Watching Talent Shows

Okay, I admit it. Despite all my best efforts to give off the (false) impression that I am actually quite intelligent and above such a lame-brained, superficial excuse for entertainment, I confess I am completely addicted to Britain's Got Talent



It's the same every year. I try hard not to get sucked in by it but always end up being won over by a few particular acts. I then just have to watch all their trials and tribulations as they wend their way through each round, forcing me to sit through every other cringe-worthy act on the way.

Fun viewing for the family

This year, I blame my kids, in particular my 7 year old daughter, who quite rightly pointed out the interesting talents of a male magician called Darcey. Never before have I found magic so intriguing, and how come I never noticed before?

Despite the usual criticism from the media - the acts aren't British, vote rigging, outfits too skimpy for pre-watershed viewing (my husband and son don't agree) - the acts have been extremely good this year and the whole show has been fun and engaging, especially for kids as many of the acts are so young.

Constructive criticism for kids

Some would argue that there is way too much focus on encouraging kids to attempt a career in showbiz when they really stand no chance; but kids will always want to try, and I think the programme deals with this well.

Simon Cowell is gentle with younger contestants and could never be accused of giving false hope. It's important that kids learn about healthy competition and accepting constructive criticism as part of life and I think the judges achieve this quite well.

Offering some positive messages for kids

Some of the young acts have put out quite a positive message to kids too, addressing topics such as bullying, breaks ups, and bereavement. By taking decisive action, facing their fears and following their dreams up on stage, the message is inarguably just to try your best.

The judging is brilliant, appealing to young and old. My daughter loves to see which dresses Alesha and Amanda will be wearing and my son adores David Walliams (don't we all), so even between acts there's something to keep everyone amused.

Saturday night entertainment!

So instead of spending Saturday nights deciding which tri-repeated DVD to watch, they are now consigned to settling down with an enormous bowl of crisps and a glass of wine (me, not the kids) whilst hurling abuse at the screen, wincing as Paddy's arm is nearly torn from its socket by Nico, singing along badly, and trying to focus on the acts while my daughter dances in front of the TV.

In other words, good old fashioned Saturday night entertainment that the whole family can enjoy. Long may it continue!

Jayne, Working Mum and Freelance Editor

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