TV & Radio Category

Television and radio programme reviews, trailers, highlights, twilights and cinema news. Also the neglected gems from years past.

The Apprentice – Alan Sugar’s New Marketing Staff

apprentice.jpgWHAT if the contestants on Celebrity Love Island never left?

Impossible, say you. Without them what would the Star do for news and who would appear on Channel 4’s 100 Best Reality TV rows? Hell, who would keep the rehab business afloat?

But just imagine if each year the new coterie of celebs were greeted on the island by last year’s batch? Every year, Big Brother just got bigger? That patch of I’m A Celebrity jungle expanded year on year. Pro-celebrity dancers never stopped moving to the music but formed an ever-lengthening Conga line?

And what would Alan Sugar do with the pushy, fame-hungry wannabes who appear on his The Apprentice show? Can he have more than one apprentice?

But Sugar need not worry. As the Telegraph reports, Tim Campbell, hired in 2005, is leaving Sugar’s company.

Campbell, a former London Transport manager, and therefore right to fear that he is unemployable in the greater world, was given a job in the health and beauty department of Sir Alan’s electronics firm Amstrad.

This not a joke. Sugar does not joke. We give little succour to the malicious rumour that Sugar invented a division in order to ensure his newest recruit was kept as far removed from the actual business of flogging discount electronics as possible.

Campbell was given the job on merit. And he stayed a while. But they don’t all last so long. As the paper notes, last year’s winner, the flirty, watery blonde Michelle Dewberry, lasted only a few months in the job. She left to set up her own eponymous consultancy.

Now Campbell is leaving. As the Telegraph tells us, he’s setting up a male grooming business and a social enterprise initiative to help entrepreneurs.

apprentice_winner.jpgThis leaves the way open for a new Apprentice. Says Sir Allan: “Last year I wasn’t particularly impressed with the calibre of candidates. I always have the problem of wondering if they are here for the right reasons.”

What the right reasons are is anyone’s guess – just as we can speculate on why Sugar would perform in such a show.

All we say is may the candidate who won’t stick it out win.

As reported by the Independent, the wannabes, never-will-bes and never-could-bes are:

“* Tre Azam, 27, from Loughton, Essex, a marketing and design consultant.

* Katie Hopkins, 31, from Exeter, a single mother-of-two and global brand consultant.

* Kristina Grimes, 36, from Harrogate, a pharmaceutical sales manager and a “ruthless single mother”.

* Rory Laing, 27, from Bristol, a waiter and bankrupt entrepreneur who employed ex-public school pupils including Kate Middleton for the Henley regatta.

* Lohit Kalburgi, 25, from London, a telecoms manager born in the United Arab Emirates.

* Adam Hosker, 27, from Lancashire, a car sales manager.Lives with wife and children in Blackburn.

* Natalie Wood, 29, from Upminster, Essex, represented England in swimming as a teenager. The mother-of-two has worked in the City.

* Paul Callaghan, 27, from Southampton, an ex-Army lieutenant who graduated from Sandhurst and spent six months serving in Basra.

* Jadine Johnson, 27, from Harrow, Middlesex, a financial adviser and single mother.

* Gerri Blackwood, 33, from Woking, Surrey, a transport development manager. Turned down a job at MI5 for The Apprentice.

* Dr Sophie Kain, 32, from Llanellen, Wales, a research scientist for aviation firm “who doesn’t suffer fools gladly”.

* Ifti Chaudri, 33, from Egham, Surrey, a company director of tile business. Applying to join the 2012 Olympic team.

* Andy Jackson, 36, from Leeds, a car sales manager now living in Kirriemuir in Scotland.

* Ghazal Asif, 23, from Glasgow, a business development manager. Speaks five languages.

* Naomi Lay, 26, from Cornwall, an advertising sales manager. Has run both the New York and London marathons.

* Simon Ambrose, 27, from Clapham, south London, a former investment banker, runs internet-based businesses.”

Posted: 22nd, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (3)

Sanjaya Malakar Makes American Idol Weep

sanjaya_rocks.jpgAMERICAN Idol’s Sanjaya Malakar stopped whispering.

