Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Rick GAY Martin (no. 1 in the great missed headline opportunities of 2010)

The showbiz world was rocked this week with news that some people actually thought Ricky Martin was straight. Ricky may have been in the closet, but it was a Perspex one, back lit with throbbing disco lights and several naked gyrating oiled men. The Puerto Rican love god, famous in the nineties for his orange face, first found fame with his cross over hits “She Bangs” and “Livin’ La Vida Loca”. I know this isn’t a “fashionable” thing to say but I genuinely think that Rickster might be the one gay man in history who may have actually, genuinely, just not met the right woman.

From his song lyrics alone the ladies he did try to find love with were a rum crowd indeed. Hanging out in their “leather and lace”? Not drinking the water, making him order French champagne? Apart from the fact since all champagne by its very definition comes from that area of France so “French” is an unnecessary specification, they were all obviously high maintenance minxes indeed. If only he had written a song about a girl who maybe wasn’t living a “vida” quite so “loca” but was happy with a Bacardi Breezer things could have been so different.

While it did take him a long time to open up about his personal life, even denying it outright in interviews, it’s understandable considering his sexuality was a huge part of his appeal. In show business being gay doesn’t necessarily pay. “Will and Grace” the much trumpeted pink sitcom managed to make it to at least series nine without any of their gay characters getting so much a kiss let alone a fumble in the jungle. Hollywood might have made several films with gay characters but there’s as much chance as George W Bush playing a confused cowboy as an openly gay actor. In pop, the gay trajectory is one respectable hit, a few reality TV show appearances and then it’s cameos in “Grease” from there on.

Meanwhile probably wishing that she was a lesbian is everybody’s favourite at least I’m not her; Peaches Geldof. Walking proof money can’t buy happiness, has been dropped by “Ultimo” underwear chain after images surfaced of the blonde naked and looking like an extra from “Trainspotting- the Porno”. It’s not the first time Peaches has been in this kind of trouble. Two years ago an ambulance was called to her central London flat and the model had allegedly to be resuscitated. Peaches claimed at the time that the emergency was caused by fumes from a home hair dye kit. This begs the question, what strength bleach must she have been using and did she know that you’re not supposed to inject it?

What I find troubling about Peaches is that she has been in the public eye for so long; it’s easy to forget she’s only twenty one. She’s been married, divorced, allegedly OD’d, embraced Scientology, will she have to invent an entirely new way of messing up her life to see her through to thirty? She’s like a child prodigy, but instead of being a genius at music or valuing antiques her gift if for really annoying people. An admirable skill but a sad one for an obviously vulnerable waif, who lost a mother to heroin, with a father who seems more interested in saving the world than his own family. It’s not like she’s unique, the grubby tired pictures of the jaded starlet are just the unseen flipside of the London scene smugly gazing from fashion magazine social pages. She just got caught.

Love Peter Andre? Adore Kerry Katona? No, they’re not the opening questions for a mental health worker about to section somebody; they’re the thinking behind OK’s current front page! What would happen if those two every found themselves with the same management team? A burgeoning romance perhaps?

The Faustian publication who have bought their souls to for a handful of Cheesy Wotsits seem intent on pushing the twosome together- my eyes- my eyes! It’s like a stud farm trying to mate their two most mentally unstable horses. In their defence, Katie Price’s new ITV3 show and entire life since the divorce seems to be one big long status update to remind us all HOW HAPPY SHE IS. Not bitter, or still obsessed with her ex! Like the not quite moved on ex girlfriend she seems to be using the entire popular press as her own personal Facebook page, furiously tagging all the best pictures of herself and writing on all their mutual friends walls about how BRILLIANT her new husband is and how she how she has NEVER known love like this. It would even be believable if Alex Reid didn’t look, in every single picture of the pair, like he is very quietly crapping himself.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

He's a phenonemon- that much is true!!!

Next time phenomenon you whinge that you’re being overlooked at work, spare a thought for Sandra Bullock. The actress has spent almost two decades making romantic comedies with Hugh Grant, a fate many wouldn’t even wish that on Ian Huntley.

