, and reaching for Corden’s hand – making their coupledom seem quite believable, or imaginable. I suspect that not a few footie fans, in between nervous giggles, suddenly realised that it might be quite comfy snuggling up in bed with Becks watching Neighbours re-runs. Even with that beard.
Actually, the Becks scene put me in mind of the domesticated bliss of sweet 1950s comedy couple Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin. Though not as funny.
I don’t know who the big guy is but seeing Bec with a ‘cub’ did give me filthy bone.
I don’t like Rooney (the grab a granny bit is quite funny) but he did redo his GCSE’s and is learning to play the guitar so at least he’s trying to improve himself.
Anyway there are far more interesting, intelligent and talented fottballers.
Yes, British football is still very ‘backs-against-the-wall-lads!’ homophobic and this skit does depend to large degree on neither party being thought at all possibly, you know, yer actual poofs.
But at the same time, I wonder if it isn’t more about them play-acting at being Big Girls together, rather than Big Gays? Football seems to be even more about running away from women and domesticity – for an afternoon – than it seems to be about shoving backs against the wall.
Of course, football doesn’t live up to the fantasy. Wayne Rooney, for example, is the tabloids’ poster boy of retrosexual manhood (because he’s a bit plain – especially compared to Ronadlo) but apparently he loves musicals and watching soaps with Colleen.
At least in America, and probably no less in Britain, sports are the primary and most primative method in the primary grades of separating the boys from the girls. boys are pushed into combative, stick weilding; bone crunching activities as an introduction to the rites of manhood. Here in the U.S. girls get to be cheerleaders, cheering the boys on to greater heights of animosity with one another. I recall that after the Spanish American war, in Cuba, President Teddy Roosevelt insited on teaching the Cubans baseball, because the” Latins were all sissys.”
The prototype of sports as a primary form of teaching competativeness and it’s association with manliness in a capitalistic/herosexual-familial system is critical to promoting that political/sexual model.
The odd fact is that the burden becomes more and more placed on paid surrogates of manliness-so they are expected to behave like good soldiers. It puzzles me that grab ass still persists, if snoging doesn’t get by.
Sport in general and British football in particular are still notoriously homophobic and this sort of skit grates with me for it’s suggestion that loving same-sex behaviour is perfectly acceptable as long as the ‘joke’ is that absolutely no-one involved could really, possibly be seen to be in any way, you know, actually gay.
Perhaps I’d feel less mean-spirited about it if I found Corden funny.
I didn’t know about that one, but I do remember the FA trying to do the same thing in the 1980s, this time under the guise of ‘worries about AIDS’.
They were so right, of course. Since AIDS was the ‘gay plague’ back then, the fact that HIV couldn’t be spread by kissing was irrelevant: the footballers were ‘being gay’ with one another on the pitch so obviously they were spreading AIDS.
There were also some attempts by football managers to stop players wearing ear-rings, on or off the pitch. I don’t know whether AIDS was cited in that instance – I think it was just called ‘pooftah’.
Funny how the old farts of football failed to stop the ear-rings and much worse taking off, but seem to have finally succeeded with stamping out snogging.
If that’s all they did it might take some of the pazazz out of the game; disrpute sort of depends on who’s keeping score, and what the sport turns out to be.
Did you know in early 1976 the Football Association got the newspapers all rather excited with the release of a report that footballers who “kiss and cuddle” would be charged with bringing the game into disrepute. Happily, the no kissing and cuddling rule was ultimately rejected by the F.A as “not practicable”.
BTW, I mean Becks, not his chubby companion, that would be like mountain climbing I fear.
I would still do much more than just cuddle him; I think it’s hard to tell at this distance. He at least deserves a turn at “powerbottom” or some kind of bottom, before fading away. I’d take him for lack of other comers; he must surely have a passable bottom & I’ve never fussed about personalities in the past;so why change now.
From the looks of it, a throw ior two won’t alter his fame at all.
Wouldn’t really work as “comedy” with, say, Gareth Thomas would it?
Yes, it’s difficult to see what role Becks will fill in the future. He isn’t cut out to be a TV presenter (which is a kind of compliment) and he can’t really act (this sketch is more akin to documentary). Maybe he’ll just be cuddled on TV by a succession of different celebs. A national teddy bear.
I was just thinking how nice it would be to give David Beckham a cuddle
I was going to say, I predict he will become a manager, his ego demands it. TV work? he not natual enough.
I’m glad it’s not just me who thinks James Corden is very unfunny and has a over the top laugh. Why won’t Beckham go quietly, fade away into the night, he surely can’t go on living for his image alone. I