TV: Eurovision 2014 Live Commentary

“Eurovision! Eurovision! Eurovision! Are you ready?!”

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20:00

Eurovision begins.

20:02

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Featuring a short video by Emily, the previous winner. Showing different ways of travelling to the Eurovision set.

20:04

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Dancing with the competing flags.

20:07

Introduction of all the eurovision entrants.

20:11

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Introduction of the hosts. More than 18 million people are watching this show, including those outside Europe.

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Musings: Avoiding Britain’s Got Talent

“Change channels”

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(Dancing for a YES)

I don’t usually publicly announce that I’m boycotting, or avoiding things, because usually I change my mind and have to explain why I reverted. However, in this case, I will explain why I have been avoiding Britain’s Got Talent for the past couple of years, and why after seeing a snatch of it now, I’m glad I don’t keep up with it anymore.

Britain’s Got Talent is a big feature of Saturday evenings, and is watched by millions of people all over the country. Yet, it’s the judges, not the acts, that are putting on the biggest show.

I thought it was about finding an entertaining act for the Queen? Or even, something worth £250,000?! Wasn’t that the point? Surely the judges can get past the their huge egos, of which no-one’s is bigger than Simon Cowell‘s.

When dance group Cartel auditioned in tonight’s show, one of the members was being judges far more harshly based on his looks and age. Jamie, pictured above on the far left, is in his late 20’s, and his teammates are in their teens. Simon see a terrible error in letting an older dancer perform with younger ones.

Does Jamie‘s age affect his performance? Not at all. He is as slick and proficient at dancing as any of those other performers, but was singled out because he is older. Apart from being incredibly rude, this is being ageist. Do I have to watch Simon’s opinions rule over television? Absolutely not, I will change the channel.

Hopefully in the future, there will be an end to over-produced audition-based shows, with egoistic judges, and auditions with sob-stories. My fingers are crossed for a fresh wave of entertainment, on new platforms.

See Cartel’s audition below:

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TV: BBC Horrible Histories Series 1-5 DVD Box Set (UK Edition)

“The best thing since cave-men!”

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Studio: BBC

Genre: Comedy, Historical, Age: 5+

Released: October 2013  (UK version)

Horrible Histories, for those that don’t know, are an insanely popular series of factual-comedic books made for children. They are pretty old, considering I read them in school, and are filled with facts that seem ridiculous, but are actually true. There have been many productions based off the books, from broadway shows, to animated series, but the 2009 series is easily the best one, being made for all age groups, not just children.

The whole box set is around 30 hours long, and includes all episodes from the five series. The first 12 episodes of each series has sketches, fake historical ads, historical parodies of modern-day reality and chat shows, songs, and quizes. Episode 13, the last of every series, has a compilation of the best songs from the series, and a few extended sketches.

The series groups ancient and modern history into categories titled like Rotten Romans, Awful Egyptians, and Terrible Tudors. Although the show starts off with mainly British related history, it does branch out into significant American and some European history.

Each member of the main cast plays a plethora of characters. As time grows on, you can immediately recognise them and their acting style, and the familiarity makes the comedy even more hilarious.

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(Featuring Ancient Beauty Tips from our experts)

I personally find it impossible to pick a favourite person from the cast, because even when they are not in the starring role, they bring a lot of charm and charisma to the sketch, and are great in their supporting roles.

Each cast member has plays many characters, but my favourite roles are Jim’s Shouty Man, Matt’s King Charles II of England, Simon’s Robert Dudley, Martha’s Queen Elizabeth I of England, Larry’s Bob Hale, and Ben’s King Henry VIII of England.

More information and videos below:

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Book: Indian 100 Everyday Recipes

“Trying to delay starvation…”

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Genre:Cooking, Non-Fiction, Age: All ages

Following on from the great successes I had with the Student Cookbook (a.k.a. Cooking for Dummies) I purchased the Indian version. This is a step-up from the easy, one-pot recipes that I was used to. Anyone wanting to try this book should prepare for a at least a dozen different ingredients, and varying preparation times for each stage.

I have never been that great of a cook, and although the recipes were coaching me through the steps, it felt like an age until I actually produced something edible.

More information and pictures below:

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Purchased: Japanese for Busy People Book I

“Learning languages.. yikes!”

Author: Japanese Language Teaching

Genre: Language, Non-Fiction, Age: All ages

I’ve been struggling to learn Japanese for a while. There seem to be a lot of wanna-be-guru tutorials online, but nothing beats a good, old-fashioned language book.

This is Japanese for Busy People, one of the most commonly used Japanese learning books on the market right now.

This book, version 3 of Book I, covers all the basics that you’ll ever need. I’ve actually made it quite far into the book cause I was testing learning from some sample chapters and it’s really easy to learn and understand from.

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Purchased: Student Cookbook 100 Everyday Recipes

“I need to learn this!”

Genre:Cooking, Non-Fiction, Age: All ages

The chances of me doing a review on this book are really slim, but I just wanted to show off my latest acquisition which is pretty much guaranteed not to disappoint!

Obviously, it’s filled with 100 recipes, but more importantly, these recipes are idiot-proof, require minimal cooking and can be made by me! Truly joyous indeed.

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