Picture Sandy in her trailer waiting for her call on set so Hugh Grant can start gurning and spasming into her face again and imagine her ruefully picturing life if the films she was originally due to star in; “Shakespeare in Love” or “Million Dollar Baby” hadn’t collapsed in pre production. As she pratfell into her sixteenth door of the day, perhaps pausing to wipe some of Grant’s drool of her face, the forty five year old would probably pause to wonder if Gwyneth and Hilary had to do this BS anymore.

Recently it seemed as if Cinderella had finally made it to the being taken seriously ball, when she scooped this year’s best actress at the Oscars. Yet less than a week later, what are people talking about? “The Blind Side” a groundbreaking movie where a middle class couple adopt a homeless teenager and he steals their belongings and nicks their car. Don’t be silly, they learn life lessons. No, her husband cheating on her with a tattoo model.

It had to be this film didn’t? Not “Speed 2- Cruise Control” not “Practical Magic”. At least Jennifer had the dignity of losing her man to Angelina, Bullock’s rival looks like a Barbie doll left alone with a small child on a long car trip with a box of felt tips.

The previous Best Actress winner Kate Winslet also enjoyed the cruelty of your private life going tits up when you finally get the career you dreamed of. After being the youngest actress to be nominated six times, last year at last, she got her hands on the Oscar. Looking at her beaming face you would think that after years of being the bridesmaid this woman was finally enjoying her moment centre stage. However it since transpires that the bride’s groom was already beginning to look elsewhere and she has filed for divorce from her film director husband Sam Mendes.

Meanwhile poor old Nadine Coyle, aka the one that sings in Girls Aloud has wised up to the way of the celeb world by using her emaciated figure rather than her voice to kick start her solo career. How sickening must it be to be her at the moment? Attempting to be the break out star of Girls Aloud when you’re up against Cheryl must be like being the best student in your class while everybody’s making a big fuss of the special needs girl because she’s learned how to use a pencil.

Cheryl’s much trumpeted life performance on Radio 1’s Life Lounge was so lifeless and dull that there were reports of people randomly slipping into comas on hearing it. For years Nadine belted her way through the Girls Aloud back catalogue probably thinking just you wait bitches, when this gets stale, I’m out of here before you can say Robbie Williams without the obvious mental damage. Then just at the crucial moment, lil’ Cheryl get’s cheated on and Nadine is old news. She’s probably planning her own racist attack on a toilet attendant while we read this. Nadine has already over come intimidating obstacles, achieving sultriness and glamour with an accent even Irish people struggle with. Before Nadine the city of Derry was best known for Dana, eighties car bombs and confusing English people about whether you put a London before it, so really she should get some sort of grant.

Instead she’s in competition with somebody you legally need to but “brave” “fragile” or “lonely” in front of. Nadine saw a gap and went for “hungry”. And oh how hungry she looks, literally and metaphorically. She recently popped up on a bizarre ITV tribute to the late Stephen Gately that sat uncomfortably between and “An Audience with a Ghost” and a Tony Ferino special. It felt like we were invited to his funeral and out of a painful need to please, the lads tried to disguise their obvious grief with a bit of dancing. I’m sure Stephen did love entertainment but isn’t it a damning verdict on someone to suggest that the best way to sum up and celebrate their life is with a cheap Sunday night special on ITV featuring ad breaks, popstars plugging new albums and Christopher Biggens? It was so disturbing it actually made me fear death in a new way. Not because I suddenly realised the never ending vacuum of nothingness awaits us all but that conceivably, if I died possibly saving a small country or Cheryl Cole and if my parents raised enough money, Ronan Keating could make a strange tribute show for me too.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

The Rumble in Rangelagh

Sometimes life as London’s premier Irish community celebrity correspondent can be pretty jazzy. Regular lunches with the actress who plays Mary from “The Royal Family”, cock fighting with Terry Wogan, guiltily bundling a drunken Daniel O’ Donnell into an unsuspecting taxi after another lost night in Brixton; I won’t lie it has its moments.

