The Festival of Rants: #2 “Make ‘em think you might stop”

Surprisingly few rants actually set out a concrete agenda – most of them are happy just to blow some steam. But every so often, a ranter comes along who transcends the form, and actually delivers a program for action. Such a ranter is Happy Harry Hardon.

Well, actually, he doesn’t start out that way. Over the course of Pump Up The Volume, mild-mannered student by day Marc Hunter slowly becomes more and more his night-time alter-ego, the fearless pirate DJ Happy Harry Hardon.

And it’s this one scene that’s the real key. The set up is fairly simple: the night before, one his listeners committed suicide after failing to be taken seriously by Harry. This has left Harry feeling both responsible and guilty for the death, and also crushingly aware that the rest of his listeners expect him to go on the air and make sense of it for them.

He goes on, briefly apologises to the dead listener for not trying harder, and announces that the show is off the air, permanently. And then:

Not unusually for a rant, the motivating force behind it is rage and contempt, and its ultimate goal (however unconsciously) is catharsis. Rather less unusually, this rant actually attempts to come to grips with reality, and even suggest a course of action.

Some listeners may even have been inspired to constructive action, although we shouldn’t expect too much.

I would like to know where they found that giant penis, though.

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