Monday, 19 November 2007

Guilty Pleasures, Part 2 - Katie & Peter Unleashed

Katie Price is frightening on many different levels. She’s like some idiot savant who’s been given some sort of weird dispensation to ride Boudicca-like over the clapped out old detritus that currently passes for popular British culture. She’s an air-bagged battering ram who says what she likes, when she likes. Whatever you do, don’t get in her way.

I’ve caught this show twice now, and I found myself strangely fixated by it. It’s not car crash television – it’s a whole lot worse than that: it’s like watching juggernauts in a demolition derby. For instance, watching Katie Price ‘interview’ Celebrity Big Brother Racist Danielle Lloyd is an education in itself:

- ‘Are you a racist?’ No, Katie, don’t be daft, of course not! I’m just young and silly! (as well as being the Ku Klux Klan’s latest centrefold)
- ‘Do you have black friends?’ Yes, I have loads of black friends (probably from the same casting agency that Jamie Oliver gets his from), and they’ve all stood by me.

Really, it’s not an interview at all; it’s as if Katie is reading out loud from a multiple choice GSCE paper where the answers are already marked off for you. To make matters worse, during an interview with Gabrielle, Katie launches a hissy tirade aimed at Jamelia (or was it Javine? I can’t remember, I was channel flicking by this point). Gabrielle looked politely horrified – backstage footage showed her looking genuinely relieved she’d escaped the clutches of evil air-bag woman, which is certainly an emotion I can identify with (especially when the end credits started to roll).

Then again, it’s not as Katie actually says or does very much – the arduous task of talking and sitting down at the same time is left to her suspiciously orange-hued Antipodean squeeze, Peter Andre, seemingly the only thing that is able to keep Katie Price’s planet-sized ego in check (then again, by this time next year she will no doubt be promoted to Supreme World Overseer, in which case: Katie, I’m your biggest fan).

On the previous K&P Unleashed, Peter sat on a chair with a swivel seat, which is apparently good for ‘core stability’ – he took the opportunity to lark about like a six year old and pulled some poses which were genuinely funny. Then, he and Katie picked up palette and brush and attempted to paint two nude models, overseen by an ‘art critic’ I’d never heard of (for one delicious moment, I thought Brian Sewell was going to make an appearance, but no such luck). Their paintings were rubbish, but what did you expect? To be honest, I was surprised that Katie didn’t draft in the services of a ‘ghost painter’ – she does the same for her ‘novels’ (god help us all), so why not here?

Whilst I wouldn’t describe Katie & Peter Unleashed as a ‘guilty pleasure’, there is certainly something off-puttingly watchable about the whole thing. They’re like some sort of weird, yin/yang philosophical experiment: Katie, the imbalanced , planet swallowing ego, puncturing pretension and punching heads wherever she goes, versus little orange Peter, his only weapon his almost-effortless charm.

As long as they don’t talk about having sex (whenever they mention it, my stomach flips over on itself, much in the same way it does when Richard Madeley starts talking about his favourite pastime – i.e., it’s not Scrabble), I might even tune in again, who knows? But I doubt it.


Elinor said...

Gracious me, Chip, when you said you were going to post about Katie and Peter - I thought you were being ironic!

You are guilty as charged and I refer the honourable gentleman to my earlier comment about a culture eating itself.

Seriously, come away now - they are beyond parody.

Chip Smith said...

I'm sorry, Elinor, shows like this exert some sort of weird hypnotic power over me - as much as I want to reach for the zapper, I just can't do it (or maybe it's the thought of yet another Poliakoff drama on Beeb One that keeps me from switching over).

Tom said...

I hear jamming bamboo splinters under your finger nails is good for character building. It certainly seems more preferable to me than ever watching this.

Chip Smith said...

Tom, you may be right (come to think of it, you are definitely right). But I feel somehow compelled to watch rubbish like this - that said, watching it twice is almost a cast iron guarantee that you'll never watch it again!