Sunday, May 31, 2009

Britain's Got Talent, but does it have taste?

Full disclosure time, I was pulling for Susan Boyle! I was sold the second I saw her breakout YouTube video on Workingclass Conservative's blog. Her story was so compelling. She was a virtual unknown and clearly not part of the in crowd. When she took the stage, everyone from the judges to the audience were ready to dismiss her, because she did not meet all the important superficial criteria of today. Within seconds of her first notes, everyone was eating a giant piece of humble pie, because Susan had the chops! Substance triumphed over form!

Sadly, form would have its way over substance once again. For the 2009 winner of Britain's Got Talent, Britain chose the group Diversity. Not to take anything away from Diversity, their little Transformers routine is pretty slick. But for anyone who rides the NYC subways regularly, acts like theirs are a dime a dozen and done on crowded platforms during rush hour too!

Perhaps it was Susan's failure to sing something new for her final performance, or maybe it was all that nonsense about her f-bomb. Whatever the case maybe, she was head and shoulders above the rest (bare-bellied Greek dancers and crying kids, oh please).

The bright side to all of this, is that Susan Boyle will be bigger in defeat than Diversity will be in victory. Much like Clay Aikens, she will be in hot demand long after everyone has forgotten who Diversity was. By the way, has anyone seen Ruben Studdard?


JMK said...

I have to be honest about this Clifton.

I too loved Boyle's initial triumph amidst millions of doubters, but she did a second show-tune for her next song (showing little range) and ended using the first song she sang, from Les Miserables, while the dance troops showed a lot more originality (in my view) by creating new material, learning it on short notice and executing it with incredible precision.

In the end, I too would've given the nod to Diversity (despite my having no affinity for that cutesy and very PC name)...they were incedibly precise.

The leader/spokesman for the group is a physics major at a London College and he came across as a decent, humble fellow, which is rare today, especially in that business, where shameless self-promotion and empty boastfulness is the rule rather than the exception.

I know it all comes down to a matter of taste, but I think, even though I was slanted in Susan Boyle's favor at the start, as I LOVED her underdog story, that Diversity did pull it off with three consecutive, unique and very creative performances.

Susan Boyle's subsequent performaces never came close to generating the electricity that her inital one did.

That may be unfair, given how awesome that first one was, but that's how I saw it...

Clifton B said...


Fair enough assessment.

Perhaps I am just jaded, like I stated in the post, I have seen acts like Diversity's countless times on the streets and subways of NYC. They are good but hardly unique.

JMK said...

Well, that's an interesting perspective. I know I judged Susan Boyle harshly, in that nothing could possibly top that first act.

I was hoping for a little more range from he, but her talent is a undeniable, but I also admired Diversity's skill set and their spokesman's humility....sadly, a unique character trait now-a-days.

Clifton B said...


Don't sweat judging Boyle, she has major talent and thus people expect major thing from her.

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