Showing posts with label Television. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Television. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Boys We Fancy

Obviously we’ve been fascinated by the Battle of the Milibands here at Portmanteau Towers. (Yes, Portmanteau Towers. I know we don’t have an office – like we barely manage a blog a week, hardly enough to warrant an office – but we do live together. In a kind of high-rise building. Well high-rise for somebody from Co. Kildare.) Anyway, yes we’ve been fascinated by the Milibands because, as we’ve mentioned in a previous Boys We Fancy post, we really fancy them. I mean the story is obviously intriguing even if you don’t have a crush on Ed and David but fancying them certainly does bring an extra dimension to our interest. We’re dead jealous of Gillian Duffy, aka The Rochester Bigot, who got to sit in on Ed Miliband’s speech today and is, according to the press association (via the Guardian), going for tea with him later in the week. But we have also been busy developing other, more mainstream, crushes recently.

Michael Buble

OK so everybody fancies Michael Buble. This was illustrated by the fact that 100,000 people went to see him play in Dublin’s Aviva stadium over the weekend. 100,000 people. Ireland’s tiny so that really is a massive proportion of Irish mammies. I like to think that I am drawn to “The Bubble” – that’s what we call him here at Portmanteau Towers (I should really drop this Portmanteau Towers thing) – for sophisticated reasons. Reasons that mark me as different from all the other screaming fans. But, yeah, basically I am the same as the rest of them. I think that ‘Haven’t Met you Yet’ is an incredibly catchy song and I like his smile. I am also strangely endeared by the fact that he seems to be a yo-yo dieter. One week he’s looking svelte on X Factor, the next (like literally the next) he’s looking porky on Graham Norton. But I’m sure I’m not alone in wanting to feed him pickle sandwiches (his favourite).

Jon Hamm

I actually fancy Don Draper but obviously that relationship could only ever end in tears so I have decided to fancy Jon Hamm instead. Don Draper is a lying, deceitful cad with a drink problem, whereas Jon Hamm is a sensitive, committed guy who, according to an interview in the Observer, would have been a teacher if the acting hadn’t worked out. Cute. I mean obviously I still fancy Don Draper a bit more (who doesn’t love a lying alcoholic?) but Jon Hamm looks exactly like him and would be less likely to deceive you with a fake background and various affairs. Also – Jon Hamm is funny. Don Draper isn’t actually that funny. Jon Hamm’s funniness can be witnessed in an SNL skit he made with my other boyfriend Michael Buble. They run a restaurant called the Hamm and Buble Restaurant that only serves pork and champagne. You can't view the video over here but check it out if you're ever in America.

Tim Dowling

Tim Dowling is the perfect man. I know this because he writes a column about his life and his family and it all sounds perfect. Yes he could be lying but I don’t think he is. I think that his relationship with his wife really is that nice and that he actually does get into those very minor, easily solved and hilarious scrapes. He is also very handsome. Or at least his byline picture portrays a handsome, tanned man. And he’s American so his family get to go on amazing holidays and they could all get green cards if they ever tire of Shepherd’s Bush. OK so I know I’m coming across as a bit of a stalker now but he happily volunteers this information every Saturday so I feel that I am entitled to know. Here at Portmanteau Towers (last time I promise) we particularly like Tim Dowling’s take on Pop, the Swedish child whose sex hasn’t been disclosed. Having discussed how Pop’s parents never use personal pronouns, he goes on to explain how “Pop has a wardrobe that includes trousers and dresses, and Pop popself mostly decides what Pop is going to wear each morning.” And I just think that’s one of the cutest, funniest sentences ever. Pop popself. I would never have thought of that. LE