But every now and then news drifts in about events unfurling in the old country of such awesomeness that you bitterly regret every lunch with Christine Beakley and every Queen’s shilling you sold your slowing warping accent for. I am of course talking about “The Rumble in Ranelagh” the celebrity scandal that is entertaining the Irish nation so much, that for a whole morning the entire country forgot they were going to have to sell their spare kidneys to Chinese business men for bread.

The scandal has everything; pissed former beauty queens, private jets and middle aged businessmen in public scuffles with angry TV presenter girlfriends. In other words it makes the whole Ashley and Cheryl saga seem as titillating as Deirdre and Ken from Coronation Street discussing whether they can get the trust back. This is celeb gossip Irish style and as such involves a lot of alcohol, violence and girls being really pissed off with each other.

The Princess Diana of the piece; Glenda Gilson, is the popular presenter of Expose, the flagship gossip programme for TV3, which is what a TV station would be if it mutated overnight from the free magazines given with weekend tabloids. The villain, former Miss Word, daughter of Chris de Burgh and all round Queen Bee of the Dublin Social scene Rosanna Davison. Rosanna represents the fin de siècle of the Celtic tiger, tanned to within an inch of her pores, hair straightened for a night out, get pissed ,vomit on her rugby boyfriends shoes, life off Daddy’s money- old school. Post economic collapse, RoRo and her friends wander confused around busted Dublin, like ghosts from the Court of Louis the Fourteenth stumbling through Revolutionary ravaged France wondering when the party is going to start again. In many ways our country let them down.

Glenda, despite a sixteen year age gap, had been secretly dating middle aged business man Johnny Ronan. The relationship had been a turbulent one with Johnny at one stage charmingly using that old fashioned device of a press statement to deny any relationship with the former model. It was during one of these rocky moments that Glenda, after a heavy night drinking watching the rugby drunkenly ordered him to come and meet her via some blurry text messages. Johnny arrived and the pair had a full screaming match on the street outside that culminated in Johnny grabbing Glenda’s head and Glenda attacking Johnny right in the rugby balls. To put this in perspective, it’s the equivalent of Fearne Cotton brawling with her secret lover Sir Alan Sugar outside a pub in Golders Green.

The next day, enter Rosanna, Glenda’s Best friend forever, to console the smarting millionaire business man over a few pints and a few fumbles if blurry tabloids pictures are to be believed. The new best friends decide on the spur of the moment to jet off on Ronan’s private jet for a few nights in Marrakesh. As you do. They had tried to get in touch with Rosanna’s boyfriend Wesley Quirke, heir to the Dr. Quirkey amusement arcade emporium but he unfortunately had his mobile turned off. When the pair returned days later, Rosanna was forced to issue a statement stressing her innocence and indignation on any smirch to her character.

The showdown was set for the following Friday’s “VIP” Style Awards where both The White Queen and Red Queen of the Irish social scene were nominated for most stylish Irish celebrity, an extremely competitive category in a country that boasts both Enya and Mrs. Doyle. However at the last minute Rosanna dramatically remembered a skiing trip that had been booked earlier and would make attending anything other than the red carpet part of the evening impossible. Why somebody would book a holiday on social event that justified their very existence was not explained. She also revealed she would be attending solo since as it was only a flying appearance there wasn’t much point in boyfriend Wes escorting her. I’m sure trust fund kid Wesley must have extreme demands on his time.

On the night- caluu, caley, wronged Glenda emerged and in a triumphant , teary, Aretha Franklin playing in the background way scooped the big award of the night, named most stylish Irish celebrity. A compliment indeed considering how famous the Irish are for their style. A sign that good women triumph in the end and in a world still reeling from the news that little Mark Owen is a trouser bandit, we need all the good news we can get.

