Steve Irwin: more comments

September 6, 2006

see my earlier post on the subject. This may not be the best time for an article like this but I can’t disagree with the contents (from the First post magazine)

“Irwin robbed nature of its wildness

While we mourn the untimely passing of Steve Irwin, crocodile hunter and daredevil, we should remember also the untold damage he did to the fine art of the nature documentary.

A long tradition of exquisite craftsmanship, patient fieldwork and painstaking editing has been threatened by the emergence of the ‘nature nasty’, a genre pioneered by Irwin and gleefully exploited by his disciples. A glance at the TV schedules will reveal that the short attention span theory of television has now invaded the final wilderness. Animals are only interesting insofar as they have the ability to bite, sting, gouge or devour. There is a pernicious vogue for the deadliest, the most venomous, the scariest. Living creatures are reduced to their crudest elements, exhibiting extreme behaviour which is often only a reflex. Steve Irwin was in large part responsible for this state of affairs. Although undoubtedly an animal-lover and keen preservationist, he figured out early in his career that the audience is susceptible to a cheap frisson. Show them a crocodile with its mouth agape in conjunction with a man whose mouth never closes, and the stage is set for vicarious thrills. Irwin was indulging in the lowest form of anthropomorphism: the animal as bad guy. Acting as agent provocateur, Irwin would force wild animals to show their dangerous party tricks under the most artificial circumstances. Unlike Attenborough and his ilk, who seek to bring us the natural world in all its dimensions, Irwin demonised wildlife and ultimately defanged it.”

Meanwhile, a Wigan man who sells stingrays has expressed shock at irwin’s death. “At the shop I am handling them every day and have never had the least bit of trouble.” Well. at least you can say this for Wigan, it’s a lot safer than the Great Barrier Reef.

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2 Responses to “Steve Irwin: more comments”

  1. Tony Says:

    I’m with you all the way on this. And just to think there’s an argument raging about whether the public should see the video of Irwin’s last moment!t

  2. tomeemayeepa Says:

    I’m sure the people who want to see it will claim to be the biggest fans of Steve Irwin.


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