The BBC Explains Economic Reporting in the Funniest Way Possible

The BBC’s Weekly Wipe has just brought us the funniest bit of economic news we’ve heard in years, and it may ruin all other economic reporting for you… forever.

In an effort to recreate every negative piece of economic reporting ever done, the folks at the BBC put together one compelling and completely uninformative segment.


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A beekeeper tends to his hive. But what these bees can’t know is they are being used as an arresting visual metaphor for the economy.

The bees represent money. The hive is GDP. And your interest has hopefully been peaked. 

Like every economic story, this one is all about numbers, and as my hand gestures indicate, I’m concerned numbers might be boring television.

Fortunately, these numbers affect ordinary people we can cut to, people wandering around the sort of grey nowhere places where ordinary humans spend their days. And by depicting sad people standing silently in front of a wall or sitting too close to each other on a sofa, we can convert those numbers into a human interest story.

Dennis and Pamela People are affected by numbers. And since they have a child, you’ll empathize with what they say while I nod in their direction.

PAMELA PEOPLE: Well it has been hard. Because of the numbers.

DENNIS PEOPLE: Yes, it has been hard. Mainly because of the numbers.

EMILY SURNAME: It is now possible to segue from this shot of a family to looking through a doorframe in the corridor to these scenes, of the financial heart of our capital, shot from a helicopter like you’re watching the fucking Apprentice or something.

Everything now indicates that as soon as this piece-to-camera has finished, we’ll have reached the point in this report where numbers take over the entire screen.

economicsAnd important though they are, they are not compelling enough to stop us cutting to stressed-looking City workers on the telephone, images of industry, and George Osborne on Downing Street before freezing, and overlaying with a quick bit of etch-a-sketch that you will register as information, but not quite take in.

By now, chances are you’ve zoned out. So here is some footage of money being made for you to vaguely notice before it is back to me outside a financial building saying, “so what next?”

So what next?

Well, it is dark. I am cold. And as I get slightly slower at the end, all I am thinking about is going indoors for a Twix.

A Twix fewer Britons are now able to afford. You may not understand why, but I have made you sad. And who is to say that is not enough?


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