X Factor, That Dog Can Dance!, Food Glorious Food, The You Generation...is no area of life safe from Simon Cowell?
Is there any corner of British life that Simon Cowell is incapable of introducing hyper-competition and loadsa-money prizes?
Wednesday saw the first episode of Food Glorious Food, SyCo productions’ foray into cooking, and the beginning of its search for “Britain’s best recipe” to go into production at M&S.
On the face of it, it’s twee-er than most Cowell productions. Carol Vorderman presents. Visually there are hints of the Antiques Roadshow. One of the judges has an MBE. But look closer, and you see Cowell all over it.
The judges are introduced in the same hyperbolic style as The X Factor. Lloyd Grossman by saying: “having sold millions of jars of sauce I know what makes a successful product”. There is the trail of no-hopers and the same endless, misplaced self-confidence egged-on by the TV lens. It is like the bastard child of the X Factor and Fanny Craddock - Kitchen Magic.
Cowell's newest ruse is a global online talent hunt harnessing the power of YouTube, no less. Syco has teamed up with the video sharing site for The You Generation, a year-long contest launching in late March seeking out a new talent every fortnight via online auditions.
It makes you wonder what he might try next. Surely Crufts could be gingered up with a few grand and some tear-jearking back stories? Actually, he’s already done that – last year’s one-off That Dog Can Dance! presented by Christine Bleakley.
In that case, maybe the staid world of combine harvesting can be electrified by the presence of Cowell in a helicopter? Or perhaps he could Cowell up a daytime property show with a contest to see who can design the best living room (the winner gets to redecorate the Drawing Room at Windsor Castle. Maybe we should just televise Sats exams, throw in a 20 grand prize be done with it.
Arts & Ents blogs
Never before seen personal accounts of Great War offer vivid picture of life at the Front
Neil Patrick Harris talks shooting 'robotic' Gone Girl sex scene with Rosamund Pike
Boy George: Bad karma
PonoMusic: Neil Young reaches Kickstarter target to fund new music player within a day
Disney's Frozen is 'very evil' gay propaganda, says Christian pastor
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
Fracking is turning the US into a bigger oil producer than Saudi Arabia
Ukraine crisis: Russia pledges to 'retaliate against sanctions' as Ukrainian president says Crimea vote will not be recognised
The quiet diplomat: Catherine Ashton - recognised and admired in all the world’s troubled countries, yet ridiculed at home
- 1 Hells of residence: Inside Macedonia's horrifying student accommodation - where the walls are green and the food is black
- 2 Girl found in the Amazon rainforest with neighbour Grover Morales after going missing for 7 months
- 3 Grace Dent: Who cares if she spells it Barraco Barner? Gemma Worrall is more employable than some bookish arts graduate
- 4 Rampaging elephant smashes up house but then 'saves crying baby trapped under debris'
- 5 Disney's Frozen is 'very evil' gay propaganda, says Christian pastor