Monday, September 13, 2010

The News

Usually the day after a big bash, when all the best celebs have been trussed up by whichever designer whose store opening or show they’re attending, my other The Portmanteau half and I spend the morning sending emails about just how “crap”, “ridiculous” and “overdone” everybody looked. Not so last Thursday after the Chanel boutique opening in NY. Hosted by Karl Lagerfeld, obvs, the event attracted Alexa, Diane Kruger, Rachel Bilson, the Gossip Girls - basically all the peeps you’d expect. And everybody looked amazing. Blake Lively had, thankfully, put away her cleavage for the night and opted for a sparkly lilac and silver dress that was so different – and so much better – than the poor man’s Sienna/slightly slutty looks she usually goes for. Alexa actually smiled in a photo and reminded me of just how beautiful she is. But Diane Kruger – Lagerfeld’s muse – must take the prize for best dressed of the evening. The ruffles, the little boots, the hair (hairband included) – I loved it all. The only dud was Claire Danes who looked like a typical WASP in her mumsy jeans and jacket combo and her too-perfect honey-coloured hairdid. But I guess the weird thing about Danes is that she is, by her own admission, a WASP. She was born to affluent yet creative parents and attended the Dalton School so it sort of makes sense that there she is, turning up to Manhattan openings in Chanel jackets. It’s just strange to think of Angela Chase – who Danes portrayed beautifully in the best TV show ever (well besides Mad Men, Come Dine With Me and Sex and the City) My So-Called Life – heading off to the manicurist and booking bi-monthly touch-ups at the hair salon at Bergdorfs. Angela Chase’s dyed red hair, pale skin and oversized plaid shirts continue to be a style influence sixteen years on and is perhaps a look that the über-groomed Danes could do with channelling.

New York grooming is the subject of an article in this month’s Vogue. Vicky Ward writes about how, after moving to New York from London, she abandoned the opaque tights she was so reliant on and opted for all-year-round waxing and fake tanning so as to show off her legs in cocktail dresses, even when Central Park was enveloped in snow or the rain was pouring down on City Hall. And, yeah, I get it. I mean I love the easiness of tights; I love how your skirt can be indecently short and it doesn’t matter because you have two pairs of 80 denier on. I love tights for their cosiness, their forgiving nature as they bundle and pack up your flesh. But I also think New Yorkers are right: tanned, toned, bare legs are infinitely sexier and compliment most dresses far better than their covered up counterpart. As Ward points out, “many of autumn’s trends just don’t work with tights.”

Alexa – who divides her time between New York and London – has obviously picked up on the NY attitude to tights because I can’t remember the last time she was spotted in a pair. Carey Mulligan – US Vogue’s October cover girl – highlighted the differing attitude that Londoners have to tights when she turned up the Met Ball in a pair. Nobody turns up the Met Ball in tights - well actually Winona Ryder did two years ago and looked terrible – but nobody else. The Met Ball is a place for glamour and unachievable muscle tone and silly LED dresses; it is not an event for dull types who have boring concerns like feeling the cold or inadvertently showing their knickers. And by wearing tights, the usually beautiful Mulligan managed to look kind of dowdy. Think of it this way: have you ever seen Carrie Bradshaw – the apotheosis of New York style – in a pair of tights? No, you haven’t.

Carey Mulligan at May's Met Ball

In the newspapers, there are lots of nice stories about the Mitfords as Deborah Mitford (or Debo or the Duchess of Devonshire or whatever) is publishing her memoirs. Now, I already know most of it but it’s always fun to read about the Mitfords. The Guardian had an especially nice interview today. Camille Paglia took issue with Gaga in yesterday’s Sunday Times, as I’m sure you have been made aware of. I liked Alex Needham’s response on the Guardian website because a) he pointed out that Gaga isn’t trying to be sexy (duh!), and b) he brought my attention to this amazing fax spat that existed between Camille Paglia and Julie Burchill. I was a child living in a small town in Ireland when the row occurred, so this was my first reading but wow! I have never seen such bitchy letters, besides perhaps those exchanged between a particularly loathsome letting agent and myself. LE

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Parlez vous Gossip?

Oh mon Dieu! Here is something to get excited about - the teaser for the 4th series of Gossip Girl – Sacre Blair! Boys du jour! Dan au pair! Vive le Chuck! Girls à la carte! Loves it. This is such a fun trailer. And just to make it even more thrilling, Clémence Poésy is joining the cast as a love interest for Chuck who is looking hotter than ever with the addition of a cane to his look.

I think Clémence and a cane are exactly what I need to get excited about GG again. For me, the series started to go seriously off the rails midway through Season 3 with the whole Chuck’s mother and the necklace confusion. Adding to the fallout were Little J’s nasty rat's tails hair extensions and the increasingly ridiculous “let's get everyone together in the end” scenarios. Things only began to look up when Serena's dodgy doctor daddy Billy Baldwin appeared on the scene towards the end of the series. As well as all the Paris drams, we can also look forward to a couple of eps filmed around Vogue's Fashion's Night Out with editors Hamish Bowles and Lauren Santo Domingo making appearances. Oh you know we still love you GG xoxo. NOK

