Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 29 May 2016

Not a super idea, Jeff

By Jane Graham

Published 21/07/2012

Jeff Anderson
Jeff Anderson

I’ve been on holiday, and I know popular culture can move on quickly, but surely TV hasn’t changed so much in two weeks that Superstar has become accepted without protest as primetime entertainment?

The ITV talent show has all the hallmarks of its genre — a panel of celebrity judges, a screaming studio audience, a bunch of young hopefuls ready to sing like mofos to realise a “dream I’ve had since I was four-years-old” — and yet something about it smacks more of Opportunity Knocks than The X Factor.

It could be the cruise ship live band, the badly-lit shadowy set, the low level of celebrity among the judges or maybe just the crushing mediocrity of the acts — fat Abba anyone? The lack of focus, dynamism or appeal is truly flummoxing. Why is Dawn French on the panel, indiscriminately declaring love for every contestant and not being funny?

Why does ex-Spice Girl Mel C, who knows a bit about the big stage, keep telling us she’s “speechless” at the quality she’s witnessing (actually, fair enough). What is the point of Jason Donovan?

Amanda Holden hosts, presumably in an attempt to bring some Britain’s Got Talent kudos, but, being the one no one noticed on the last BGT series, her barely detectable presence just makes Superstar feel even more out of touch.

Belfast boy Jeff Anderson, a combination of George Best and Corrie’s Roy Cropper, seems a genial chap, but if he thinks this is the way to supernova status he’s in for a whole world of pain.

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