It is there, contagious as it is; Singapore is looking for its idol now as well. After The Pop Idol has stormed through Europe and the US, it was Singapore’s turn now. I mean, not that I have something against this, because I?ve seen these kinds of shows numerous times. I guess it all started way back when I watched Henny Huisman’s playback show when I was a kid. Reality TV in its infant stage I guess.
The hunt for Singapore Idol had it?s good and it?s bad sides for me. Let?s start with the good sides. It was excellent to see so many people from all walks of life, giving it their best shots. People didn?t even let their disabilities, mute, deaf or cripple hinder them. The most touching was this guy who just lost his father, and then sang so awfully well, his voice full of emotions and clarity, that not only tears welled up in his eyes, but I guess in many viewers eyes as well (yeah yeah, had big-time swallowing to do as well, but held back my tears, honest :p)
Some of the bad and evil came up as well. Unfortunately the judges are typical china-men, who believe that they rule the earth. They might be celebrities, who are looked up to in Singapore, but it doesn?t mean that they can just tell people to ?Get Out!? after they sang their song or telling contestants, ‘You are nothing!’ and ‘I am beginning to hate you’. Worse even: apparently Mediacorp was so proud of the quotes of especially Mr Dick Lee and Mr Ben Lim, that the most dreadful, inhumane and demolishing quotes were broadcasted over and over again as teasers during the commercial breaks. Probably these judges themselves would even like to forget that they have ever even given these kinds of remarks to another human being, but they weren’t allowed to.
Okay, I?m not trying to say that I?m a saint and I would also not like to sound too prudish, but my entire point is that if you give criticism or feedback, it can be given in a constructive and honest way. However, some remarks were uncalled for and destructive. Perhaps they were trying too hard to be Simon Cowell, but the difference is that Simon his feedback, while quite harsh, was most of the times constructive and honest: ‘Give up your hope of ever singing’ or ‘that was horrible’ are examples of his feedback. Somebody could be hopeless in singing and yet find his vocation elsewhere. ‘You are nothing!’ is an immature and arrogant way of putting down another human being.
Even when you would consider Singapore Idol (and the joke around it?s judges) from an entertainment point of view (which Mediacorp would probably defend itself with), this panel is a real disaster. So there was this funny guy, the banana man, he had a banana mask on when he was doing his song and dance. But instead of hearing him out and asking him to do several songs for the entertainment and x-factor, he was asked to take of his mask or go. Well, that?s one way to break entertainment and turning it into harshness again.
Anyway, my overall impression of the show is that Mediacorp just hasn?t pulled it off, and brought a bad copy to the public in Singapore. Besides feeling sorry for Douglas Oliviera for sitting next to such incompetent asses, the judges’ actions undermine everything that the Singapore government has tried to achieve in their courtesy campaigns.