Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Rule Britannia...?

Last year’s BRIT Awards were the first in as long as I can remember that I not only didn’t watch, but didn’t even bother to record.

A combination of irritating hosts, irrelevant presenters, garbage performers and a string of undeserving nominees coupled with my increasing disinterest in the sort of music the BRIT’s normally honours made me avoid last year’s shindig like you would the fat couple at a key party.

And it seems in my absence that I didn’t miss much. The only thing of note I missed from last year was the Arctic Monkeys, dressed as country gentlemen no less, making fun of the ridiculous ‘BRIT school’.

One year on, and given that I now write a TV blog, the fact that, regardless of my personal feelings, The BRIT Awards are one of the biggest TV events of the year and my obvious love of sado-masochism; I thought I’d sample this year’s self-congratulatory festivities and inflict my cynical, biased and largely unfounded opinions on all of you.

So can this year’s BRITs recapture the Prescott-wetting, dead Sheep, Jacko-mooning glory days of the past or are we in for another Frank Skinner tumbleweed effort…? Let’s find out….

(Just before the show began I made the decision that I would publish exactly what I wrote during the show as my BRITs coverage, so please excuse the broken nature of the main body of this week’s blog)

Show Opens:

Urgh it’s Johnny Vegas on voiceover duty….

They’re opening with U2!? Talk about blowing your load early. They sound amazing, not sure about the karaoke backdrop though and Bono really needs to calm down he’s acting overly sexual this evening.

Fuck off Vegas…

Oh look it’s Kylie… and Horne and Corden doing a ‘Can’t Get You Out of My Head’ spoof – nice to see they’re keeping it relevant.

Kylie Vs. The autocue looks like it could be a fun battle. I actually laughed at Horne’s Ting Tings gag.

Scotty mark II Simon Pegg’s here to present the first award… British female …Beth Rowley – who the fuck is that!? M.I.A. or Duffy for me.

I think Pegg might be pissed. Duffy wins. Good start, she’s had a big year and I’d say was the most deserving.

Why’s Estelle come dressed as Wesley Snipes in ‘Demolition Man’!?

Poor speech Duffy. Give that award back.

Anyone see that tumbleweed blow by then during Kylie and Corden’s link?

It’s Chris Kamara! Oh no wait, it’s Lionel Richie. Is it me or is he getting younger?

International female… Tough category… So long as Pink doesn’t get it I’ll be happy. Perry wins. Can’t complain. Muting the audio? What the fuck? I thought the Brits were ‘rock n roll’.

Urgh… Girls Aloud… Are we supposed to think they’re naked under those feathers? Because that’s the only way this performance would be watchable.

Seriously U2 to Girls Aloud… who picked this running order? Sweet Moses how out of tune was Sarah Harding during her solo, scratch that – how out of tune are all 5 of them.

Thank God. It’s over.

From bad to awful… It’s Fearne Cotton.

Duffy McDuffster? How old are you Cotton? Someone stole Duffy’s BRIT…. Give it back Adele…

Why does Fearne Cotton always sound like she has a cold? British single noms; Coldplay or Duffy for me. Scouting For Girls have no business even cleaning the Earl’s Court toilets, never mind being nominated.


And we’re back…. Is Horne wearing blue shoes? Oi Horne, Noddy wants his shoes back.

Alex ‘Farmer’ James is out for Breakthrough… Shadow Puppets for me, wishful thinking though I think… Duffy gets the BRIT, I’m pleasantly surprised seen as it was voted for by Radio 1. I was convinced it’d be Adele or Scouting For Idiots as Noel Gallagher referred to them once.

Let’s hope for a better speech this time Duffy...

…Well that was better actually.

Coldplay are up, they seem intent on giving away the good performances early tonight (well, with the exception of Girls Aloud of course).

The Beatles should really sue Coldplay for gimmick infringement with those Sgt. Pepper’s jackets.

Good performance.

Go away Cotton. Jamie Oliver and Jamie Cullum, two men with something in common… They’re both cunts.

Oliver do us a favour and hit Cotton with that BRIT.


How awful does that ‘Celebrity Juice’ look…?

We’re back…

Natalie Imbruglia… I thought she was dead. International Group…

Gotta be the Kings… MGMT should win. I’d love AC/DC to win…

Kings of Leon… Could it really have been anyone else? I liked it when they were hairy.

