RuPaul's Drag Race season 9 recaps

The shadiest Drag Race recaps on the web. Get ready to death drop, queens!

The Bachelorette Australia recaps

One woman, 14 desperate men, mucho LOLs. Oh, and Osher Gunsberg.

The Bachelor Australia recaps

Sequins, spray tans and sex - it's season 3 of the world's stupidest dating show.

RuPaul's Drag Race Season 8 recaps

YASS, HUNTIES! Every episode of season eight recapped for your reading pleasure. Let's get sickening!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Junk mail round up Vol 2

A very piecemeal round up today, as despite receiving a metric tonne of crap in my letterbox over the last few days, none of it was craptacular enough to warrant blogging.


Definitely not a rip off

Nope, not a rip off at all

FAMILY clogs? Listen, Big W - if you're going to rip off someone else's design for a shitty rubber shoe, at least come up with a good name. What about 'Iguanas'? Or 'Gators'? Or turn it into an Aussie tribute - 'Irwins'? Still, I commend you on the price. That really is as much as anyone should pay for a shoe made in a mould.

POLYRESIN? Fuck yeah.

I wonder if Buddhist countries have shops that sell designer Jesus statues.

BUDDHIST INTERIOR DECORATOR: We're going to give your living room a real Western, Christian feel.

HOMEOWNER: Ooh, lovely! I've always wanted that.

INTERIOR DECORATOR: We'll paint the walls beige, install some fluoro lights and put a big crucifix in the corner.

HOMEOWNER: Is it polyresin?

And lastly:

Aw yay, a free voucher!

For what now?

Addendum: I hereby declare jihad on anyone who pronounces "greasy" as "greazy".

Monday, October 30, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: 7th semi final - "Australian Music Legends"

Before I go any further, I'd just like to say how sorry I am that The Greatest Thing To Ever Come Out Of This Country Musically got the arse last week - even after singing such a compelling version of The Veronicas Revolution done as a swing number. I have no idea what went wrong - perhaps all her fans were out late night shopping for ballet flats and leggings and forgot to vote.

At any rate, Shuffles M. McDull (the M stands for "mumbles") has finally been cast aside, which sort of means I no longer have an Idol whipping boy. Here's looking at you, Ricky Muscat.

On with the show, and tonight we're one man down as Monkey Boy is off chatting up The Veronicas and trying to score with Natalie Bassingthwaite hosting the ARIAs, which means the Idol float is left solely in the hands of Ken Doll for the evening. Tonight the Idolites have to choose songs by people that have been inducted into the ARIA hall of fame. Oh goody, think I, imagining Chris Murphy cracking out a bit of Dame Joan Sutherland or Ricky Muscat letting rip on Slim Dusty's I'm Going Back Again to Yarrawonga.

Unfortunately 'tis not to be, as we start with the man that makes Holden say 'Val Doonican' at least twice every episode, Damien Leith.

He's chosen to do Split Enz' Message to My Girl - a dangerous choice as a) they're not even Australian and b) everyone in the whole world loves this song so the chances of stuffing it up royally and getting kicked off are rather high. Once again he's dragged the piano out (or rather, 10 men have dragged it out for him) and he's plonked in the centre of the circular stage playing by himself (I said BY himself, you dirty perverts). It's lit up green, from which I deduce that Damien isn't actually a leprechaun, he's a munchkin and he's just made it to the Emerald City to ask the Wizard of Oz for some talent. Either that or the stage managers are taking the whole Irish thing way too far.

He starts playing...and you know what?'s good. It's...bloody good. REALLY bloody good. The set is perfectly quiet except for the piano and his lilting voice and the audience is spellbound - no one wants to breathe in case they ruin the vibe. Clearly the Wizard came through with the goods! The camera cuts to Marcia who is relaxing blissfully in her chair with her eyes closed (either that or the medication kicked in and she's knocked out). I have goosebumps. Surely a touchdown is imminent. DL 4 PM.

But no, Holden rips us all off by NOT awarding a touchdown to what will surely be the best performance of the night. He says Damien could have taken it into soppyland and made it a dross Val Doonican arrangement (strike one), but he didn't and it was great. Then he says Damien is more Elton Bon than Elton John on the piano - everyone laughs but no one actually understands what he means. He doesn't say 'Val Doonican' again, and everyone doing the Idol drinking game at home is severely disappointed. Marcia ruins some TV magic by crapping on about how hard it was to move the piano onto the set (you mean it didn't just APPEAR there?) and no one cares as that bit wasn't actually shown on TV. She then tells Damien he suits the piano and the piano suits him. Well maybe he should just marry it then, Marcia, huh? HUH? Kyle says Damien has international appeal and is a global artist - so look out for him duetting with Youssou N'Dour at next year's WOMAD.

We then cut to Monkey Boy LIVE at the ARIAs chatting up interviewing The Veronicas, who look like extras from a forthcoming movie titled BIRTH OF PAIN: The Emo Story. He doesn't take the opportunity to ask them how they feel about Lisa raping their song on last week's show, or if they feel personally responsible for her being voted off. Stuff Midnight Oil - The Veronicas should be knighted for that achievement.

On with the show, and it's Sticky Custard's time to shine - literally, as he's wearing a glow in the dark white suit and shirt to sing The Bee Gees' To Love Somebody. Allegedly. With the white suit and his crazy eyes and spastic dancing he looks like a televangelist getting ready to heal the faithful. But actually, his singing is good tonight, in fact it's probably the best he's sung so far, but it all sounds very 90s. In the 90s, Ricky's band would be called 'Cool Mountain' or something and they'd have this one song that would make it big on the back of a cult movie soundtrack before the band fades into obscurity. He meanders along and the crowd are liking it OK enough, but it's not really cutting it after Mr Leith's Incredible Effort. In a last ditch attempt to pull a rabbit out of his hat, Ricky tries to break the sound barrier on his final note but ends up sounding more like a broken fridge. "BURRRRRRRRRRRR" is what comes out of his mouth. "What the hell?!" is what comes out of TV viewers' mouths all around the country. We can see from his droopy puppy dog expression he knows he's blown it. If he makes it through the Monday elimination he will have to deal with people yelling "BURRRRRRRRR!" at him for the rest of his life.

Holden cements his place in the finals of the Stating the Bloody Obvious Competition by saying Ricky is a competitor. He's also a male, Holden. Ooh, ooh, and he has two legs too, does that count? He then says it was obvious he stuffed up the ending, and the audience murmurs, tut-tuts and says "Rhubarb rhubarb" a lot to pretend to be confused. Holden's having none of it, but Marcia picks up where the audience left off, calling him a cold-blooded, acidy son of a bitch. Well, she doesn't actually call him a son of a bitch, but she does stick her arm out and say "Talk to the hand", so it wouldn't have been entirely out of order. Kyle says Ricky looks perfect, and would he like to meet him in the carpark after the show?

On to Chris Murphy. He's rocking out with a bit of Stevie Wright's Evie, which most of tonight's audience will think was written by Jet. Not Murphy though, who reveals he's actually 30 - what the hell? Did anyone else think he was about 26, or is that just me? He goes on to say that Idol is "the one chance to get the music career I've always wanted" - what, releasing one crap album and then being forced to tour the country with four chicks who are more talented than you are? Ok, whatever floats your boat. He also shows off his considerable linguistic skills by telling everyone how life has "metamorphosised" since he started in the top 20. Anyway onto the song - he's got his guitar on, which isn't actually plugged in to anything, so he's either faking it or has a special wireless pick up. Probably the latter. Chris absolutely rocks it with song - but on the other hand, if you can't rock an audience with Evie you might as well give up and become an accountant. He busts out on a guitar solo which is enhanced by Crazy Rock Camerawork TM, and he even puts his foot up on the foldback. It's all I can do to stop myself from putting on the Amanda Streete costume I bought off the internet and ripping it off again, screaming "I LOVE YOOOOUUUU!!!" He takes his mic off the stand and walks around with it AND the guitar, which he now can't play because his hands are full. Realising this, he puts it back on the stand, rips out a few whiplash head movements from last week's episode, and finishes to a standing ovation from the entire audience, including the judges. Soft rock, thy name is Chris Murphy.

Kyle gets up and assaults Holden from behind, we THINK in an attempt to get him to do a touchdown. Holden runs on stage (presumably to get away from Kyle briefly) and gives Chris a high five, which is obviously his new way of doing a touchdown. Marcia embarrasses an audience member by drawing attention to the dodgy air guitar she pulled in the middle of Chris' number. Amanda Streete has never been so embarrassed. Kyle runs through his checklist of things that make a great Idol - great voice, great stage presence, will sleep with the judges for votes - and says Chris meets every one of them.

Next up is Jess OhBoy-NotAnotherR&BBallad singing another R&B ballad. This time it's The Bee Gees' Words. Yawn. Yet again she looks fantastic in a butter coloured strapless satin babydoll dress - is anyone else sick of her looking so fabulous all the time? I'm craving a Paulini moment from Jess, where she comes out wrapped in gold lame with a giant multicoloured bow on her arse, so Kyle will have some grist for the fashion mill. But she won't, because while Jess has a lovely voice and can trill all the notes and is always very impressive, she doesn't actually have any personality and so will never surprise anyone with anything. Snore.

Holden says it was sublime, she's beautiful, and sticks it up Damien Leith for the second time tonight by giving Jess a touchdown. Marcia says she had to close her eyes to listen to her because when her eyes are open she gets all confused (sure, Marcia, that's the second time you've been caught napping tonight). Kyle decides he hasn't said enough hyperbole for the past few weeks so gives Jess the kiss of death by telling her she's going to be One Of The Finest Voices To Ever Come Out Of This Country. Goodbye Jess, it was nice knowing you.

On to the last performer which tonight is Dean Geyer - yes, DEAN GEYER, to all those phonetic spastics out there Googling for 'Din Guyer'. He's doing a John Farnham/Human Nature hit and MIX FM mainstayer Every Time You Cry. If his hair wasn't so perfectly engineered I'd swear he had forgotten about tonight's early start and raced to the studio at 6.25pm, only to be told "You're too late for wardrobe, you'll just have to wear what you have on" as he's wearing a crap pair of blue jeans and a khaki shirt. Honestly, that's it. He looks like a park ranger. You know, with perfect hair. Anyway he's sitting on a stool and he's singing with that vacant facial expression he always has, and I start to think: perfect hair that never moves, dead eyes that pierce into your soul, vacant facial expression, hmmm...

