Friday, July 20, 2007

Seriously... This Show is May-jah
I don't hate Posh Spice. I don't like Posh Spice. I just don't give her much thought whatsoever. So when I heard there was going to be a reality series about her moving to America with hubby David Beckham, I rolled my eyes. Somewhere along the line that 6-episode series turned into one (Becks didn't want to be involved, Posh probably didn't want her children to be shown) and the "series" was truncated into a single special episode called Victoria Beckham: Coming to America. The show aired on Monday, and I meant to watch it, thinking it would be a fun train wreck, but I forgot. The next day the critics panned it, and a woeful 4 million people watched. Then my friend Crissy -- who IS a fan of Posh and the rest of the Girls -- told me I really, really had to see it. She said it wasn't funny in a train wreck way, but that Posh is seriously funny. Then my friend Fionna told me last night it was set to air last night again, and she, too, had thought it was pretty funny, but in a more ironic way.

So, I tuned in. And seriously, folks, this woman is HILARIOUS. And I don't mean in a Jessica Simpson, GOD-she-is-so-stupid sort of way, I mean she's wickedly funny. There were moments where I was laughing out loud.

The producers were clearly trying to go for a "look at the ditz" sort of show, and they didn't get one. The commercials showed her looking through a driver's handbook saying, "What's an intersection?" and Americans were supposed to sit on their couches and guffaw. But in the UK, it's called a crossroads. It would be the same as if an American went to the UK and passed by a border guard who asked to see inside their boot. As the American would be taking off his footwear, the guards would be rolling their eyes and pointing to the trunk of the car, which is what they were referring to. Posh isn't an idiot; she just speaks a different language. And if she WAS aware of what an intersection was and was just asking, she was doing it on purpose.

If you think for a moment that a single second of that show was done without her knowing, think again. Victoria knows she's a caricature, and she does her best to play it up for laughs. And seriously... I was laughing. "Just a moment, I have to look miserable," she says as she prepares to go outside the face the paparazzi.

But for the most part, she's genuinely funny. When she's looking for a house, a real estate agent boasts, "This house was built from the ground up." Without missing a beat, she responds, "Aren't ALL houses built from the ground up?" In another house, she sees a fancy wooden floor, and the agent tells her it was installed by Lionel Ritchie when he lived there. Posh responds, "He put in this floor? Whilst dancing on the ceiling?" Hahahahahahahaha... Everything is major, pronounced "may-jah," though it's not clear if it's meant to be a good or bad thing.

My favourite part, however, is when she goes to a socialite luncheon. Thinking she needs to have some Beverly Hills friends (hoping also they might have children who would play with her trio of boys) she accepts the invite and when the door opens, Posh enters a house full of middle-aged, Botoxed women who have all had so much plastic surgery their lips are stretched almost to their ears. The decor is HIDEOUS, and in her voiceover she says, "I didn't know if I should laugh or cry." One woman, who appears older than the rest, has wispy, shoulder-length hair that's been blown back and sprayed that way, and Posh says to the camera, "There was this one woman there in a powder-blue suit who'd had a MAY-JAH blowdry." I LAUGHED my head off. (This woman looked like Cameron Diaz in There's Something About Mary.) The voiceover continues, "There was so much red lipstick in that room is was may-jah. I've never seen so much red lipstick. These women were FABulous."

She has to throw out the first pitch at a Dodgers game ("But what if I lose the game for them?" she asks... hahahahaha) and shows up in short shorts and high-heeled trainers (see pic above) and throws the ball like she's training for shotput. She goes to the DMV with her hairstylist and makeup artist to take her driver's license photo, and pulls one of her fierce poses, then looks at the pic and asks if she can have a redo, and when the woman says no, retorts, "Well, can we do any touch-ups?" Again, she's doing all of this fully aware of what she's saying.

This show is awesome. I didn't really think of Posh one way or the other before, and now I think she's hilarious.

I'm gonna go watch Spiceworld now. I hope it's may-jah.


Anonymous said...

I TOTALLY agree - I pvr'd it last night because I missed it on Monday and of course I was curious, being a massive Beckham admirer. My sister and I watched it tonight and we both enjoyed it thoroughly - someone at work today said they thought she was stupid, but after watching the show it seems that either she didn't watch the show or she didn't get the humour. My sister and I both agreed that it's too bad that this wasn't a series - it would have been very enjoyable - of course, the Beckhams are big family people and they wouldn't want their sons exposed to this, so it's understandable that it's a no-go as Victoria is very hands on with her children, so it would be hard to film it.
I LOVED her facing Perez face to face, the blow up doll decoy (complete with wig cut by her hairdresser) and the look on her face while that crazy socialite did her dolphin speak!!! :)
p.s. if I was going to go fora job of being Posh's asst, I think I would have dressed a lot better than this one did -

Kristin said...

But how is any of this reason for a tv show? What does this woman do? She's not a tv or movie personality, she doesn't write books, she has no skill beyond being the anorexic wife of a soccer player. That is the problem I have with her.

I know many witty, funny women...beautiful ones...prettier by far than this stick...and they don't have tv shows.