You can hear a pin drop after the punchline to every gag.

Best British Male… Poor line-up to be honest; I’d give it Mike Skinner but it’ll probably be Paul Weller like every year…

…What a surprise. How annoying is Adele…

Duffy takes the stage… I hope she’s going to bust out ‘Mercy’ after a few chords of this weary ‘Warwick Avenue’ bullshit… but at least she has her cans out.

Looks like we’re just getting Warwick… Poor do Duffy…

Go on Calzaghe punch Cotton… we won’t tell anyone. No one to beat up? Hit Cotton! Not that I’m condoning hitting women… but come on, it’s Fearne Cotton!


We’re back….

I am having fun actually Corden. No thanks to you though.

How amazing would that have been if Calzaghe had hit Corden!?

International Album – Go on AC/DC! Kings of Leon again, who’ll take my odds of 1 – 50?

You should have taken that bet. You could’ve turned £50 into £51.

A genuinely appreciative and humble band… I thought I was watching the BRIT Awards…

It’s Take That on a spaceship… I’m not even ashamed to say it; how good are Take That!? I like the look they’ve got going on… it means Mark Owen doesn’t have that ridiculous fucking hat on.

Amazing performance.

Now Nick Frost’s out, are they just wheeling out the entire cast of 'Hot Fuzz'? Where’s Timothy Dalton….?

Live Act… I’ve never seen any of them live so I can’t really comment. I’d say give it Iron Maiden.

Holy shit. I was right. It’d probably be a sweeter victory if it hadn’t been over Scouting For Girls though.

The Hoff! The show is saved! That’s a good looking man there people. Reaction of the night. Even if the guy is certifiably insane.

British Group… Are you shitting me? Radiohead and Girls Aloud in the same category!? Coldplay or Take That for me…

Pleased for Elbow though.

You forget how young Coldplay are. It seems like they’ve been around for ages.

How does Fearne Cotton still have a job? The lines are closed, does that mean no more Cotton. Here’s hoping.

Kings of Leon… The roofs going to come off… Awesome.

Cotton’s back… The Hoff’s got a glint in his eye, Cotton better watch it, he can get you pregnant just by looking at you.

An Estelle & Ting Tings duet…? Or as I like to call it; the musical equivalent of being punched in the throat and kicked in the balls at the same time. Can’t wait for that….


This new Tarrant game show looks like it might not be completely horrible.

We’re back. Kylie’s reappeared.

Critic’s Choice: Florence & The Machine. Means nothing to me really… what the hell’s with the muted audio again. Get over it ITV. She thanked some Radio 1 DJs; I respect that. Her stuff they played sounded half decent as well.

Gok Wan. One question; Why? Get a new act you gimp.

International Male… I say give it Seasick Steve. Beck is nominated for this every year, even if he doesn’t have an album out.

Actually give it Diamond. Go on Neil.

Kanye West. What a crock.

How is 'Gavin & Stacey' so successful? If Corden & Horne wrote these links then Ruth Jones must be one hell of a writer.

Estelle & The Ting Tings… My ears are bleeding… Have they even rehearsed this? Estelle can’t even keep up with the Tings. I’m always sceptical Katie White’s actually playing that guitar.

This is worse than the Bedingfields the other year.

Alan Carr… I can’t say anything bad about the guy…

British single… Duffy – ‘Mercy’ for me. Just keep it away from Scouting for Girls…

The only time Diana Vickers will ever be mentioned at the BRITs.

Girls Aloud win. I may have to mute the acceptance speech. ‘The Promise’ is a good pop song though. Harding’s fucked.

British Album… Presented by Sir Tom Jones. The beard’s looking a lot better natural. Stay grey Tom.

Tough call… Wouldn’t like to venture a guess.

Duffy. Congratulations. Did the voiceover woman just compare her to The Darkness? What a ringing endorsement. I loved that rumour that Tom Jones was her Dad.

The best bit is; nothing for Adele. What a shame.

Alan Carr mocking Sarah Harding then was the best laugh I’ve had so far. To be fair though; the BRITs aren’t supposed to be intentionally funny are they.

I can’t believe the Pet Shop Boys are getting the Lifetime Achievement award – How do they pick it these days – by sticking a pin in an old Now CD?

The only good thing the Pet Shop Boys have ever been a party to was a rumour I heard when I was younger; that they got their name because they liked to stick Hamsters up their asses.