Monday, March 29, 2010

She's A Lady

If you haven’t already, head to 4 on Demand to catch the hilarious doc The Lady and the Revamp. The Lady was founded 125 years ago and is the go-to mag for finding a butler, sycophantic coverage of the royal family, ugly covers of owls and kittens and articles on the history of cucumbers and cobnuts, whatever they are. The Lady fascinates me: how can it still exist? Its readership continues to drop and it haemorrhages cash. Anyway, here comes Rachel Johnson to wield her machete in the office she describes as a cross between an undertakers and a lunatic asylum. At one stage, Joan Collins wanders through to do "something" and tea and sponge cake is served. I so want to work at The Lady! Rachel knows she has an impossible task ahead - to modernize the mag without alienating the existing readers – and from this show, they seem like a rather scary bunch. She starts off the programme by describing the magazine’s appearance as a cross between an in-flight magazine, a funeral parlour brochure and a Bupa catalogue and towards the end of the programme says angrily: “In the real world this is a piddling magazine that nobody cares about or buys.” It’s clear Rach doesn’t care a jot for the mag or its readers but has been brought in to get some much needed publicity and for her valuable contacts. In exchange she gets lots of entertaining material she can use for the diary she’s writing on the experience. It’s not quite as glamorous The September Issue but it's infinitely more amusing. NOK

Monday, March 1, 2010

Boys We Fancy

Conan O'Brien
I have loved Conan since my other The Portmanteau half and I spent a summer working as chambermaids in a weird Mafia-run inn on Long Island. OK so the Mafia thing was only a rumour but if you heard the way the proprietress pronounced the word ‘blind’, you would believe it too. (“Girls you’ve gotta remember to clean the blooiinds!”) Anyway we were under 21 and broke so we spent most of our evenings watching TV rather than engaging in typical J1 pursuits like binge drinking and vandalism. American Idol (the first series) was followed by some local news and then Late Night With Conan O'Brien would come on and what can I say? I fell in love. And I’ve loved him ever since. Obviously I was on Team Coco as the war with Leno and NBC got underway and I actually cried at his gentle and dignified leaving speech. The thing is though that although lots of people “love” Conan, very few can claim to fancy him. “Really though, do you think you could actually... you know?” they ask, wincing. Yeah, totally, he’s hot. L

Declan from Leap Year
The Irish Times film critic Donald Clarke had warned that Leap Year “is offensive, reactionary, patronising filth” but we went along regardless. And yeah it’s crap. Ridiculous clichés abound as gombeen locals yell ‘top of the morning’ to each other and an entire village is nearly blown up after an American plugs in her fancy schmancy BlackBerry. But Matthew Goode is incredibly hot as hapless Dingle publican Declan. I mean let’s get some things straight: he cannot do the accent - he tries to do a traveller-esque brogue but his own posh Rs keep creeping in so he just sounds like some poor unfortunate with a speech impediment – and the character is kind of a loser. But yeah despite all that, we fancy him. The Oh-God-I-am-so-sad-I-fancy-a-romcom-lead moment happened somewhere around the middle of the movie when is forced to don a big farmer jumper (hot) and kill a chicken with his bare hands (also weirdly hot). And so I guess we’ll go along to A Single Man to catch Goode in an actual proper, well-made, fashionable film but I just don’t think that he’ll have the same appeal once he’s clean-shaven. L

The Miliband Bros
It may end up being the battle of the brothers when it comes to the next Labour leadership contest but the only battle that really matters is for the title of hottest brother. Am I crazy? Maybe not. The "David Miliband is Hot" page on Facebook has 97 members. Wow – impressive. They are total geeks – Miliband Snr’s nickname is Brains – but that has never stopped me before (see previous posts on David Mitchell and Moss from the IT Crowd). I have formidable competition for David's affections in the form of Hillary Clinton who was gushing over him in a recent US Vogue interview, calling her colleague “vibrant, vital, attractive and smart”. I totally agree Hills. I'm also fascinated with his hair. It’s Action Man-esque and truly weird. But I think Ed has to win this battle: for his impassioned performance in Copenhagen, which was in total contrast to David’s withering reaction to the attempted coup to oust my other beloved Gordon Brown, and for being just a tad hotter. N

Zac Goldsmith
On the other side of the political divide is Zac Goldsmith. He hit the headlines again recently with the Sunday Times claiming that his donations to the Tories were “improperly registered” - sounds dodgy to me. Zac is a bit of scoundrel alright - this story follows on from accusations that he’s buying his seat in parliament and claiming non-dom status on his estimated £220m. Let’s not forget that he also cheated on his lovely organic wife Sheherazade with his sister in law Alice Rothschild. He denied it of course, claiming they were simply planning a charity poker event. Yeah sure Zac. There are many reasons not to like this guy but he‘s just so golden and gorgeous that I try and ignore them. N


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Olivia vs Lily

It’s the battle of the Upper East Side Up Dids! This kind of style gets a bad name- that’s what years of debs hair horrors and matronly red carpet dressing will do for your reputation but two stars of the small screen are showing us how to rock them properly. Park Avenue Princesses, Gossip Girl’s Lily and The City’s Olivia, are doing stellar work for the upswept cause.