Who needs call centres in India? asks Tabloid Baby. Sanjaya Malakar’s unexpectedly uninhibited and totally bizarre performance last night, aided by a deft director who kept cutting to a little girl who’d been weeping through the entire show (a tribute to the evening’s British Invasion theme, of course) was one of the most memorable moments in American Idol history.

And despite the best efforts of the judges to sway the votes, Sanjaya would seem to be a lock for a place in the Final 10, and upcoming Idol concert tour and album. (Too bad for Phil “Bat Boy” Stacey, who reminds us of a big kid from the Make A Wish Foundation.)

Sanjaya’s explosion comes amid a furious refutation from one of the Indiacentric websites that led to our exclusive report about suspicions that Sanjaya’s voting bloc was the Desi (South Asian) community here and outsourced call centres in India.

In the days after our report was picked up by media around world, Uberdesi writes:

First off, AI cannot be broadcast LIVE in India. Everything is time-delayed… It is highly improbable for a TV to be present in a call centre environment; do you watch reality programming when you are at your job? Even if there is a TV that did broadcast an American Channel, AI would be broadcast at the wee hours of the morning.

“The time difference would mean that the show should be available at approximately 6:30 / 7:30 AM for it to be live. But from Star World’s online schedule it plays at 10 am on Thursday, which makes it 11:30 P.M. Central Time and at 8 P.M. on Wednesday, which would be 9:30 P.M Central Time Tuesday night This also happens to be the busiest time for call centres, considering the calls they have to make to the west coast.

“Think of all those telemarketing calls you receive every night when you sit down at the dinner table; if those cunning Indians were stuffing a virtual ballot box for someone who isn’t even really one of their own, would they have time to annoy you?”

We’ll know more after tonight’s results show. That Peter Noone turned out to be a good mentor after all…

Tabloid Baby

Posted: 21st, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comment (1)

A Gay American Idol – Melinda Dolittle More Talent Than Antonella

melinda-dolittle.jpgAMERICAN Idol continues its long trawl for talent. Antonella Barba had talent, but of the wrong sort for this show.

Sanjaya Malakar has talent and should his nascent career as America’s leading whisperer fail to prosper he can combine his act with his Phil Spector impersonation to become a truly unique performer.

But there is singing talent on the show. And it’s name is Melinda Doolittle.

As Tabloid Baby notes, Melinda may not have much by way of neck, but again she showed tonight that she’s head and shoulders above the other finalists on American Idol.

Melinda, of course, is a professional. She makes a living as a background singer. She comes with a vocal coach and stylist. At 29, she’s the oldest contestant, and despite her shy onstage demeanor, she obviously knows who she is. But how soon until America gets the hint?

In the latest episode dedicated to the rock ‘n’ rolling British Invasion of the Sixties, Melinda chose “As Long As He Needs Me” fro the musical Oliver. But in the opening line, sitting on the lip of the stage, she quite clearly enunciated, “As long as she needs me,” before switching back to “he” for the rest of the song.

Will America have its first openly-gay Idol here? A few weeks back, Melinda sang the gay anthem, “My Funny Valentine” and dedicated it her two “closest” female friends, whom she called her “Gayles” – as in “gay girls” – or as she explained, “Gayle King,” the woman long rumoured to be Oprah Winfrey’s lover (Melinda said she’s the Oprah in the triangle). And two weeks ago, she made her mark with a strutting “I’m A Woman.”

Tonight, she laid it all out. And was that a (Oprah’s longtime alleged boyfriend) Stedman Graham joke when she held onto the line: “I’ll cling on… sted-fast-ly…”?

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

But whether Melinda the professional is merely reaching for a voting demographic, has an Oprah jones, or playing it loud and proud… we’d say it doesn’t matter! It’s about time we had a gay Idol!

