Oh TV, what have you done to me? I’ve been abandoned by the lack of new shows… which has left me scrabbling around in the pits of darkness looking for something to watch. So amazingly trashy TV it is!
So who remembers these two?
Of course you remember Trinny and Susannah! They were the poster girls for no-nonsense makeovers where no part of the body was off-limits to grab, and a thousand women suffered the humiliation of being simultaneously man-handled and having their boobs hoiked up to the recommended height and pertness. Oh, and they put body-conscious women in a room full of mirrors so they could see their cellulite, wobbly bits and stretch marks from every possible angle. What a time for makeovers it was!
They’ve been off the screen for a few years now (although as far as I know, their chain on spanx-esque pants are doing pretty well) but this week they returned in Trinny and Susannah: From Boom To Bust (C4) a strangely compelling mockumentary that charted the pair’s attempts to get themselves back on the box. Needless to say, it was all a miserable failure, with their agent dropping them, a humiliating incident at a racecourse and two terrible encounters with Vanessa Feltz. Alongside this, Susannah tried to control her drinking problem while being dumped from a Cillit Bang endorsement deal and Trinny was the only remotely sane one (ironically, she was always the evil one, so it was weird to see her take the reins as the mentally stable and level-headed one). To be honest, it was all a bit too believable for a mockumentary: the most comedic elements came from their half-witted wannabe “agent” who provided some strange laughs with his incompetence. It was easy to see how Trinny ans Susannah could have really been in that position. This made it more like car-crash telly more than a genuinely funny and light-hearted romp through some fictional scenarios. Besides, there was too much bitchiness and swearing for it to work on a comedy level. Weird.
I have to admit, I never really watch The X Factor (ITV), but sometimes you have to go along with the zeitgeist and expose yourself to stuff like this. And if I had to choose between Strictly Come Dancing and this, I’d choose X Factor any day. Sorry Beeb but ballroom dancing doesn’t cut it with me.
This was the “Judge’s Houses” stage where each of the four judges take a group of contestants and whittle them down to the three most likely to succeed. I have to say, I felt so sorry for Louis “I always have puppy-dog-eyes” Walsh as the over-28s failed to impress. I liked the growly soul woman with the pink streaks in her hair and Alicia (Alicia? She looks a bit like Mariah Carey according to my friend) had a semi-decent voice but his partner in crime Sharon Osbourne had a face like thunder. Bless him, he’ll never win again. Over at Dannii’s house a slightly more talented but still a bit bland bunch of young men wanting to be the next Shayne Ward rolled up to warble in front of her and Natalie Imbruglia. It was a bit weird to hear one of them sing “If I Were A Boy” but at least he had a less commercial falsetto voice. Actually, I only liked Paije, who had a good set of lungs on him and good style to match:
Not bad. A little flat on the chorus maybe but a heck of a lot better than the others. Simon Cowell had the other unfortunate task of being the judge for the groups, where everyone wants to be Girls Aloud. Or very camp. God knows who he’ll pick, as apart from one group (KNP? KHE? Something beginning with K…) everyone was as bad as each other. Cheryl, on the other hand, has the pick of the litter. My favourite performance of the night came from Gamu who performed Pixie Lott’s “Cry Me Out”. She was a little shouty but hey, she’s a little girl with a big voice:
A big disappointment came from Cher Lloyd who isn’t exactly original but at least she doesn’t sing in a transatlantic R’n’B voice. She had a throat infection, and tried to sing. But heck, she couldn’t do it. She tried though. And it wasn’t too bad:
Okay, it went baaaad but Cheryl has said “you’re right up my street” to her before, so maybe she’ll get the sympathy vote. I kinda hope she does just to mix it up a bit in the women’s category but hey, what do I know? Will.i.am didn’t look impressed with any of them!
And if you thought that was weird and fluffy, then you ain’t seen nothing yet. My School Prom (BBC3) was the strangest insight into the Americanization of UK school days I’ve seen. And I’ve seen Baby Beauty Queens. Everyone had an odd story to tell, and nearly all of them wanted extravagance for their prom. The most awful of all the teenagers was Mia, a girl who frankly has a lot riding on her “I’m daddy’s little princess” status. She was well and truly spoilt. A massively expensive dress, an over-the-top entrance (using three modes of transport: a limo, a horse drawn-cart and then just a horse) and afterwards she had an afterparty in her parents’ back garden where 200 random teenagers turned up to booze themselves silly and cause havoc. It was all a bit grim really: always thought house parties were a more OC-American thing.
Methinks Mia’s been watching too much of The Hills.