The Dutch version of British television show ‘Antiques Roadshow’ called ‘Tussen Kunst en Kitsch’ (‘Between Art and Kitsch’) – apparently unscripted as compared to its British counterpart – has uncovered a gem by eighteenth century Dutch painter Adriaan de Lelie valued at 100,000 euro (not the image shown here).
The painting in question depicts Dutch painter Charles Rochussen as a baby. De Lelie mostly painted portraits of contemporaries in Dutch cultural life and many interior scenes, which this painting supports. Expert Willem Jan Hoogsteder is convinced that this portrait is the work of De Lelie.
Although the TV show’s record dates back to 2011 for the most expensive painting (250,000 euro for a painting by Joost van Geel in 2011), the De Lelie painting valued at 100,000 euro shares fifth place with a work by Jan van Kessel de Jonge for the same amount.
According to CNN and BoingBoing on Twitter, while developing methods to 3D print synthetic micro-swimmers, microscopic devices that can propel themselves by interacting with the chemicals in their surrounding environment, researchers at Leiden University printed a model of Star Trek’s USS Voyager that’s just 15 micrometers long. As a comparison, a human hair is around 75 micrometers in diameter.
By studying synthetic micro-swimmers, we would like to understand biological micro-swimmers,” Samia Ouhajji, one of the study’s authors, told CNN. This understanding could aid in developing new drug delivery vehicles; for example, microrobots that swim autonomously and deliver drugs at the desired location in the human body.
Why did they go for Star Trek and why one of the franchise’s later starships? Jonas Hoecht, one of the study’s co-authors, claims to be a big Star Trek fan and was told he could print anything he wanted. Of course, I still want to know why he opted for Voyager and not a version of the Enterprise, but it’s still extremely cool.
According to Wikipedia, Rembo & Rembo was an absurdist Dutch TV show for kids written by Theo Wesselo and Maxim Hartman that aired from 1987 to 1995. In casual conversation with Dutch folks, bits of sketches from Rembo & Rembo are often quoted or alluded to. I was lucky enough to attend a Rembo & Rembo themed-party once with one of the two guys, I don’t remember which one, and was probably the only non-Dutch person there. People were dressed up like the characters in their sketches, including about six carpenters, which is why I’d like to share this beloved Rembo & Rembo sketch with you and my English translation below the video.
Recently I had to get a carpenter (‘timmerman’, ‘timmervouw’ if it’s a woman) and this sketch was the first thing that popped into my head. Funny enough, the ‘timmerman’ was called Tim.
Here’s what old school Dutch humour looks and sounds like.
Carpenter: Yes, hello!
Man: I’m here for the advert about becoming a carpenter…
Carpenter: Sorry, I got it wrong, I’m not here today either. Tomorrow I’ll be here for sure, tomorrow for sure.
Man: Hello, I was here yesterday already for the advert about becoming a carpenter…
Carpenter: Hey, that’s great, fantastic! Come in! You can start right away!
Carpenter: Come over here and I’ll show you how to hammer. This is a hammer, this is a nail. Head up, point down, a piece of wood: Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! It’s in.
Carpenter: Yes? One more time: Hammer, nail, head up, point down, a piece of wood: Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting!Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! It’s in. Yes? Do you understand or should I do it again?
Man: If you could show me once more…
Carpenter: OK, what is this?
Man: A nail.
Carpenter: This is a hammer!
Man: Ah yes, the hammer of course.
Carpenter: And what’s this again?
Man: That’s the hammer then.
Carpenter: This is the nail, yes?
Carpenter: Head up, point down, a piece of wood: Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! Ting! It’s in, yes?
Carpenter: Try it yourself, OK?
Carpenter: I’m not going anywhere, I’ll be back.
Man: Head up, nail, point down, hammer, a piece of wood: Ting, ting… Hey! This one has the head facing down!
Carpenter: Hey, hey, hey, hey! What are you doing, man? Why are you throwing out the nail?
Man: It’s no good, the head is facing down and the point is facing up!
Carpenter: You’ll also find these types of nails as well, but you’re not supposed to throw them out!
Man: Oh no?
Carpenter: No! You need to save them for ceilings!
Carpenter: No worries. If you’re here at 7 am tomorrow, you can start right away.
Man: OK. And how much can I earn?
Carpenter: 2,50 [guilders, 1,34 euro] an hour, but it will be more later.
Man: OK, then I’ll come later.
The funny parts: The ting ting ting is a classic. The carpenter keeps looking left and right when he opens the door possibly because he hires people and underpays them or is just plain dodgy. The nails for ceilings is also a classic.
For anyone living in the Netherlands who watches Dutch television, it’s not news that all kinds of American, Canadian and other foreign series are subtitled in Dutch instead of being dubbed over. And in Germany, they dub over everything.
For the first time ever, Dutch broadcaster NPO will dub a German series for adults into Dutch. The reason I mention ‘for adults’ is because the only dubbed programs on Dutch television are cartoons for children. Subtitling is cheaper.
The German-Luxembourg series ‘Bad Banks’ (yup, English title) happens to feature British-born Dutch actor Barry Atsma in a main role, which means he gets to dub himself in Dutch, the only actor able to do so, as much of the cast is German-speaking from Germany and Austria.
As well, many things had to be left in English and French, which apparently makes the whole experience sound like a language course. Then again, if I can watch Norwegian series like ‘Okkupert’ (‘Occupied’) with Norwegian spoken, some English, French and Russian with Spanish subtitles, then Bad Banks should be fine. And if this experiment works out, the NPO will dub more series. It’s interesting to read that they will have the money to do so.