There are many reasons to watch The City: monitoring the progression of Freddie Fackelmayer's tan is one major attraction, checking out the latest way that Olivia "I pulled that look" Palermo can mess up yet another morning show segment is another. But the big draw is Olivia’s oh so polished hair. Yes, although Olivia can’t form coherent sentences, her hair is a constant source of delight. Her ringlets are a little too Tinsley Mortimer for my taste but no one can pull off a chignon like Olivia.

Lily VD Dubs provides Olivia P with some strong competition with her line up of hot hair dids, with twists and braids adding some extra edge. So who wins the battle of the buns? – its got to be Lily but I’m biased because she’s my fave GG character and may need my support. I’m a little scared that the co-op meeting lady that Rufus met on the pre-hiatus cliff hanger might end up disrupting their chilli and board game-filled idyll. NOK

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I Heart Betty

Mad Men series 3 starts on BBC 4 tonight and the papers and blogs have been all a flutter about it. Over at the Guardian they asked various media types, like Mariella Frostrup and Rory Sutherland, the vice-chair of Ogilvy, to decide which character they most relate to or aspire to be like. Check out the full list here.

I've always loved Betty. And it’s not just for her outfits. While pretty much all the girls who work on the show are beautiful, I find Betty the most attractive. I also find her the easiest to identify with, which might mark me as out a crazy person but really it’s true. I know a lot of people single Peggy out as somebody that they feel they could connect with, but she is way too controlled for me. Yes, we know she lost that control in one huge breakdown but the fact that she is able to compartmentalise her life so much is pretty alienating to me. Joan was too much of a simpering man-eater in series 1 for me to really engage with but I did think that her series 2 was much more interesting and her relationship with the doctor looks set to be nicely complicated. But, yes, back to Betty. Betty is the one I can imagine having afternoon drinking sessions with. Betty is the one I could go the beauty parlour with. And Betty has an innocence that is completely refreshing in a show crammed full of liars. OK so she treats her son badly and slept with a stranger in a bar and shot at some birds for no reason - the list goes on - but it’s all born out of a complex naivety that I think would be pretty easy to carry around if you’d married a cheating, lying (and incredibly handsome) man like Don Draper, while still in your early twenties. Basically I think we should be friends; I'm really jealous of Francine. And I know I said it wasn’t all about the outfits but, wow, they’re great. LE

Friday, October 30, 2009

Boys We Fancy

Going to the dentist isn't top of my fun-things-to-do list but it is made easier by the fact that I totally fancy dentists. Not all dentists, but, eh, most of them. Maybe because they’re strict or maybe because when I was twelve, I had an operation to remove a supernumerary (that’s fancy for extra) tooth and the dental surgeon was really handsome and – perhaps because of the general anaesthetic, perhaps because of the onset of puberty – became a kind of paradigm of male attractiveness. Most dentists are probably really boring, but when you’re lying back in the chair they seem smart and actually hot, albeit in a Jeremy Paxman way. L
(There are no Google images that successfully illustrate the concept of a hot dentist. Just imagine it.)

David Mitchell
I’m about five years behind the rest of the world when it comes to Peep Show having watched an ep for the first time last week. It was a revelation and since then I’ve been going around saying “You must check out this Peep Show” like I’ve just uncovered some obscure, underground arthouse oddity. I don’t know why it took me so long because I majorly fancy David Mitchell. The love affair began with his Observer columns and then only increased with his appearances on Who Do You Think You Are? and infinite panel shows. There are lots of drawbacks – he enjoys watching snooker, has a bad back and lives in an ex-council flat in Kilburn that he himself describes as “shit” and “a dump”. Hilarious and socially awkward, he’s my perfect man even though he does seem to be in competition with Stephen Fry to be crowned ultimate media whore. N