Friday, 12 March 2010

A Day in my life

I was used to fame; a woman where I was temping freaked out when she recognised me from a brief appearance on Sky News. Like a pro I spent all morning putting her at ease and being as down to earth as possible thinking; this is how Robbie Williams must feel. It lasted till I completely jammed the photocopier and then the office Cinderalla swiftly became a pumpkin temp again. So when I went for an audition with a friend for Orange Mobile and it went well, I wasn’t that surprised when her agent asked to meet me. I had sailed through the audition and though I hadn’t quite counted my chickens, I had decided exactly how I was going to spend them. This agent was my ticket out of the admin slums and like a particularly stirring Alicia Keys video, nobody was standing in my way. Yes, it would mean cancelling a meeting with two friends arranged months ago, but hey, I was no Kelly or Michelle, Beyonce was going to the agent’s workshop.

I knew the score, it would be full of middleclass teenage girls with eating disorders and expensive tracksuits, I'd swing by, we'd exchange knowing glances and when the pleasantries were over, she'd flip open her contact book and I'd be in a Cadburys advert before you could say, Edinburgh completely paid for...

So after wandering around freezing and lost for about fifteen minutes, the greasy chips that I’d grabbed on the way from work slowly congealing in my tummy, I finally found the entrance to the school the classes were taking place in. Harrow wasn’t normally a place I associated with show business, but what did I know. The class was full of about thirty twenty somethings, the earnestness and concentration so powerful it was almost combustible. Actors- pah! I was a writer. I write their words. The agent who was running the class asked the newcomers to introduce themselves; their name and something they were really good at. Oh, Ok agent, you want to do this dance? Fine, let’s foxtrot.

Rob sprang forward, and declared he made a mean spag bol- laughter spinned through class, Tina announced she was a great pilates teacher- impressed ooohs reverberated through the room, Gráinne stepped forward and said her twitter updates had been really funny lately. Silence.

It was a successful drama group I quickly learnt. The classes improv group had just won a prestigious improv competition. Their devised piece was not only hysterical, she proudly revealed, there were moments where it was actually, pause, extremely, pause, moving.
But they weren’t ones to rest on past glories though, there were scripts to work on. A comedy script. Oh, I thought, this will be embarrassing, G- Dog is back in the game. But before we could read the scripts we had some thinking to do. “Words were nothing” the teacher explained, “Anybody can say a word. But what brings them to life?” “Emotion?” A nervous voice suggested? “Exactly” the teacher confirmed. “Comedy is all about emotion” I was still pretty sure it was words.

We split into groups to work on a scene and she then rated our efforts. Out of a choice of three, I came third. My smugness was now beginning to desert me. I could actually see it, outside the window having a fag and occasionally peering in and laughing at me.

Then the agent announced fantastic news. Somebody in the class had been shortlisted for the Orange indent! Who could it be?! How embarrassing for them I thought, I’ve been to one class and already I’ve exposed the futility of their ambition and I didn’t even want to be an actor. How bracing must this gust of reality be for them? For about three seconds I felt like Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” a secret Orange mobile indent superstar undercover in their midst.

Then step forward Sonya, a rambling teenage Jade Goody tribute act who described how she nailed the audition by revealing how much she hated Tinkerbell from Peter Pan. JM Barries metaphor for infant mortality was exposed as nothing but a common hoe. “I bet she was with all them Lost Boys” she angrily declared, like a contestant on lost Edwardian version of Jeremy Kyle. “Isn’t she wonderful?” the agent calmly stated looking serenely around the sea of almost completely nodding faces. “How can we learn from Sonya’s energy how we can get that audition recall too?” I suddenly had a vision of Edinburgh but instead Sonya was now doing my show about how Alice in Wonderland was definitely a prostitute. It got quite good reviews and there were suggestions of a brief Soho theatre run.

The class was £7 and it took me two hours to get home. When I finally made it into my kitchen I realised the horrible stench that I had smelled all day was in fact the sole of my shoe slowly rotting. That is all.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

No, there is no mention of Mark Owen, I am still too traumatised to discuss that man.