Have you seen this boy?

Holden says something about someone lapping Dean up like crazy. Perhaps he's recounting a drunken anecdote from the party they all had at the Idol ranch on Saturday night, I'm not sure. He then says he wonders if Dean has the vocal range to match his charisma - for the sake of his recording career, I bloody hope not. He says he thinks maybe Dean only has eight notes in his range, which means he'll probably make a mint singing ringtones. Marcia congratulates Dean on pushing himself and excelling, and then finally passes out under the desk. Kyle attempts to get in with the cool kids by singing "You're bringing sexy back", and everyone rolls their eyes and groans like dad's just made a joke about "That Joseph Timberpond" at the family dinner. He then tells everyone he was at a party the other night where 45 year old women were going crazy over him. We assume he means Dean.

And with that, dear readers, I'm afraid I must conclude my Idol wrap ups as I am off to travel the world and get drunk in overseas bars for a few weeks. But don't fret - guest Idol bloggers Redcap and Raoul shall be snarking up the Idol scene in my absence.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: 6th semi final - "Swing Night"

Well it had to happen, didn't it kids? At SOME point we were going to have to be subjected to seeing the Idols bend jazz over and give it a good old seeing to, and last night was the night. Not only were they instructed to sing jazz, they had to take a modern song and MAKE it jazz, which is sort of like giving a blind man a paintbrush and asking him to turn an IKEA print into the Mona Lisa.

Hence the birth of the "Idol Swing Night Drinking Game" - whenever you hear someone say the words "comfort zone" (as in "You've really gone out of your..." or "I need to try and push the envelope and get outside my...") take a drink. You'll be pissed by the first adbreak.

Clearly, Ken Doll has felt the burn of a thousand bloggers pouring scorn upon his wig-like super mullet, as he's had a haircut. And you know what - snaps to the G, he looks rather dashing indeed. And alarmingly, even more like a Ken Doll.

Monkey Boy asks Kyle to comment on the theme of the evening, and Kyle replies that he doesn't want old people to enjoy the show. News flash Kyle - old people aren't interested in you or this show, because they're all watching the ABC's classical Idol instead. He then freaks fiance and home viewer Tamara Jaber out for the second week in a row by saying he'd love to go to the carpark with the Idols. This is never explained.

On with the show, and first up it's Sticky Custard who says he's doing the Beatles' Saw Her Standing There and admits he loves horns. Kyle offers to show him his trouser trumpet but no one hears him over the screaming of TEAM RICKY. "I picked this song because everyone knows The Beatles! Who doesn't know The Beatles?" laughs Ricky, failing to cover up the fact that he only learned who The Beatles were half an hour before the show.

He comes out in a sharp black suit with a 1980s skinny pleather tie and a fauxhawk, looking a little bit like an extra from Footloose but somehow still rocking the look anyway. The crazy facials are ever present but now he's in a suit, he just looks like a coked out 1980s Wall Street tycoon rather than a mental homeless person, so it's not all bad.

"Hold her hand in miii-EEEEEEEEN!" is what Ricky tries to sing.
"Hold her hand in miiii-iiiiiine" is what he actually sings, as he completely misses the chance for a ballbusting falsetto that would have shizzled Holden's shemizzle and sent him racing, pedal to the metal, for Touchdown town.
Where's Damien Leith when you need him?

Overall the performance feels forced. Ricky looks like he's possessed, Emily Rose style, for most of it, and he ends with a half arsed scat that sounds like something they'd teach you in 'Scatting 101' in a first year Bachelor of Jazz course at the Widjimorphup TAFE: "Boppity boppoty bop do bop YEAH!" But hey, he sort of looks cute, doesn't he?

With bags under his eyes and cheeks puffier than the quilted black anorak he's wearing for no good reason, Holden looks seriously old tonight. He actually looks like a nanna waiting for the bus on pension day. Surely nannas love Ricky? "SCHWING!" says Holden, channeling Wayne and Garth and bringing out a 1990s cool phrase that isn't cool anymore. He says it's the best Ricky's done so far. (So the answer is yes, nannas do love Ricky.) Marcia says Ricky really dug it and it came over well. She neglects to mention whether SHE dug it. Maybe she can't remember. Kyle says Ricky didn't take him to the places he thought he would (like the carpark).

"Well the crowd loved it and I had a ball!" announces an ectstatic Ricky, as an evil cameraman cuts to a shot of the most bored person in the entire audience - a young girl in a yellow dress with an expression so blank we're not even sure if she has a face. Look at the crowd loving it!

Next up it's Lisa Mitchell. It's all I can do to stop myself punching the television as soon as she walks on. IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOOOOOU!!!!!! IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN YOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUU!!!!!


Sorry about that. Once again Lisa whinges about how the chosen theme for the night isn't her style, and it's been difficult to go out of her COMFORT ZONE (take a drink) and blah blah blah. Clearly, any theme other than "dull, whiney five-year-old girl voice crap" is going to be difficult for her. Although I WOULD like to see Chris Murphy tackle that one. Lisa then gives a definitive description of "swing" by explaining that it has "heaps of brass in it". Oh, how I wish someone would put heaps of brass in Lisa Mitchell.

Knuckle sandwich, anyone?

Once again she is dressed in page 39 of the latest Sportsgirl catalogue, in a strapless sundress, black leggings and ballet flats. YES, MORE GOD DAMN BALLET FLATS. I mean, God forbid that she should dress up in a kicky little cocktail dress and heels for jazz night. She's sitting uncomfortably on John Foreman's piano, clearly because Sheridan Tyler or someone has told her she'd look like this:


When actually she looks more like this:

Can't even spell fabulous.

Ok, so she wasn't PLAYING the piano, but it's the best I could do. She's singing The Veronicas' Revolution, and almost starts one against herself with the first 30 seconds of her performance. It is truly dire. I mean absolutely, craptastically awful. I've never heard anything quite this tragic before. "I am temperamental," she slurs like she's on valium, with no tune to speak of. "I am sentimental," she continues, even though half of Australia is begging her to stop. "I am, I am, I am," she sings, and the other half of Australia finishes her sentence with "CRAP". She starts to shuffle around the stage, giggles a bit and then coughs half way through a word like she's given up on life. It really is the most half arsed performance the Idol stage has ever seen. SHE'S A REVOLUTION! CHECK OUT THE ONE-GIRL REVOLUTION!

Of course, anyone waiting for the judges to give any sort of considered criticism on this absolute debacle (like I just did, see?) is sorely disappointed. "You're just stunning" says Holden. I hope that he means it in the same ambiguous way that "Amazing is NOT the word!" does, but unfortunately it seems he's still actually besotted by Ms Mitchell. He says the beauty of Idol is that they're continually pushing her through hoops to get her out of her COMFORT ZONE (drink) - and strangely, doesn't seem to be put off by the fact that she has turned out to be utter crap every time they do. He then craps on about her being stuck in the minors when she can open up a new part of her voice in the majors, and then calls her a trooper. For once Marcia says what everyone's thinking by saying that the scariest thing about the contest is Lisa singing things she wouldn't normally. Too fucking right. Kyle tells Lisa her performance made him feel like he was shopping in Myer at Christmas time (presumably not for her impending album produced by Mark Holden) and to my satisfaction, his comment gets a little cheer and a clap from an obviously anti-Lisa section of the audience. HOORAY! So they DO exist! But then he confuses everyone by saying that she's good. What, in a crap Christmassy kind of way? He says she did a slowed down version of a great song, which provokes an angry outburst from Holden. I agree - The Veronicas don't have any great songs.

At about this point the quickly-becoming-regular Idol sidecar Raoul (who I should point out has actually updated his blog for the first time in about 6 months and it's rather good so maybe you should check it out) got bored and drew a penis on my notepad, which woke me up out of my post-Shuffles McMumble stupor. I mean, CLEARLY the judges have lost their minds here. Even the McDonald's sponsored "Unforgettable" clip of some dude who can't even remember his lyrics was better than her performance.

Anyway it's on to Chris Murphy who is taking the whole Aussie rock thing a little bit beyond a joke by choosing to do AC-DC's You Shook Me All Night Long. No - as a swing number, remember? Thaaat's right. He makes all the home viewers drink two shots by mentioning both his "comfort zone" and something about "horns".

Not to rest on his laurels from last week's bad shirt incident, he's outdone himself with a classy little number straight from the remainder bins at Ed Harry Tea Tree Plaza. It looks like he's just stumbled out of a strip club at 3am after being kicked out for grabbing the waitress. Although he seems to have gotten the grease/shampoo equation correct this week - it's not too greasy or too Pantene-y, it's just right. Snaps to the Murph.

The performance isn't too bad, as long as you ignore his strange penchant for throwing his head back at the same point in the chorus every time. "YOU *head* shook me allll niiiight loooong! Yeah YOU *head* shook me alll niiiight loooong." It looks completely bizarre, like he's trying to give himself whiplash so he can make a claim on worker's compo and get out of forklift duties at the warehouse for a few weeks.

Marcia says it was very clever and she's trying to digest it. We're not sure if she's talking about Chris' performance or her medication. Holden says he danced between the rock and the vocals and did it really well. If you could call that headbanging a dance, sure. Kyle says it worries him that young girls aren't going to bed dreaming about Chris Murphy. But it's ok, because HE is. He then commits the biggest act of hypocrisy in Idol history by bitching Chris out for not dressing up for swing night. "It's the perfect night to suit up, why didn't you wrap yourself up in a suit?" he whinges. Um, Kyle, remember this:

"I am...wearing the same outfit as last week."


On to Dean Geyer-than-Christmas, who announces he'll be singing Mustang Sally "by The Commitments". Um, Dean - they weren't actually a REAL band. I think you might mean Wilson Pickett. "I've never played with a big horn section before," he says. Yes, yes, we know you're a virgin, can we move on now?