James Franco
James Franco’s films – Spiderman, Tristan and Isolde, The Holiday – meant that he remained under my radar for a really long time. It wasn’t until Pineapple Express that he caught my attention and then I made up for lost time by researching/Wikipedia-ing like crazy. Yeah, so he’s perfect. He holds a degree in English from UCLA and goes to graduate school at Columbia (creative writing) and NYU (film studies). It did occur to me that his Gucci campaign was kind of selling out but if Frida Giannini offered me a gig like that I would obv take it. Plus MFAs at Columbia and NYU aren’t going to pay for themselves, you know. Anyway he totally makes up for it by gently making fun of the ads. (See video.) L

Michael Fassbender
I have nothing really to say about Michael Fassbender except that he’s incredibly hot and probably the first person I’ve nominated for a Boys We Fancy post who is conventionally attractive and not some variety of social misfit. I have to admit that I even kind of fancied his character in Fish Tank even though it felt so wrong. He’s the archetypal charming, rugged Irish man, the type who only seems to exist in Guinness ads, a man who can swim from Ireland to New York via our hometown of Naas and its beloved motorway ball. N

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I'm John and I'm Edward

I have loved John and Edward since their very first X Factor audition. Back then I was pretty much alone but in the last few days, they have acquired a dedicated following. Jackie Collins has leapt to their defence saying, “I think the twins - that choice of doing that Britney Spears song was genius, absolute genius. I mean they are so cute and they really give the show that pizzazz." They have been featured on Dlisted and Stuart Heritage wrote a brilliantly supportive article on the Guardian TV blog.

There’s a simple reason for my love of J & E – they cheer me up. One minute, I’m half-heartedly watching boring mediocrities such as Lloyd or Rikki, the next I’m frantically dancing round the living room, singing along to their excellent song choices. They induce happiness. They're like a natural Prozac. Well actually I've never been on Prozac but I'd wager that it's not as good as J & E. They're more like a natural laughing gas. A major factor in their charm is that they say the funniest things in their weird Southpark-esque voices. It’s like they’re not from Lucan at all, but another planet entirely. My top five Jedwardisms are:

When asked where they see themselves in 15 years
“Well I see myself being older.”

Discussing their influence on hairstyles
"Britney Spears, she wore a belly top and now everyone wears belly tops. John and Edward have big hair. Everybody is going to have big hair."

Talking about their influences
“I remember the very first day 5ive came on the telly and I was like ‘woah, imagine if we had that status and had that much fun and were able to come out with such a hit'.”

After a particularly bad performance
“I was practically laughing at myself, imagining I was looking at TV and going ‘woah, these guys are a joke’.”

On why they want to be pop stars
“We came to see all the ladies. Who wouldn’t want girls shouting your name, going ‘John’ or ‘Edward’ or whatever”


P.s. If you have yet to be introduced to John and Edward you should check this out. LE

Friday, July 31, 2009

The News

My Friend Michael Jackson: Uri's Story marked the end of our MJ obsession. For about a month we talked of little else and listened only to Michael Jackson music but at least now we have some answers. Uri says that he hypnotised Micahel Jackson without his knowledge (an unethical but perhaps unsurprising move given that when you begin typing Uri's name into Google the first suggestion is 'Uri Geller Fraud') and MJ vowed that he did not abuse any children. We also learned that Trevor Nunn, the acclaimed theatre director, thought that MJ had a Peter Pan complex and Mark Lester informed us that MJ liked to shop. So like I said we now have all the answers and can move onto our new favourite news story - the ballad of Jude and Samantha.

People magazine must be finally getting over their MJ obsession too. He’s been relegated to the side-bar of the latest issue with the Saved By the Bell gang (minus sex-tape making, tax-dodging Screech) gracing the cover. Dustin Diamond was even airbrushed out of the 1989 cast photo like he never existed in the first place. Maybe he'll have the last laugh though as apparently he’s currently working on a tell-all book called Behind the Bell. That's another amazing classic for the library. And what about Mr. Belding? Well, according to the comments section of New York magazine, he’s become a bit of a creep in the intervening years. So no place on the shiny, happy People cover for you, Mr B.

Hopefully Mark-Paul Gosselaar’s appearance in character as Zack Morris on Jimmy Fallon’s show was just a taster of the delights to come. We're totally in favour of this reunion although with constant repeats on TV it's not like they ever really went away but as pointed out in today's Guardian, we are living in the age of the comeback and so we can’t blame the SBTB kids from joining, or cashing, in. Our ultimate eps include the one with the Casey Kasem-hosted dance-off at the Max won by Lisa and Screech despite her sprained ankle (Casey: “"C'mon everybody, let's do the...the...the Sprain." ) and the Jessie-Spano-is-hooked-on-caffeine-pills classic (Jessie: "I'm so excited... I'm so exciteeeed!... I'm so... SCARED!"). LE & NOK

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Boys That We Fancy

The Grey Gardens meets Ab Fab mess that we predicted is now our reality. We live together in a tiny flat with shoddy carpentry, surrounded by discarded newspaper supplements and empty sparkling wine bottles. We spend our evenings compiling lists of boys we fancy and eating biscuits.

