Grease The School Musical Review: Tell Me About It, Dud!
GREASE THE SCHOOL MUSICAL: Sunday 30th August, Sky1, 7pm Alert Me
We’re not sure but we’re almost convinced that Duncan James woke up one morning and asked his magic mirror, ‘How can I look more smug and just generally self satisfied?’
If you saw the first version of this show, in which the musical in question was Hairspray and the presenter was Denise Van Outen, then you know it’s no X Factor.
The Blue singer has scoured the country looking for schools to participate in a West End version of Grease. The kids need to be actors, dancers and singers and while it wasn’t technically a requirement, they need to be fairly pleasant to look at.
Duncan From Blue will be helped by vocal coach and part time Loose Woman, Zoe Tyler, as well as choreographer Stacey Haines. While they may be nice enough to watch on telly, they’re probably not the best people for the job and were most likely hired because they weren’t busy actually being vocal coaches and choreographers.
While Duncan has been on the West End stage, albeit in the ‘we’ll take anyone’ Chicago, he probably got the presenting job because lots of teenage girls hadn’t heard the news that Dunc swings both ways.
Pimply faced with unbroken voices; the search for West End stars in British schools may prove to be a fruitless enterprise but it is mildly entertaining in the process.
Watching these desperate kids ‘sing’ for the judges is more than a wee bit cringeworthy and feels a little like watching videos of your own school plays. You just know that these kids will live to regret the decision to attempt to perform in front of cameras.
The show is utterly formulaic with lots of shots of Duncan From Blue trying to look pensive but instead looking endlessly punchable.
In terms of talent searches, there are much better out there and this isn’t a patch on an older version of this format, Musicality, where genuinely talented adults were put through their paces. Putting kids through the torture of being in the toughest, most judgemental and demanding industries out there is almost cruel. And a bit funny.
If you’ve ever been to a child’s school play then I wouldn’t bother with this. Unless you’re a stage parent, then you can judge them to your heart’s content.