We’re back.

Brandon Flowers is looking young to. Whatever those make-up ladies are doing back there is working.

Someone needs to tell him Cousin It from ‘The Addams Family’ has fallen asleep on his shoulders though.

Pet Shop Boys are on. I’ll let them off for being shit if they do ‘Go West’.

‘Go West’! All is forgiven!

GaGa’s here. Christ on a cracker; what is she wearing? It’s not right that someone hot can have so few clothes on and look unattractive.

Flowers and Cousin It are on now. He looks genuinely happy to be out there with them.

You forget how many hits the Hamster asses have had. Maybe they did deserve it. They were certainly more deserving than the Spice Girls.

That’s it. Show’s Over.

Final Thoughts:

A pretty uneventful show. It was saved by some killer performances, the presenters were horrendously C-list though.

Corden and Horne did an admirable job, but there wasn’t a great gag on the whole show, but again the BRITs are about music aren’t they. Hosting the BRITs is clearly a poisoned chalice though and you’ve got to admire those two for taking it on.

The sad thing is; the BRITs genuinely did used to feel like the rock n’ roll event that most media types still make it out to be. Nowadays though it’s just too safe and at no point tonight did I feel like something shocking could happen. It’s a pretty sad commentary on the state of TV and our country at the moment.

So here’s to another year of mediocre music and celebrating that mediocrity all over again this time next year.

Other Tele-Visual Musings This Week:

- I caught Britney Spears’ video for her latest single ‘Circus’ this week. In between Britney’s vocoder enhanced robotic vocals I noticed the lyric “don’t like the back seat”… All I can say to that is; I bet K-Fed begs to differ…

- Friday night saw me for the second consecutive week watching, and actually enjoying the Lee Mack-starring sitcom ‘Not Going Out’ on BBC1. It might be your stereotypical stand-up comedian’s sitcom, which basically means thirty minutes of stand-up material and one liners with a weak plot worked around the jokes - Exhibit A: Frank Skinner’s ‘Shane’, but I found myself actually laughing.

I’ve always liked Lee Mack and Tim Vine, especially when working together, dating back to their work on ‘The Sketch Show’ and this sitcom actually went some way to restoring my faith in the BBC’s comedy output…

…until I caught a bit of ‘The Old Guys’ on Saturday night that is. Whoever it was at the BBC who decided that steaming pile of horse shit belonged on Saturday night prime time needs sectioning. Boy has Roger Lloyd-Pack fallen a long way since 'Only Fools and Horses', but I suppose to be fair to the guy, he’s never going to top Trigger is he?

- ‘24’ on Monday night and my fears were realised. Not only was there no sign of Tony but no mention of him either and from what I’ve read that trend will continue into next week’s episode.

After the blistering pace the show went off at, I thought we were in for a return to the golden days of season 1 & 2 but the last couple of episodes have slowed right down. There’s too much emphasis on the moral pondering of whether the end justifies the means. FBI agent Larry Moss appears to be the show’s moral conscience, but it feels like I’m watching the editor of The Daily Mail. Speaking of Moss, this series has placed too much focus on the new characters, who quite frankly have done nothing so far to make us care about them.

Okay, so I’m a massive Tony mark but die-hard fans eat up the veterans getting screen-time and at the moment it’s just not happening. The internet’s already buzzing over the episode that just aired in the states that saw the returns of Agent Pierce and Morris O’Brian.

All I’ll say is when Tony finally reappears they’d better have a good explanation for where he’s been, and he’d better get involved in a decent arc otherwise the producers will go right down in my estimation for trying to pop a ratings spike by bringing him back from the dead and then kicking him to the curb in favour of FBI agent Pippy Longstocking.

- Finally, I’m both excited and curious as to if/when us Brits will be treated to Joss Whedon’s new Eliza Dushku starring ‘Dollhouse’. I was never a big Buffy fan but I absolutely adored Whedon’s ‘Firefly’, I was also a massive geek for Dushku’s ‘Tru Calling’, so it’s almost like a match made in heaven for me. With it being on Fox I’d assume Sky1 is the best bet for broadcasting it in the UK.

Hearing the word Fox though is extremely worrying, given that it’s the network that cancelled not only both of the above shows but also the magnificent ‘Arrested Development’…

…I hate you Fox.


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