There are some journeys in life that are just too scary to be navigated first hand; moon travel, night buses and romantic flings with Peter Andre. What Peter professional widow Andre? The man who spent the past year looking sad in photo shoots in Starbucks, ruefully wondering if he’ll ever find love again? The man who mentions his celibacy in every single interview? “What do you think of the war in Iraq Pete?” “No, nothing, not even a cuddle since Katie” Surely he doesn’t think that his core market of prepubescent girls and their HRT addled mothers would begrudge him a bit of happiness, even if it is with a blonde former glamour model? I mean with him it is all about the music.

Yet unbeknownst to everybody it transpires old King Umpa Lumpa himself has been getting some giggy all along. Lucky old Maddy Ford met the pop icon at that notorious celeb lair, a children’s birthday party. Yes we are through the looking glass people into the insania world of the mysterious man himself. Have you ever dared to wonder, what smooth line of honey he’d use to lure you into his world of v necked t shirt heaven? Wonder no more, Maddy’s taken one for the team. “He whispered into my neck “I think you are gorgeous”. Wow, who knew he had such away with words? Well anyone who’s read the lyrics on his CD sleeve notes you could justifiably reply.

Despite enjoying the benefits of being in a relationship with Maddy for over six months, he repeatedly questioned whether he was “ready” for one. That old chestnut, haven’t Hallmark noticed a gap in the market with that one? They could stock them in card shops beside “Happy Birthday- I love you but I’m not in love with you! Enjoy your special day!”She also recalls how a week after telling Peter about her mother’s traumatic early death, he invited her to an event and suggested she bring her Mum along. When he did finally dump her, scared that it was about to become public, he released a press statement lamenting his terrible taste in women, saying “I sure know how to pick them”. Oh Maddy, you’re better off without him- isn’t Dane Bowers single?

What she needs is a real man. Step forward Colin Farrell, a presenter at last week’s Oscars. Colin found fame in Hollywood as a gifted actor, charismatic party boy and doe eyed pin up, but mainly for knocking boots with Britney Spears. His bad boy reputation is interesting considering he went to private school, auditioned for Boyzone and is from Stillorgan, a middle class suburb of South Dublin famed for having a lovely shopping centre and a large bowling alley. For Irish people any area they associate with trips for the first communion is hardly The Projects. In the UK, bowling alleys equal Kerry Katona country, in Ireland they can actually add to your property value.

Despite this slightly odd pose, like most Irish people, I have a soft spot for the man. Mainly because for the next twenty years , no matter what giddy heights of celebrity he climbs, whether he’s kissing Angelina Jolie or riffing with Will Smith, some Irish person will nudge the person beside them and sneer “sure he was in Ballykissangel!” thus puncturing the scene of any glamour or fantasy.. Irish actresses have never fared as well in the city of dreams, mainly because as a race, we’re best known for our personalities. The nearest we had to International glamour was Andrea Corr but in her twenties her Dundalk accent was so strong it sounded like a donkey being violently drowned. Ireland likes to get excited about the slightest claim to Hollywood that it can.RTE is the only news channel that will report an Irish sweep at the awards because Johnny from DIT had a week’s work experience on “The Hurt Locker” .They’ll then go live to Johnny’s mother’s kitchen where she’ll tell Joe Duffy how happy but completely unsurprised she is because he was always very artistic.

The Oscar’s lived up the glamour of the occasion. Then the very next day, former Hollywood golden boy Corey Haim, went to bed with the symptoms of a bad flu, his Mum called the ambulance and by the time he brought him to the hospital the thirty eight year old Lost Boy star was dead from an assumed accidental drug overdose. I don’t know what it would be like to be famous as a child, to be offered drugs as a teenager every time I felt insecure, depressed or rubbish. I don’t know what effect being “friends” with Michael Jackson as a fifteen year ole would have on me or how I’d deal with being washed at by my mid twenties. Luckily I didn’t have to. Now we only have one Corey left. Hollywood is horrible.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Come on gay celebrity couples- get your finger out!

