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Tribute to Boris. When the meta-TV exceeds the TV

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Omaggio a Boris. Quando la meta-TV supera la TV

Published on : by Riccardo Greco




“Ma perché tutti parlano di 'sto Boris? Che avrà di speciale? Vediamo...”. E fu subito amore.



Questa è la sinossi di una mattina della mia vita, anni fa, quando da fresco studente universitario, prima di andare in facoltà, ero solito fare colazione davanti a una puntata di una qualche serie tv, da recuperare rigorosamente su quei siti di streaming che ad ogni minimo movimento del mouse ti aprivano pop-up di ogni sorta da chiudere con massima cura, tanto che cominciavi a vedere la puntata che già si era fatta ora di pranzo.



Boris è il nome di una serie tv italiana di cui sentivo parlare in continuazione come fenomeno cult di grande successo, in onda su Sky, quindi sfuggita ai miei radar fatti di pixel e gente veramente euforica... Bisogna fare una precisazione a tal proposito, da dedicare ai finanzieri all'ascolto: Marta Bertolini, all'epoca a.d. di Fox Networks Italia ha riconosciuto alla pirateria il reale merito del successo di questa serie, che sul canale FOX (poi su FX, e poi su CULT) faceva meno audience di Ghost Whisperer, ma che ha decuplicato le views grazie a Megavideo e soci. Nonostante la prima puntata risalga al , questa serie è una di quelle che resterà attuale per decenni e decenni. Ad oggi potete cercarla su Netflix o Prime Video, ma dovete finirla in fretta, perché appare, scompare e riappare con meno preavviso della Madonna di Fatima.



Torniamo a noi. Ricordo che interruppi la serie che seguivo all'epoca (che era Mad Men, non so se mi spiego) per iniziare finalmente a vedere questa pietra miliare della televisione italiana, spinto da una curiosità enorme, e senza nemmeno informarmi sulla trama. Totalmente al buio.



Così, io che mi aspettavo (non so perché) una commedia che parlasse di immigrati italiani in Germania (ripeto, non so perché), mi ritrovo catapultato nella storia di un set televisivo, con tanto di attori, troupe, delegati di rete, produttori, e poi lui, Boris, il pesce rosso che il regista tiene sul suo monitor come feticcio scaramantico a cui vuole un bene dell'anima, tanto da chiedergli consigli sulla scena da girare o pareri su quella appena girata, ovviamente senza ricevere risposta alcuna. Al di là di tutto ciò (questo apparente sentore di pazzia e demenzialità si attenua col passare delle puntate), Boris è una serie TV che si prende gioco della TV stessa, in modo audace e come mai nessuno aveva fatto prima d'ora. Ma ci torneremo più in fondo.



La trama in breve: si narrano le vicende di una troupe impegnata nelle riprese de “Gli occhi del cuore 2”, seconda stagione di una fiction melensa che racchiude tutti gli stereotipi della TV da massaia, dalla trama sconclusionata ed elementare, passando dalle luci più sparate di un sole di Ferragosto sulla fronte della D'Urso, per finire alle star che si credono divi di Hollywood ma che non compariranno mai su schermi più grandi di 28 pollici. Il tutto manovrato da delegati di produzione che fanno da filo diretto con la Rete, un'entità aleatoria che detta legge dall'alto senza possibilità di replica, e che decide le sorti di tutto e tutti in base a elementi che poco hanno a che fare con professionalità e meritocrazia, in nome del dio Auditel.



Un botto di roba, insomma. E anche i personaggi sono tanti, tantissimi. Alcuni più protagonisti di altri, ma tutti meritevoli comunque del loro “il meglio di...” su Youtube. Anche in questo caso vi tocca una breve rassegna dei principali: si parte dal Maestro Renè Ferretti (un sublime Francesco Pannofino), regista talentuoso ma disilluso dai continui compromessi che deve mandare giù pur di portare la pagnotta a casa; Arianna Dell'Arti (Caterina Guzzanti), l'aiuto regista condannata a mostrare una facciata da sergente come copertura di un'estrema sensibilità; Duccio (Ninni Bruschetta), direttore della fotografia, pigro e superficiale autore delle luci smarmellate che inondano ogni scena della serie; e per finire (si fa per dire), le star Stanis La Rochelle (un sorprendente Piero Sermonti), Corinna Negri (che vi farà rivalutare Carolina Crescentini) e Mariano Giusti (Corrado Guzzanti, e non aggiungo altro), ognuno dei tre immerso in una vita da divi spocchiosi e capricciosi, che fanno solo perdere tempo a tutti, senza saper recitare nemmeno un decimo di quanto credono di saper fare.