The real issue is whether Melinda, as a professional, should be in the contest to begin with. Because every time she sings, she’s so much better than the others…

But how about that Sanjaya? He deserves to stay another week! Whisper it…

According to American Idol, the 1960s British Invasion was epitomised by these tunes:

Haley Scarnato – “Tell Him” by The Exciters.
Chris Richardson – “Don’t Let The Sun Catch You Crying” by Gerry and the Pacemakers.
Stephanie Edwards – “You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me” by Dusty Springfield.
Blake Lewis – “Time Of The Season” by the Zombies. He beatboxes at the start. (probably kinda like the record).
Lakisha Jones – “Diamonds are Forever,” Shirley Bassey (from the Bond movie).
Phil Stacey – “Tobacco Road” by The Nashville Teens.
Jordin Sparks – “I Who Have Nothing” by Tom Jones.
Sanjaya Malakar – “You Really Got Me” by the Kinks. (EEP!)
Gina Glocksen – “Paint it Black” by the Rolling Stones.
Chris Sligh – “She’s Not There” by the Zombies
Melinda Doolittle – “As Long as He Needs Me” from the musical “Oliver!”

Posted: 21st, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (25)

Heather Mills Dances With The Stars

PSSSST! Wanna see a one-legged woman dance, dance, dance?

No, Heather Mills is not appearing topless – not this time. Dancing With The Stars is a family show, and Heather is a family girl – albeit from a family soon-to-be reduced in size.

Here she comes… Take it away Hea-ther Millssssssss. A one and a one and a one…

Posted: 20th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (3)

Heather Mills Is “Whorible” On Dancing With The Stars

heather21.jpgHeather Mills begins Dancing With The Stars and we see what went on.

ABC fulfilled its part of the bargain with Heather Mills’ appearance on Dancing with the Stars last night.

The woman known in most of the English-speaking world as the hard-boiled, attention-grabbing fantasist who married Paul McCartney in his lowest hour, then played dirty pool in her effort to fleece him in divorce, is now “an inspiration”… with “more guts than Rambo”… and, drummed over and over again… not a gold-digging former porn model and alleged call girl… but a “charity campaigner.”

McCartney’s name was never uttered. Whether that’s due to lawyers’ letters or part of the plan to present Heather as blank slate syndicated talk show candidate, the show’s “first performer with an artificial limb” was presented as an odd celebrity without portfolio (and without the lower part of her left leg).

The familiar Heather only showed up between the lines: the way she twisted her face and talked out of the side of her mouth like Dick Cheney… her disingenuous claim that she was “not used to dressing up at this level” in her “ice cream sundae” gown– followed by cohost Samantha Harris’ quip, “Somebody get her some whipped cream” (obviously forgetting Heather’s porny —NSFW— photos)… and Heather’s line to the judges: “Just don’t ask me to point that foot! If you can point it, I’ll give you a million dollars.” After the McCartney settlement, she can afford to throw around a million bucks.

Not everyone bought into the new Heather. The Dancing with the Stars message boards were filled with anti-Heather postings:

“Is there anyone besides me who has a problem with a former call girl who posed nude in sexual situations now being called a ‘charity campaigner’ and hero for the disabled? Why would ABC put a person like this on a family show? Her nude shots (with a man) are available to anyone who can google, including my friend’s older teenagers who were pulling up the pictures and laughing at them as she danced. In the UK she has a disabled parking badge. In the US she is dancing and doing high kicks.”

“She is whorible”

“Judge her harshly? Are you crazy? She’s being judged for being a gold digger and trying very hard to screw Sir Paul McCartney! Don’t you read the news??? Jeez…”

“I, for one, am appalled that she is trying to make herself out to be something she’s not right now. And I will not watch the show until she is OFF! Shame on ABC!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Thirty-nine year-old Heather and her partner wound up in the middle of the pack, placing seventh with eighteen points. The gambling site is among those taking bets on whether Heather’s artificial leg will at one point fly off during the competition.

Tabloid Baby

Posted: 20th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (8)

Phil Spector Wears American Idol’s Sanjaya Malakar


AMERICAN Idol’s Sanjaya Malakar is Phil Spector’s alter ego?

Wall of Hair pop music producer Phil Spector sported a new coif as jury selection began in his murder trial today.

Spector, in court to defend his name in the shooting dead of actress Lana Clarkson at his Los Angeles home four years ago – arrived at the Los Angeles Superior Court looking every inch the International Man of Mystery.


But Spector is not Austin Powers. Spector is Sanjaya Malakar, who each week stands accused of murdering another song on American Idol.

