Pop Goes the Band


Where do I even start on this bizarre programme?  The first episode aired on Living TV on Monday 23rd Feb at 10pm.  The trailers had been shown for a good few weeks beforehand and my husband, for one, was really looking forward to the series.  It seemed a light hearted look at some 80’s cheesey pop bands to see what they are up to now and a chance for them to perform together again.  There was obviously going to be a makeover element to the show but it seemed innocent enough.

Fast forward to the first episode, starring the duo ‘Dollar’.  Now, let me say right from the start that I don’t really remember Dollar.  I’ve heard a few tracks over the years and I’ve seen David Van Day on a few programmes but I honestly can’t remember them from their heyday.  So maybe I’m missing something.  I don’t know.   However, David Van Day irritates me from the moment he appears on screen.  He always has done and this week’s programme did nothing to warm me to him at all.  Theresa Bazar seems lovely enough but appears somewhat blinded by Van Day.  She admits that when they were a couple she struggled to cope with his cheating and yet still seems totally smitten by her bandmate.

And so, on to the programme itself.  The aim is to give the band eight weeks in which to reinvent themselves in order to perform in front of an audience at the end.  They are put in front of a panel of four ‘experts’ although, to be honest, most of them filled me with fear rather than confidence!  There is a stylist, a personal trainer, an expert in non invasive surgery and a plastic surgeon.  Yup, you read it correctly.  A plastic surgeon!  This is no simple makeover show after all.

As Bazar opts for non invasive treatment, you’d think she was safe.  Until you see the scary expert woman stabbing her hundreds of times with a needle.  Think Little Shop of Horrors and you won’t be far wrong.  The poor singer comes out in bruises that make her look like she’s fallen down the stairs.  As for our man Van Day, of course he opts for the full surgery and undergoes a face lift. There’s a complication with one eye and a whole section of squeamish scenes that had me peeping from behind a cushion.

Finally, at the end of the 8 weeks they are ‘revealed’ on stage to perform in front of an audience.  There must have been at least, ooh thirty people there.  This was no big concert revival.  Most of the audience were family and friends with a few ‘super fans’ thrown in for good measure.  The pair were cheered and applauded as they made their way out onto the stage.  Yes, there was some visual improvement but how much of it was surgery and how much was just good make up it was impossible to tell.  As Dollar mimed to one of their old hits we didn’t even get the chance to watch them perform as there were so many cut aways to interviews with friends and family.  And they only did the one song.

As I said at the start – what an odd programme!  It was entertaining, I’ll give it that and I think my husband did enjoy it after the big build up but it is far more about the image of the people than the music of the band, and I can’t help feel slightly uncomfortable that people would go to the extremes of surgery to get back on stage.

Next week’s episode will be all about Bucks Fizz – no doubt they’ll go ‘Pop’ too.

  • BBC One
  • BBC Two
  • BBC Three
  • ITV1
  • ITV2
  • 4
  • E4
  • Film4
  • More4
  • Five
  • Fiver
  • Sky1