Helen Razer’s Reality Recap : The Voice & MasterChef
Yesterday, eh? Apparently it contained news and things-in the-actual-world. All of which came to nothing by 7pm at which hour (a) the first Pressure Test of MasterChef Season 4 was already underway and (b) rumours were rampant that Delta had done something new to her hair.
If you missed the sizzling reality-on-reality action that only happens when two networks offer a hot property simultaneously, well, I feel bad for you son. Personally, I got 99 problems but missing an opportunity to maniacally switch between channels and scream at my television ain’t one.
Let’s take a look together at last night’s abuse. I shall not bother with a blow-by-blow recap as these are already all over the internet. We shall focus instead on style and set design.
Many of us live and die by Mr M Preston’s fashion wisdom and we were pleased to learn that the Anna Wintour of food criticism did not disappoint last night as he continued riffing on this season’s “What if a pimp from the 1970s was dressed by Laura Ashley?” theme. Heaven.
Perhaps if a pimp from the 1970s was asked to devise an elimination challenge for three people newly charged with making the “least impressive sandwich” it would be this: ask them to replicate the devilishly clever desserts of Peter “Snow Egg” Gilmore.
Despite showing little promise in the handling of butter knives, Lydia, Wade and TK set about making a thing that seemed to require patience, ganache and an engineering degree. This was odd and strikes me as a bit “Well you’ve failed finger painting so why not try your hand at a little neural surgery” but, as the young people say, whatevs.
Gilmore’s eight-layer extravagance came with meticulous written instructions; much of which the flighty-but-adorable TK elected to ignore. This young sweetie took a non-linear approach to patisserie that recalled the later films of David Lynch but SOMEHOW, despite turning the recipe upside-down, she survived. Which is just as well as I don’t want to live in a world without TK.
Wade must have produced something because he survived as well. I must allow I was too fixated on his strong brow and the fact that he is named after a verb to notice if he was any good at cooking. Isn’t this the way with competitive reality shows, though? The tasks assigned to contestants are just so unthinkably dull, we ignore them and form strange sexual attachments in our heads and start thinking, “Are all men named after verbs proficient sexual partners?” Jack, Skip. Chuck. Russell. It’s a theory.
Anyhow, Poor Lydia left, covered in chocolate and sandwich disgrace. Pity. She seemed nice. This departure was made especially odd by the installation of those faux amber beaded room dividers in the judging area. You know the ones; they look like the sort of thing a 1970s pimp might nail up in a brothel? Perhaps this was an homage to Craig Thomson? I don’t know and I don’t care because by this time, The Voice had started and the rumours were TRUE. Delta had a new ‘do.
Although she is yet to turn thirty, young Delta has long been styled like the damsel of a previous era. Her look has longed owed more to 1980s advertisements for feminine hygiene products than it has to the current time but all that was ended as she turned out beautifully in a Perry gown that delivered her dazzling décolleté like ivory. Yes! The chicken tikka tan was gone and in its place a lovely, modified late-sixties mod look to the eye and the hair for which nothing but good taste and Mad Men were responsible.
Keith’s look deserves little examination continuing, as it does, to reliably derive its inspiration from pornographic cinema. He always seems dressed like the Hot Mechanic who helps out the Horny Housewives with their grease-and-oil-change. Or so I imagine. I have never watched such things although I imagine that Seal has because THERE IS NO WAY ON THE GODDESS’ GREEN EARTH that this dude hasn’t had sex with everyone on the eastern seaboard. What is it with him? Why is he so sex? Why can I only think about sex when I watch Seal? Is it because The Voice is so unstintingly mediocre? Is it more due to my earlier theory about men who are named after verbs?
Seal wore a white shirt that seemed to owe much in its formation to the strait-jacket. There was a very odd BDSM thing happening with the sleeve which I didn’t notice for the first half of the show as his Seal Cleavage, Or “Sealage” as I prefer to know it, was gaping. Then, some spoil sport in production did it up for the last hour and I was left to wonder what Wade was up to and to ponder WHY Joel Madden thinks looking like an inner-city Lesbian from 1986 is a good idea. The guy’s hair is less Joe Strummer than it is Joan Crawford and his chest is a testimony to the rule that you should never choose a tattoo after more than one standard drink.
Fashion flame of the night was lit by none of the judges but by Diana Rouvas whose tangerine shortie-tux was nothing if not incendiary. Happily, hers was one of the few performances that sounded like music. This is the thing about The Voice: most of the contestants are actually terribly average. When someone like Rouvas actually manages to hold a tune, she sounds like Streisand by contrast.
I didn’t think much of Prinnie’s outfit but I did envy her backup dancers. That I do not have backup dancers currently assisting me in my endeavour seems unfair. I’ll get them for the next recap and then, perhaps, I’ll be able to focus on something other than clothing.
Helen Razer is an occasional broadcaster, frequent writer and incessant yabber-pants. Follow her on twitter at @HelenRazer or read her blog Bad Hostess
Images courtesy : Masterchef Australia and The Voice Au
Episodes aired on Monday 21st May 2012