Friday, August 13, 2004

My Say on Singapore Idols

People who know me well enough know that I’m someone who doesn’t really watch television programs. I would not specially stay at home to catch a show on tv even if I was dying to watch it.

Singapore Idols proved otherwise. I nearly contemplated postponing my tuition just to catch part 2 of the audition round on Tuesday night. It is by far the best reality show I’ve enjoyed after Amazing Race 3. It is the best local comedy ever produced by Mediacorp. It is pure entertainment.

Without Singapore Idols, I would never have discovered Singapore’s pool of extreme talent. The show was a caricature of guts where the contestants were all immensely talented in mortifying themselves.

Few months ago when I saw the ad for the Singapore Idols auditions at Suntec City, I thought to myself that this Singapore version would never emulate the American one in terms of entertainment. I thought that no way are conservative and reserved Singaporeans going to humiliate themselves on national tv. At that time, I certainly did not expect thick-skinned people who can’t sing for nuts to grace the tv. This talented pool of Singaporeans proved me wrong.

The trailers alone were enough for me to look forward to the debut of Singapore Idols. Each time I catch the trailers featuring the motley crew, I would be tickled. Too bad I missed the first 20minutes for each of the 2 episodes. Missing those minutes caused me to miss catching Mr Shangahi who “falsettoed through the Beatles’ Yesterday” as quoted by Lionel Seah, Mr Lemon Tree doing a William Hung, Mr Underpants… uh… stripping to his yellow underpants and Mr Banana Man doing his banana stint. Such characters would possibly remain unearthed deep in the soil if not for Singapore Idols. I was really amazed yet gratified that Singaporeans aren’t the boring lot I’ve always perceived them to be.

I know of many people who have truly enjoyed those two episodes but for those who constantly criticize the show and compare it with the American version, branding the local version flat and all please shut up. *stares at my second sis*

No doubt many Singaporeans were disappointed when Gurmit Singh was revealed as the host. This local funny man (who does not really appeal to me) could never match the charisma and pleasant disposition of Ryan Seacrest. However, he has proven that he too, can be the Big Brother who will lend his reassuring shoulders to cry on.

No doubt many Singaporeans have criticized the judges for being flat and unoriginal. What’s up with you people?

First you go “HUH? Who the heck are these people?” at the mention of names like Florence Lian, Douglas Oliveiro and Ken Lim.

Next, you claim that the Singapore judges are flat and boring, none matching the wit and sarcasm of Simon Cowell.

Finally you chastise them for being unoriginal and being a copy-cat, trying very hard to emulate the American judges by “diligently boning up on their 'How-To-Be-A-Simon-Cowell' manuals what with their suspiciously-rehearsed, smark-alecky barbs”. Dick Lee’s subtle sarcasm was his style in the 1st episode. However, after that his deMEANour emerged, becoming really sarcastic and rude, especially when he screamed at the not-bad-looking- guy to “Just get out!” That is his style! I don’t think he was trying to imitate anyone.

Singaporeans are a hard bunch to please.

So far, I’ve not noticed anyone who really has the star appeal and the idol look that is so sought after in this program. Those who could sing and those who had great voices, did not really possess the disposition of an idol. While those who had the looks, could not sing.

“Instead of looking forward to the nation's next singing sensation, viewers seem more eager to tune in to Singapore Idol to take digs at their fellow Singaporeans and look out for the next joker to fall flat on his face.”

I do agree with the above statement. Currently, those who enjoyed the two episodes were more interested in being entertained by sniggering at the losers. I’m afraid I’m one of them too. I wonder if I will continue to tune in to the show after all the losers have disappeared from the screen and there is nothing left to amuse myself anymore.

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