His "swing version" of Mustang Sally is basically exactly the same as the original but slowed down and with a few more horns (drink) thrown in. The most I can say about his outfit - a white open collared shirt and blue jeans - is that it's boring. With his crucifix necklace on show to the world he could easily be a door knocker for the local Christian youth group. It's not necessarily a bad performance, but it's passionless. Australia - this is what happens when a virgin sings the blues.

Marcia says he looks beautifully presentable. Clearly she couldn't think of anything good to say either. Holden says it seemed like a better idea on paper than reality, and we wonder whether he's talking about Dean's performance or his decision to be on this show in the first place. Kyle freaks Tamara Jaber out for the second time this show by asking four surprised girls from the audience to get up on stage and "show their appreciation" to Dean. They politely give him a hug each. This seems to displease Emperor Kyle, who yells "When I said 'show appreciation' I didn't mean cuddles, girls, come on!" Everyone looks decidedly awkward as it becomes clear that Kyle was expecting some sort of Eyes Wide Shut on-stage orgy in which Dean the virgin is deflowered on national TV. The girls leave the stage feeling more than slightly unclean, and Kyle thinks about what he's going to do in the carpark later.

Next up it's Jess Mauboy, who comes on looking fabulous as usual in a floor length black and white striped evening gown. It's a pity then that her swing version of Beyonce's Crazy in Love sounds like a big bag of arse. Raoul rightly points out that it sounds like the closing theme music to a TV gameshow, and we imagine John Blackman reading over the top: "This has been a Ten Network production." She's fucked up the lyrics, she's singing all over the place and she's out of breath (I can sympathise with this, having attempted this song before on SingStar. It is physically impossible unless you're actually Beyonce). Altogether - a complete disappointment. Apart from the dress. Which is fabulous.

Holden takes another 1990s cool phrase that isn't cool anymore and says Jess needs to be more bootylicious. You know, like Ricky Lee Coulter on that deodorant ad. (Or perhaops you're after more of an el-EC-tric vibe?) He says the performance wasn't rooted in her body, which sounds worrying, but then qualifies that by explaining it wasn't in his pocket. So, no roots anywhere, by the sounds of it. Dean knows a bit about that. He does, however, say he wants to see her do something more physical, which prompts Raoul to pipe up with the obvious gag "I BET HE DOES!" It gets a laugh anyway, as we're all thoroughly bored by tonight's lacklustre presentation. Marcia says, enigmatically, "Jazz is jazz". Kyle says it was poorly put together. Clearly so is her dress because he says it looks like an ironing board cover. The hypocrisy of him criticising EVERYONE'S outfit tonight except Lisa "Leggins" Mitchell does not escape me.

And finally it's Damien Leith, who has decided to rape and murder Radiohead by doing a swing version of High and Dry. Damien's mum is in the audience, and tells Monkey Boy that the entire nation of Ireland thinks they've lost their darling son Damien to Australia, prompting Raoul to yell out "Tell them they can have him back." Snaps. "It's going to be a great night for all of us" says Damien. Except Radiohead, obviously.

If you missed this performance, imagine the front bar of the Best Western in Las vegas at 3am. Theeeeere you go.

Holden says Damien could have easily brought out the Val Dooni-goo-goo-ometer TM but he didn't. Then he asks Damien's mum how long she's in town and tells her to extend her visa. Not because Damien's going to stay much longer - he just thinks she's hot and wants to take her out to dinner. Marcia says Damien is "such a conten-DAH". Kyle says he's brilliant but worries that people at home will find it boring. Yawn. Sorry, what was that Kyle? I nodded off there for a second.

Marcia sums up the evening with one of her famously accurate and rational statements: "Dial and make and vote."

Oz Idol wrap up - hang in there kiddies!

Don't worry, it's coming... Check back later this arvo, orright? I promise I haven't forgotten.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: Up Close and Personal episode

Eh? Idol on a Tuesday? Has the world gone mad? Well clearly it has, as we discovered last night when Mr Unique P. Individualson (aka Bobby Flynn) was UNCEREMONIOUSLY DUMPED from the Idol lineup after hundreds of thousands of insecure teenage girls voted for Shuffles McBalletflats instead. Well, actually, there was a fair bit of ceremony, what with it being a TV show and all. Not to mention the crap they wrote about it over on Idol Central - jeez, anyone would think the man had been killed by a stingray or something.

Fortunately my favourite Idol was allowed back in the sandpit for one more playgroup session on tonight's "Up Close and Personal" episode. Ken Doll assures us it's a "WORLD FIRST" for Idol in which the contestants can sing their own songs and play their own guitars (which by the way is a "WORLD FIRST") without the hassle of the judges sitting in (also a "WORLD FIRST"). Oh, and did we mention tonight's show is a "WORLD FIRST"?

(World) first up is Dean, who I am starting to suspect might be wearing a wig. Or at the very least, is an alien, because surely NO ONE'S hair can look exactly the same like that every single day. Surely. He's wearing a denim jacket from Goodwill and a t shirt, but let's face it, he's still pretty hot. He announces he'll be singing one of his own songs. Ken Doll asks what it's about. "It's about change," says Dean. "It's called Change." Fairly appropriate title, then. I think perhaps he is singing about spare change in a homage to his busking roots back in the streets of Joburg, but then I remember he's a virgin and hasn't actually had any roots yet. He is joined on stage by some dude called Rex, who according to Dean is the best guitar player in Australia. Of course he is.

The song itself isn't bad, but it's not good either. Sample lyric: "Change melts us down and moulds us round into who we are." Moulding us round? Hmm, not sure about that one Deano, but I could definitely hear this played on the radio. Sure, Change would be the kind of song that would make me CHANGE stations, but nevertheless...

And the judges say...NOTHING! Because they're all at a fondue and schnapps key party at Marcia's place in North Ryde.

Time to throw to an adbreak, with Monkey Boy saying "We'll see if people like what Lisa Mitchell has to show off next" to which I scream "NO WE WON'T!". My quickly-becoming-regular-Idol-sidekick Raoul adds "Slapbag", prompting me to gurgle "Little whore", both of which are probably unecessarily harsh comments but hey, that's what you get when you're responsible for fucking up my Bobby Flynn Sundays.

Back from the ads and Lisa steps on stage in one of her typically stupid outfits but still looking cute as hell, damn her eyes and a pox on her house. She's put on some sort of white, loose-fitting tank top that looks like something a weight lifter would wear to the gym in 1984, and teamed it with a black mini and of course, tights. Clearly she has sold her shares at Jay Jay's and bought new ones at Kaiser, as she's practically living in bloody tights lately. Together with ridiculously exaggerated false eyelashes, the overall look has a very unnerving Clockwork Orange feel. All she needs is a cane and a bowler hat and she'll be ready to bash the shit out of unsuspecting homeless people with her legions of teenage girl droogies. And GOD knows what she's done with her hair, which is exploding out both sides of her head like she decided to casually stick her finger in a power socket on the way to the stage. It looks like two bats are attacking her ears - perhaps it's some sort of strange tribute to Hunter S Thompson ("I can't sing here - this is BAT COUNTRY!") but I doubt it. Ken Doll interviews her about the song she's going to sing and Lisa says...well WHO THE FUCK KNOWS what she says? Who the hell knows what she EVER says? The girl sounds permanently like she's been caught out scarfing a kilo of toffee and accidentally glued her teeth together.

Her song is called Too Far Gone and actually, it's alright. Really, it is. Especially for a 16 year old. It took me back to the audition episode in which she played one of her own songs and blew everyone's mind, including mine. Yes, I admit it: there was a time when I was pro Lisa Mitchell. But soon, as with tonight, her annoying singing style and kooky accent drove me slowly insane, and now all I want her to do is shut up. Or you know, SING NORMALLY! I know they say it "adds vocal interest" when you pronounce the word "dawn" as "dahhhh-ehhh-innnn" but in reality it just makes people want to punch you.

Next up is Ricky "I Haven't Got the Lyrics on My Hand This Time, Honest" Muscat, who bounds on stage in a shiny, shiny brown leather jacket and finally releases his inner wog for all to see. We knew it was in there, Ricky, good onya for letting it out, tiger! "It's crazy, all my fans are going crazy back in Werribee," he chortles excitedly. His three fans in the front row wearing home made TEAM RICKY t shirts squeal. Ken Doll asks him what it's like being one of only two single blokes in the Idol mansion. "It's crazy," says Ricky. "Me and Dean are having a ball!" So that settles THAT rumour then.

Given that Ricky is also one of only two Idols who can't write original songs, he's chosen to sing what he clearly thinks is an obscure Michael Jackson track, Off the Wall. Except he's stripped the funk right out of it, slowed it down and turned it into a Justin Timberlake meets Usher meets Valium remix. Yawn.

"Are they epaulettes on his jacket?" I say, stunned.
"What? Does he have epilepsy?" says Raoul.

Perhaps not, but one of the cameramen certainly seems to as we are treated to a weird jump cut to the audience and then 30 seconds of shaky film of another cameraman, Blair Witch style. It's possibly the most exciting part of Ricky's performance.

Damien Leith has foregone the guitar option for a dashing electric piano, prompting Raoul to blurt out "What a faggoty bar cabaret player!" quickly followed by "I am so articumalate." Quite. Damien tells Ken Doll how he used to be in a "family band" with his brothers and sisters back in the green, green hills of Paddyland, which I can only assume was sort of like this:

Come on everybody get happy!

He then announces he grew long hair and played in a metal cover band singing Pantera and Megadeth, so who knows what to believe. Clearly Irish metal was about as successful as Irish disco. Tonight he sings one of his own songs called Sky, which has utterly crap lyrics like "I'm so happy with who I am, it's a lovely day". Really. I'm not joking. He clearly needs more angst in his life for artistic inspiration - fortunately hs weekly slayings on Idol will probably help in that regard. He's rather James Blunt-ish, which doesn't help my appraisal of either him or the song. Raoul thinks he's a bit Alex Lloyd-ish. I concur.

