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Do You Remember Where You Were When… #2

This week, @lkmrgnbrttn likens his most disliked pop culture telly programme, The Voice, to the meat market that is Take Me Out (FYI, Notion agrees with the latter opinion, and disagrees with the former because it’s SUCH GOOD telly). Luke reminds us that The Smiths might well be reforming (which he doesn’t like, because they remind him of his ex, or something… we drifted off at the point when he got all emo); and that My Bloody Valentine are releasing new things (“yay” all around). 

There’s been one TV show flooding my Twitter stream lately and, surprisingly, it hasn’t been another of Cowell’s auto-fellatio egofests. No, BBC’s The Voice has been getting people up and down the country all dizzy about who will be the “next big thing”, the “next CD they’ll buy from Tesco”…etc. The whole premise of the show is that the judges turn their back to the contestants so they can’t base their opinions on looks. The moral of the story evidently being “Ugly people can have beautiful voices too, you know”. I must admit before going any further, I have only watched the programme once. But I guess that’s one more than the actual judges themselves. And I know what those of you who haven’t seen the show either are thinking, you’re thinking that it’s a welcome change to the appearance-driven culture we’re living in. Not quite, as, you see, this “twist” to the tale only lasts about three minutes and then the judges swing their chairs round to reveal whether the performer in question is “hot” or “not”. It’s almost as bad as ITV’s mind-numbing, moral-bludgeoning series Take Me Out – which occupies a space as the exact opposite of what was ethically good about Blind Date.

In Take Me Out, about thirty girls get to judge a man based on, and in this order, his looks, his personality and what his friends think about him. At the end of it all, the man chooses which girl he wants of all those that he “wouldn’t mind a piece of”, showing the entire show to be an outdated chauvinistic farce. And this is exactly how The Voice seems to be going. How will the producers and judges explain it, for example, when the contestants that wowed at the start of the show, when everyone had their backs turned, are suddenly dropped. What will be the reason? “Err, she has a good voice but…” But… BUT?!

Anyway, elsewhere this week also saw The Smiths in yet another ‘To Reform’ rumour shock. Avid readers of the internet will be able to sense my sarcasm here. Surely there must be so many times a band can cry wolf? And would we even want to witness the band reunite anyway? Surely it’s better to remember a band, and the people in it, in full bloom. Otherwise it’d be like digging up the remnants of those flowers Morrissey once used as a prop on Top of the Pops and proceeding to make pot pourri out of the decay petals. Or if you’d prefer, like phoning up a long-lost ex. What’s the need? We all have photographic memories, or in this case some CDs and MP3s, to keep us warm on those cold winter nights.

One welcomed  nostalgic treat, however, was news of My Bloody Valentine releasing Loveless as a deluxe, two-cd boxset. Oh and not only that, but that they’re coming out with a brand-new LP and EP before the year’s end. Sure, it’s taken about 15 years in the making but listening to the first track to have leaked, all can be seen as forgiven. This is not a case of Guns N Roses and the infamous Chinese Democracy album. With that, Axl promised and promised, again and again, and let us down every single time. My Bloody Valentine have toyed with us, constantly teasing, keeping their cards close to their chest; and thus we’ve always wanted more. But if the group do indeed reform and come true on their word then anything could be possible in this lifetime. Maybe things will turn out alright in the end after all, maybe we’ll indeed get the girl. Maybe we will even be able to make it out of bed before noon, at least every other day. Perhaps! We can only live in hope.

-Luke Morgan Britton

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