Alan’s law is not a new television drama about a law firm in a small fictional town, neither is it an actual law in the legal sense of the word, it’s merely a means of confirming whether a film is good or not.
The Bear and I used to work together, and would undoubtedly spend a lot of the time talking about film and television. I think it’s fair to say that we have very similar, although (importantly) not the same, taste in what we watch. I love watching and then talking about programs and films, and getting to find out how other people have interpreted them. For the most part, The Bear and I would have pretty similar views or theories. But not always. Sometimes one of us may have read about, or seen a trailer for, a new film/program and would be met by a torrent of abuse/mocking when we suggested that ‘it looked good’ and that we wouldn’t mind going to watch it. Sometimes the other person would eventually be won around, other times you’d have to admit that you were wrong and that it was actually terrible, but other times we would find ourselves locked in an almighty deadlock. And then we discovered Alan’s law.
Alan* also worked with us, and for the most part bear the brunt of our jokes and mocking (sorry Alan). But he too loves film, and goes to the cinema a lot. Probably more than the two of us combined. However, we quickly discovered that his taste in film is nothing like ours at all. To be quite frank, you could bet money on the fact that if Alan loved a film then it would be awful. It wasn’t always the case, there were some exceptions, but it was pretty close. And this was how Alan’s law began. If we were deadlocked, or unsure about a film, we would simply ask Alan whether he liked it or not. If he said it was good, in our eyes the opposite must be true and the film was deemed to be rubbish, and we would live with Alan’s decision. Argument over.
It’s now 18 months or so since we worked together, and Alan’s law is still in use. In fact, I had a text from The Bear on Tuesday night telling me that he was going to ‘invoke Alan’s law’ because I’d seen The Box and quite liked it, where he has only heard bad things about it. We haven’t had a ruling on it yet… So, Alan, The Box, have you seen it? Is it any good…?