Next up we have Chris Murphy, dressed in khaki as a tribute to Steve Irwin. Having grown bored with the WORLD FIRST, Raoul was singing and muttering randomly over most of Murphy's interview with Monkey Boy, so I have no idea what was said, but he sings his song Diamond Days, possibly in celebration of 60th anniversaries everywhere. It's a good old Aussie pub rockin' song with a hint of The Darkness, Eskimo Joe and The Corrs. Put that in your blender and mix it! As much as we bitch about how much we dislike the song, both Raoul and I are tapping our feet to the beat. We just can't help being drawn into that middle-of-the-road soft rock.

Then it's Jess Mauboy who looks simply stunning in a black satin evening gown with diamond detailing and a sleek updo. Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous. She is clearly Sheridan Tyler's wet dream. She says she's going to do something completely different from the norm tonight, and I sit on the edge of my seat waiting for her to rip out a bit of Killing in the Name Of. Instead, she perches herself on a stool next to John Foreman's piano like some 1940s starlet and launches into What the World Needs Now. Sigh. I'll tell you what the world needs now, Jess, it needs YOU to pull out a bit of bloody FUNK, THAT'S what it needs! As usual her voice is perfection but this has got to be the most boring performance of the night. Given that this show is supposedly a fundraiser for sick kids at Ronald McDonald House, if this goes any slower they're in danger of losing half the audience.

"Mummy, I need my insulin!"
"Not yet darling, we just have to wait for the pretty lady to stop singing..."

(And just quietly: hello - McDonalds? YOU have a fair bit of money, actually. Maybe YOU could fund your own fucking charity instead of asking people to donate all the time? Just a thought.)

Christ, we're both looking at our watches already and she's only up to the second verse. "The test pattern will come on after this," says Raoul.

Finally it's all over and we're onto the big, fat finale from *sob sob* everyone's favourite Idol *sob sob* Bobby "Out Like" Flynn. Dressed in jeans and a grey suit jacket, he looks like he's borrowed tonight's outfit from Ken Doll, which isn't really such a bad thing. But what's that on his face? Is his mascara running? Has he smudged his eyeliner? Or has he channeled Prince and painted teardrops on his face to symbolise his anger at being kicked off before Mumbles McBoring?

Whatever, he sings his most excellent song The Boy Had Trouble which I am proud to say I downloaded from his band's MySpace page the second I saw his very first audition all those *sob sob* months ago *sob*. To be honest it's not the greatest performance - the MySpace version is much better, despite it not being mixed properly and the drums sounding like cardboard boxes (at least, so says drummer extraordinaire Raoul). But he does a whistle solo which no one has heard since Otis Redding's Dock of the Bay, and so we don't really mind. Oh Bobby, Bobby, Bobby, why did you have to go?

And so concludes the love fest.

Junk mail round up Vol 1

I believe I am one of very few people in the world who actually enjoys receiving junk mail. In fact, when I moved into the bachelorette pad I actually removed the NO JUNK MAIL sticker from my letterbox so that I would get more of it. Now every day my letterbox is bursting with a colourful array of shiny waste paper made from old growth forests, and I couldn't be happier.

So, given my current penchant for starting new sections here at the BC, I'm launching a new regular section - the Junk mail round up - in which I will share the glorious contents of my box with you. So to speak.

This week:


"I totally didn't get that movie, but I know this shirt is cool."

Suggested alternate uses for previously cool T shirts now featured in this week's Target catalogue:

  • Shoe polishing rag
  • Window polishing rag
  • Any sort of polishing rag, really
  • Costume for a 2004 themed fancy dress party

$19.99 though, that is a bargain.

Not as big a bargain as THIS though.

I think perhaps this ad should actually read ATTENTION: $2 HOOKER!, because that's basically what this handbag says about any woman carrying it. Sure it's genuine leather - PIG leather, from the unsavoury parts of the pig, dyed an even less savoury colour and then stitched together in a "patchwork" style to hide the fact that their origins were ear, ankle and snout. Not sure if the cheap jewellery comes with it, but I am thrilled that the bag doubles as an attractive flower vase.


Clearly Jenny & Tom aren't very GOOD graphic designers, as they've resorted to using someone else's generic flower clipart design on their promotional sticky labels. Perhaps they should read "Jenny & Tom Armstrong: Lazy as SHIT Graphic Designers with No Talent", although that might not fit.

For those who like to dress for comfort.

"AT LAST!" is right! For so many years I have endured comfortable nights' sleep, free of studs, clasps and tight elastic. Thank GOD someone's come up with a way to ruin all that, by inventing a bra I can sleep in. Not COULD sleep in, CAN sleep in. Clearly they know as well as I that there are lots of us who WISH we could, and now - a solution. Praise the Lord! Sure, it looks like something your gran would purchase at the chemist, but you can have TWO of them for the price of one!

See why I love junk mail?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: 5th semi final - "Idols' Choice"

For those of you pressed for time, here's a quick summary of tonight's show:

  • Everyone sucked except Dean Geyer

And that pretty much sums it up.

Initially I was surprised by this, considering that Geyer-than-Christmas has been coasting by on his good looks and strange chest hair for weeks with the occasional bit of gymnastics. But then I noticed this graphic on the Idol website and saw that our God-loving Sith Ifriken Dean truly does have the lord on his side:

Praise the lord

Obviously the neon crucifix is my own addition, but I don't think it's all that inappropriate, considering Dean's recently acquired sense of Las Vegas style showmanship.

At any rate tonight's theme is "Idols' Choice", which basically means that unlike every other episode in which the Idols have been held at gunpoint by the song choice police and forced to choose really bad songs, they are now left to their own devices to choose really bad songs. Oh, and apparently they get to play an instrument too. I wonder what the hell Ricky Muscat will be playing but then remember that we all got to see his instrument a few weeks ago in the "Year You Were Born" episode.

Without a hint of irony in his voice Kyle predicts it will be the best night EVER. Then Marcia says HOLY HELL WHAT IS THAT WOMAN WEARING? Sorry, I have no idea what either she or Holden said at this point because I am so distracted by the fact that her shirt collar appears to have vomited white lace all over her front. Teaming that with an ultra crap faux Chanel pink jacket she's clearly been delayed in the studio on her way to a 1980s themed party dressed as Prince. Or possibly to an Iron Chef themed party dressed as Chairman Kaga. Even Liberace would have deemed this number "over the top".

Thank goodness we have the style and grace of first contestant and fashion plate Bobby Flynn to ease the burning of our retinas. As long as he's not dressed like a futuristic, makeup-wearing pool boy golf caddy this week we can relax. He's singing Fleetwood Mac's Rhiannon, which Ken Doll introduces by saying "If you're a girl born in the late 70s chances are your parents named you after this track." Yeah, well if you're a girl born in the late 70s chances are you're watching CSI right now. But I digress. In a very understated white pin striped shirt and jeans, Bobby perches on a stool with his guitar, Lisa Mitchell style, and promptly launches into a really bloody boring rendition of a song most viewers will only know by the fact that they're occasionally forced to listen to it when their parents are driving them to a slumber party with MIX 102.3 on the stereo. He goes for some high notes, misses them, tries again, misses again, and we are all treated to a delightful crack in his voice we never knew existed. Strangely enough though, it all sounds like he actually meant to do it and so we still love him.

Holden (who after last week's "red braces" incident has gone for the safe option and dressed in all black, perhaps in an attempt to be mistaken for Johnny Cash) tells Bobby he's becoming a concept and is in danger of becoming predictable. Not that Holden would know anything about being predictable. Hey, he wore crazy red braces last week! He then further demonstrates how unpredictable he is by waxing on about "the plateau of Bobby" which exists in "the far off planet of Bobbyland". UNPREDICTABLE, Holden, not INCOMPREHENSIBLE. Marcia says she loves what she does. Once again, we struggle to see the point. But Marcia's self-love is trumped by Kyle, who shocks the nation (not to mention Mr Flynn and his girlfriend) by announcing that he thought Bobby was going to blow him tonight. Colour Bobby surprised.

The word you're looking for there, Kyle, is "away". You thought he would blow you AWAY.

He cleverly covers his gaffe by comparing Bobby to Star Wars. Smooth. He also says he feels a bit deflated after that performance, but it's probably nothing a good blow wouldn't sort out.

Next up is the newly dubbed Disco Deano, who as we already know, has the almighty power of The Lord on his side and will smite all in his path in order to ascend to his rightful place on the Idol throne from where he can make the world of modern pop a more righteous place to be. Given that any old arse can pick up a guitar and immediately score praise, admiration and sexual favours from attractive chicks, Deano should be a shoo-in with this challenge, given that he is a big old slab o' man beef and all. Thakfully he's given up his girly t shirt collection for a more manly black collared short-sleeved shirt, which makes him look rock with the added benefit of showing off his rather nice biceps. His hair might not have moved a millimetre since his last performance but Deano's attitude has certainly changed - he is ALL ROCK tonight with a performance of All the Way Down by some random band they like to play on Triple M just before announcing where you can pick up an icy cold can of Coca Cola from the Black Thunders parked at Centro Colonnades. He's strumming away and wailing and Dean, Dean, Dean, welcome back to hotness, my friend! It truly is amazing what guitars can do for young men - they really should be available on the public health benefits system. And then all of a sudden - BAM! - he ditches the guitar and starts grooving, pointing at the audience. A dozen girls think hopeful thoughts about going all the way down on Dean, including Kyle who is still wondering when Bobby is going to blow him. And then he gives his trademark Tom Cruise smile (actually, I guess that would be Tom Cruise's trademark, but what clout does HE have any more to get it back?) and it's all over.

Marcia says the mic stand is the only think stopping Dean from being a member of the audience. Everyone muses on what this might mean, but we quickly move on to Holden who says it was a "crackerjack performance on so many levels". He is practically wetting himself with excitement - we've not seen Holden this jazzed since Lisa Mitchell agreed to let him be her godfather, if it meant he'd stop following her home at night and sending her suggestive text messages. Despite the distinct lack of gymnastic prowess in Dean's performance the audience baying for a touchdown and Holden delivers. Deano and Holdeno high five each other while shouting "YOU'RE awesome! No YOU'RE awesome!" Kyle tells Dean the only thing he could have done better is to have performed naked, and leads the audience in a chant of "Take it off! Take it off!" Bobby sheds a single tear of rejection backstage. Tamara Jaber begins to rethink her recent engagement to Kyle.