Tabloid Baby spots the trend and wonders what Sanjaya will have in store for the American Idol judges next week.


Posted: 20th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (2)

American Idol’s Sanjaya Dials The Apprentice’s Surya

sanjayavotes-2.jpgSURYA Yamanchili, in his final hours as the most-recently fired Apprentice candidate, is the latest to weigh in on the worldwide debate over our report on suspicions that Sanjaya Malakar’s stay on American Idol is being extended by bloc voting in India – specifically from workers and technology in outsourced call centers in cities like New Delhi. writes Tabloid Baby.

Surya, like Sanjaya, is a hero to the Desi community because of his prominence on an American reality TV series (Indian-American couple Vipul and Arti Patel didn’t make it past the first episode of last season’s Amazing Race). He doesn’t buy the theory.

“What the hell?” he writes us. “This seems pretty idiotic to me. There are no facts supporting it all – just total speculation. Why don’t they just speculate that Martians are voting for him because Martians consider themselves Asian?”

Hard-core rap fan Surya (who, like Sanjaya, was born in the USA) admits, “I haven’t followed Idol. I think the fact that you can ‘manufacture’ a pop music star on national TV is proof what shit most pop music is today! Although I think if I watched the show, I’d probably like it!”

The story was based on a wave of Internet chatter on Indian and Desi blog and news sites. Since it’s been picked up around the world, new suspicions and theories have emerged.

But the potential scandal has picked up even more traction and debate in the UK, where anti-Asian bias is more of a problem, and became a national scandal amid charges of racism on Celebrity Big Brother.

Read about it here.

Posted: 18th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (6)

Antonella Barba Bites American Idol’s Big One

antonellabarbabites.jpgPICTURES of American Idol wannabe Antonella Barba warming up her tonsils in unconventional style have made her a star in the US.

And now that Antonella has been booted from the show, she uses her mouth to tell People magazine how it feels.

As with all reality TV shows there are shocks as talent is forsaken for something less. The show has cast a spotlight on one Sanjaya Malakar, a teenager who would whisper if he only spoke up a bit.

We had thought Antonella would progress far, past third, fourth and even fifth base. Antonella would go all the way.

But it was not to be. And now she tells us: “All that other stuff was completely irrelevant to the fact that I’m here to sing.”

And so it was – which is hard luck on Antonella who may have expected something else. Because, as People says, there is no such thing as bad publicity. Right?

“Yes, it’s true that my name is more well-known because of it, but I’m not known for the things that I would like to be known for right now,” says Antonella. She says that “the pictures are irrelevant to me as an artist”.

And: “I wanted to make a name for myself in singing. The pictures that have been released of me – the ones that actually are me – they were very personal and that is not how I intended to portray myself. I’d rather promote myself in a more classy way. And, again, that was private – that was not for the public eye.”

Antonella’s mistake seems to have been to stray from the celebrity guide – the straight-to-internet, X-rated stuff coincides with a mid-career dip career and not at fame’s apogee.

So what now for Antonella? People hears of an offer to pose for Playboy, which she denies.

But People wants to know if she’d do it?

“No,” she replies. “Right now I want to look at all the offers I get and sort out what’s best for me right now. I’m definitely not opposed to acting or modelling or something.”

As she said after the show: “I’d love to do all three, act, model, and sing. I’m definitely willing to sort out the offers I get and figure out what’s best for me.”

We are sure there will no shortage of offers for Antonella. And, who knows, someone may even want her to sing…

Posted: 12th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comments (12)

Antonella Barba – Porn Idol

antonella-barba-porn-idol.jpgAmerican Idol’s Antonella Barba – an open letter…

“I FEEL for you, cause you’ve taken a lot of stick in the media. I think you’ve handled yourself well throughout, and I don’t think anyone should be put in that situation. But I’m not going to patronize you here…”

As the situation mushrooms from a naughty half-naked photo scandal to charges of discrimination, racism, favoritism, unpatriotism and porn-peddling immorality behind the scenes of America’s top television show, the Antonella Barba scandal finally got a mention on American Idol last night.

