The veteran Newsnight host Jeremy Paxman has come under fire for claiming that white, middle-class men have no chance in today’s television industry.
“Gorblimey guv’nor,” Mr Paxman told an audience at the Edinburgh Festival, in a pre-recorded interview. “You seen all them posh birds in their designer suits wot’s running the BBC these days? Did I say runnin’? Ruinin’, more like! It’s got like bleedin’ Desperate Housewives over Shepherd’s Bush way lately, I’m tellin’ yer! An’ that Channel Four’s even worse! Pretty soon they’ll ‘ave ter rename it Davina, the way fings is goin’ – serious! Channel Five? Channel Five?? More like bladdy Chanel Number Five, innit? If any bloke gets in my cab an’ arsks ‘ow to git inta telly, I tells ‘im straight – put on a dress, mate, an’ stuff a couple of rolled-up socks dahn the front! Else you int got no chance. Know wot I mean? ‘Ere we are, Miss Frostrup, Television Centre. That’ll be twelve quid eighty - but’ ere, tell yer wot, love, you’ve got a pretty face, ow’s about we come to a cosy little ‘arrangement’, you an’ me - if yer not in any kind of ‘urry, like? Whoops - no offence, darlin’!”