If the last week has thought us anything, it’s that killer whales don’t make great pets, you wouldn’t like prime ministers when they’re angry and heterosexual couples are rubbish.
With Newcastle’s Queen finally exporting Cole, married footballers rutting like shell shocked soldiers on shore leave and the most boring couple in history Tess and Vernon barely surviving the dullest sex scandal in modern times ( I like ur T*ts cocker :)) it seems our only hope lies in the gays.

Elton John and David Furnish are the last proper celebrity romance still standing. I’m sick of reading about boring breeders and their petty problems, in this modern age of civil partnership isn’t time we had our first great gay sex scandal? If Elton ever,god forbid, cheated on Furnish the scandal would be such a glamorous, perfectly dressed, directed by Tom Ford, spectacular involving golden yachts, Venetian masked balls, a lost Egyptian prince and the entire cast of “Glee” that it would make Rebecca Loos and David Beckham’s affair as sexy as Frank Butcher and Pat getting frisky on Aldi gin.

Awed by its glittering magnificence and not a little turned on, Furnish would be forced to ruefully ruffle Elton’s wig and warn him never to do it again. Not for him being photographed sobbing in a tracksuit, it’d be lunch with Liz Hurley and a happy reunion before you could say “Let’s have Pamela Anderson over for vol au vents?” They’d then celebrate the whole scandal with a massive big party in the style of Louis the Sun King.

Speaking of divas, Lily Allen is threatening to quit pop stardom to open her own designer clothes rental shop. How will pop survive without its Samuel Pepys commentating on the urban issues of the day? Without her there’s only N-Dubz performing their West Side story style plays to give us advice on modern relationships. I really want to like Ms. Allen but could do without her limp wristed, shoulders hunched, waddle on stage as she doesn’t even try at being as successful as she is. “I guess I’ll perform at the Brits” she seems to shrug, “But it will delay me from my party with Alexa and your one from Popworld”. Compare her studied ambivalence with the eye boggling desperation of Lady Gaga and maybe she is better suited to needlework.

She has started a war of tweets with Courtney Love after the pair fell out over dresses for the Brits. Poor Courtney is not only turning into a Spitting Image puppet of herself but has lost custody of the daughter she had with Kurt Cobain. How rubbish of a mother do you have to be to lose custody of a teenager? Babies, toddlers, heck, who hasn’t accidently dropped one of those or left them on the bus but being such a mess your seventeen year old daughter is fed up of you takes some doing.

At least Kurt never had to see his Nancy Spungen become Joan Rivers. It’s always hard to watch your heroes wane but it’s downright twisted to see them reach their dotage and end up being patronised by Jeremy Clarkson. Nelson Mandela survived twenty seven years in prison but faced his toughest challenge yet when forced to make small talk with the Top Gear presenter. I think most of us would prefer breaking bad news to Winnie over that. Despite haven once written an article slamming the erection of a statute in his honour and comparing his revolutionary roots with Al Qaeda, the presenter gushed about meeting the former president. Hi s question to the ninety one year old Nobel Prize winner? Had he ever been to a lap dancing club? He’s crazy! I’m glad my taxes pay for those jeans! Maybe we should be glad if he didn’t ask if the end of apartheid was delayed by women drivers.

Mandela was apparently confused as to who Clarkson actually was and mistook him for an astronaut. Never mind, maybe they just couldn’t get “Top Gear” on Robbin Island. Be honest, which image is more painful- the idea that Mandela is losing his marbles or the gruesome alternative where he instantly recognised Clarkson, begged for a spot on “Top Gear” and ended up beating Jay K’s lap record? Me too and no, that doesn’t make you a “bad” person.
I think they should use Mandela’s confusion as inspiration for their next series. They could attempt to send Richard Hammond into space with hilarious consequences. It would be great, the bid could be launched at tax payers’ expense, Rich could suffer unnecessary, pointless brain injuries, waste NHS resources and fire services time, put his family through their worst nightmare and come out at the end a national hero, a top selling author and even more smugger than when he first attempted the selfish reckless immature stunt in the first place.

We’ve had monkeys in space, so why not a hamster?