Welcome all to another instalment of your favourite weekly TV round-up
And first up we have new series of I’m a Celebrity Get Me out of Here. The initial line-up, although mundane, at least featured people who were had some kind of skill whether it be acting (Stuart Manning, Lucy Benjamin, George Hamilton), singing (Sabrina Washington and Sam Fox kind of), dancing (Camilla thingy from Strictly), cooking (Gino DiCampo), cleaning (Kim of Kim and Aggie), decorating (Colin and Justin) or Playing Snooker (Jimmy White). They seemed like a likeable bunch as they arrived on the yacht and then were sent into the camp in various ways. There was the old favourite – the parachute jump was there but only three celebs took part in this while another four rode horses through a river into camp (this was unintentionally hilarious thanks to Jimmy White’s inability to control his horse) and George and Kim hiked into camp, this seems to be because of their age as does the fact that George has been ruled out of nearly every task because of his age. Gino and Sam took part in the first task which involved them staying on a deserted island for the first night and Sam singing to/torturing Gino with constant versions of Touch Me (Gino’s favourite Sam Fox song is there another one?). The highlight of this first task saw both having to put a spider in their mouth Gino’s reactions were funny but Sam was disgusted even though I think she has had worst things in her mouth during her time as a page 3 girl, also her line – ‘its so big and my mouth’s so small’ has probably been heard before by several men before Ms. Fox decided to switch to women. However it was Kim Woodburn who ruled the first couple of days being the first person voted in to do the task she coped marvellously and managed to get almost a full house of stars. Her can-do attitude and her banter with George was very entertaining but there was hardly any bitching just a nice happy family. Enter Camper no.12…
Yes when the initial line-up was announced the ITV1 representative said the Katie Price rumours were pure speculation but then she turned up on Day 3. Unlike all the other skilled celebs her whole career has been based on exploiting her body and later her family for TV deals in fact she seems to have sold her soul to ITV and that’s why she’s back in the jungle. Although she’s famous for being a model the show producers are crediting her as a ‘model and businesswoman’ not sure what business that is – risky business perhaps. Although they could’ve said model and author as Price has put her name to a whopping thirty-four books (25 for children, 3 autobiographies, 4 for adults and one fashion book) although her writing contribution to these books is questionable. Anyway shockingly once she got in there she had a barney with Kim (boob envy perhaps) and was voted to participate in every Bushtucker Trial. The public obviously think they’re having a go at Katie by voting her in for these trials but actually she’s getting the exposure she needs. Apart from Katie’s arrival the first week saw Camilla leave due to exhaustion (and pregnancy rumours) to be fair she may have just evaporated as she provided no entertainment of any kind. Camilla’s replacement was Joe Bogner the boxer who started to wind everyone up straight away. The camp then separated with the people leaving going into exile and fighting for immunity from the first eviction. Overall there hasn’t been any memorable moments or storylines to speak off that don’t involve Katie Price. Despite some entertaining and likeable characters (Kim, George, Gino, Sam) and a rumoured romance between Hollyoaks Hunk Stewart and Alesha Dixon’s mate Sabrina I don’t think this will be a memorable series compared to recent years. At the moment it looks like the final four will include Kim, George, Gino and Sam but possibly Stuart might go further than expected. But even though the entertainment may wain I’m a Celeb is always watchable thanks to Ant and Dec’s one-liners, they make the show and if they were replaced by say Ben Shepherd and Kate Thornton then no-one would watch at all.
Before the debut of this series of I’m a Celeb, BBC1 aired the penultimate David Tennant starring Doctor Who. The last episode that aired in April was quite light-hearted and even featured Lee Evans and was allegedly an attempt for Russell T Davies to get all the comedy out of the way before the Doctor went dark and to an extent this was true. Last week’s episode was entitled The Waters of Mars which some eagled-eyed Whoniversers spotted was an anagram of Wars of The Master however The Master didn’t feature. Instead I found the bulk of the episode, about the first human colony on Mars, very similar to the film Sunshine in that one-by-one the crew got picked off thanks to an alien who was addicted to the water in the human body. The Doctor’s main companion in this episode was Lindsey Duncan who was several rungs above Michelle Ryan who accompanied Tennant on his last adventure. Duncan was very stern as Captain Adelaide Brooks who was suspicious of the Doctor at every turn. The final third of the programme was when things finally got going as The Doctor knew that the crew’s deaths would affect the future in a positive way. But at the last minute he decided to save them and became quite maniacal while he did this. The final five minutes saw two of the crew members surviving and going off into the night while Adelaide committed suicide (which I thought was very bleak for Sunday teatime viewing) therefore cementing her legacy. As The Doctor had acted against his code he knew his time was almost up (he’s obviously pre-ordered his Christmas Radio Times) and he was visited by one of those Ood-things. Having previously been critical of David Tennant I thought he was the highlight of this episode acting out of character to save the day even though he knew it was the wrong thing to do. The tone was dark almost a little too dark, dark-for-dark’s sake, this was especially true of the overpowering score. The one thing that seemed a little out of place was the K9-esque robot Gadget who was obviously there to distract the kids from the very adult themes elsewhere. Although not as good as it could’ve been The Waters of Mars was an adequate enough prelude to the Christmas spectacular.
Finally this week BBC4 started its season entitled – Women We Loved in which three prolific female figures of the 20th century are given the biopics they deserved. This was suspiciously like the Curse of Comedy season that BBC4 aired last year that earned them plenty of BAFTA nods and exposed some of our greatest loved comedians as troubled souls. Those two trends seem likely to continue especially with the first entry into the new season – Enid, a biopic of Enid Blyton with the titular heroine being played by another national treasure Mrs. Tim Burton Helena Bonham Carter. The script showed Enid’s literary works being overshadowed by her personal turmoil. Starting with her father walking out on her mother an event that seemed to affect most of the rest of her life. She married her publisher (played by Matthew MacFayden) only to kind of lull into a childlike state and scold her husband constantly. She seemed fixated on the fact that her father was a wonderful man and thus punished her husband in the way she never could her husband. She had two daughters which she ignored and then sent away to school. She cut all ties with her original family and had already killed her mother off before she actually died. The only person she seemed to have some kind of affinity with was her much older second husband who was the father figure she always longed for. The final stages saw Blyton being criticised for the old-fashioned nature of her books and facing allegations that she didn’t write the books herself. It would be hard to play a very troubled woman but Carter is one of our finest actresses and was able to mould the childlike aspects of Blyton’s character with her more blunt nature when dealing with more adult subjects. None of the other cast members really stood out apart from the little girl from Outnumbered who was very cute and naive as Blyton’s youngest daughter. Very interesting if a little overly-bleak at times but well-performed throughout – Enid was an interesting start to The Women We Loved Season fingers crossed that the other two entries will be as good but more on those over the coming weeks.
Next Time: Gavin and Stacey, Paradox and Gracie