Simon Cowell stepped gingerly around the controversy while doing his best to subliminally order viewers to vote the poor thing out before things get even farther out of hand. His comments to Antonella after she managed to mangle a Corinne Bailey Rae easy-listening Starbucks staple constituted a gracious kiss-off to the worst remaining female singer.

Antonella, true to form, didn’t get it.

Said Simon: “You’ve gone as far as you can go, Antonella. I mean, the reality is, and I think you know this yourself, which is, you are surrounded by some pretty amazing girl singers. And I don’t know how much more you can do, to be honest with you, because I don’t think your voice is going to get any better.

“I feel for you, cause you’ve taken a lot of stick in the media. I think you’ve handled yourself well throughout, and I don’t think anyone should be put in that situation. But I’m not going to patronize you here. It wasn’t your worst, we’ve heard you sound worse, but I just have a problem here, which is I just wish you could sing better.”

As she did last week, Antonella responded to the criticism by challenging it. She said, in part:

”I know I’m surrounded by really talented people and I think that I’m just, I have a different style than them and I’m not trying to compare myself to anyone else and I with the judges wouldn’t compare me to anyone else because I try to be myself… We’re all different, we’re all unique.”

Two gals and two guys will be eliminated tonight at 8. Our money is on Antonella hanging in. And if she does, don’t be surprised if “someone” leaks more-explicit photos that they’ve been holding back, so Idol producers have no choice but to ask her to leave the competition.

Posted: 8th, March 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

Porn Idol Antonella Barba’s Past

porn-idol-antonella-barbas-past.jpgOH well. We can’t say we’re surprised, but it looks like the scandal over American Idol contestant Antonella Barba’s photographic past has come to a head even quicker than we’d expected.

The website I Don’t Like You In That Way has come up with some photos that allegedly show the exhibitionistic Antonella in an act of sexual intimacy.

We don’t have independent confirmation, but the site has been on top of the photo scandal, and matches the sex shot at left with another Antonella pic for eyebrow, eye and nose comparisons. We won’t show you her mouth.

Should the latest pictures (NSFW!) indeed depict the 20-year-old from New Jersey, they’ll probably guarantee that she’ll soon be leaving the Idol stage for a lucrative new career. For now, Idol E.P. Nigel Lithgoe says he hasn’t seen the latest snaps. ”We have really good background checks on everybody, and we deal with that every season,” he adds. ”It’s sad, isn’t it, that your best friends are the ones that come forward with information that will go to Smoking Gun or put your photographs on the web?”

The Idon’tlikeyouinthatway group and all the other Antonella evidence – including teeth comparisons – are here…

Posted: 24th, February 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

Maid For Gest

DAVID Gest is topless on the Star’s Page 3.

Let it go on record that Gest, who has gone under the knife more times than the Christmas turkey, is not modelling his new breasts.

Dave’s breasts are his own. And if they have been shop bought we urge him to seek a refund, or more stuffing.

And it will not end with the top. Gest is to be “stripped bare” in a stitches-and-all documentary on his life. The star has signed a £500,000 deal to have his life broadcast on ITV.

Gest says the show will “be an absolute blast with nothing hidden”.

By way of a preludial glance at the show, the Star introduces us to David’s maid Vaginica Caeman and her lovely daughters Beulahbelle and Clitina.

Vaginica and Clitina are sure to make headlines. “I can’t wait for everyone to meet Vaginica and her daughters in the flesh. They’re larger than life in every sense.”

And this is not all. The self-confessed pal of Michael Jackson’s is to appear on the pro-celebrity singing contest Soapstar Superstar. “I’m not going to the show to pick my nose,” says Dave, in an unmasked reference to cosmetic surgery and the aforesaid Jackson, “I’m going to pick a star.”

Clitina – the stage is yours…

Posted: 11th, January 2007 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

Leona Lewis – The Farewell Tour

LEONA Lewis everyone.

This is the first interview with the winner of TV’s X Factor talent show, says the Star. Leona is the winner of the TV contest to find the heir to past winner Steve Brookstein. And she has much to say.

And she’d like to begin by saying goodbye. As the Star says, Leona is to quit the UK and head off to find fame and a £50m fortune in the United States.

"I’m off to USA", comes the headline inside the paper." I know I can make it," says Leona.

