When Jonathan May-Bowles, AKA Jonnie Marbles, attempted to push a foam “pie” into Rupert Murdoch’s face there was almost universal condemnation for his actions, some of which may have had some validity, but most of which was simply a knee jerk reaction (a phrase which is in danger of being overused in the current political climate).
“Murdoch will get sympathy from this incident, and won’t therefore face justice.”
There may be some truth to this, but not much. Those who would sympathise with Murdoch would have likely done so anyway, and the idea that he would “face justice”, with so many friends, or at least people on whom he has dirt, in high places is laughable.
- “What if it hadn’t been a pie, what if it had been a bomb? String him up for treason!!”
Well, it wasn’t a bomb. Shouldn’t Marbles at least get some credit for that? There were some mutterings about the lax security, but they seem to have died down quite quickly.
- “He’s supposed to be a comedian, but he isn’t funny at all!”
That must have been the most hurtful criticism of all to Marbles. It’s true that when, after his first court appearance, he announced to the waiting press that, echoing Murdoch, “today was the most humbling of my life” it occurred to me that Marbles should stick to writing comedy rather than performing it. However, this doesn’t take into account the strain he must have been suffering, and that his delivery of that line may well have suffered as a result.
Anyone following him on Twitter or on his blog would have been impressed by his stoicism (not to mention his ingenuity in posting from inside prison), and his good humour, and I certainly think he has a career in comedy. Perhaps an audience that isn’t baying for his blood might help his performance.
In the meantime Murdoch won’t really pay. He may lose some money, in lost profits or even fines, but he has plenty more. When David Cameron said in an interview that “News International are aware of the big issue”, I don’t think he meant the kind of Big Issue that popped into my mind.
Jonnie Marbles is out of prison now, on licence, which means he has to behave for the next couple of weeks or serve the rest of his sentence. I hope he can make good comedic use of his experience.