You don't get to be a star and famous without having done something worthy of the fame. Even if it is singing badly during an "American Idol" tryout. But she has done nothing since her days as a Spicegirl.

I just don't think she will really end up with the same amount of celebrity she has in the UK, because most of America just doesn't care. She and her husband (mostly her) are trying too hard to be international stars, and it turns people off. Me included.

The Chapati Kid said...

She gets paid to act the way she does. I watched it the first night it aired, and I grinned from ear to ear the whole way through. Sadly, I think her dry humour was completely and utterly lost on Americans. You'd think the critics would get it, but they didn't. Come on, if someone offered me a big suitcase of cash (or a cheque) to film a few hours of my life, and I was already a celebrity in the spotlight, I'd say, sure, why not? It's more exposure for her and her husband who's coming to join the LA Galaxy. And for god's sake, it's called ShowBIZ for a reason. I just loved the fact that the whole time she was being filmed, she totally took the piss. I was MOVED by her comment about Lionel Richie dancing on the ceiling. I thought, wow, her wit's as sharp as her cheekbones. She knows how to work it, she does. And the best part is that she's so totally and completely unpretentious about being totally and completely pretentious.

I love the way she rakes over that personal assistant of hers on the first day. And the way you can see how the Beverly Hills tea party is like almost like a Mad Hatters party as far as she's concerned. She and her assistant both get drunk there and just egg everyone on. What was with that strange sonic shriek?!

Like it or not, Kristin, she will definitely be a star. She may be a has-been pop star, and her husband a has-been football player. But some American company was smart/stupid enough to bring him to LA. They wouldn't have done it if they didn't think there was a huge market for soccer there. It was tried twice before, first with Pele, then with Maradona, but they were way too washed up by then. And unlike Pele and Maradona, the Beckhams are a product, not people, and they are very aware of it. Furthermore, another sad fact: America is OBSESSED with celebrity. That's why you have Paris Hilton.

Kristin said...

Look at the comment from anonymous. Someone at this person's work already has a negative opinion of her without even watching the show. They have TONS of indifferent people to win over, and I'm not one of them.

I think when a 'personality' is stuffed down your throat through an odd tv show, magazine spreads galore, strange pictures of being overdressed and way too thin, you get backlash. Not interest.

I guess we'll see where this heads, but I think they went about this all the wrong way.

David Beckham will not bring interest in soccer. America just really is not that interested in the sport. Football, basketball, and baseball will always be the big three.

Nikki Stafford said...

Unlike Paris Hilton, the American celebrity that no American can seem to get enough of, Posh actually did do something at one time to gain her notoriety. She was a member of the Spice Girls. Then, when she released her first solo album, it went #1 in the UK for a gajillion weeks. Next album successful, next album pretty successful. No, we don't hear much of her here (though probably more in Canada than in the UK, since half the country seems to be British), but in the UK she is MASSIVE. I mean, Madonna hasn't really done much of anything lately either, but that doesn't stop her from being absolutely huge no matter what she does.

My husband is a sports writer, and he thinks Becks is about 5 years beyond his prime. In N.A., he'll have far more female fans who buy his calendars and magazines with his mug on it than men who think the guy has any talent (face it, if he didn't look the way he did, he wouldn't have half the fans) because he's not nearly the best player in the league. Not by a LONG shot.

The UK is obsessed with celebrity in a way even the US isn't. I remember being in the UK in 2000 and there was a biography of Martin (is that right?) Kemp (lead singer of Spandau Ballet, played Steve Owen on EastEnders), and it was HUGE. It was everywhere, in store windows, in airport and train shops, it was absolutely everywhere. A celeb bio comes out, everyone buys it there. A celeb bio comes out here, and we often raise eyebrows and keep walking.

But as Chapatikid says, that doesn't mean the US isn't necessarily obsessed with celebrity, it's just that it's a different kind of obsession. They might look in the other direction when Posh and Becks come striding down the street, but Paris Hilton spends about 3 frickin' minutes (total) behind bars and everyone's nuts for her. Britney goes into rehab and comes back out and it's front-page news everywhere. Britney's had about the same success story as Victoria -- first album massive, second one big, next one not so big -- but we'd think she is huge. She's no bigger than Victoria, but Posh just isn't as well known here.

I bet if you looked at per capita numbers of the show, Canadians probably watched it more, and loved it more because of the sense of humour that we just get. I can totally see why Americans wouldn't like -- or get -- that show.

Crissy Calhoun said...

Ah, I love a good Posh debate. Just for the record, since the Spice Girls split up, she's had a solo record (how good it was...well, not very) and an autobiography (Learning to Fly, and it's not absolutely terrible, better than Ginger's) and of course, had three kids. So she hasn't done *nothing* since the end of the Spice.

I'd much rather watch a funny, self-aware pop star who mocks celebrity culture whilst participating in it than one who thinks being dumb is sexy (Jessica S., Paris, etc.).

Bottom line, she is an entertainer and the show was nothing but entertaining. Well done, Victoria. You're major. In a good way.