Next up is Chris "Matted Hair For Two Weeks in a Row" Murphy who, strangely enough, has matted hair for the second week in a row. "I'm known for being a belter and having fun so I'm not going to do that this week," he says. What a great idea - strip out the fun! I can't see how that wouldn't work. He comes on in one of the worst shirts humankind has ever seen to sing Paul McCartney's No More Lonely Nights. I hate to break it to you, sunshine, but in that shirt there's nothing BUT lonely nights in your future. Chris then lets out his alter ego, Squinty McSquinterson, as he squints and limps his way through another MIX 102.3 classic. You can almost hear the back announce: "And that affection connection was for Wendy, from Rod. He's sorry for what he did and hopes you can forgive him. Next up - a bit of Boz Scaggs."

"I won't go away until you tell me so," he croons. Yeah, well wait 24 hours, Chris. He rips out an impressive bit of falsetto but it's not enough to make you stop wishing that Paul was singing it instead. Holden asks if his guitar was in tune and then shows off his physics knowledge by telling Chris to watch out for his strings warping under the hot stage lights. Marcia says it was nice. Kyle decides to finish her sentence for her, saying it was a "nice, slightly boring sounding grandma piece of crap." A win for constructive criticism once again. He then compares Chris to Jack Black for the five millionth time (just because they have the same facial hair doesn't mean he IS Jack Black, Kyle) and then offends the entire Versace fashion empire by suggesting the purple and black monstrosity currently raping our eyeballs is part of their label. It seems all downhill for Mr Murphy, but then they cut to his rather hot wife in the audience and we realise that even if he loses, he's probably still going to be a pretty happy guy. Take note, Dean "I'm Saving Myself" Geyer - this is what guitars can do for YOU.

Next up it's Jess "My Voice is My Instrument" Mauboy, who is foregoing the BYO guitar option to do exactly the same thing she does every week. Sing with the band. WEAK, I say. She had a whole damn week to learn to play something - surely she could have whipped something up on recorder. Or possibly French horn. Fortunately she's opted for a song that doesn't involve any instruments anyway, Brandy's Have You Ever, an R&B chart-bottomer from the 90s. And aren't we all surprised. She looks delicious in a floaty sunset-coloured dress and fabulous makeup but her hairstyle is half falling off her head - perhaps its trying to escape this horrendous song. It's no secret Jess has the best voice left in this competition but this is an utter dog's breakfast of a performance - she's screeching, missing notes, going flat and PUTTING EVERYONE TO BLOODY SLEEP. MY GOD IS IT BORING. The effects of Disco Deano's rockin effort of 15 minutes ago is already wearing off - we need some rock up in this bitch! Jess is clearly not the lass to do it tonight.

Marcia gets out her Little Book of Hyperbole TM and turns to page 188, saying Jess is one of the most naturally blessed singers she's ever heard. Holden says he can't believe she used to wear thongs, as if it's well known that it's a physical impossibility to sing well in double pluggers. He then commends her on her new choice of footwear and for the second time this season Idol's resident foot fetishist cameraman gets to do a big, juicy closeup of a contestant's feet. You'd think they would have learned after thrusting Lisa Mitchell's cankles on us a few weeks ago, but no - they zoom right in on Jess' six inch cork wedges covered in crystals, which it has to be said, are absolutely atrocious. Somewhere, a drag queen is performing her final number barefoot. Kyle says he loves her look and her performance sans-instrument made him forget about everyone else's instruments. Even Bobby's. And Dean's.

Ploughing straight on with Damien "I've Run Out of Irish Cliches" Leith. John Foreman and Erana Clark discuss what Damien's issues will be this week, which apparently are singing the wrong words, getting the phrasing wrong, singing too fast and not coming in on key. So, not too much to worry about then. Damien's Centrebet odds shoot through the floor. Then they announce he'll be singing everyone in the world's favourite song, Chris Isaak's Wicked Game. His odds plunge into the earth's core and become molten magma. This is not improved when he begins the song acapella and slightly off key. He saves it though, partly by looking so cute in a brown leather jacket and t shirt, but not for long. Soon enough he's ballsed up the lyrics, missed a few crucial notes and thrown his falsetto all over the place and winds up sharing the dogbowl with Jessica Mauboy, particularly when he sings "I don't wanna fall in love with you-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo-yeah-eah-eah-eahhhhhh..." oh SHUT UP Damien. Chris Isaak's beautiful, simple song does not need to roll in the hay with half arsed Celine Dion-esque stylings. He ends with an absolutely beautiful falsetto but it's too late to save this puppy. Soon to hit the remainder bins at a bookshop near you, Damien Leith's How to Murder a Classic.

Inexplicably, the judges think it's the best thing since...well, since Damien's last good performance, which was admittedly a while ago. Holden gives him a touchdown. Whatever. Who HASN'T had a touchdown these days? Marcia puts down her hyperbole guide and picks up her Little Book of Cliched Quotes and says "Don't get angry just get even". Kyle says it was so perfect it was ridiculous. Damien says he's blown away, but as Kyle hasn't gotten up from his desk all night we're not sure by whom.

Then it's finally time for Lisa "I've Been Waiting for This Moment All Series and I am TOTALLY Going to Show You Guys How Awesome I Truly Am" Mitchell. Clearly this means that Ricky Muscat and his "instrument" will be the finale for tonight. God help us all. Catwoman has this week chosen to do Coldplay's See You Soon. She's also chosen to do it in a strapless Sportsgirl sundress over black leggings (I live with bated breath until this appears on Go Fug Yourself) and in a hearty "fuck you" to Kyle, has returned to her $1.40 ballet flats. This I condone, despite him actually being right about the shoes. Her guitar is off, her voice is flat, and what the hell is this boring ass dirge of a song? I am foolish enough to think the judges will pick her apart for crashing and burning with such a crap performance on this, her Night Of Nights, but instead they fall over themselves with excitement. Surprise, surprise. Clearly unaware that sleeping pills can now be bought over the counter, Holden says he could have listened to her performance for another hour and a half. He then says people either find her beautiful or boring - as if the two are mutually exclusive. Work it out, Holden, she's beautiful AND boring. They cut to Marcia who looks like she has tears in her eyes - so do I, but that's what happens when you jab a pencil in your ear screaming "MAKE HER STOP SINGING!!!" Every viewer with an ounce of taste is willing Kyle to let Lisa have it, willing him to rip into her with dripping, snarling vitriole and make sure she never sets foot on the Idol stage again. Instead, he tells her she's like a kid dragging a blanket around. I feel betrayed.

We finish up with Ricky Muscat, who apparently has recently earned the nickname of "Risky". This is not explained - although perhaps it has something to do with the fact that he was caught on national TV reading lyrics off his hand in the middle of last week's group performance of Boogie Oogie Oogie (I could see how that would be hard to remember). Although I guess most people would count that as DUMB rather than RISKY behaviour. He has fallen back on the Jess Mauboy "My voice is my instrument" excuse (pathetic) and has decided to sing Robbie Williams' Feel. Robbie Williams. Oh no. No one has ever sung Robbie Williams and gotten out alive. Do I have to remind you all of Daniel Belle again? Anyway Ricky seems to be looking a bit cuter than normal this week, in a black leather jacket and jeans and a t shirt that appears to say ASS (but probably doesn't). He delivers some powerful notes at the end but overall it's another boring, cruisey performance. They really could have billed this show as Australian Idol: The Valium Episode.

Holden tells Ricky he's come undone. Ricky checks his fly to make sure his OTHER instrument hasn't inadvertently made an appearance. Then Holden says Ricky's just proved to Australia that he's not Robbie Williams. I would have thought that being introduced as Ricky Muscat might have cemented that truth for the viewers from episode one actually, but I guess you can never overestimate your audience's intelligence. Marcia tells Holden he's ridiculous and orders him to go to bed. Kyle wonders if he can come too, but covers it by wanking on about how great friends he is with Robbie Williams and how they've been to concerts together and had dinner and they're SO, like, best friends forever, and Robbie said he was heaps cool...and what was the point again?

Who cares, the show's over, and Dean is the new ruler of the Idolverse. Ricky - it's time to go, my friend.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Jack White is DEAD!

Reeeelax, he's not. But I have turned him into a skeleton, because I am sad and lonely with nothing better to do at 9am on a Saturday morning.

Store bought bones

Try the shenanigans for yourself at Bone Idol.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Incredible Inedibles: Weird Japanese Buns

Despite almost permanently sacrificing my tastebuds last week investigating Haw Flakes - an evil, pretend "lolly" I found at the Chinese supermarket - I have decided to persist with my crazy food reviews for your reading pleasure.

Earlier this week I found myself once again in a Chinese supermarket (a different one, but inexplicably with EXACTLY the same layout - perhaps I have found some sort of Asian grocery tardis?) and as if by some magical, invisible cord of bad taste, was drawn to grab this product from the freezer:


Let's face it, who WOULDN'T buy this product? Well my sidekick Raoul, for one. He thought they looked like crap. I thought they looked ADORABLE - look at those happy little steaming, smiling buns! Sure the bigger one looks like he suffers from some degenerative blindness, which he has passed to the smaller one who is possibly his semi-retarded, partially blind carer, but anything that happy has to taste good, right?

At this point I might as well mention that there was no English on this packet whatsoever. I might also point out the obvious fact that I can't read Japanese. I had no idea what this product was, or what the ingredients were, but I did know that whatever it was it was happy, and there was possibly 300 of it. Or 15. That part was a bit unclear.

Opening the pack I noticed the buns had some dark brown flecks through them, which I assumed were chocolate chips. How wrong I was.

This is about the point I started to rethink the experiment.

In order to give these cold little hockey pucks the best chance of a good review, I had to work out how to cook them. The instructions were extremely helpful.


Ok, so I put them in a steamer for 6 or 10 (days? months?), or in a 1960s television set for 6 or 60. Hmm. Slight discrepancy there. In the end I took a stab in the dark and nuked them in my television set for two minutes. They came out rock hard, probably because my TV set isn't from the 1960s (although it was screening Bert's Family Feud at the time, but I guess that wasn't enough). I decided to try the microwave the second time, and jammed one of those suckers in there for 10 seconds.


Result! The bun was nice and squishy and steamy, and I'm sure if left to its own devices it would sprout legs and start smiling like its friends on the front of the packet. Bad luck, no time for that, it's eating time!


The bun was giving off a very odd smell akin to Vegemite, and it was at this point I realised the brown flecks were clearly NOT chocolate. With any luck they'd actually BE Vegemite but I doubted it. A generous bite revealed that the bun actually tasted like...nothing.

Seriously, nothing.

What the HELL?

Why does a bun flecked with brown things taste like nothing? Why does it smell like Vegemite if it actually has no flavour? AND WHY ISN'T IT SMILING?

It was doughy, fluffy, tasted like nothing and smelled like Vegemite.

All in all, a total disappointment. I rate it below the Haw Flakes.

By the way - if anyone can read Japanese I'd love to be enlightened about this product.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: 5th semi final - "Disco Fever"

Read that title and weep, dear reader. Personally, I can't think of anything worse than our poor, beleagured Idolites frocking up to sing dodgy examples of the worst genre of music in human history simply to promote Marcia Hines' new drink coaster album. There is a reason the phrase "as dead as disco" exists, and Channel 10 would have been well advised to keep it that way.

Nevertheless, everyone's been struck with DISCO FEVER, although thankfully Monkey Boy and Ken Doll have avoided the "wacky host" look by choosing NOT to wear any crazy afro wigs or flares. Never fear, Holden is there to pick up the slack with a pair of Fireman Sam red braces and a black polo neck. Er Holden? Leo Sayer called, he wants his look back. No hang on, he just called back - he says you can keep it.

And as we all admire Ken Doll's ferocious mullet (seriously, have you SEEN that guy in profile? It looks like a prop squirrel from a pantomime is trying to attack his shirt collar) it's time for everyone's favourite bogan, Chris Murphy. Well, he's got the hair for disco.

We start with a bit of video from Mr Murphy's stint in the recording studio with resident disco expert Marcia and some other dude whose job it is to fiddle with knobs and dials and give the thumbs up occasionally. Chris announces that he's got a golf ball in his throat which he's "really disappointed about" - clearly the new "putter's diet" isn't working then. At any rate he's singing Play That Funky Music White Boy (of course he is), a cover band anthem which everyone knows is just an excuse for fat, white people to get up and dance at weddings. But snaps to Mr M for his outfit - black leather jacket, t shirt and jeans - which, while on the dull side, is still pretty stylish. But what the hell is going on with his hair? It's all matted and greasy (surely Kyle would approve) - you're supposed to SING the funk, Chris, not swim in it. Eerch.

I can feel the funk...dripping down my neck.

Holden says it's a great way to start the show. Yawn, Holden. Marcia tells him he sang through it. Yes, yes he did Marcia. That's how this show works, see, contestants get up on stage and...oh never mind. Kyle tells him he owned the show, which is a pretty bold statement considering no one else has sung yet. Then he gives him a typical backhander by telling him he's not a pretty boy, but that ladies who wear masseur sandals will love him. What, lesbians with mothering instincts?

Next up it's Lavina Williams who will obviously romp this one in with her eyes closed, hands behind her back, duct tape over her mouth and microphone off, so everyone else might as well just go home. In her montage she strolls into the studio looking like a poor man's J-Lo in her Adidas tracksuit and hoop earrings (are they actually surgically attached to her earlobes or what?) and Marcia speaks in ebonic double negative by saying "The biggest problem Lavina will have will be putting it all together, but I don't have any doubt that she won't." So, she will then? Or won't she? SHIT WOMAN, WHICH IS IT? But then Lavina walks out on stage and all thought is erased from my head as her enormous breasts swing into frame. My GOD they're huge. Now I know what the captain of the Titanic felt when he saw the iceberg. Holy hell. She's in a figure-hugging, skin-tight sparkly caramel coloured number, with some sort of industrial rigging hidden in the bust line to put those puppies front and centre. It's a good colour for her actually but when she turns on the side it's WELCOME TO GUT CITY. Sorry Lav, but a bit of Nancy Ganz wouldn't have gone astray. She's singing Best of My Love and she's not rocking it half as hard as we'd thought. Clearly she's been taking stage lessons from Ricky Muscat as she's pulling facial expressions that make her look like she's giving birth to a mirrorball.

Just one...more...push...DISCO!

Marcia commends Lav on how her head opens up and notes come out. And how chirping bluebirds then circle around it, with sparkly stars shooting every which way, and baby squirrels dance around her feet singing Yankee Doodle. She then excuses herself to take a few more Disco Pills in the backstage toilets. Holden looks confused and throws to Kyle, but it's probably only so he can score some off Marcia before she leaves the set. Kyle says he thinks Lavina doesn't feel comfortable. He means she looks fat. Holden says something else. Whatever. We're all disappointed. Except for my own Idol sidecar this week, Raoul Duke, who comments that Lavina's excessive cleavage is "nice".

Next up Ricky Muscat announces: "When I heard it was disco this week I was pretty excited." Given that the only song he knew from 1983 was Land Down Under, I think it's safe to say that nobody ELSE is excited to see what Ricky pulls out of the 1970s bag. Once again Marcia exclaims that Ricky's biggest challenge will be "putting it all together" - what, does she think they're doing a jigsaw puzzle or something? Why doesn't she just say what we're all thinking? "Ricky's biggest challenge this week will be singing in tune while not pulling the facial expressions of a psychotic axe wielding madman. But I don't not doubt that he can't not do it."

Ricky channels Peter Andre circa 1996 and selects Get Down On It, coming out in a white shirt and jeans - clearly the 12 step program to get him out of the black jacket/white shirt combo is working somewhat. Baby steps, Ricky, baby steps. But then he lifts his arms in a triumphant disco air-punch, revealing the mother of all sweat patches, and we all realise maybe he'd be better with the jacket on. It's a strange performance - even with back up singers he manages to sing the backing vocals himself, while simultaneously singing the lead vocals. It's like those Tibetan monks who can sing three notes at the same time. But disco. And you know, not as good. Finally he finishes and stands there, centre stage, looking dead. I don't mean exhausted from the performance, I mean ACTUALLY dead. Eddie Munster dead. So hey, at least if the singing thing doesn't work out he can get a job as a cadaver.


Holden tells Ricky that he's got some really good tones and where did he download them from cos Holden is getting sick of his Crazy Frog one and wants to Idol up his mobile. Marcia announces that no one pays any attention to Holden's opinion. Then says dynamite. Then says well done. Nobody pays any attention, given that we're all still distracted by Holden's braces. Kyle says Ricky's good looking with fine vocals, but he's lame and limp. Ricky's lame? I didn't notice he had a limp. That would explain the facial expressions though, the poor boy's probably in pain...oh wait, the SONG was lame and limp. Never mind.

And then it's an ad break, which from the couch I was sitting on went something like this:

LENA: Come try our $9.90 lunch specials, there's the penne gamberi, the garlic prawns or the lasagne, mmm. Are you thinking what I'm thinking?

RAOUL DUKE: I dunno - where are we going to get three gerbils and a ladder?

Back to Idol, and it's Damien Leith, our charming Irishman. Somehow I think there's a reason the genre "Irish Disco" never eventuated. And somehow I think we're going to find out why very soon.

Holy god, he's singing Celebration. Holy. God. In the studio, Marcia's coaching him saying "Don't rush it, it's a CELEBRATION! Who would want to rush a celebration?" I think we ALL would, if Damien's singing it, Marcia.

Closing your eyes won't make it go away, Damien

He bounds on stage like the happy little leprechaun he is in a dark blue tartan body shirt (which is much more stylish than it sounds) and a cheerful "How's it going tonoight? Everbody going alroight?" This generates about as much enthusiasm as a sock puppeteer looking for a "helper from the audience" in a performance at the local high security prison. In an effort to jazz the crowd, he tries on a few dance moves, which basically amount to jumping up and down on the spot and punching the air (it didn't work for Ricky, mate, it won't work for you) and shimmying along the front of the stage like your dad at his 50th after a few glasses of punch. It looks like he's auditioning to be the sixth Wiggle. And dammit, I'd give him the job! Get him a silver polo neck and let's be done with it. He looks intensely worried throughout the entire performance, and it's not hard to see why - this is an absolute catastrophe to rival even Daniel Belle's performance of Robbie Williams' Rock DJ in 2004.

But hey, at least it's not a ballad.

Cut to the judges - Holden has his head in his hands, and is clearly trying to work out what his life has become. Marcia looks stunned. Kyle is sharpening his teeth for a snarling retort. He says it's the worst thing he's ever seen on TV EVER. Phew - I thought he was going to say something REALLY nasty! Then he asks why Damien hadn't chosen to do something he would normally do, as opposed to dancing around like a clown. Er - I think that IS what he would normally do, Kyle. Then he calls him a big ball of string, and it's on to Holden who says "Mate, mate, mate - URGH." Then he shows off his latest piece of Idol technology, informing us that his Val Dooni-goo-goo-gometer has jumped to 11. Which, as we all know, is one more goonie-goo-goo than normal. He then says it's the most bizarre thing he's ever seen. But then we cut to Marcia, and we realise her hair is possibly more bizarre - but only just. She says it was the best Damien could do, prompting Holden to call for him to be kicked out of the competition. He then retracts the call on grounds of never wanting to hear Damien sing Celebration again. All in all, pretty constructive criticism. It's lucky he's so darn cute.

Next up it's Lisa Mitchell. I make myself a strong cup of coffee so as to be sure to stay awake for her entire two minutes on stage. She's singing Blondie's (dear GOD no!) Heart of Glass, only one of the greatest pop songs ever. Oh hang on - isn't it supposed to be DISCO NIGHT? Whatever. In the studio montage we hear Marcia instructing Lisa to "open up her vowels". Or was that bowels? In hindsight the latter would have sounded a hell of a lot better, given that Lisa has taken Debbie Harry and put her in a style vacuum until she comes out sounding like Kasey Chambers. She looks cute as hell in a stripey top and skin tight black pants, but sadly this isn't the Dolly covergirl competition - if it was she'd have to duke it out with Dean Geyer.

Making Blondie blandie.

The only thing disco about this performance is her glitter eyeshadow, which I keep hoping will fall into her eye and stimulate some real animation from her. Once again she just stands there gripping the microphone stand - has this girl got some sort of doctor's exemption from moving? Everyone else gets caned for it but it's like the judges have given up on Lisa. So has the audience, who are beginning to tire of clapping in time. OH MY GOD SHE MOVED, IT'S A MIRACLE! "Na na na na na" she slurs indifferently as she slacks about the stage.

Once again we cut to the judges to find Holden with his head in his hands. Tonight he reminds me of a parent who's just woken up from his vigil on the sofa to find his teenage daughter creeping in through the window at 4am, prompting him to say "I'm not angry, I'm just very disappointed." He's clearly battling his father complex, as he launches into a contestant survey on Lisa: "How was your workshop with Marcia? What did you get out of it? Do you think it helped you to improve?" For god's sake, Holden - GIVE UP ON THE GIRL! We've all known for weeks that she's a one trick pony, it's time to let it go. Unperturbed, he presses on with the sort of comment that makes viewers all over the country slap their foreheads and scream "no shit!" comments at the TV. "You sang it at one level all the way through, you didn't dig in whereyou should have, you looked bored," he says. Um yeah, she does that EVERY WEEK! Kyle is clearly smitten with her new choice of footwear and says she did an excellent job, but she could try and look happier. Lisa whinges about wanting to sing an acoustic song with her guitar, while everyone yawns and looks in the TV guide for what's on next. Ooh, Supersize Me, I hear that's a pretty good movie. Do you want a cup of tea? Milk? Oh and by the way I forgot to post that cheque today, so you'll have to do it tomorrow...

Raoul then closes all debate on the subject of Lisa Mitchell by exclaiming "Dirty little fucking little wench whore", which pretty much silences all other conversation.

And then it's Dean "Covergirl" Geyer time, with Turn the Beat Around. Good, I think. I love to hear percussion. Given that Raoul was still mumbling about Lisa DLFLWW Mitchell at this point, I missed most of Dean's studio video, catching only the words "It's going to suck", which fills me with confidence for his upcoming performance. And then he comes out in a pastel rainbow striped v neck T shirt and I think maybe he might be right. WHO keeps giving him these disastrous girly T shirts to wear I don't know (Sheridan?) but I wish they'd stop. Although as Raoul points out - they do show off his rather nice arms.

"Terrrn the bit ararrrnnnnd..."

I'm busy pointing out the scary bit of fluff that seems to have crawled up from Dean's belly button to sucker itself to the nape of his neck, when all of a sudden Raoul screams "OH MY GOD DID YOU SEE THAT? He did a forward flip on one arm across the stage!"

What the bloody hell? You look away for one second and Dean does something fabulous, typical. I'm just about to tell Raoul this but then he yells "FUCK! HE JUST DID A FUCKING BACKFLIP!"

Dean Geyer, the incredible flying crack.

Bollocks. Two fabulous things in the space of two minutes and I miss both of them. Typical.

Not surprisingly, the judges cream themselves with excitement for their new gymnastic prodigy. Holden calls him Disco Deano and says he's got a "big wow factor". I have a feeling quite a few viewers wouldn't mind checking out Dean's big wow factor, but that's another story. Marcia says thank you. Honestly, that's all she says. Kyle says he took a lame-o song and made him forget how lame it was. Damien Leith gets on the phone to Cirkidz backstage to organise some juggling lessons for next week.

Next up is Bobby "unique" Flynn. Sure he's got the hair for disco, but it's fair to say his fans are shitting themselves tonight at the horror that could be Mr Flynn crashing and burning on a bit of Disco Inferno or, god forbid, Funky Town. His outfit - a blue checked shirt and matching tie with white pants and black socks - is a COMPLETE disaster. It looks like something Maria would sew for the Von Trapp children if she lived on a golfing range in 1953.

Want me to caddy for you, Mister?

But sweet, sweet Jesus, everything is forgiven when he starts up with his own bongo fired, cocktail-fuelled, loungeified version Rick James' Super Freak. Quite an appropriate choice really, given that "freak" is how most people have labelled Mr Flynn so far.

His velvety voice floats on over the groovy beats and my god, it's the best disco tune I've ever heard. Well it's not really disco. But Lisa sang Blondie, so fuck it, hey? Bobby for president.

Marcia gets into the groove, saying it's "outta sight" as she takes a hit on her jazz cigarette. Kyle says it's a pity some of the other contestants didn't rearrange their songs like that instead of destroying them, not looking at anyone in particular, Damien Leith or Lisa Mitchell. He then tells Bobby he looks like a pool boy, which we all realise is the truth, but no one really cares because Bobby rules the universe and he can clearly do what he wants. Holden makes his first obvious joke for the evening, saying "YOU are a superfreak, man!" and then giving him the second touchdown of the series. The crowd goes wild, the judges are ecstatic, Bobby's parents and girlfriend are crying tears of joy in the audience - and for the third week in a row Bobby looks mystified as he thinks "Singing badly, wearing makeup, dressing like a pool boy and completely flouting the rules - what the HELL do I have to do to get voted off this damn show?" FOILED AGAIN, BOBBY! HA HA! You're here to stay, my friend.

Finally it's Jessica Mauboy with Donna Summer's On the Radio. I'm still thrilled by Bobby at this point so I don't really pay much attention but she's wearing a completely unflattering neon yellow and black zebra print dress, which Raoul describes as looking like "a bad couch from a 1980s New York apartment". I concur. Her voice is great. She sounds awesome. That's about it, really.

What sound does a zebra make?

Holden says he's happy to see her letting the tiger out. No, Holden, that's a zebra. Yes, I KNOW it's yellow. Well tigers' stripes are slightly I'll read you a story later. LATER, I said. Marcia says Jess has one of the finest voices she's ever heard. Somewhere, Deni gnashes her teeth. Kyle says she's gone from a scary bush frump to being perfect in every way. Aww that's...sweet...isn't it? Raoul says that vocally, it's between her and big tits. I think he means Lavina. Once again Jess manages to sound like someone's jabbed her with morphine just before the judging has started, laughing like she's mentally deficient throughout the whole thing.

I propose that we all use the next half hour to focus our energies on ejecting Lisa Mitchell.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Arguing on the internet

I like this picture muchly. It was sent to me by A Random Stranger, who I think is rather fabulous.

Although I do still like Bobby Flynn.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Oz Idol wrap up: 4th semi final - "The Year You Were Born"

Three down, 9 to go, and it should be fairly easy to kick at least one more Idolite out after tonight's show, which is cryptically titled "The Year You Were Born".

No, not the year YOU were born, dear reader, that would be silly. Of course they mean the years each of our Idols was born. So they really might as well have made it an 80s night.

Anyway we kick things off with Irish sensation Damien Leith, who tonight bears a striking resemblance to Leisure Suit Larry.

Aye begorrah, to be sure, to be sure

Since Idol's resident style guru Sheridan Tyler showed him the wonders of the black jacket and white shirt combo in the second semi final, Damien just hasn't looked back, wearing it on every possible occasion since then (and possibly to bed as well). If you looked in his Idol wardrobe I'm sure you'd find a series of plastic-wrapped black jackets and white shirts to see him out until the final episode (where he would then don the special black-velvet-with-ebony-sequins number for the Opera House performance). Tonight however, Mr Leith has turned the tables on us in SPECTACULAR fashion - teaming a WHITE jacket with a BLACK shirt. Those Irish! So innovative.

We learn that Damien's birth year was 1976, and the nation holds its collective breath in anticipation of the potential horror that could be a pale, skinny Irishman singing Starland Vocal Band's Afternoon Delight, or Hot Chocolate's You Sexy Thing. It turns out he's chosen Elton John's Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word, and comes up with a honkier-than-honky white man's funk version of it. It's clear he's struggling to find the funk within as he sings "What do I have to do to make you love me" - don't worry Damien, we're all wondering the same thing. We'll let you know if we work it out. His weird attempt at a few dance moves, which ends up looking like a girly sort of skip across the stage, only succeeds in leaving him a bit breathless. Luckily he's got his marvellous falsetto to save everything - oh wait, no he doesn't. We're all bored with that, I forgot.

Overall the performance is underwhelming. Actually, it's just a bit sad. He's like an over enthusiastic groom who's taken six weeks of vocal lessons so he can sing You are So Beautiful to his bride at the wedding reception, but all people can say is "Aww, he's practised SO HARD for this."

Holden says it was lame, and that he almost got the Goonie Goo-Goo-ometer back in to check Damien's performance. Clearly he has traded in the Idol calculator he's used in previous episodes for better technology. Marcia says she admires Damien for choosing a song so steeped in tradition, and the rest of us wonder what tradition she could possibly be referring to - the opening anthem for the AGM of the Elton John Appreciation Society, perhaps? Then she gives his ego a real boost by saying no matter how he'd arranged the song, the judges would have dogged him for it. Kyle says it "reeked of Kerri Anne Kennerley" and was something he'd expect to see on daytime TV. Damien denies the allegation, while making a mental note to cancel his appearance on 9am with David and Kim next week.

Next we have plastic sensation Ricky Muscat. We start with a video of his mum telling us all about "when Ricky was a baby" over a montage of baby photos, one of which shows a naked little Ricky with a little Ricky dicky in centre shot. THANKS mum. Back in the audience, Amanda Streete takes one look and quietly folds away her "SHOW US YOUR COCK, RICKY!" poster into her studded leather handbag.

Tonight, Ricky has chosen Men At Work's Land Down Under from his birth year of 1983. Fairly appropriate, considering we've all just seen Ricky's land down under. He's taken a page out of Damien's style guide (and therefore ruining it, as it only had one page in it anyway, and that said "BLACK JACKET, WHITE SHIRT") and I really need to say it? A BLACK JACKET AND A WHITE SHIRT, LORD HAVE MERCY UPON US ALL. He's also obviously been taking stage lessons from Mutto, as he seems to have perfected the Bono crouch, but the crazy eyes have made a reappearance. Oh well - you can't have it all. Unfortunately it's all over before he gets to sing the line about "chunder", but we should probably be thankful for that.

Marcia gives an incredibly insightful appraisal of his performance, saying it was kinda strange but great. Holden says it reminded him of the last call at the Upper Widgibulgari. There is silence. A tumbleweed rolls across the stage. Kyle says it was a shocking song choice, it was the lamest song ever, and he hopes he'll never hear it again as long as he lives. Ricky complains about the lack of good songs in 1983. Um, like Billie Jean, Every Breath You Take, Beat It...what about AFRICA for fuck's sake? Can't you just see Ricky doing Toto? Well I can, and it'd be brilliant.

Anyway moving on to desert sensation Jessica Mauboy, who was born in 1989. I know, I know - I'm freaked out too. Just breathe. Again we get to see some baby photos, while her mum explains how she played Jess Roxette and Madonna as a baby - what, no Whitney Houston? That's practically child abuse.

Jess picks the Brandy version of Phil Collins' Another Day in Paradise - clearly this sort of year jumping (ie: cheating) is allowed, as no one calls out "Guards - seize her!". But why would you when she looks so cute? A pearlised gold fitted jacket with blue jeans and a black t shirt - she looks bloody fabulous. Whoever is responsible for getting her out of K Mart's "Girl XPress" section deserves an OAM. But truly, this song sucks. I've never heard the Brandy version but I suspect this song could be the reason no one's heard from her since 1989. Jess also seems to have no idea what she's singing, beaming her way through lines like "She's got blisters on the soles of her feet" like she's ordering an ice cream sundae. I'm so disturbed I am driven to the kitchen to get out my tin of Hello Panda biscuits. I know - I didn't think you could get them in tins either until I saw them at the Chinese supermarket! A big old tin! Anyway.

Holden says she was struggling, although he loves the way she sits right in his pocket. Or the pocket. Or something. Marcia comiserates with her having a scratchy voice - where the HELL are these Idols living? The cold and flu ward of Sydney Royal? Every damn week someone's got a bloody cold. Quarantine them, for god's sake! Kyle says it was just shit. He actually says shit. And nobody bleeps it out. Apart from getting to see Ricky Muscat's wang, this is the most exciting thing that's happened all episode.

Hold onto your hats, it's unique sensation Bobby Flynn, who surprises everyone by having been born in 1981. Am I the only one who thought he was like, 35? Bobby's mum craps on about how when Bobby was a baby, strangers would stop her in the street and comment on how much style he had. Look - we know he's UNIQUE, but let's not take the piss, alright?

He's singing Queen and David Bowie's Under Pressure, and he strols out on stage in dapper grey suit pants and a matching waistcoat with a red tie and DEAR GOD WHAT IS THAT ON HIS FACE?

Prissy Flynn

Yes - it appears Bobby has gone all glam-rock, channeling Bowie, Sideshow Bob and Darryl Hannah in Bladerunner all at the same time, painting a big grey stripe across his eyes for this performance. We can almost hear Sheridan Tyler gnashing his teeth backstage while a Maybelline makeup artist screams "Where the FUCK is all my charcoal eyeliner?!" For the second week in a row everyone is convinced Bobby is trying to take a dive in the strangest way possible, so that when he finally gets voted off he can say "It's the Australian public man, they just weren't ready for my makeup fetish." I think Bobby does a good job of this song, but to be honest - I'm too distracted by his crazy hair and THAT STRIPE ACROSS HIS FACE.

Holden says he's "so out there" and asks him to come back in because he'l catch the death of cold. Marcia tells Bobby he's "so cool" and then asks him if he'd like to go to the school dance with her. Kyle reveals he's been doing surveys on the street about Bobby, and that people either reckon he's "a full mong" or "one of the biggest stars in the world". Kyle seems to think this split is a good thing.

No one mentions the crazy makeup.

Then it's on to shuffling sensation, Lisa Mitchell. She was born in 1990 (I KNOW - be calm, think of a happy place). Her parents reveal that she was "quite good at hand actions" when she was little. Obviously she never mastered any others, as once again she's back on stage, shuffling about. If they attached a few Chux to her shoes they'd get that stage gleaming in no time.

She's used some crazy Idol loophole to sing Steve Miller Band's The Joker. We all know it will be a perfect choice for her ooky, kooky voice and lack of stage presence, and will be a perfect one for her to shuffle through. Dressed in what looks like the kind of outfit you wear to paint your house, she slumps on the edge of the stage so no one can criticise her for not dancing. "Some call me the gangster of love" she warbles. Yeah, well some people call you FUCKING BORING, LISA. Not me though. I call you REALLY fucking boring. "I'm a midnight toker" she sings. Sure you are, Lisa. Although that WOULD explain the outfit. And the lack of movement.

Marcia says it's great to see her on stage looking comfortable. Hello? The only way she could get more comfortable would be if they dragged a recliner out there for her to slouch into. Holden says she took a bizarre song choice and turned it into a lot of fun. I must have missed the fun bit. Kyle says it was brilliant and cute, but the only thing he would suggest is ditching the $1.40 ballet slippers she wears every week. The only thing I would suggest is stuffing a rolled up sock into her mouth and sealing it with duct tape. Different strokes, I guess. We wind up the segment with a lovely shot of Lisa's cankles. Who knew she had cankles? I am strangely satisfied.

On to Sith Ifrican sinsation Dean Geyer, who was born in 1986. His mum says his most striking feature as a child was his "bug blue arse". Oh wait - "eyes". Not quite as interesting, really.

He's singing Bon Jovi's You Give Love a Bad Name, and he loses everyone on the first line. He's up there singing "Shot to the HEART and you're to BLAME" and everyone is yawning and looking at their watches. Even his failsafe stare-into-the-camera-and-make-everyone-drool manoeuvre isn't working anymore - perhaps he'd better think about showing us his big blue arse instead. We REALLY want him to get down on his knees in a full rock slide, but instead he busts out some very average air guitar with the actual guitarist, who is way more animated than he is. He finishes the song with not a hair out of place. Very UN rock.

Holden says he wants to see less "gorgeous angelic pure Dean", and more "down and dirty diabolical Dean". Funny, I think I HAVE seen that...somewhere on the internet... Anyway Marcia finally removes all doubt that she has lost her mind by announcing she doesn't know who Holden is. Then she asks what more anyone could want from Dean's performance. Just because it's a rhetorical question doesn't stop thousands of people yelling "ENTERTAINMENT!" at their TVs. Kyle sticks his groin in Marcia's face and tells Dean the virgin to go and have sex before singing a song like that again, because he needs to do more grinding. He tells him he should have been giving the audience lapdances. Gays around the nation log on to and start booking tickets to Sydney to be in the studio audience.

Next up we have bald sensation Mutto, another 1976ite. Oh to have been a fly on the wall when he and fellow 1976-er Damien Leith were deciding on their songs:

DAMIEN: I'M doing Elton John, OK? Shotgun, I said it first, I barsed it, it's MINE.
MUTTO: Um, ok.

Instead he pulls out a bit of Aerosmith's Dream On. And before we go any further here, can I say Mutto, PLEASE stop writing your shopping list on the back of your hand every week. We're not interested that you've run out of toilet paper back at the Idol ranch. The song sounds ok, but it's a very restrained performance, apart from his weird hip hop dance to the chorus - dude, we know Eminem did it, but that doesn't make you MC Mutto. He finally sinks the song with a failed high note at the end.

Holden says it's great to see him using the audience like the CHEAP WHORES THEY ARE. Great job. Marcia says it's good to see him working the room like a CHEAP WHORE. Great job. Kyle says it was an excellent song choice but he looks like a creepy old dude with 15-year-old hair. He describes Mutto's "hair art" as a perfect example of an old guy desperately trying to hang onto his youth. Kyle is such an expert in the field that everyone stops arguing.

And then it's Williams family sensation mark 2, Lavina Williams, born in 1979. Her mum reveals that she had always hoped Lavina would grow up to be an air hostess. It's nice to have goals.

Clearly Lavina has been raiding Reigan Derry's leftover wardrobe again, as she's wearing another disco milkmaid outfit. This time it's a camel number with a blakc satin ribbon lace up front. There's so much cleavage on show we're in serious danger of losing the judges and half the front row down her top, but fortunately she launches into the Bee Gees' Too Much Heaven and we can all relax. As always, she's fabulous. "You and me boy got a highway to the sky" she sings, pointing at her boyfriend sitting in the audience in his plastic Adidas tracksuit. "A highway? Awesome, I just put new suspension on the Skyline, sick!"

Holden says she was spectacularly good, and admits that at times during her performance he felt like Diana Ross. Then he screams "You took me so cloooooose!!!!" before moaning and falling off his chair. Silence. Tumbleweed. Marcia says she is beyond beautiful. She says Lavina is OK looking too. Kyle says sure she can sing, but her tatts are ugly. No one gives a shit what he thinks. Lavina for President.

And finally, we wrap up the evening (thank god) with Aussie bogan sensation, Chris Murphy, with a 1976 Eagles hit, Life in the Fast Lane. He jogs on stage like Jack Black in a black cowboy shirt with white stitching and black pants. He looks like a stagehand in one of those amateur theatre troupes that tours schools doing moralistic plays about smoking and bullying.

It's a perfect song choice for him, and he's clearly excited about - dashing about the stage and pulling faces. He's like an ADD kid who's forgotten to take his Ritalin, running over to the band, forgetting what he's there for, pretend kicking the drummer and running back on stage screaming "OWWWWWWWW!". Then he finishes by running almost completely off stage and jumping. Then he thanks the band and is censored by an inordinately long bleep noise, which I hope means that he said something like "I'D LIKE TO THANK THE MOTHERFUCKING BASTARDS IN THIS SHIT HOT C*NT OF A BAND, YEAH!" It's all so very rock.

Holden says he's a talented bastard. He says Chris is pretty talented too. (YES! Same joke twice in one entry! Snaps to me!) Marcia says it was one of the most exciting performances she's seen in that room. She neglects to mention what sort of performances she's seen in OTHER rooms. Kyle says he's consistently great but he needs to remove the "Jane Fonda elements" from his performance. So what - no more legwarmers and headbands? But they stop his ankles getting cold, you bastard!

I'm guessing it could be the Irishman's time to say "cheerio".