Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Square-Eyed Couch Potato: April 2008

Firstly, a minute’s silence for Saturday night television. "Harry Hill’s TV Burp" has come to the end of its current, fabulous run. His surreal observational comedy talent was finally recognised with two awards at the BAFTA TV Awards the other night (I treasure his "CHIPPY CHIPS!!!" acceptance speech) and hopefully he won’t be off our screens for too long.

I never thought I’d see the day when I got sick of the reality-talent show (well, British ones anyway - European ones are still ok), but that day has finally arrived, it seems. "I’d Do Anything" is a very appropriate title for the latest West End musical star search - after all, is it really true that acting the part of Nancy in "Oliver!" and cavorting around singing "It’s A Fine Life", is all this group of young, attractive women "have wanted to do all their life"? Umm, I think not. I watched this show from the beginning, but I’m tired of this show now, I didn’t even watch it on Saturday night.

The other part of this show is a search for three kiddie performers to play the leading role....oh, pass the sick bag.

Maybe the format has just gone stale now, but I can’t help thinking that they chose the wrong musical. After "The Sound of Music" and "Joseph", a more modern musical would have been a good choice; "Saturday Night Fever" would have been perfect, and they could have selected a male and female lead. A missed opportunity.

Don’t even start me on "Britain's Got Talent". This show is yet another one suffering from "Cowell’s Disease", a rare medical condition whereby contestants, audience and judges are regularly infected with spontaneous fits of crying. I won’t be watching again - I got soooooo bored this week. Can it get any more cynical?

One of the few British reality-type shows I still have time for is "The Apprentice" which is must-see weekly viewing because of all the clashing egos, the back-stabbing (even more than ever, this series!) and Sir Alan Sugar’s brilliant boardroom put-downs. It’s great to see these wannabe tycoons being humiliated every week. I’m not really into humiliation but in this case, they asked - no, begged - for it!

A quick mention for DW-TV’s "Pop Xport" which I mentioned last year on this blog. This fortnightly round-up of everything that’s going on in the German music scene is essential viewing and covers all types of music, from heavy rock to rap to alternative to the cheesiest pop. If you like German music and have Sky Digital, check this out.

Is it just me, or are TV game shows a bit rubbish now? It’s all psychological nonsense, trying to work out what your opponent’s thinking. Thank goodness therefore for Challenge TV, still bringing golden oldie gameshows like "Family Fortunes" and "Bullseye" and "Take Your Pick" from the days when TV quizzes were more simple than they are now.

I'm not really watching anything else at the moment, apart from the usual "Hollyoaks"/"Boston Legal"/"Army Wives". Season Two of "Heroes" starts on BBC-2 this Thursday, apparently it's not supposed to be as good as Season One, but by the next edition of "Square-Eyed..." I'll have seen enough of it to form an opinion. As long as Mohinder is still around, I'm not too bothered how good or bad it is!! :)

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