In the late 1980s, Québec series ‘He Shoots, He Scores’ (‘Lance et compte’) was filmed in both French and English, the first television series to air simultaneously in English and French on Canadian television. They would shoot one scene in French and then shoot it again in English with the same actors.
Here’s the international trailer (NSFW) for Bad Banks:
Although last year we announced the first Belgian-Dutch series to hit Netflix, called ‘Undercover’, now there’s a Dutch Netflix Original in the works, with no name as of yet. Since Belgian television is developing and will broadcast ‘Undercover’ first, it isn’t considered a Netflix Original, while the unnamed Dutch project will be.
Produced by Pieter Kuijpers and Sander van Meurs of the Pupkin company, the eight-part series of 30 minutes will feature the combination of two elements, namely coming of age and horror, set in Amsterdam. A group of students enjoying the vices of the Dutch capital discover a link to a demonic world from the Golden Age upon which this country has built its entire fortune. This Dutch outing will be penned by writers’ collective Winchester McFly (Bankier van het Verzet, Smeris), while the showrunner will be Michael Leendertse (Van God Los, Smeris).
The first Belgian-Dutch co-production ‘Undercover’, a 10-part series, is set to hit Netflix in 2019, and it stars Anna Drijver (Dutch), Frank Lammers (Dutch), Elise Schaap (Dutch) and Tom Waes (Belgian), produced by Jan Theys (Belgian), with writer and showrunner Nico Moolenaar (Dutch) and directed by Eshref Reybrouck (Belgian) and Frank Devos (Belgian).
For those of you who have watched the Netflix series ‘Narcos’, an American series about the cocaine trade in Colombia, consider this its European ecstasy cousin, but then set in the Netherlands and Belgium. Not a week goes by in the Netherlands and possibly Belgium without a news item about drums of chemicals used to make ecstasy (aka MDMA) found dumped in woods in the province of Noord-Brabant, so someone might as well make a series about it.
“I found it incredible to learn that the Netherlands and Belgium are such a huge part of the global drug trafficking network”, said producer Jan Theys. As for cocaine, the Netherlands remains the ‘Colombia of Western Europe’ and used to be the best and biggest cocaine producing country in the world until WWII.
Good news for all the Game of Thrones fans in the Netherlands and a great idea for anybody who can set this up elsewhere: watching the season 7 finale of Game of Thrones on the big screen for free on Monday 28 August at 7pm CET.
Pathé theatres in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Groningen, Maastricht, Tilburg and Utrecht will have a glorious 81-minute viewing of the popular show. You’ll need to reserve seats, something that’s normal here for film tickets, knowing that other countries only sell tickets at the box office.
And it was some blogger’s idea, not Pathé, which needed to be said. No spoilers on Sunday night please!
The website of popular Dutch reality television show Expeditie Robinson recently fell victim to a hacker with a sense of humour.
The hacker placed a picture of Adolf Hitler on the site as a potential candidate for a new season in which ordinary citizens can participate alongside celebrities. Television chain RTL was slow in noticing the ‘intruder’, not having noticed anyone hacking into their site or disgruntled employees.
When people clicked on Hitler, they could read the words ‘Sieg Heil’, which was in the process of collecting likes as a potential participant. Once social media starting talking about the incident, the media got wind of it. I’m not even going to check if the situation has been rectified, I had a good laugh and I’m thinking, it could happen again.
Identical twins Ermano and Roberto who live in Sulmona, Italy and have never set foot in the Netherlands were interviewed by linguist Marc van Oostendorp of website Onzetaal.nl. They have recognisable Italian accents when they speak Dutch, but their syntax (word order) sounds pretty good, and they even correct themselves as they speak. They are motivated as well, which is more than I can say for many people here who can’t be arsed to learn Dutch.
These Ermano and Roberto are the antidote to that apathy. They are fans of Dutch television presenter Hans van der Togt, associated with the show ‘Raad van Fortuin’, (Dutch version of ‘Wheel of Fortune’,) and when asked what city they would like to visit if they could, they choose Maastricht first because they also watch television show ‘Flikken’ (‘Cops’), which is filmed there. Oh, and they watch satellite television because that’s the only way to get RTL4, their favourite station.
For all of you who can’t be arsed, the brothers’ enthusiasm is contagious, as is the charming way they finish each other’s sentences. And you’ll want to see them one day make that bucket list trip to the Netherlands, but since they have demanding jobs as cleaners, it won’t be easy, although it would be very cool.
Watch this Dutch video with English subtitles and some Italian countryside:
The stop motion series ‘Pat a Mat’ from the Czech Republic (then Czechoslovakia) created by Lubomír Beneš and Vladimír Jiránek from 1976 to 2015 has a wildly popular Dutch version called ‘Buurman en Buurman’ (‘Neighbour and Neighbour’), two handymen getting themselves into all kinds of trouble. The fun part is they never get mad at each other, delighting children and parents alike, so much so that some people probably think it’s Dutch of origin.
Yesterday on the Dutch telelvision show ‘Jinek’ named after host Eva Jinek who happens to have a Czech background, theatre show creator Jelle Kuiper announced he had been given the green light to write 10 more episodes of the show in collaboration with the Czech makers for international distribution sometime in 2017. Kuiper was thrilled to be asked to do this, again highlighting the popularity of the Dutch version since it first appeared on television in 1986.
During Jinek, Kuiper explained that the Germans tried to launch the show three times and failed, something that surprised the guests and the host considering how much Czech culture the German have embraced. Kuiper said that “the Germans didn’t like things going wrong”, and apparently the Dutch love that part a lot.