Tre stagioni, diverse quanto basta l'una dall'altra, con trame e vicende che salgono e scendono a livello di interesse generale, ma con un ritmo che resta costantemente su livelli altissimi di comicità. Battute a raffica, gesti, espressioni, una padronanza dei tempi comici rarissima per la TV italiana, dove all'epoca non si andava oltre agli sketch di Camera Café (che sarebbe pure un format francese).



Una sceneggiatura intrisa di una satira pungente e nemmeno tanto velata, dove nonostante non si facciano nomi e cognomi, i personaggi e le situazioni che di volta in volta vengono prese in giro si riconoscono in modo lampante, raggiungendo il punto più alto a cui dovrebbe aspirare un autore comico, quello del “fa ridere perché è vero”, da sempre punto forte della commedia più riuscita, che si tratti di cabaret, sit-com, o stand-up comedy.



Il target della serie non è mainstream, così come la sua comicità. Insomma, se non ridi guardando I Simpson, se non ti piace Friends, o non sai cosa siano 30 Rock o Modern Family, è inutile anche solo guardare la sigla della prima puntata (sigla che, per inciso, è scritta e cantata da Elio e le Storie tese, per dire). Così come probabilmente c'è da superare il fatto che certi aspetti vengano apprezzati un pizzico di più dagli addetti ai lavori, che sui set ci vivono e conoscono quel microcosmo fatto di incongruenze e frenesia immotivata che è il cinema italiano. Chiaramente Boris fa ridere anche chi non lavora sui set, ma è rivolto comunque a un pubblico che si presuppone abbia un minimo di passione per la TV e i suoi backstage, il gossip, e magari anche solo un'infarinatura sui principali luoghi comuni che aleggiano attorno a questo mondo, e che non sono del tutto immotivati.



Tutto questo è opera di Giacomo Ciarrapico, Luca Vendruscolo e Mattia Torre, autori e spesso anche registi di molti episodi della serie. Quest'estate proprio Torre ha perso la sua battaglia contro una lunga malattia, e con questo articolo vorrei personalmente omaggiarlo, spingendovi magari a fare qualche ricerca su Google, per poi leggere o vedere qualcosa di suo, e prendere coscienza dell'enorme perdita subita dal mondo dello spettacolo italiano, in ogni suo ambito, dal teatro alla narrativa, passando proprio dalla TV.



Un affettuoso ricordo spetta anche a Roberta Fiorentini, scomparsa proprio ieri a 70 anni. Lei è l'attrice che interpreta Itala, la segretaria di edizione venuta su a vino e periferia romana, la professionista che ne ha viste tante e non ha paura di niente. Uno dei tanti personaggi-carattere che per quanto possano essere secondari, si fanno sempre sentire sulla scena.



Boris è durata 3 stagioni + un film (di cui proprio non si sentiva l'esigenza). In ogni stagione vengono presi in esame (e di mira) gli aspetti salienti della produzione audiovisiva italiana, esaltandone l'approssimazione, la disorganizzazione, la disonestà, sempre in modo pungente e mai volgare, rappresentando a pieno la capacità così tipicamente italiana (cit.) di sfangarla sempre, nonostante tutto, mostrando contemporaneamente la capacità di risolvere problemi e quella di crearceli e alimentarli in continuazione.



Perché in fondo...

Tribute to Boris. When the meta-TV exceeds the TV

Published on : by Riccardo Greco




“But why is everyone talking about Boris? What's special about it? Let's see...”. And it was love immediately.



This is the synopsis of a morning of my life, years ago, when I was a fresh university student, before going to the faculty, I used to have breakfast in front of an episode of any TV series, to be rigorously recovered on those streaming websites that with the slightest movement of the mouse opened any kind of pop-up to be closed with the utmost care, so much so that you began to watch the episode that had already was time for the lunch.



Boris is the name of an Italian TV series of which I heard continually as a cult phenomenon of great success, airing on Sky, then escaped my radar made of pixels and really euphoric people... It's necessary to make a clarification in this regard, to dedicate to the financiers reading: Marta Bertolini, at the time CEO of Fox Networks Italy acknowledged piracy as the real merit of the success of this series, that on the channel FOX (then on FX, and then on CULT) made less audience than Ghost Whisperer, but that has multiplied the views thanks to Megavideo and company. Despite the first episode dates back to , this series is one of those that will remain current for decades and decades. Today you can look for it on Netflix or Prime Video, but you have to finish to watch it quickly, because it appears, disappears and reappears with less warning than Madonna of Fatima.



Let's get back to us. I remember that I interrupted the series while I was following at the time (that was Mad Men, I don't know if I can explain myself) to finally start watching this milestone of the Italian television, driven by a huge curiosity, and without even informing me about the plot. Totally in the dark.



