‘Six pages about Patty Brard!’

VARAgids reader Jan van der Plas from Katwijk is canceling the VARAgids because of the Patty Brard special of the television guide. “For me, this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back.”


It was quite a surprise: the left-progressive VARAgids, containing columns by all kinds of cynical types such as Mart Smeets and Youp van ‘t Hek, presented a major Patty Brard special two weeks ago. “No TV star in the Netherlands has been so ubiquitous for so long,” the editors defended themselves.

Drop for Jan

Unfortunately, it does not seem to be an unqualified success among VARAgids readers. One of them, Jan van der Plas from Katwijk, even announces his resignation in the letters section managed by Özcan Akyol. “I have been receiving the VARA guide every week since 1983 and I have enjoyed the content for years, which was almost always of a good standard. I read almost everything.”

He criticizes the Pattyfication of the VARA guide: “In recent years the content has become a lot less, both the programming and the guide (in my humble opinion). But in guide #7 it is six (!) pages about Patty Brard, which is unfortunately the final straw for me. Can you give me one good reason not to drop out after this low point?”

Popular entertainment

Özcan disagrees with Jan. He says: “That’s very simple: in every good marriage there are good and bad moments. We of the workers should not look down on popular entertainment. You seem to be doing that a bit now. And I find that strange. The programming is not determined by the VARA guide. It is the same everywhere.”

He continues: “The bottom line is, you have to stay for the great interviews, the beautiful pieces, the editorial by Roy van Vilsteren, the hard work that editor-in-chief Johan and the others put into this magazine every week. And of course there are the varied columns.”

Beautiful mug

Does Özcan really not offer a good reason not to drop out of the VARA guide? “Okay, to the point, if you remain a member, you will receive a nice mug from the broadcaster. And a pen. Unfortunately I can’t offer anything else.”

Maybe Patty can add another flushing hose. After those six pages, Mr. Jan seems ready for a major detox…

VARA guide cover

The cover of the VARAgids special about Patty Brard: