Friday, September 29, 2006
I read that Richard Branson is to run a pop idol type TV show to select one of the first passengers on his new spacecraft . Well, Branson's a nice guy and generally a good thing, but, I'm afraid, he would wouldn't he? Virgin lacks taste. Its shops are tacky without being funny, his aircraft - well it's difficult to make a 747 unlovely, but, somehow, Virgin does. Being on one of his new trains is liked being trappd inside a really cheap toy. Space Idol or whatever it will be called is born of the same tacky, vulgar streak that disfigures Virgin. For me, it's hard because, as you can read here, I was very impressed with this entire project and its presiding genius Burt Rutan. This was engineering and beauty at a very high level. And planes and rockets look good in the Mojave Desert. The carrier plane - White Knight - is, in the flesh, simply gorgeous. Tacky Virgin decals would be vandalism. Since Sigourney Weaver was one of the frontrunners for a seat on the first flight, one can imagine her reaction when she sees the tatooed, spotty, lardball, Hull-born winner of Space Idol munching on his/her pork scratchings. She'll zap him with a flamethrower, grab the cat and dive into the escape pod.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 7:42 am