The new blog may have started, but it won’t contain material like this. In the spirit of silly fun, I’ll again be liveblogging tonight’s second episode of series 6 of X-Factor. Will anyone be able to stop the Danyl Johnson juggernaut? At 7pm BST:
[NOW CLOSED but still viewable]
This year I’m not going to tweet my comments about the new series of X-Factor, I’m going to liveblog them. You’re welcome to add your comments as well (and by Twitter, if you let me know in advance that you’d like to). It’ll kick off at 7pm BST and that’s when you:
[NOW CLOSED but still viewable]
Will Young’s new single ‘Grace’ is finally released today, making this the timing of this performance on ITV1’s ‘Here Come the Boys’ pretty canny. I’m sure it’ll help sales too that it’s far and away his best live performance of ‘Grace’ to date!
I couldn’t enjoy this song more, and you can get it both in record stores and iTunes (version 1 with video and version 2 with superb remixes).
Posted in music, popular culture, Will Young
Tagged Grace, Here Come The Boys, iTunes, iTunes Music Store, ITV1, Let It Go, music single, music video, single, Will Young
I’d worried it would be a brand-damaging exercise, that it would be a step back. I’d worried he’d be open to needless criticism and comparison. I’d worried he’d fluff the song. But Will went onto the X-Factor last weekend and blew everyone away with ‘Grace’. You can see why. And far from being a damaging experience, it only enhanced his reputation – show owner Simon Cowell was the first to leap to his feet and a standing ovation, Will gave one of the best performances of his upcoming second single from ‘Let It Go’, and Pop Idol seemed a very very long time ago.
‘Grace’ can (and should) be purchased here.
Before I go any further can I just say who made the boneheaded decision to wreck main draw Mitch Hewer’s hair?! There, now I’ve got that out of my system it’s time to review Britain’s answer to High School Musical.
Written by Jonathan Harvey eh? Given how good Beautiful People is right now, you’d expect the standard of writing to be very high. But this is by-the-numbers TV, and the characters are nothing more than cardboard cutouts, promoted from their looks (or in the case of Hewer sadly by reputation) alone. The show doesn’t know what it wants to be – High School Musical copy, Fame copy, a British drama, Skins-lite or something else. It can’t be Harvey’s fault that there’s so little charm when so much is evident in his current BBC project – it’s the corporate concept (and no doubt interference) at work – but he’s seriously not helped by poor acting by all the leads.
Mitch Hewer follows up from his mega popular role as Maxxie in Skins as Danny, and immediately demonstrates his lack of versatility. It’s not just his character which is shallow though, this is one step up from pantomime and they’re all pretty uninteresting and barely believable. But where the musical aspect stands out in HSM and Fame to make you forget such shortcomings, the same is infrequently true here, and it’s a surprise considering the lead song writer is Gary Barlow. He too is not helped by the corporate influence – turning otherwise good musical performances into pop videos instead of blending them effectively into the drama itself.
It really is regrettable that the leads have no believable charm at all. While Georgina Hagen is a welcome, central calm presence, she’s nowhere near strong enough to carry the show and the relationship with Hewer comes across as forced. Charm radiates however from dance teacher Adam Garcia – hot as ever and as good a TV actor as ever. But even the Fame TV series successfully blended the music, dance and drama effectively, but here the choppy, diffident editing takes any attempt at intensity right back out. Seriously to avoid unless you’re about 8.
Posted in popular culture, television
Tagged Adam Garcia, Britannia High, Fame, Gary Barlow, Georgina Hagen, Guy Chambers, High School Musical, ITV, ITV1, Jonathan Harvey, Kids From Fame, Mark Benton, Mark Owen, Matthew James Thomas, Mitch Hewer
Posted in popular culture, religion
Tagged bear, blasphemy, crybabies, Fern Britton, Gillian Gibbons, Islam, ITV, ITV1, Mohammed, Muslim, Muslims, religion, Sudan, teddy bear, This Morning, TV presenter