Thursday, 25 August 2011

The Apocalypse – as told through the medium of Reality TV

If I want to stare mindlessly at hundreds of pathetic individuals with meaningless lives and next to no social prospects I simply go and stand alone in a hall of mirrors and sob until my tear ducts run dry. Some people, who we shall from now on call the “crazies”, instead decide to believe in their own social worth (the fools). In order to prove to themselves they aren’t the lowest piece of scum in the universe, the crazies watch reality television. And who can blame them? In a world full of airbrushed reminders of your own fat imperfections, it can be reassuring to see other people failing at things and leading miserable lives – and annoyingly my friends won’t do that (I’ve become the loser one). In the old days we had to make do with EastEnders and Chucklevision but over the last decade we’ve “enjoyed” the rise of the reality show, watching people attempt (and usually fail) at singing, dancing, business, conducting an orchestra, masturbating a pig and feeding children to wolves – ok I made the last one up, but worryingly I didn’t make the penultimate one up (The Farm – anyone?).

Reality TV now forms such a tightly run year round schedule, you could (if you were mad), not use a calendar and simply work out the time of year from which reality show was on at the time. January – March you’d be seeing celebrities injuring themselves in the campest show ever created for television Dancing on Ice, then Graham Norton would take over to find some member of staff for Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, then it’s the Apprentice and Big Brother taking over for the summer, before passing the baton over to The X Factor to run a marathon through until Christmas with Strictly Come Dancing and I’m A Celebrity… joining the party and in a warning that if all three of us are on, you really should go Christmas shopping. However this year that meticulous plan has been ruined by the late start of Big Brother this week (The X Factor hasn’t actually started any earlier this year, it just feels like that!).

Yep this week saw the double whammy with both The X Factor and Big Brother kicking off. At this point I should declare a small conflict of interest that I have, in that I know someone currently working on Big Brother. Incidentally, whilst I’m on the subject of people I know, I should apologise for last week describing and old uni friend as a “prick” (particularly as they read it and worked out I was referring to them - dam) they’re not a “prick” I just got carried away in my rant. Sorry, I’ve slapped myself round the face with a used tampon as punishment. Any way the new Big Brother kicked of this week on Channel 5 (not to be confused with Channel 4 + 1, a common pitfall for the mathematically gifted person in charge of the remote control), and Brian Dowling has taken over the reins (in a jacket ever so slightly too small for him). Admittedly he is less enthusiastic than Davina McCall, but in fairness I don’t believe it’s possible for anyone to be more enthusiastic than Davina McCall without being declared a public health threat by the UN. He’s welcomed a pack full of “celebrities”, and I use the term exceedingly loosely, into the all new house. In a risky twist Channel 5 are running Celebrity Big Brother back to back with the standard format, leading to the worryingly possibility that those of us not paying attention won’t notice when the switch over has occurred. In fairness the line-up is a bit dodgy but there never was a mythical golden era when we’d heard of all the contestants in Celebrity Big Brother so it’s probably unfair to expect any better from Channel 5. As we met the contestants on launch night it became clear that never had the phrase “You’ll probably know me from…” been so misused. For those of you unaware I’ll give you a quick rundown of the “celebs” (that I’ve heard of):

Amy Childs – represents the rather disturbing trend of reality TV for inbreeding, where by someone gets on a reality show simply for having been on a previous reality show. In this case The Only Way is Essex, which I saw once and mistook for a government propaganda film promoting birth control.

Bobby Sabel – is someone… probably.

Darren Lyons – I have actually heard of before, but I’m not sure how or why? He looks like a genetic splicing of everything in the world that is poor taste, like a twat version of Mr Potato Head. His sole purpose seems to be to make Jedward’s hair look normal.

Jedward – I find it hard to slag off Jedward, primarily because I accidentally caught myself in the mirror the other day (something I try and avoid so I don’t vomit) and due to a combination of bad highlighting and lack of haircut, for a brief moment I thought I saw Jedward’s aging father.

Kerry Katona – I find her much easy to slag off, there’s something I find deeply irritating  about her, like rabies. Annoyingly she refuses to go away or fall under a train – too harsh? No I didn’t think you’d mind. I remember her preaching to the CD:UK audience about how great it was to divorce Brian McFadden (nice content for a children’s programme), which I believe was the first time I wanted to slap her – since then my hands have become red raw just considering the mental imagery.

Lucien Laviscount – A successful young person, reason for us all to intensely dislike him.

Paddy Doherty – Another “star” from another “show” I’ve not seen, though apparently he’s a former bare-knuckle fighter, so we can only hope he gets drunk and decides to reprise his role.

Pamela Bach-Hasselhoff – A woman who has a selection of names from popular Baywatch stars, and that’s about it.

Sally Bercow – Wife of the House of Commons Speaker, who seems to have simply gone in their specifically to annoy the Daily Mail, something she should surely be commended for. And how can she do any worse for politics than George Galloway did?

And finally Tara Reid – Famous for being in American Pie and American Pie 2, though I watched both films and don’t remember her. I suspect it could be a lie, and she isn’t really famous at all. I mean does anyone check these things?