Piers Morgan
We only watched one episode of Britain’s Got Talent but that was all it took for us to develop huge crushes on Piers Morgan. It took us about a week to finally admit it (first to ourselves and then to each other) but we are now so proud of our paramour that we bought three of his books on Amazon the other night. Problem is he seems really into his perfect girlfriend Celia Walden and even if we got by her, we’d have SuBo to contend with.

Gordon Brown
OK he's the most unpopular person in Britain at the moment but our embarrassing crush on this particular PM just won't go away. Where other people see incompetent and crumbling, we just see an aloof brooding Heathcliff-type. Women ministers are abandoning him in droves but that just means there's less competition for his affections. Let's just say we won't be joining the WAGs (women against Gordon) anytime soon.

Chuck Bass
OK so Chuck has appeared on our previous Boys That We Fancy list but it would be unfair to exclude him from this one on those grounds. Maybe his Gossip Girl storylines have become a little fantastical but the news that he is to play Heathcliff more than makes up for that. As has previously been noted, The Portmanteau does not fancy Ed Westwick. Just Chuck Bass.

Tom Guinness
The new Burberry campaign for AW 09 was launched today fronted by Emma Watson. We have always found the Harry Potter actress a tad bland and underwhelming and can't really fathom the fashion world's interest in her. But the campaign is saved by the presence of yummy aristo Tom Guinness and his amazing cheekbones.

Andy Samberg
Andy is hot and hilarious, which is the ultimate combination. The only problem is that his girlfriend is harpist babe Joanna Newsom and we can't really compete with her as we love her too much. The Portmanteau was shocked when it first learned of their relationship - we thought she lived in a tower in a medieval town, drank mead and NEVER spoke to boys. How wrong we were.


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Model Behaviour

MTV's House of Style, one of my childhood TV faves, is back. It pains me to say it, but they really shouldn't have bothered. Including segments on jelly shoes and friendship bracelets is hardly the way to win a new generation of fans. Host Bar Rafaeli seems to find speaking difficult which makes for quite an uncomfortable viewing experience. And we thought Cindy Crawford was wooden. Jessica Stam demonstrates some revelatory recession busting tips like, um, actually wearing the clothes in your wardrobe and teaming a white t-shirt with a skirt (would never thought of that myself, thanks Stam).

There will be more supermodels hitting tv screens soon as Elle Macpherson has signed on to play Claudia, an 80s supermodel and owner of Focus Models, who "is still in great shape and runs her business with the efficiency and toughness of a dictator" in some new drama called Beautiful Life. If Elle's acting in this is as bad as it was in Friends, then we are in for an absolute treat. The show, produced by Ashton Kutcher, revolves around a group of models living together in New York. Sounds a lot like '90s Aaron Spelling classic Models Inc. so basically I can't wait to see it. Mischa Barton has also been linked to the project so maybe she's finally realized that it's time to start concentrating on getting her career back on track instead of just turning up at fashion weeks. 

Behind the scenes fashion programmes have never been more popular, and with the new 90210 and rumoured return of Melrose Place, surely it's only time before someone brings back the long-forgotten (but not by me) Aaron Spelling show Central Park West. Set around the scandal and shenanigans of fashion magazine Communique, this was so glossy it makes Gossip Girl look low-budget. It also boasted the most bizarre cast ever assembled for the small screen; a bunch of faded beauties - Mariel Hemingway, Lauren Hutton, Raquel Welch - and John Barrowman. Alas, it was tragically cancelled after 2 seasons but I'm thinking now is the perfect time for a CPW revival.

                                           Models Inc.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Cosby Cool

Zoe Kravitz is a regular fixture on NY party pages but I'm more of a fan of her mom, 80s babe Lisa Bonet. Bonet's Denise Huxtable was the coolest of all the Cosby kids. Old eps of the show are a masterclass in styling for SS09. Her key silhouette was a sharp tuxedo jacket paired with slouchy trousers, finished off by loading on the accessories - brooches, headscarves, sunglasses. When I attempt to pull off the same, I look a lot less like Denise and a lot more like 90210's Brandon Walsh a.k.a short and stumpy. But if you go easy on the Rifat Ozbek-style ethnic prints, Miss Huxtable is an ace muse for this season.