So it is that the woman with the fastest downloaded single ever, the 21-year-old former receptionist (Star) and pizza worker (Mirror) from London, is leaving us at the apogee of her fame.

"I feel like my dream has come true," says Leona, "the dream I’ve been dreaming since a little girl has come true."

Yes, she is off to America. It is the dream for many of us. Foreingers usually either need a Green Card to live in the land of dreams or to be suspected of being part of a global terror plot. But all Leona needs is her voice.

And not just her voice but training too. As is the way with TV talent shows that make stars of the unknown, Leona went to stage school, namely the £2,500-a-term Sylvia Young stage school in London, as the Mail notes. Although in the Express this becomes the £9,000-a-year Italia Conti stage school. Plus ca change.

So Leona is on her way.

Goodbye, Leona. Farewell. Cut a record. Break a leg. It was nice knowing you…

Posted: 18th, December 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

The Ordinary Boy King

WHEN Matt Willis was presented with that hollowed out coconut and broken oar his life changed.

No longer would Matt be Matt from Busted. He was now Matt, the celebrity you ate a kangaroo’s arse on the telly and chased it down with a crocodile’s penis.

Matt had arrived.

And now he’s spilling his guts to the Star, telling the paper that he has no plans to be the new Preston, the singer from The Ordinary Boys who met Chantelle Houghton on Celebrity Big Brother.

Before his CBB appearance, Preston had had one hit record. Since then he has still had one hit record, but extended his range with a number of showbiz magazine photospreads, a wedding to Chantelle and any number of tight jackets and comfy knits. In this process, he has made, by Matt’s estimations, £3million.

Matt sees Preston’s life as a cautionary tale. As he says: “It’s been said I’ll earn £5m, but there won’t be an autobiography or an ‘at home’ shoot with my girlfriend. I don’t want to be one of those people.”

Perish the thought. Incidentally, Matt’s album is out on Monday, and he would be pleased if you’d buy it. A fortune of £5m does not earn itself. He needs our help.

And he needs our money. As the Express reports, Matt is being sued for £20million by Ki Fitzgerald and Owen Doyle, who claim they formed the Busted group and had a hand in the group’s hits.

The plaintiffs were joined by Willis and James Bourne (also being sued) and finally dropped in favour of one Charlie Simpson. Success followed.

The paper says “legal experts” believe the lads are due £10million each, including royalties from the band’s “official biography”.

Yes, Matt’s life story has already made it to print. Why do it again?

It’s not like he needs the money…

Posted: 11th, December 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment (1)

Klass Is The Tops

“CAN you tell fake from real?”

That question to you, Sun readers studying the form of Myleene Klass.

For a second opinion, Sun readers can see Myleene two different bikinis, one yellow, and the other black.

So are they real? You may care to feel if the bra on Myleene’s white bikini, the one that so illuminated the I’m A Celebrity jungle. Is there a hint of wire? Or is Myleene supported by something else?

And you can get your hands on the white bikini for real.

The “big-hearted” beauty is auctioning off her outfit. And she wants the proceeds to pay for her boob job.

No, not really. Myleene – who says her breasts are natural – wants the money to go to customers of Farepack, the collapsed Christmas club.

“I don’t know how much the bikini will raise,” says she, “but I just wanted to do my bit and hope it helps.”

And she is not the only bestowing Christmas cheer on one and all. The Star leads with Aisleyne, once of Big Brother. “If a guy smear chocolate all over my naked body, “I’m in heaven,” says Aisleyne.

She goes on:” Five times a night is normal as far as I’m concerned. Plus being double-joined in my legs means I can do sexual positions other girls can’t.”

Indeed, not everyone can be as fortunate as Aisleyne. So she offers some advice.

“Show as much flesh as you’re comfortable with,” sys she. “ Show your legs or cleavage, but both is bit much”, sage advice illustrated by a shot of Aisleyne dressed in a strap of cotton and knickers.

But looking beyond that, we return to the question: “Can you tell fake from real?”

Take your time…

Posted: 5th, December 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment (1)



The front page of the Star promises much. Where other papers just have news and the odd Page 3 stunna, the Star offers the full multi-sensory experience.