So with that line up, is it too much to hope for a biblical plague to sweep through the house? Please Channel 5, pretty please, it’s not like it would be the least tasteful thing you have ever done, don’t you remember that show that featured Keith Chegwin naked?

Meanwhile over on ITV The X Factor arrived back on our screens in its usual demure and understated fashion as approximately one billion tonnes of pyrotechinques are detonated to a voiceover recorded by God himself (or voiceover artist Peter Dixon, but I imagine God sounds a lot like him, though hopefully he says more worthwhile things than “THE BIGGEST ARTIST IN THE WORLD” – note Peter Dixon can only ever be quoted in capital letters). The main attraction of the show this year is the new judges, who begin the show by being flown in, in four separate helicopters – not because they don’t like each other, but because much like the Royal Family they can’t risk flying together in case of a crash. And who can blame the producers for being cautious given the number of judges they’ve lost recently? Talk about careless it’s like ITV accidentally organised a massacre at last year’s rap party, and much like a cockroach nothing can finish off Louis Walsh. As a result this year it’s The X Factor: The Next Generation, with a whole host of new judges – in fact when I saw the first wave of publicity featuring the judges I thought it was one of those dodgy spoof comedy shows, who really struggled to find actors to play the panel, bar a remarkably good likeness for Louis Walsh. Speaking of Louis Walsh, whoever thought watching back in Series 1 that of all the “talent” (talent by the way is media wanker speak for people who appear in front of the camera, instantly implying that everyone else on the production doesn’t have talent – which in my case is true), on the show at the time Louis Walsh would be the only one still standing by Series 8? I mean really, Louis? Back during Series 1 you could have got 10-1 on for Louis being sectioned by Series 3. Of course Louis did briefly leave the show in 2007 in a completely “unstaged publicity stunt” where conveniently despite being fired he hadn’t booked any other commitments in his busy schedule, so was free to come back to the show on Week 2. Incidentally did anyone think in Louis introductory VT, that given they credited him with “finding amazing pop talent over the last 30 years” that showing Girls Aloud was a bit much – I mean we (and when I say we, I don’t mean me) picked the final line-up for Girls Aloud, so who can he claim full credit for that.

The new judges are of course Kelly “Destiny’s Child” Rowland who claimed “she’s really excited by all the talent in the UK” proving she’s clearly never watched The X Factor before. Second Tulisa “I don’t have a surname”, who appears to have completed her community service looking after the other members of N-Dubz. And finally we have Gary “I’m not the new Simon Cowell, but I’m going to try” Barlow who, as explained by means of a VT montage. is as mean as Simon Cowell, except he’s not, he just says “no” a lot like an evil doppelganger version of the Churchill nodding dog.

Other shocks are of course the inclusion of a new audition in Liverpool, because it’s well known that talented people in Liverpool are unable to travel, so good news for them. And of course the bombshell hidden in the credits, that Dermot O’Leary has a stylist. A stylist who presumably was off the day they went to Birmingham and Dermot put on those beige chinos.

My favourite part of the whole show was seeing a woman being sick in a Morrisons bag, something that we should see more of on television, though I was disappointed that she didn’t throw up on the judges which would have been “the new and refreshing thing” the British pop industry is looking for. This along with pointless statements, (such as Gary Barlow saying “this isn’t just an audition, it’s an X-Factor audition” – well durrrhh, what did you think all the X’s emblazoned over the place were for – well not for bloody buried treasure), appeared to be one of the many things making up the show rather than actual auditions, I counted only five full auditions (other than the montage of people Gary said no to). Still that’s only five people to hate. First up we got to meet Frankie who has the name of seven girls tattooed on his bottom (coincidentally I’ve got a copy of the Daily Mail tattooed on my bottom, so I can enjoy defecating through it on a daily basis), this provoked much cheering from the stupid women in the audience – proving that it’s ok to sleep about so long as your pretty. He then went onto say “a night out with me would be mental”, where I suspect what he actually means by “mental” is “not fun to any sane person”. Annoyingly he was actually a half decent singer, and the judges let him through because of his “cheeky demeanour” or “being a twat” as I call it. There was then a boring collection of vaguely talent girls followed by Goldie, a mad women, (the one who was sick in the Morrisons bag). She sung a song no one could understand (not even her friends and family) then mounted Gary Barlow, this lead to Louis Walsh asking her to sing another song – I suspect he’s getting the hint of Wagner already, fifty quid says she’ll be one of his finalists. And then finally we had a previous auditionee who threw a foul-mouthed tantrum two years ago, he reassured us he had changed before having another foul-mouthed tantrum in which he called Tulisa every name under the sun, and then said she wasn’t Cheryl Cole, so at least he ended on a nice comment.

So that’s what we’ve got to look forward to in the way of reality television for the next few months. Still if that doesn’t float your boat you could always while away the time like I do, making a likeness of yourself from Angel Delight. 

 And they say I don’t know how to have fun.

1 Comment:

Holly said...

'...a twat version if Mr Potato Head...' Genius!