I'd have a more detailed account of the evening, which sounds fantastically unstructured and infantile in a way only Italian TV can be, if I'd seen it, but I was, and am, in the UK. Still, I'm sorry I missed the scene where an infuriated orchestra ripped up their sheet music and refused to play, not to speak of Antonella Clerici (see photo) exclaiming Che topolona! at the sight of the private parts of all-round entertainer Loredana Cuccarini or the brass band of the Carabinieri playing the Star Wars theme in a bid to calm things down, like a foretaste of the new regime. This kind of nonsense is not only the stuff of Sanremo legend - it's also, paradoxically, par for the course on Italian telly.
People who don't know the Bel Paese often wonder how on earth the Italian version of a programme like I'm a Celebrity, Get Me out of Here can just go and on for hours, weeks, months, without anyone even seeing a kangaroo's arsehole, let alone eating one. Well, it's easy. All the people on it forget that they're there to further or revive their careers and just go completely OVER THE TOP! It's as though a horde of utterly spoilt children on truth drugs were given free rein to loathe each other and then, to their horror, slapped back into sense and forced to realise what they'd done. It's boring for hours on end and then deeply, grippingly, stomach-turningly awful in a way those of us brought up on the milder fare of Anglo-Saxon television can't begin to imagine. It's almost as excruciatingly adolescent as John Fowles' journals. Well no, not quite that excruciatingly adolescent.