Inside the paper, what promised so much is distilled into a picture of I’m A Celebrity… evictee Phina Oruche wearing a blue bikini and jumping into the air.

That’s the sex. What of the cocaine? “I think they were handing out cocaine to some of the stars, because all of a sudden people were laughing and running around doing head-stands,” says Phina. “Being a moral Christian I wouldn’t touch it. I don’t know what the others did, though.”

That’s moral Christians for you. (Perhaps this deep spirituality is why Phina speaks in tongues, switching between any number of accents in a single sentence.)

The show needs spice. And to solicit the contestants do entertain, Phina tells us that the producers offered them bribes.

“Every night they’d promise us a cookie or a chocolate brownie or a cup of coffee if we spilt the beans. They’d sat, ‘Tell us your carer highlights and we’ll give you a scone’.”

For some of the celebrities on the show getting a scone on I’m A Celebrity would be the standout career highlight.

So much for bribes and drugs. Let’s have another go at the sex. And read the Sun’s tale that Jan ‘Screaming’ Leeming will strip for Playboy if they offered her £250,000.

“My skin is not as taut as it used to be otherwise I would wear a bikini for the shoot,” she tells us.

No need. For a few pence Sun readers can see some tight skin in a bikini. It’s Myleene Klass and there are a further six page of the bikini with Myleene in it spread across the paper’s centre pages.

These are the “HIGH POINTS” of the show. “(That’s both of them…)”

Might it be that Myleene’s assets are the show’s true stars? And the cry will soon go out: “We’re The Celebrities…Get Us Out Of Here!”

For £250,000 ono…

Posted: 29th, November 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

A Welcome Gest

I’m A Clebrity…

LIZA Minnelli: I hope David Gest gets “f*****d by a kangaroo and eaten by crocs” in the Australian jungle.

Such is Gest’s growing legend that he may share his estranged wife’s ambitions.

Indeed, if either event was caught on camera, Gest would be hard to forget, and a shoo-in to win the £250 weekly prize on You’ve Been Framed and star on other TV outtakes shows.

But Gest is already proving himself to be an able star. Here he is asking Jan Leeming: “Does my hair look ridiculous.” Leeming assays the clumps and wood stain. “The fact that you have grown a beard and a moustache looks better,” says she. “Don’t shave, you look more butch.”

Leeming then adds: “Beards really turn me on.”

In which case she should grow one and then maybe learn to feel about herself and stop moaning. A bearded Leeming may turn out to be yet more attractive to Toby Anstis. It was he who asked: “What schoolboy didn’t have a crush on Jan Leeming?” At guess, we’d say al the schoolboys that weren’t you, Toby.

Anstis and Leeming are making decent fists at entertaining us. But it is Gest who leads the way in all things.

And for this reason, Gest features on the cover of the Mirror, the paper showing the world what he looked like “BEFORE” the surgery.

“When he was young people stopped mother in the street to tell her how beautiful David was,” says his sister Barbara. “It’s hard to believe that now. He does not look the same.”

Indeed, if at 53-years old Gest still looked as he did when aged 18 months, it would be still more incredible.

He’d look like Scott Henshall, or Pee-wee Herman, as he used to be known…

Posted: 17th, November 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

I’m With David Gest

I’m A Celebrity…

IT is as clear as Toby Anstis’s girlish complexion that Liza Minnelli got the better end of the deal in her marriage to David Gest.

Rather then being a wimpering fool, Gest is I’m A Celebrity’s best entertainment by the length of Faith Brown’s bra straps.

What’s more, Gest is far removed from being the show’s most effete male. The competition for the role of camp camper is tough – someone called Scot Henshall (no, neither have we) may have believed himself to be the show’s man’s man in residence.

But that was not counting on the considerable challenge presented by Anstis, Anstis’s tight white underwear, and Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren Booth.

Incidentally, 35-year-old Toby’s girlfriend, Stephanie Stewart says she and Toby are tighter then his pants. “It’ll be hard to see him massaging another woman,” says she. “There’s no way he would ever cheat on me though. We’re a very strong couple and call each other at least 20 times a day.”

But nothing is as strong as David Gest.

Here was David wearing a snake around his neck. Here was David taking on Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren.

