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John Barrowman
John Barrowman

If you’re a person with eyes, ears and critical faculties, you may have noticed that television schedules are already rather full of competitions in which people sing into microphones for the benefit of four imperious people in a row. So the news that John Barrowman is set to launch yet another one may not come as (heh!) music to your ears.

However, it’s the title of his new show, for ABC, which is the real moment of total genius. The format is fairly straightforward. It’s a cross between the UK show Stars In Their Eyes – in that contestants are invited to perform the greatest hit of a particular pop or rock star, with frightwigs, single jewelled glove, spandex leggings and everything – and Dancing With The Stars (meaning the performers will already be famous people themselves).

The judging panel, according to Entertainment Weekly, will include Debbie Gibson, who definitely knows a thing or two about making a huge success out of singing just one song.

And that title? The proud fluttering flag under which this astonishing endeavour will soldier on? Sing Your Face Off.

I’m just gonna let that sink in for a minute. John Barrowman’s new TV show is called Sing Your Face Off.

Sing. Your. Actual. Face. Off.

I mean it’s curiously literal, isn’t it? The guest stars metaphorically take their real faces off, in order to sing with someone else’s face on. It would be like calling Pimp My Ride something like Jalopy Facelifts, or rebranding American Idol as Bellowing Your Way To One Hit Album, Or Bust, or putting House out under the title He Won’t Know Why You’re Poorly Until Just Before The End. 

Sing Your Face Off, though! I know!

EDIT: Now I can’t stop thinking of literal TV titles. Bake Your Way To A Coronary, You Love It When Posh People Argue, Detectives Are A Bit Mad, Aren’t They?, Gritty Urban Crime Procedural… it’s endless fun.

Why not have a go yourselves, in the comments below?

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By Fraser McAlpine