BoyleWatch: Weak Competition on Britain’s Got Talent

This past weekend was the fifth round of auditions for this year’s Britain’s Got Talent: so how’re Susan Boyle‘s odds at winning the title coming along? Pretty good from my standpoint. Perhaps this weekend’s biggest threat to the Boyle Supremacy is Greg Pritchard, a hotel waiter who looks like Pete Wentz but sounds like Tiny Tim doing his best Leontyne Price impression. He’s what they call a “male soprano,” and the three judges looked equally puzzled at his high-pitched mewling when he sang the opera standard, “Nessun Dorma.”

But the sad thing is…the judges actually liked him. “It’s like a dog meowing,” says Simon Cowell. “It just shouldn’t do that.” That was a compliment so you know. I’ve actually heard several dogs make noises like that, but they were being put to death at the time. Not good, and my co-worker noted he wasn’t even pronouncing the words.

To paraphrase Nina Garcia from Project Runway, sometimes, I question these judges’ “taste levels.” Take for instance, 17-year-old rugby player Shaun Smith, whose audition aired this weekend as well. Sure, he’s what the British lasses call “fit as f***,” but Dude can’t sing. Clearly, judges Piers Morgan, Amanda Holden, and Cowell saw dollar signs in his smoldering jock looks when he came out and “performed” the Bill Withers classic “Ain’t No Sunshine”. When Smith thankfully finished, imagine my surprise when I heard Simon muse that Smith was like Simply Red frontman Mick Hucknall “but good-looking.” If that’s 2009′s version of Mick Hucknall – one of the best blue-eyed soul singers of all-time – then man, how standards have fallen.

After watching the judges praise all of that meager talent, a man farting “The Blue Danube Waltz” is exactly what they deserved. (Performer Mr. Methane is self-styled “flatulist” extraordinaire.) I hope he ate a nice big curry beforehand just to make things even more unpleasant.

To clear the air, I offer the fresh scent of hot chocolate in the form of contestant Conrad Brisset, an impossibly chiseled male stripper with more talent in his quivering left buttock than all the three previous contestants combined. (Well, maybe not including Mr. Methane.)

Meanwhile, Susan Boyle didn’t snub President Obama‘s correspondents’ dinner over the weekend: she wasn’t allowed to attend per Britain’s Got Talent rules. I know the Radical Right was simply salivating to claim the “Hairy Angel” as one of their own, but she didn’t take the bait. Smart lady.

In other news:

  • Say It Ain’t So: Jordan and Peter Andre are splitting. Of course like all celebrity breakups, British rags called it months ago. Bookies give two-to-one odds that they’ll get back to together within the year. I give it a few months actually. Is there anything these two do that’s not a publicity stunt?
  • Watch the most gorgeous couple on Earth be gorgeous.(The Sun)
  • Gordon Ramsay curses. A lot. Apparently, 51 people in Britain didn’t get the memo.(BBC)
  • Was Boy George in prison for the past few months or was he lazing in a spa getting facials? He looks tons better!(Daily Mail)
  • What Not To Wear harpy Trinny Woodall can’t blame prison for her unsightly new Trout Pout.(Daily Mail)
  • Seal and Heidi Klum mocked the poor with a “white trash” wedding. (Daily Mail)
  • She should have prayed for rain: shameful Amy Winehouse is back to her old ways, shocking fans with a dreadful performance in St. Lucia. (Mirror)
  • An ailing Morrissey has cancelled his Royal Albert Hall appearance.(BBC)
  • The lady knows what side her bread’s buttered on: Jerry Hall had to return her nearly $1 million advance on her autobiography because she didn’t dish enough dirt on Mick Jagger. (Telegraph)
  • Jamie Oliver, who was a judge on Oprah’s Big Give, is giving “healthy makeovers” to America’s unhealthiest cities in a new series produced by Ryan Seacrest.(Hollywood Reporter)
  • Maxine Peake, Matthew Macfadyen, Denis Lawson, and Sophie Okonedo (love her!) are all set to star in the second season of Peter Moffat‘s BAFTA-winning series Criminal Justice.(The Stage)
  • An interview with director Stephen Frears on his new movie, Chéri, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Rupert Friend.(Guardian)
  • EastEnders won Best Soap at the British Soap Awards.(BBC)
  • Congrats to the cast of The Norman Conquests, who won the Ensemble Performance award from the Outer Critics Circle Awards.(Variety)
  • Hottie pop star Craig David slips his “mystery lover” the tongue in Paris.(Daily Mail)

Kevin Wicks

Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.

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