I think it's fair to say there has been a massive void for dramatic theater of people in accents yelling at each other while making political moves ever since Game of Thrones went off the air. There are probably some shows on Netflix that have scratched that itch for some people and this week at Barstool we've had an incredible reality show, a wild redneck boxing card with Jose Canseco in the main event, and what could end up being the most electric live stream in the history of the World Wide Web.
However, nothing has quite hit the dramatic highs of what came out of Westeros.
Enter the Handforth Parish Council's Planning and Environment Committee, which is a bunch of old Brits debating about whether or not the meeting is lawful in their cheeky, sarcastic tones while making personal attacks on each other in the most vague ways possible. If you thought American politics has gone off the rails in this crazy corona world, you should see British church politics.
The video above went viral this week and someone took the 90 minute Zoom call and edited it down to the best 18 minutes for the internet to consume.
Yes I fully realize that posting 18 minutes of an English Parish meeting is absurd on pretty much any website, let alone Barstool SPORTS. But that was truly some of the greatest passive aggressive, and in some cases aggressive aggressive drama I have ever seen with the perfect amount of British charm to make everything seem fine. Feel free to skip around the video above but the mudslinging starts all the way at the beginning as they argue about whether or not the meeting has actually started.
You want characters? Buddy all the Handforth Parish Council has is characters.
The star of the show is clearly Jackie Weaver. She may not be the loudest or reside at the top of the council's org chart. But she is the straw that stirs the drink. She doesn't just play the game, she lives the game. Breathes the game. Jackie Weaver will take down her enemies one by one then drink some of her Holy Sacrament with a slight grin while watching her vanquished opponents burn (figuratively speaking in this case).
You think Jackie Weaver gives a FUCK about the rules that only the Chairman can throw out people from a meeting? Well the Zoom Ejector button on Jackie's computer says she can do whatever she wants as she calmly removed the Chairman like he was one of his teeth.
That power move obviously caused the watchdogs of the HPC to start barking from Aled's iPad.
I'm guessing the old man is Aled (typo for Alec) because iPads seem to be the preferred device of choice for people over 50. Back when we actually left our houses and did stuff in public, one of my favorite things was watching Boomers take pictures at weddings, the zoo, the park, or wherever else they were with a foot-long iPad. However, it's the guy on
Aled's Alec's right that steals the show by losing his shit over understanding the standing orders, giving out subpoenas and a bunch of other malarkey. They are The Mountain and The Hound of the Handforth Parish Council.
Cyn is my lowkey favorite character on this show, I mean council. A wolf in sheep's clothing. She doesn't forgive and DEFINITELY doesn't forget. Jackie may be the one that swings the sword, but Cyn is the one that hands her the sword while telling Jackie she is right for swinging it.
John Smith is as nondescript as his name but is a true common lad that is just having a blast watching the action unfold on his Compaq Presario.
Sue is the wise old owl with the fire tree curtains that is as good at keeping order as she is at telling you how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop.
Peter Moore may not be a primary or even secondary character. But I always love seeing the cool guy with guitars and amps checking in on his angry compatriots.
Here's a handy reference sheet for people trying to keep of the madness at home.
I know what you are thinking. This Zoom call is clearly the result of a powderkeg exploding due to a wick of drama being lit as everyone in the council has been stuck inside for months on end during a deadly pandemic.
Turns out, these crazy motherfuckers are just as nuts in person if not more so since they are ripping each other in the nicest way possible right to each others' faces like its an episode of Surviving Barstool but replace a $10,000 prize with free coffee from the Parish.
This may be the cabin fever talking as I have been stuck in my house with my kids for wayyyyyy too long. But I cannot WAIT for the Handforth Parish Council's next meeting and that's coming from someone who hasn't gone anywhere near a Parish meeting at his own church or even gone to church outside of a wedding, funeral, or baptism for decades. The HPC is Must Watch until further notice and will at the very least be the bridge to gap football season and baseball season because the sharp silver tongue of Jackie Weaver is the only thing that will warm things up until spring finally arrives.
If the HPC isn't part of the initial class of Barstool England along with Troopz, I'll be shocked. If you thought these blokes were nuts about church politics, wait til they are arguing about their favorite EPL lads.