Knives out: why Fox News has declared war on Radiohead

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Thom Yorke of the band described by Fox News’s Greg Gutfeld as ‘the poor man’s Coldplay’. Photograph: Danny Payne/Rex/Shutterstock

Two of the channel’s libertarian ‘comedians’ are slagging off the British band – and their fans – after Thom Yorke and co were nominated for inclusion in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

31 October 2017 | The Guardian

Name: Fox News v Radiohead.

Age: About two weeks old.

Appearance: Almost entirely on Fox News.

What is it? Some kind of remix? It’s a feud.

Who are the combatants? On the one hand, Fox News; more specifically, Greg Gutfeld and Kat Timpf.

I’ve never heard of either of those people. Timpf, a millennial libertarian comedian, is a frequent guest on Gutfeld’s comedy libertarian chatshow on Fox.

I didn’t know there was such thing as a funny libertarian. It turns out there isn’t, but they plough on.

And on the other hand? The popular beat combo Radiohead, formed in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, in 1985.

It’s hard to imagine two such entities squaring off. I thought Fox News was entirely devoted to hating immigrants, Muslims and Hillary Clinton. If it is trying to diversify, it’s off to a shaky start.

How did all this come about? It began during a televised discussion about Radiohead’s recent nomination for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Timpf described the band’s fans as “strange, malnourished and sad”, and their music as “elaborate moaning and whining over ringtone sounds”.

Slagging off Radiohead – the one area where the US is still 10 years behind Britain. After some pushback from fans, Gutfeld and Timpf revisited the topic last week, with Gutfeld referring to Radiohead as “the poor man’s Coldplay”.

That remark proves he knows the names of two British bands, and almost nothing else. On another Fox News show, Gutfeld called for Radiohead’s music to be banned from public places, and referred to them as “the poor man’s Air Supply”.

Video Link

That doesn’t work either. He sounds like a cut-price Jeremy Clarkson. All the bad-mouthing culminated in a spoof ad featuring Timpf as someone suffering from “Radiohead lice”.

Now they’ve gone too far. There’s nothing funny about head lice. This sketch certainly proved that.

What did Radiohead do in retaliation? Not a lot. Guitarist Jonny Greenwood changed his Twitter bio to include the phrase “strange, malnourished and sad”, but then he changed it back again.

So they won the feud. They didn’t really even turn up for it, but yeah.

Do say: “Fox News – where music criticism comes to die.”

Don’t say: “I think you’ll find most of us Radiohead fans are happy, conventional and dangerously overweight.”

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