I used to love Harry Hill’s TV Burp. When it first started, it was a clever way of finding jokes in popular television. He’d say things like “I’ve noticed Phil Mitchell has been gradually deflating.” and then cut to clips of Phil Mitchell repeatedly sighing. It was the sort of humour that Mike and I do, so I enjoyed it. But then they started throwing in recurring jokes and characters, like Wagbo (a cross between Wagner, a contestant on X Factor, and Susan Boyle, a contestant on Britain’s Got Talent) and they seemed less focussed on finding funny jokes in TV, so I went off it. But this isn’t a TV Burp review, this is a New Stars in Their Eyes Review. I saw ‘new’ because they’ve brought back the original show with a new host. After the way TV Burp panned out, I was more than a little dubious when they announced Harry Hill as the host of the revived show. But was I right to worry? More on that later.
The show opened with a short joke featuring… Matthew Kelly! Yes, the legendary presenter is back, even if it is only for a brief cameo. He walked through the smoke filled door and reemerged in traditional style as Harry Hill. This was a nice little nod to Matthew Kelly, like he was handing it over.
So, let’s go to the singers. The first was a woman who did Kylie Minogue, she wasn’t too bad. Then there was a husband and wife duo who decided to do the Everly Brothers. A bit of an odd choice, but they were quite good and the woman did surprisingly well as a man. Then there was a really annoying girl who did Rihanna. She sounded nothing like her and was a really bad singer. Then came a man who did Eminem. He was pretty good. Didn’t sound much like Eminem, but his rapping was just as good as the others’ singing. Finally there was a woman as Christina Aguilera. I didn’t know the song she sung, but she sung it well. The final contestant was the best singer of the bunch, and unsurprisingly she won and will go on to sing in the not-live final, which Harry took great pleasure in reminding us was ‘not live’.
So, the sining was as bad as it always was, but what of the rest of the format? They kept the VTs in, but instead of the person talking briefly about themselves and how they discovered the artist they were going to impersonate, it was just a montage of stupid jokes. The worst was the Rihanna girl’s one, which just kept going on and on about Slough, with crap jokes and everyone being silly, making me immediately hate everyone from Slough. There was also the husband and wife duo, whose VT mainly served as a way of showing how much they disliked their sister-in-law. This annoyed me, as the VTs ended up just providing evidence for you to hate the person before we’d even met them, instead of introducing the person and the act.
So, back to Harry. Unfortunately, he ruined the whole show for me. Well, maybe not him, but rather whoever wrote the show. Why? Because they added loads of jokes and sketches in that weren’t even that funny. The first lady – the Kylie one – worked as a dog groomer. Harry encouraged her to tell an anecdote about her starting off grooming dogs in the back of a van. It then cut to a skit of Harry grooming a toy dog in the back of a van.
This was unnecessary, not that funny and just added unnecessary time onto the show. I was watching with Mike and my mother, and not one of us laughed. I spoked to my Nan and Grandad after the show and they were just as irritated by it. Harry Hill is a good comedian, but his style isn’t to everybody’s liking, and when it’s crowbarred into decent shows it doesn’t work. He wasn’t really much of a host, it was more about the silly jokes. Matthew Kelly was a superb host. I met him a few years back, lovely bloke. They should have brought him back, and a lot of people on Twitter seem to agree.
On top of this, my worst fear was realised, as Harry brought back at least two recurring characters from TV Burp: Brian (who I think was in Big Brother or something) and a woman who looked vaguely like Adele playing Adele. The woman who plays Adele is called Jenna Boyd. You can see her website here and find her on Twitter here. Also, see if you can spot her in the background of Les Miserables here. Anyway, the show doesn’t need these characters! They’re not funny, I don’t know why that Brian guy is even in it!
Overall I was disappointed. While it’s nice to have a classic show back – which shows that they can’t make anything good anymore so they’re bringing back the old stuff – Harry Hill and the writers have ruined it to the point that I won’t be watching any more episodes, which is a shame. I doubt this will get another series, with lots of people sharing their disapproval on social media.
I asked Mike to lend a few words to this review, so here’s what he thought:
“I was looking forward to seeing how he does as a host, and it turns out he didn’t even try to be a host, he just went through scripted sketches with guests, and the music wasn’t important. You can see why they added his name to the title. With Matthew Kelly, and even Cat Deely, it was “Tell us about yourself, tell us about who you’re going to be.” while the new one is “Right, TV Burp is cancelled, so let’s just make this that.”
Our rating: (1 / 5)