Ant & Dec – The Kings of Saturday Night

by Charlie_East_West on March 25, 2013

What a person gets up to on a Saturday night is largely indicative of what stage of life they are at.

In my teens, it involved getting few sharpeners down my throat at the local rugby club. In my student years, every night was a Saturday night. In my twenties, the choice of bar and drink got better as my career progressed. The elegance of the Saturday night out improved in line with my disposable income, to the point that I was knocking back expensive drinks in ostentatious surroundings that were so far removed from my old local rugby club. It was not a good look.

And then along came the kids…

Becoming a parent completely changes the function and form of a Saturday night. Endless big nights out are immediately replaced with a quiet night in, or at least, a move towards endless dinner parties in our house, to keep the social life alive – especially in the first years of parenting.

My children are now 7 and 5 years of age, and Saturday night telly, which was at one time persona non grata through my twenties, has suddenly become part of the fabric of life, and with it, the joys of Ant & Dec.

Ant & Dec have recently returned (have they ever been away?) with Saturday Night Takeaway. It is one of those programmes that everyone from every generation can enjoy. That is the whole point of Ant & Dec. They have that rarest of qualities – the common touch, appealing just as much to a primary school child as to a 75 year old grandmother.

The public love Ant & Dec, and their performances on Saturday Night Takeaway feel like a throwback to the glory days of Morecambe and Wise. Ant & Dec are absolutely fantastic at live TV – combining sketches, showbiz pranks, gameshows, comedy, song and dance all within 75 minutes of old school family entertainment.

The East-West family love Saturday Night Takeaway – so much so, that when Mr and Mrs East-West do get a babysitter, and don the glad-rags for a Saturday night out on the tiles, we Sky+ the show for everyone to watch the following evening. Sad but true.

What Ant & Dec have tapped into is a need for cross generational family entertainment. In this austere/social media influenced day and age, a shared experience is so much better than an experience in isolation. When this shared experience puts a collective smile on everyone’s face, it becomes Ant & Dec’s television version of the Big Society.

On Saturday night, Ant & Dec revisited their old PJ and Duncan characters and performed their 1993 song “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble” – it is both utterly crap and brilliant at the same time. Ant & Dec lack any form of self conscious behaviour, and we the British public, completely lap it up.

The impact of their Saturday night performance has been immediate. “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble” is heading back to the top of the charts after 20 years – and that is another point to Ant & Dec – they make everyone feel both young and old at the same time.

Ant & Dec are national treasures, in a way that the likes of Boris Johnson can only dream of. They are the unrivalled Kings of Saturday Night.

Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: