Or how I got the blog drop on Scott Beale. Marc turned me onto Nathan Barley yesterday, a brilliant British commentary/parody of the commodity cool culture of the dot-com era, UK style. Genius writing, I can see why it only lasted a season in a country that drops everything for Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire. It would have lasted even less here. Barley is a self-described self-facilitating media node who wears dual bluetooth headsets while directing his growing self-referential media empire under the sparkle of the discoball and celebrity spotlight.
This BBC article from 2001, reporting on the British dot-com backlash (yes, it’s total twilight zone!), describes the early Barley:
“Nathan Barley rides a tiny metal scooter along the pavement in the direction of an overpriced ‘gastro-pub’ in order to attend a meeting with a group of worthless toffee-nosed sh**s intent on setting up an internet radio station with an elaborate Shockwave interface, eternally doomed to be of interest to absolutely no-one other than themselves.”
It might hit home a little, which is partially why it’s funny as fuck and worth a snort in the BitTorrent-o-sphere. You can find the first season, 6 episodes, which only aired in the UK last year. While waiting for the download to finish, follow Barley’s Wikipedia roots. The subversion runs deep.