Tag Archives: martin kemp

Celebrity Big Brother: Bonfire of the Vanity Cases

I know the London Olympics were great and all that, and I did enjoy the fervour of the burgeoning national pride they inspired. But there’s been an Awful Lot of sport on telly these past few months. Which has been hard for those of us that need our regular fix of something to slob in front of that doesn’t involve very fit people running about, making us feel bad about eating a whole large packet of Tyrell’s salt and vinegar (you umami-packed seductive bastards) in one go. So, for me, it’s quite nice that we’ve got some excellent tosh back on the box.

And  Celebrity Big Brother has hit the ground in camp, leopardprint running shoes. I stopped watching Big Brother after the first season on Channel 5. Too many ad breaks and it has all started to horribly claustrophobic. It also goes on far too long. It’s not a good sign when you think you can smell the telly. In this case a rank mixture of the nocturnal odours of too many inactive people on a weird diet plus the whiff of damp towels.

But with the merely three-week long Celebrity Big Brother, both Empress of Twitter Grace Dent and I have been lured back. The major thing they’ve done to make it too tempting to resist is to have the delectable Martin ‘god of EastEnders’ Kemp as a housemate. My entire purpose for watching the soap back in the day (and, as I recall, PLA had a bit of crush too. We share such good taste).

Then they chucked pretty, witty, savage-tongued Julian Clary into the mix. And THEN they added Bet Lynch in a “GET IT, GOT IT, GOOD” t shirt and animal print leggings, and Heather Trott (AKA Julie Goodyear and Cheryl Fergison). Then there’s Loose Woman and ex Nolan (and so used to shacking up and sharing a hairdryer and make-up with a lot of women, one might imagine, given the number of sisters she used to sing with) Coleen Nolan. What with her and the other glamour pusses, I get the sense that the bathroom drains are soon going to get blocked with hair extensions of many colours.

The rest – an Olympian judo player, someone from Jersey Shore, a bitchy journalist who thinks she’s too darn pretty for this world, some assorted muscle-clad lads and  a scattering of glamour/underwear models – are just The Rest to me right now, but that’s fine. We need some wallpaper for our superstars of soap, comedy and daytime telly.

There they all are in the house now, like the most fabulous, crazy selection-box of characters, with a burning desire to get more attention than anyone else.  Continue reading

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Waterloo Road: Destroying a W of pie

(Series 6, Ep.7) Front and centre in this episode was Harry Fisher’s bulimia, which up till now has been a secret shared only between him and us. When he told his mum that sister Jess was planning to spend the night with school bad boy Finn Sharkey and Jess was grounded, Finn decided to take bullying of Harry to new levels (as a side note, what was Harry doing in the same classes as Finn and Josh? Aren’t they older than him?). This culminated in Harry experimentally trying to drown himself during a swimming lesson, but not before he’d snarfed a considerable quantity of quiche which Ruby Fry had lovingly fashioned into the initials “WR” to celebrate the inter-schools debating competition.

Of course, it all had to come out (which I realise could be construed as a tasteless pun, given the subject matter), and Karen went into guilt-and-blame overdrive. She mainly blamed husband Charlie for running off with Maggie from Casualty (who was at Waterloo Road for the inter-schools debating comp, so was very much in the faces of the Fisher family this week). Jess and Harry mainly blamed Karen, for her obsessive hero-worship of missing daughter Bex. They do have a point.

While Karen’s anguish  occupies large swathes of screen time, you badly need some comic relief, and this was provided by (the very wonderful) Ronan Burley. Now he’s got rid of nasty dad Martin Kemp he can get back to ducking and diving, wheeling and dealing like a Rochdale Del Boy. He set up a betting scam on the inter-schools debating comp which could only fail if he himself won. The topic to be debated was school uniforms, and Ronan took the “actions speak louder than words” approach by doing a striptease (or rather “a badly debated point through the medium of interpretative dance,” as he styled it) rather than actually debate. And very flexible he is, too. On whose planet did he think that this wouldn’t be a crowd pleaser? Presumably he was hoping to be disqualified, but as young Ruth Kirby bottled it, it was either let Ronan win or let the trophy go to a rival school.

The reason Ruth bottled it was because her father puts too much pressure on her to be a genius. She finally got the courage to tell him to stuff his Mensa membership. “Laters!” she told him. “That’s not a word!” he yelled – nice to see that some teachers have standards. “It’s my word,” replied Ruth.

And Janeece gave birth to her baby. It was a girl. Prior to the birth she’d decided if it was a girl she’d call her Cheryl, and if it was a boy she’d call it Cole. You can see a theme there. Turned out it was a girl, and Ruby Fry wants to call her Poppy. Poor Janeece – only moments after giving birth she was already apparently out of the charmed circle that was the new Fry family unit.

