What Kind Of Week Has It Been? 11 October 2013

10/10/2013 12:18 BST | Updated 23/01/2014 23:58 GMT

The terrifying Stephen King prank of news

In a few hundred years time, people are going think Sinead O'Connor was the Samuel Pepys of our time. Either that, or they'll speculate as to what "letters" were, and why they apparently could not be closed.

The whole sorry state of the relationship between Sinead O'Connor and Miley Cyrus, and between Miley Cyrus and any sense of reality, has been laid out agonisingly clear for everyone to see. This Mean Girls meme essentially sums it up. Adding his inexplicable two cents to the fray was backbench government TD Alan Farrell, who decided it was important his followers know he thought Sinead was mad as a brush.

If Alan ends up losing his seat at the next election, at least he has the Seanad to potentially fall back on, as the government's plan to scrap it lacked one small but crucial thing: the majority of the public's support. The whole debacle has been quite embarrassing for Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Eamon Gilmore, the Nick Clegg of the operation but also Foreign Affairs Minister, who is coming under pressure from his party to take up a domestic post to show Labour aren't a complete economic write off. Or at least take responsibility for the fact they are. Meanwhile, Enda Kenny experienced some pressure to the face with a rugby ball.

But back to the topic of changing government jobs, and it's a well-accepted fact among people who are politically interested that at its base is simply a hyper-extended love of musical chairs. So it was when the BBC breathlessly covered the Westminster ministerial reshuffle, even if it is all but impossible to make the Deputy Under Secretary for Crustacean Affairs being made a Trainee Whip in any way sexy. The only change at cabinet level was poor Michael Moore, who was replaced as Scottish Secretary by Alastair Carmichael. You have to feel sorry for Moore, bumped out just before the Independence referendum, the political equivalent of being handed your notice as Wimbledon groundskeeper at the end of May. Labour also made a couple of changes to their frontbench which some alarmed commentators who spied a Leninist revolt, but two years out before an election the only people it really affects are the producers of Question Time and Newsnight. Although, the latter seems to be doing just fine for top level guests without the help of Labour.

If drama was nowhere to be found on the political wheel o' shuffles there was at least loads to be found in, eh drama. Namely, TV drama on a Sunday night. Not that many people were happy with that. Complaints poured in after Downton Abbey decided that a credible storyline showing a violent incident that shows sometimes awful things happen to very good people was a bit much. After the watershed. In a show where two family members died in childbirth and in a car crash right after childbirth, and another had a miscarriage because of a strategically placed bar of soap. Bubble dwellers mad about the plot veering off furtive glances and jam-related disasters wasn't the end of the criticism though. Telegraph columnist and opera buff Rupert Christiansen wrote an uproariously pernickety piece that tore strips out of the whole "Melba comes to Downton" shtick with the glee of a Star Trek cliche.

Elsewhere, Irish gangland hit Love/Hate got into serious bother when, despite being a show that basically revolves around people being killed all the time, a scene portrayed a cat getting shot. In fairness, if there was a show about gangland cats and a human got killed, I'm sure it'd be just as much of an uproar.

The critical acclaim of Love/Hate has so far avoided criticism about showing Dublin in a negative light, but for the ten towns named in the most recent UK Crap Towns list, there's neither escape nor consolation from having a top TV show set there. Some of the list will raise eyebrows, but it's a telling feature of Ulster pride that I'm actually a bit disappointed a Northern Ireland town didn't get on the list.