                                              Doo.Ri SS09

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My So-Called Style

I was watching old episodes of My So-Called Life the other day and thinking that the clothes didn't seem so dated - because these days, the whole of Hollywood seems to be taking its style cues from Angela Chase and co. - although, sadly, I have yet to see anyone sporting a poodle hairdo and tank top combo a la Brian Krakow. When they aren't scrubbing up for appearences on Oprah and book signings at Barnes and Noble, the Olsens seem to wear little else but oversized check shirts. In the case of MK, she literally wears nothing else - more often then not teaming her shirts with opaque tights or bare legs. Indeed, with her messy hair and biker boots, sometimes my dear MK seems to be heading into Rayanne Graff territory. Check out this pic of MK and her plaid clad beau Nate Lowman doing his best Jordan Catalano impression. I love 1994.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Alexa (Again)

I did not appreciate being stood up by Alexa on Friday night. I cut short a good night out just so I could watch Claudia Winkleman, Alexa’s replacement on Jonathan Ross, discuss the Strictly Come Dancing contestants. Claudia seems quite nice but I don’t watch Strictly.... so the references to the C-list celebrities and their garishly dressed professional dancer cohorts were somewhat lost on me. It was interesting to hear a sober Colin Farrell speaking eloquently and intelligently on the subject of addiction and mental health (Emma Forrest seems to be a very good influence) but I was really just tuning in to see what Alexa would wear.

Alexa did turn up for the second installment of Frock Me on Channel 4 this morning, the show she presents with Henry Holland. Frock Me is perfect Sunday morning viewing, with short snappy interviews and little street style challenges that do not demand much of our frazzled hungover brains. The customising section is embarrassingly Blue Peter-esque and Henry is a little wooden but it’s still a fun show and a welcome alternative to other Sunday TV favourites like Friends reruns or horse racing.

For more Alexa news, check out The Sunday Times magazine where Alexa chats about her perfect life in A Life in the Day. There’s lots of talk of how much she loves Alex Turner, how she loses weight really easily and how designers are forever sending her free clothes. Ugh. Unlike most A Life in a Day contributors, who claim to get up at sunrise before milking their own cows and going to the gym, Alexa seems a tad lazy. She mentions how tired she constantly is but then goes on to say that she goes to bed at 10pm and gets up at 9am. Come on Alexa, that’s eleven hours!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday Night with Jonathan Ross

Make sure to get home from the pub early tonight because there’s a treat in store on BBC 1 at 10.35. Jonathan Ross does tend to polarise opinion (personally I kinda like him) but the guests are so good tonight that you have to watch it. Our own Colin Farrell appears as does Roger Moore and there’s music by The Kills but the real reason we’re so excited is that Alexa is appearing on the show. I’ve a feeling that Jonathan and Alexa are going to get on like a house on fire and I’m curious as to how she’s going to dress for the occasion. If I had legs like Alexa, I’d be rocking some oh-so-now trousers, either leather skinnies or some peg leg woollen ones, but she might play it safe and stick to what she knows best – little dresses that perfectly bridge the gap between dressy and casual. And will she wear brogues, penny loafers or heels? Only time will tell….

Monday, September 29, 2008

Gossip Girl

Not having ITV2 has meant missing out on one of the biggest TV phenomena of the year – Gossip Girl. Magazines are inundated with pictures of Blake Lively and Leighton Meester, hailing them as the new best-dressed (personally I can’t see it – they just seem like two pretty-ish girls with ok stylists). And hardly a day goes by when Perez doesn’t pay homage to the sparkly-eyed Chace Crawford. So feeling left out and worried that I was no longer keeping up (even Drew Barrymore is on the act – she was spotted kissing actor Ed Westwick recently), I went out and bought the box set in an attempt to see what all the fuss is about.

Gossip Girl is set amongst the privileged kids of the upper-East side (think Cruel Intentions) and the characters are so rich that they make the OC gang look like they’re from the wrong side of the tracks. I think they’re supposed to be about sixteen or seventeen but everybody knows that TV teenagers are unlike real teenagers in pretty much every way so we won’t gripe about how they’re played by twenty-somethings, seem really self-aware, etc. Blake Lively and Leighton Meester as Serena van der Woodsen and Blair Waldorf are the queen bees of their posh school and the rest of the show’s relationships revolve around these two spoilt brats. Lively and Meester have an onscreen charisma that is lacking in the paparazzi shots that appear on incessantly, but the style icon status still seems undeserved. Blair is the primmer of the two and there are lots of pearls, updos and classy dresses. Serena meanwhile favours a more bohemian look – so Sienna circa 2004.

