Following on from this blogs most read post so far about Susan Boyle, I thought I’d give a few thoughts on the rise of Jamie Pugh, Britain’s Got Talent’s latest hero.
Last Saturday we were presented with an ordinary looking, pizza deliveryman who was riddled with nerves and stage fright. We were told he had never performed before a large crowd before so he had the sympathy of everyone before he launched into an extraordinary rendition of ‘Bring Him Home’ from Les Miserables that so far has over one million hits on YouTube. It’s not Susan Boyle but it’s not half bad either.
After this extraordinary performance we had the emotive background music, the scenes of applause all around the arena, much gushing from the judges (For once Amanda Holden didn’t cry though!) and then three, suspense filled but entirely predictable ‘Yes’ votes that sent our Welsh hero on his way.
And then during the week The Sun discovered that Pugh in fact performed as part of medley at 1,200-capacity West End venue in 2006 where apparently stage fright wasn’t an issue for the man in the pizza delivery van.
Far from being, in his own words, “a simple bloke from The Valleys” Pugh is a performer with experience and Simon Cowell and co probably knew this but the chance to portray Pugh in an entirely different light for a ratings boost was too good to resist.
The dishonesty is perhaps not as galling as the deceit with which Boyle was presented to us but it’s another fine example of how reality TV isn’t really reality, it’s just whatever Simon Cowell and co decide it should be.