TV review: Scottish independence referendum debate

PEOPLE are always complaining about repeats on TV. I saw their point, as the second independence debate went over and over the currency question which dominated the first debate.

Picture: Reuters
Picture: Reuters

Surely everyone has made up their mind about this by now? While Alex Salmond was decreed to have “lost” the first one to Alistair Darling, he seemed more focused this time, with no gags about aliens or driving on the right.

In fact, neither politician had much time for diversions, both battling fiercely – and often bad-temperedly – to speak over each other.

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Presenter Glenn Campbell was a far less bullish presence than STV’s Bernard Ponsonby, but he did at least try to move them on from the topic of money.

Until, given a chance to cross-examine, Darling brought it up again, to audible groans. It had become as repetitive as watching videos of the ice bucket challenge which both men underwent last week.

In the middle of this was a brief discussion of how much oil there is in the North Sea, which saw figures thrown about – £4 billion! £9bn!…“One MEEEELLION DOLLARS”, as Dr Evil would say. But as, for almost everyone watching, this is a particularly technical issue that we can have no hope of accurately judging for ourselves, it’s just down to who you believe.

After more acrimonious disagreement on Trident, there was a rare moment of unity, as both vowed to accept the final result. But a rowdy debate must have turned off more viewers than it enlightened.