Standing by a pre-jungle drop hotel table laden with drink, Gest told Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren that he had read what she had said about him.

Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren had said: “He’s scarier than Michael Jackson. He’s got an ironing board face and I’m terrified.”

Rather then shy away from her, Gest told Cherie Blair’s half-sister that he did not admire her pisspoor writings. “You’ve had such great things to say about me in the papers today,” said Gest.

Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren replied: “You know it’s just those flippant remarks – you say things like that when you’re nervous – you say silly things on the phone.”

Yeah. Professional journalists and commentators are always saying things without thinking or researching what they’re saying. Tsk!

Cherie Blair’s half-sister Lauren then showed she had acquired none of Gest’s cool and got her top all wet.

Later Gest got wet in a Bushtucker Trial called Flash Flood, collecting six stars (equating to six meals) for his jungle mate.

Back at the camp, Gest told them: “They out two gators in with me and when I saw them I said: ‘Weren’t you at my wedding.”

Gest does the dares. Gest does the jokes. Don’t get Gest out of there…

Posted: 15th, November 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

I’m A Celebrity…

FOR fear of his facial plugs coming unstuck and pebble-dashing the jungle canopy, David Gest declined the offer to bungee jump into the I’m A Celebrity… encampment.

Until now, we’d snuggled up to the belief that these pampered celebrities signed any right to say “No” when they took the reported £100,000 for a maximum of two weeks work.

If we wanted Jason Donovan to get in touch with his inner anteater and eat grubs, then he would have to do it. The public would vote for Jan Leeming to be crawled over by rats in a sealed grave. And if we decreed that Lauren Booth, Cherie Blair’s sister, should wear a Perspex fishbowl filled with toxic spiders for a balaclava then so be it.

But Gest has bucked the trend. Although given the reports of his arrival in Australia, he might be the scariest thing out there.

So terrifying is Gest that the sun introduces its readers to a topless Gest diving into the surf, and the surf diving out.

Sun readers are invited to answer the question: “Would you rather sleep with David Gest or…”

Options involve eating kangaroo scrotum, cleaning a turkey farm with your tongue, wiping Abu Hamza’s backside or being Paul Gascoigne.

It might be too late to change the show’s format, but if Ant ‘n’ Dec can implement these challenges we could vote for Gest to undertake them all.

The music promoter (it says here) could then shag Myleene Klass and tell us which was the worst experience.

And note that this is the man whose benchmark is a swift marriage to Liza Minnelli, friendship with Michael Jackson and a shaving mirror.

You think he scares easily..?

Posted: 13th, November 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

The Gascoigne-Bests

AWAY from the arc lights, the sound booms and the cameras of Fiji, Bianca Gascoigne and Calum Best might just have a chance.

Bianca, step-daughter of Paul ‘Gazza’ Gascoigne, and Calum, son of the late George ‘Bestie’ Best, are the new queen and king of TV’s Love Island.

Anyone who watched the show and saw Bianca and Calum admire each other from very close quarters will hope that the pair can go on to create a new sporting dynasty.

But will they? Now, speaking to Hello!, Bianca is keen to tell us about her “UNFINISHED BUSINESS WITH CALUM”. “Obviously, I felt a strong attraction for him, and I think he felt the same for me,” say Bianca.

Indeed. Even before going onto the show, Bianca had a prophetic moment when she “jokingly” said, “It would be good if you could sneak Calum Best in here.” Calum was her “heart-throb”.

So the Gascoignes and the Bests may yet be united. And lest you worry about the offspring, know that Bianca’s half-brother Regan (son of the tired and emotional Paul and mum Sheryl) “resembles his famous footballing dad” and is a “well-mannered little boy”.

It might just be that the joining of two errant sporting families produces an especially obedient character who would no more pull his pants down and tell Norway to “f*** off” than he would forget to burp demurely into his napkin.

There is hope. And Bianca hopes to see Calum again. “Looking at pictures of him in the papers…made me realise that I really do like him. He’s a gentleman and he has respect for me,” says she. She talks of “chemistry” between them.

Great romances have been founded on less.

Posted: 8th, September 2006 | In: TV & Radio | Comment

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