No idea why Costello has always insisted that this single doesn't feature on any Best Of Compilations. Was it really that bad? I mean, it's not that good but after a couple of listens it strikes me that it's one of those middling Costello songs that neither amuses nor annoys - in tune with three-fifth's of his career output - that you imagine he cranks out in the time that it takes the rest of us to boil an egg.
Maybe it's because the film the song is associated with is considered a bit of a mess - not as bad as Comic Strip's Supergrass but not as good as Cannon & Ball's The Boys In Blue either - that has resulted in Elvis 'Winston Smith' Costello bringing 1984 forward by 13 months. (It's the sort of early eighties British flick where you expect Kathy Burke to turn up in some bit part, but she's missing from this film and her usual role was taken by a very young Caroline Quentin.)
But back to Costello; he needn't be so precious, as the closing barbed wired verse in the song corrects any mistaken impression that he was 'writing to film soundtrack order', and it also has to be stated that the music is the best thing about the film.
Many an American power popper on Amazon cries real tears that the film has never been made available in the States, and they have to be content themselves with the hard to find vinyl copy of the soundtrack.
*I'm wrapping everything in 'barb wire' these days for some reason.