The Patch

March 10, 2007

Saturday 10th March- Why I’m Cooler Than You, bitch…

Filed under: Celebrity/TV,Miscellany — Ames @ 5:50 pm

For someone who’s About Me on mySpace includes the fact that I ‘am a sucker for reality talent show competitions’, this time of year is a dangerous one. Not only is the final of  Dancing On Ice drawing near, but Celebrity Fame Academy is in full swing, American Idol has finally decided on the final 12, and I’m getting withdrawal symptoms from not being about to watch this series of America’s Next Top Model due to my Freeview box not receiving LivingTV- tragic, really. Moreover, as my fellow Patcher pointed out yesterday, the vote for our representative in Eurovision will soon be upon us, as will the Big Night itself (although whether it’s deserving of the title ‘talent competition is another matter entirely, though it’s probably more deserving than the piece of shoite that is When Will I Be Famous (possibly finished now though, thank goodness…). Oh, and hopefully Strictly Dance Fever will be back on our screens soon, showing those Americans on So You Think You Can Dance? that when compared to us Brits that they most definitely can not.

But what is it that gets me so sucked up into these shows? Why was it that, on X Factor results night, I was nigh-on praying that Leona would win (besides the fact that Ray is a smug little git, who needed his perma-smile taking off his face. Bitch? Me? As if…)? Why is it that I got quite upset when I thought Mel might leave the Academy last night. Every week my flatmates and I (of the female variety, mind) will sit down and watch Dancing on Ice every Saturday without fail, cheering on our favourites, congratulating them, just in case they can hear our voices from Cardiff, and feeling their pain as a step goes horribly wrong.Quite possibly, it’s because these shows create better stories than most other programmes on television at the moment. I’d much rather follow the improvements of someone who’s never stepped onto the ice before into a fully-fleged figure skater, than the trials of America Ferrara as her poorly-dressed, bushy-eyebrowed alter-ego saves the day for her boss once again in Ugly Betty, or whether the Cassie and Sid will ever get together in Skins. Yes, I know none of the characters in these programmes are supposed to be realistic, both in storylines or character development, but they are meant to make you want to follow their progress, for better or worse, right? Yet they still don’t sucker me in as much as those ‘talent competitions’. Plus, at least people in those are likeable and learn from their mistakes. This is possibly the reason why I do and can not watch Big Brother– I would rather be best friends with Abby in Skins than have to watch the people on that talk about what is essentially absolute bollocks for an hour a day, 10 (or more) weeks a year. And this is coming from someone who does a lot of bollocks talking, as proved by this article.

 Or maybe it’s because I like watching people make an ass of themselves from time to time? (Did I hear you call me a bitch again? Girl, please… [input obligatory hand movements, clicks and American accent in here]) Come on, you know we all do it. We watch Eurovision because it’s 3 wonderful hours of people who think they can write and sing songs giving their all for… I’m not quite sure what… The most entertaining bits of any singing talent show is Simon Cowell shattering the dreams of people by being the first person to tell them the truth about how absolutely appalling their singing voice is. The mix of this with survival and sob stories is frustrating at times, but it’s this magic formula that has me, and millions of others, hooked by the time it gets to the live broadcasts. And watching 4 hours straight of American Idol audition footage. No, really… Even better is Celebrity Fame Academy, which involves a bunch of presenters and soap has-beens trying to improve their voices. They’re only trying their best, but the fact that it’s for Comic Relief should surely be some indicator that it would be best if they ‘accidentally’ had sound faults so we could just watch them prance about without having to suffer the actual singing part. That said, it makes me feel a lot better about my own talent, or lack therefore. I still have my favourites though; Ray, Mel and Colin for the final please.

To be honest, I’m not quite sure what it is about television reality shows that hooks me, like one of those people on those foul new anti-smoking adverts. What I do know is that my night in yesterday consisted of channel hopping between re-runs of old series of America’s Next Top Model (thank God for the parents’ Sky), American Idol, Castaway for a small amount of time and Celebrity Fame Academy. And while my head ached somewhat towards the end of it, it was a thoroughly enjoyable, if somewhat over-indulgent, night. Yes I did shout when Richard Parks voted that bloody Blue Peter presenter into the academy over Tim & Mel (presumably because of her legs). I then got annoyed when Sanjaya got voted into the top 12 over Sundance Head in American Idol. I mean, who couldn’t vote for someone named Sundance Head? Bloody Americans… I laughed at the bitchiness of wannabe models, and I got a little too overexcited when I recognised- before they told us- that one of the Castaways was from Oxford due to the locations on her introductory video. I’m not ashamed. Reality TV Talent Shows (and I suppose we can include Shipwrecked in this description, because, my God, some of the talent on those islands!), are my Not So Secret Passion. They’re shows I can discuss and argue about with both friends and family. I can get wound up about the people in them in a way that I have only ever done about those in ER and Desperate Housewives before. I can be perfectly happy staying in on a Friday night, because I know I have my good friends to entertain me for the whole evening. It may not be as hip as necking cocktails in the newest bar, or even as having a pint down the local Old Man’s Pub, but I’m quite happy with that; Ben & Jerry’s, a comfy seat and a remote? Sorted…


1 Comment »

  1. I used to really love America’s Next Top Model but I’ve noticed how its got so repetitive, you have the rock chick, the maybe lesbian, the commercial one who makes the judges go “Oh you’re SO commercial” and the bitchy one that no one likes but gets really far in the competition because she’s interesting. Its getting kind of dull.
    I’ve recently found myself getting into The Hills on MTV. Its ridiculous how “OMG LAUREN GO TO PARIS” I got when watching it and thats scary because the Hills is so obviously staged and acted. I think the lines between reality and fantasy in some reality tv shows are so blurred, what does reality tv even mean, anymore?

    Comment by denesha — March 12, 2007 @ 9:12 am | Reply

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