Sunday, 21 March 2010
The Two Ronnies at the Epicentre.
I'm looking for a new pair of glasses and drawing a blank.
The reason I'm looking is, although I have contact lenses, I can't always be arsed to fiddle around with them before going out. I'm a big fan of the black rimmed NHS specs - nothing fancy - just big clunky trustworthies. I thought I'd got it right last year when I opted for Specsavers specs but although they're black rimmed, they're not quite right. There's something about the slightly south-leaning corners that are inauthentic.
I tried Optical Express and they were too flash (I hate Chanel and Dior symbols and what is it with arm designs in general? They're dreadful). I then hit upon the idea of trying Urban Outfitters for frames but they were pretentious, Shoreditch-style oversized monsters. And friends of mine on Twitter have visual evidence of me not even trying to pull these off.
Anyway, this made me pontificate on how glasses have changed over the years, and I've compiled a potted history of our favourite four-eyed figures over the decades:
Arthur Askey started off in the 1930s, where he appeared on an early form of BBC television. Askey had to be heavily made up for his face to be recognisable at such low resolution. When television cranked up a bit, Askey was a regular performer in variety shows. He went on to appear in some Gainsborough films and he finished off as a Paul Whitehouse incantation.
Glasses were a bit pointy in the late 50s and early 60s for many women. Dandy Nichols who started her career in 1947's Hue and Cry was more famous for playing Alf Garnett's eye-rolling wife.
BBC Parliament followers (especially a few Fridays ago when they screened the Feb 1974 elections) will have been swooning over David Butler's bins. This screengrab is actually taken from 1979 though, where he wore a better quality frame.
Mark Curry was gracing our screens pretty much at the same time NHS prescription glasses were going down the shitter (:-(). He represented a new wave of glamour and possibilities in the realm of primary coloured frames in outsizes.
Meanwhile, if anybody knows how I can get hold of a pair of NHS specs anywhere other than Ebay (I just can't get along with that place) then please do let me know.
I'm looking for something like this: