Sunday, 17 April 2011


Britain's Got Talent returned yesterday night on ITV1. Simon Cowell's talent show, now in its fifth series, came back with the same old, same old wacky, pathetic or brilliant material, hosts Ant & Dec, but a two-third renewed judging panel.

Gone is Piers Morgan, due to US commitments, and BGT supremo Cowell will judge the live shows only. Enter comedian Michael McIntyre and former America's Got Talent Judge David "The Hoff" Hasselhoff comes to old Europe (where he's revered as a living legend) for another jury duty. Amanda Holden is back but a contestant may have involuntarily given Simon Cowell an idea when she mistook Holden for... Joanna Lumley.

The Hoff himself got his share of confusion with the number of a woman named Christine Fraser (« I'm from America and I don't get it ») and a man proved that not every citizen from Liverpool can sing The Beatles. In Birmingham Michael McIntyre met one of his future colleagues, 9-year old stand-up comedian David Knight. A guy named Gold didn't shine (sorry, couldn't help) and there was of course the usual amount of dance groups and also some animals, real or not: two dogs lead by Donelda Guy, 66, impressed the judges and a financial analyst named Blair Christie doing a dolphin inspired McIntyre one of his best lines of the evening (« We can now see why this country is in financial ruin. »)

The mandatory Susan Boyle moment, available in every local edition of both Simon Cowell's juggernaut franchises, Got Talent and The X Factor, was provided by Michael Collings, 19, and his cover of Tracy Chapman's Fast car. The young man looks talented, let's hope he'll deliver as good if better when he'll come back. Same old, same old... The good, the (very) bad, the ugly and a cute moment too, with husband and wife duo Gay & Alan Cooper performing My heart will go on with handbells.

Yesterday night's show had everything, Michael McIntyre was perfect, David Hasselhoff stayed faithful to his myth and viewers didn't miss Piers Morgan and Simon Cowell at all. Cowell will apparently quit the British X Factor for the upcoming US version (1) but ITV should not worry though. 10.4m viewers watched this series premiere (2).

(2) (Michael Collings)

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