So, I was expecting that (I don't know why) a comedy about Italian immigrants in Germany (I repeat, I don't know why), I find myself catapulted into the story of a TV set, with lots of actors, crew, network delegates, producers, and then it, Boris, the goldfish that the director keeps on his monitor as a superstitious fetish to which he wants a good of the soul, so much to ask it advices on the scene to shoot or opinions about the one just shot, obviously without receiving any answer. Beyond all this (this apparent hint of madness and dementia fades with the passing of the episodes), Boris is a TV series that makes fun of the TV itself, in a bold way and as no one had done it before. But we will come back to it further.



The plot in short: are told the stories of a troupe engaged in the shootings of “Gli occhi del cuore 2” (The eyes of the heart 2), second season of a melancholy drama that contains all the stereotypes of the housewife TV, from the rambling and elementary plot, passing from the most shot lights of a Ferragosto sun on the front of Barbara D'Urso, to finish with the stars who believe to be Hollywood stars but who will never appear on cinema screens. The whole handled by production delegates who act as a direct line to the Network, a random entity that dictates law from above without the possibility of replication, and who decides the fate of everything and everyone based on elements that have little to do with professionalism and meritocracy, in the name of the Auditel.



A lot of stuff, in short. And the characters are also many, so many. Some more protagonists than others, but all anyway worthy of theirs “the best of...” on Youtube. Also in this case I make a brief review of the main ones: it starts with the Master Renè Ferretti (a sublime Francesco Pannofino), talented director but disillusioned by the constant compromises that he has to accept to get paid; Arianna Dell'Arti (Caterina Guzzanti), the first assistant director forced to show a sergeant's face as a cover for an extreme sensitivity; Duccio (Ninni Bruschetta), director of photography, lazy and superficial author of the all opened lights that flood every scene of the series; and finally (so to say), the stars Stanis La Rochelle (a surprising Piero Sermonti), Corinna Negri (which will make you reconsider Carolina Crescentini) and Mariano Giusti (Corrado Guzzanti, and I don't add anything else), each of the three immersed in a life of pompous and capricious stars, that only waste time for everyone, without being able how to act not even a tenth of what they believe they can do.



Three seasons, different enough from each other, with plots and stories that rise and fall in the level of general interest, but with a rhythm that remains constantly on the highest levels of comedy. Rapid lines, gestures, expressions, a mastery of comic times very rare for Italian TV, where at the time it didn't go beyond the sketches of Camera Café (which would also be a French format).



A script steeped in a biting satire and not even so veiled, where despite names and surnames are not made, the characters and situations that are teased each time can be clearly recognized, reaching the highest point that a comic author should aspire to, the one of “it makes you laugh because it's true”, always a strong point of the most successful comedy, whether it's about cabaret, sit-com, or stand-up comedy.



The target of the series is not mainstream, as well as its comedy. In short, if you don't laugh watching The Simpsons, if you don't like Friends, or you don't know what 30 Rock or Modern Family are, is also useless to watch the opening sequence of the first episode (opening sequence that, by the way, is written and sung by Elio e le Storie tese, anyway). So as probably there's to overcome the fact that some aspects are appreciated a little more by the insiders, that live on the sets and know that microcosm made of inconsistencies and unmotivated frenzy that is the Italian cinema. Clearly Boris makes people who don't work on sets laugh too, but it's aimed at an audience that is supposed to have a minimum of passion for the TV and their backstages, the gossip, and maybe even just a smattering of the main clichés that surround this world, and that are not entirely unmotivated.



All this was created by Giacomo Ciarrapico, Luca Vendruscolo and Mattia Torre, authors and often also directors of many episodes of the series. This summer just Torre has lost his battle against a long illness, and with this article I would personally like to pay homage to him, maybe pushing you to do some research on Google, to then read or see something of his own, and become aware of the enormous loss suffered by the Italian entertainment world, in every sphere, from the theater to the narrative, just passing by TV.



An affectionate memory also belongs to Roberta Fiorentini, dead just yesterday at 70 years. She's the actress who plays Itala, the edition secretary raised on wine and Roman suburbs, the professional who has seen so many things and is not afraid of anything. One of the many characters-character who although may be secondary, they always have a relevance on the scene.



Boris consists of 3 seasons and a movie (of which just it didn't feel the need). In each season the salient aspects of the Italian audiovisual production are examined (and targeted), exalting the approximation, the disorganization, the dishonesty, always in a pungent and never vulgar way, fully representing the capacity so typically Italian (quote) to always break it, despite everything, showing at the same time the ability to solve problems and to create them and feed them continuously.



Because basically...

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