Watching Brief: Deayton's Claim That His Cheating Is a Form of Schizophrenia Gives New Meaning to the Notion of a Two-Headed Monster -- One Lives in His Head, the Other in His Sloggis

By Platell, Amanda | New Statesman (1996), June 3, 2002 | Go to article overview

Watching Brief: Deayton's Claim That His Cheating Is a Form of Schizophrenia Gives New Meaning to the Notion of a Two-Headed Monster -- One Lives in His Head, the Other in His Sloggis


Platell, Amanda, New Statesman (1996)


TAKE ME BACK, screamed the splash headline, I've been a naughty boy. I've taken my punishment, I've been humiliated on national television -- hell, I nearly had tears in my eyes at one point. Surely, all's forgiven and I can return to the fold?

Well, it may have been that easy for Angus Deayton, but the public rehabilitation of Roy Keane is another matter. We are living in a world where newspaper interviews and television appearances have become substitutes for proper personal discourse.

Instead of giving "his and hers" simulcast splash interviews to the Sunday Mirror (Deayton) and the Mail on Sunday (Deayton's partner, Lise Meyer) a week after the News of the Worldbroke the story of his cocaine-fuelled romps" with a hooker, shouldn't Angus and Lise have been talking to each other? What purpose could possibly have been served by dragging the story out for another week, replacing the hooker's lurid revelations with their own deeply personal and, one could argue, private ones? All it did was to give the story legs.

And instead of giving an interview to the state broadcaster RTE pleading to be allowed to return to the World Cup to play for Ireland, shouldn't Keane have picked up the phone and spoken to the one man who can make that happen, the Ireland manager, Mick McCarthy?

It stinks of stunt, PR opportunism run wild. Both sagas followed the first three rules in the PR bible of crocodile tears: return to the bosom of the family; walk the dog (why do they always have a dog?); go public. Exit the stiff upper lip, enter the wobbly bottom lip.

The public confessional should be the domain of the page-three girl. It works wonders for Jordan (the 34FF model who has just had a baby by the footballer Dwight Yorke) when attempting to squeeze extra dosh out of a father.

But what did the Deaytons achieve by pouring their hearts out to the newspapers? Deayton's claim that he blames his cheating on a form of schizophrenia gives new meaning to the notion of a two-headed monster- one lives in his head, the other in his Sloggis.

I can imagine that one working on Jordan, but Lise? She is a clever and talented woman. That she even entertained this explanation defies belief.

And what does it say about a woman, so seedily cuckolded, that she sits down and writes jokes for her partner's show about his infidelity? Probably that she was distraught and her judgement clouded. …

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