By far the best dressed is Chuck Bass, played by Drew’s buddy Ed Westwick. Chuck wears spiffing suits with cheeky bow ties and high top sneakers and is rarely seen without his trademark silk scarf. He is the bad boy of the show, which actually means that he is a total pervert. I’m all for bad boys but Chuck goes slightly too far when he tries to date rape 14-year-old Jenny but I must admit that I still fancy him. I also sort of fancy Rufus Humphrey, the faded rock star dad of Dan and Jenny. Everybody looks down on poor old Rufus because he’s kind of arty and used to be in a band but where I come from that’s really cool. This upper-East side bunch is way too harsh and the gallivanting Mrs. Humphrey just doesn’t deserve him. He used to have a thing with Serena’s mom and now Serena is dating his son so there are lots of parallels at play. I hate it when TV shows do that – it would be really creepy to think of some big van der Woodsen/Humphrey step family.

Anyway, I am way too old for all of this and I know that I should be watching Gemma Arterton in Tess of the D’Urbervilles or something but Gossip Girl is a guilty pleasure and here’s hoping that RTE will have the good sense to eventually pick it up.

Bad Boy Chuck Bass

Friday, September 26, 2008

Fashion TV: The Golden Age

Off the Rails returned on Wednesday night but with two new presenters - Sonya Lennon, a well-known stylist and long-time contributor to OTR, and Brendan Courtney, a man credited with bringing back The Clothes Show. The new duo is clearly more knowledgeable than their predecessors so it’s a pity then that a lot of the programme consisted of voiceover and stilted reading from an autocue. Brendan especially gives the impression that there is a lot of fun and mischief lurking beneath the rehearsed pieces to camera and hopefully as the season progresses, we will see a little more of this. Sonya was responsible for the makeover of geochemist Bernadette and while she lacked the more extreme bullying tactics of Trinny and Susannah, there was some prodding of flesh and of course mention of magic knickers, which have become a big, reinforced cliché. There is a lot crammed into this half hour slot so the emotional punch that accompanies some other makeover shows is lacking but instead you get a fun, glossy and very Irish take on fashion, from the Parisian catwalks to Naas high street.

All of this got me thinking of fashion tv shows in general and how they really don't make them like they used to. The golden age of fashion tv was undoubtedly the late 80s/ early 90s. My ultimate favourite was Fashion TV with Jeanne Becker although I always found it slightly strange that it was based in Toronto, not exactly known as one of the world's major fashion capitals. Some might say it wasn't completely appropriate viewing for a 6 year old but when your after school ritual included watching Knots Landing, Fashion TV was par for the course. Oh the joys of having a working mother. FTV was obsessed with supermodels as was I and fittingly its theme tune was Obsession by Animotion.

Another must see was BBC's The Clothes Show - presented by that ultra 80s triumvirate of Caryn Franklin, Selina Scott and Jeff Banks - Caryn actually knew her stuff, Selina was really posh and Jeff claimed to be a designer but everyone just knew him as that guy from the Daz ads. The show opened to a remix of In the Night from the Pet Shop Boys - (whats with fashion TV shows having excellent theme tunes?) Ah - the simple days when you would dream of attending The Clothes Show Live - if only you lived near Birmingham.

RTE had its own take on The Clothes Show - Head 2 Toe - with another strange threesome to rival theirs : classy Barbara McMahon (now "fashion consultant" to Dunnes Stores), kooky Jennifer Keegan (now a yoga teacher), and, um , Pat O'Mahoney (hmmm...anyone?)

And no trip down fashion tv memory lane would be complete without a mention of MTV's House of Style. It was at its apex when fronted by my favourite super, Cindy Crawford, but it was downhill all the way when it brought on the Cindy wannabes in her wake - Niki Taylor, Daisy Feuntes et al - don't even try, ladies - you could never compete with Cindy, the supreme queen of wooden tv presenting.

So will there ever be a return to the glory days of fashion tv? - well, there are a couple of treats in store this autumn - BBC2 has a 5 part series called British Style Genius and Alexa returns with Henry Holland, and not Gok Wan, by her side for Channel 4's Frock Me - she's no Jeanne Becker thats for sure, but for now, she'll just have to do.