Canadian Idol 06/01 – Not Exactly A Whole New World
In the great tradition of Canadian television, any Canadian show in which more than 14 people tuned in, guarantees additional seasons. In the country where Train 48 is considered a ‘hit’, I’d say that we’ll be watching Canadian Idols for the next 50 years. So excuse me if I wasn’t breathless with anticipation as host Ben Mulroney, (son of the much-hated former Prime Minister, Brian) counted down from 10 to open the show. What was that about?
Blander than bland Ben has returned this year as host, along with judges Farley Flex, Sass Jordan, Jake Gold and Zack Werner. Jon Dore has also returned as special correspondent, which roughly translates to ‘jackass who runs around like he’s had too much sugar’. Sadly, Tanya Kim has not returned. No worries, Tanya can still be seen daily on ETalk Daily where she continues to work hard at eliminating any and all personality in order to one day be the heir apparent to Ben Mulroney himself.
Inferiority Complexes Abound
Each of the judges explains what we can expect to see from them this year. Farley says he’s looking for emotional performances this year. Taking a page out of Simon’s book, Zack explains he’s concerned with the ‘it’ factor as well as solid vocal performances. Sass promises to be less forgiving, no doubt desperately trying to avoid comparisons with that raving nutjob Paula Abdul. Jake makes a strong play for Zack’s job as token ‘jerk judge’ when he promises to be harsher with the contestants. Be careful what you wish for Jake, you might find yourself slapped down by Simon at World Idol 2 if you can’t deliver.
Ottawa – City of Chokers
I kid, Ottawa is a lovely city. Too bad their hockey team has severe psychological issues when playing Toronto each year in the playoffs.
This year, the auditioning begins in Ottawa, capital city of Canada. The same city that the first Canadian Idol, Ryan Malcolm auditioned in last year. And look, here he is now to inspire the masses. Too bad he chose to wear an old, worn ‘Atari’ shirt, reinforcing the stereotype that Canadian stars make squat unless they find success stateside. You want these kids to think there is a good reason to be the Canadian Idol, Ryan.
The auditions get off to a rocky start. Lackluster performers after lackluster performers come before the judges and fail to impress. Farley has his first of two excellent burns of the night when he tells a clueless Rick, (who chooses to sing Ryan Malcolm’s Something More) that he’d love to design a machine that would allow him to hear what the performers hear when they sing. Me too Farley, me too.
In addition to the horrible performances, it seems as if the Ottawa hopefuls have decided to sing the same song. A Whole New World. Over and over and over again. I don’t think one person sang it well. Anna gets points for originality however, choosing to sing White Christmas. Unfortunately, she didn’t sing it well and failed to advance.
Not all were a disappointment. Serge, a big guy in a trucker hat, gave a solid performance of Now and Forever and earned a ticket to Toronto. So did Anmary, an electrician from Quebec with her version of Crying.
While most of those who auditioned in Ottawa were civil upon their rejection, there were a few that didn’t like to be told no. Krista Allen was politely told that she lacked sincerity by Jake as she smiled and nodded. Upon exiting, she lapsed into a tirade about how wrong they were about her and inviting them to kiss her ass. I suppose she felt she was being genuine, but picked the wrong moments. I’m sure that attitude would have won them over for sure, Krista.
The final competitor in Ottawa, Andrea Gal made a better impression, however, with a great performance and winning a ticket to Toronto. If you’re thinking the same thing happened last year in St. John’s, you’re right, but no, Andrea didn’t reduce the judges to tears. All in all, 22 Gold Tickets were given out in Ottawa.
Toronto – City of Egos
Thousands of Idol hopefuls descend upon Canada’s biggest city and according to Ben, the World’s Greatest Entertainment Centre, Skydome. Have you been to Skydome lately? It’s not so great anymore. As in Ottawa, the performers are treated to a surprise appearance, this time from World Idol, Norway’s Kurt Nilsen. And if that weren’t treat enough, Jon has a little fun with the Jumbotron and addresses his would-be minions. Oh well, at least Jon thought it was fun.
The talent in Toronto isn’t much better. Among the freaks that perform is Atm, who sings an absolutely dreadful version of Rhinestone Cowboy, despite the argument that every version of Rhinestone Cowboy is dreadful.
Daniel, a singer from Montreal, seeks out Jon and asks him to act as his family for him and be there after the audition, as he has no one there to support him. Jon accepts and is thrilled when his ‘little brother’ wins a Gold Ticket, even carrying the gag further by saying hello to ‘maman’ in a phone call. It was more charming than it probably sounds.
Torontonians have a reputation for being somewhat arrogant and self-involved and fortunately some of the performers were happy to oblige. Misty sang First Cut is the Deepest and was stunned that the judges didn’t think she was wonderful. In fact, it turns out that every person that has EVER heard Misty sing thinks she’s great. She dismisses the male judges’ opinions and states she only cares about Sass’s opinion, as Sass, like Misty, is a performer. Sass echoes the sentiment that Misty, in fact, is not great. Imagine that, the only four people to not think she’s a great singer being the stumbling blocks to becoming the Canadian Idol. Oh, the injustice of it all.
There were a few notable auditions in Toronto though. Amy, a perma-perky blonde from London selected a Little Mermaid song from her repertoire. It worked and earned her a gold ticket. *giggle*
Also earning gold tickets were Joshua, who slept in his car and sang Where The Streets Have No Name and farm boy Brock, who practices singing to his audience of livestock. I’m sure this is the same audience that Mindy sings to. Everyone loved Brock but Jake, who thought he sucked. Farley, in his second great moment of the night, suggested Jake personally hand Brock his gold ticket to Toronto.
Oh Sure, Take The Fun Out of Laughing At Horrible Singers
As the show winds to an end, Ben takes the opportunity to observe the thousands of Idol hopefuls that are sent home empty handed. Most of the hopefuls are accompanied by their supportive and equally hopeful parents. To the strains of Jann Arden’s Good Mother the show closes with a montage of the performers and their parents.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to call my mother.