Posted by PLA                    (more Waterloo Road posts here)

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Waterloo Road: Dads. Total embarrassment

(Series 6, Ep.5) Fathers didn’t get an entirely good press in last night’s Waterloo Road. Top embarrassing dad of the night was guest artiste Martin Kemp (off of EastEnders and Spandau Ballet), who played Ronan’s dad. Turns out that the reason Ronan has been the king of the dodgy deal over the last few weeks is not because he’s a would-be Alan Sugar. It’s because he wants to raise enough money to escape the clutches of his criminal dad, who expects Ronan to join the family “business” of thieving and violence.

Ronan’s escape fund was going nicely until it came to the attention of second annoying dad of the night, Marcus (father of  Jonah and Ruth), who is now a teacher at WR. Wading in with both feet to try and sort out Ronan’s family issues, he very nearly got beaten up for his efforts if Tom Clarkson (more on him later) hadn’t intervened. All ended well with Ronan grassing his dad up to the police, who gratefully apprehended him in mid-burglary.

Jess Fisher’s dad is an embarrassment as well. Jess discovered this week that he’s about to move in with his “fancy piece.” “Her name’s Maria,” said her dad. Oh no it isn’t – her name’s Maggie from Casualty. Whatever she’s called, Jess doesn’t want to move in with her.

Tom Clarkson is doing his best to get to grips with son Josh possibly being gay (don’t think Josh has quite worked out whether he is or not himself, but he’s worked out he doesn’t fancy Finn. Only he so does). When Josh was getting picked on for (possibly) being gay, Tom decided it would be a brilliant idea to teach him some self-defence moves – in front of the entire class. Not humiliating at all.

It’s not just dads who can be really annoying, though. There’s always Karen Fisher to represent the annoying mums, though bless her she is trying and has let Jess’s friend Vicki move into Bex’s room (Jess is keeping a watchful eye on her so she doesn’t spill the beans about Jess and Chris Mead).

Ruby Fry isn’t even a mum yet, but she’s been annoying the hell out of Janeece. Janeece is carrying the baby Ruby is expecting to adopt, and Ruby wants to make sure the foetus gets the best start in life – so she’s hovering over Janeece’s shoulder being the nutrition police. They decided to have a full and frank Q&A session, which went hilariously like this:

Ruby: “Father of the baby. Did he look like he had, or may have had, a history of heart disease and/or glaucoma?”
Janeece: “Well, it was dark. And I’d had more than a sniff of sherry.”
Ruby: “Fine. Fine. Well, you know we’ll greet any genetic mutations as a pleasant surprise. Your turn.”
Janeece: “Was you addicted to tranquilisers?”
Ruby: “Next question.”

Next week: Drugs rear their ugly heads again at Waterloo Road. And there’s heartache for Grantly Budgen.

Posted by PLA          (more Waterloo Road posts here)

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Strictly: Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting

jo-wood2It was a family tradition to sit around and bicker as we watched Saturday light entertainment programmes that might involve Bruce Forsyth, cheesy group dance and what passed for comedy in the 70s. Now we can enjoy at all of those things together, including the bickering, on Strictly Come Dancing.

There were right ding-dongs last night. It all began with Jo Wood, a woman who once had some sympathy from me after being left by Stoned husband Ronnie. But then, as week after week of not very good dancing and an increasing attitude of ‘poor me’ go by, I do begin to think ‘well she did choose to be with the knobhead in the first place. What does that say about her judgement?’

Anyway, she clearly brings about from straight men the need to defend her in the ‘poor little matchgirl’ victim role she takes on. So dance partner Brendan leaps to her defence (which gets me yelling ‘She’s a grown woman for God’s sake’ at the screen). Craig Revel Horwood, being gay, tells it straight and said she danced ‘like a bush kangaroo’. Brendan Foster storms off dragging the dormouse behind him. Bruce tells Craig off for being ‘personal’ and Jo is guaranteed a ton of public support ensuring she and her crap dancing stay another week, as much better dancers (like Zoe Lucker) end up in the dance-off, in a surreal turn of events. Zoe stayed, Joe Calzaghe went, after the first decent performance he’d given. Craig Kelly and Jo Wood should have been in that dance-off. The voting public behave like surreal random parents in a family row, spreading arbitrary ‘justice’ to punish nasty Craig RH for being horrid to sweet ‘ickle Jo.

Makes me wanna puke and slam the door. “It’s just so UNFAIR.”

Oooh. And I’d forgotten just how much I fancy Martin Kemp. Gold indeed.

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Eastenders: Parklife! Or not

phil-danielsI don’t watch Eastenders. The reason for this is that it’s grim, humourless, worthy, tedious, everything looks grubby and Martin Kemp isn’t in it any more.

Apparently former Stenders actor Phil Daniels feels the same (well, I’m not sure about the Martin Kemp bit). “EastEnders doesn’t really ‘do’ light comedy,” he moans in the Mirror. He says the character he played “ended up miserable, in a storyline dead-end. The only thing they could do in the end was kill him off.” Had he not noticed the relentless grind of miserableness that passes for a storyline in Walford before he signed the contract? Couldn’t his agent have mentioned something?

 “Other soaps are good at comedy,” he whinges, clearly regretting that Coronation Street has no openings for cheeky Cockney chappies now that the Baldwin clan is no more.

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