This post was written by Britain’s Got Talent and Big Brother uber fan Daniel Cohen. Check out his personal blog here or catch up with him on Twitter here.
If social media is to be believed, the audiences that visited the first two days of Britain’s Got Talent auditions were unanimous: David Walliams was the best judge … EVER!!
According to hundreds of messages David was: the funniest, the sweetest, the most clever and the most polite to the audience. Many contestants tweeted to thank him for his funny jokes, his kindness and support. Audience members thanked him for the laughs and for caring enough to talk for ages to them in the pouring rain outside to make up for the three hour wait outside. The judges and the onsite staff commented how much fun he was and how well everything was going and how happy they were with having him on board.
Everyone was enjoying the amazingly cute bromance David and Simon had developed in just two days. On Sunday the Daily Mirror and other papers including Metro said that David was the best judge and the audience loved his jokes. They said he was TV gold.
It sounded like Britain’s Got Talent would be perfect this year and on hearing this, you’d think he is the perfect judge. So imagine my surprise when I opened the papers today and read: “David Walliams is too rude for BGT”. Going on the internet I realised that each and every paper had started some sort of witch-hunt on the new judge, aided by so called producers who told the papers: “the comedian’s remarks to the hopefuls were littered with innuendo and double entendres.”. Suddenly it was said that “big chunks of Simon Cowell’s Britain’s Got Talent comeback could end up on the cutting room floor after the new judging panel traded a string of sex jokes and rude innuendo.” and that “bosses now face an editing nightmare having to take out many of the references on the family show and will urge the judges to “rein in” the gags so audiences do not think it is too sleazy.”
David was told to have insulted a Christian couple (no he had not: the comments made to the Christian couple were all taken in good faith, the couple were even laughing) and they were hinting that Simon was shocked by David’s behaviour, reprimanded him and had had to apologise to contestants and the audience on David’s behalf.
This is all very strange, isn’t it? If the audience and the BGT team enjoyed and even loved David and if the press liked him at first, why is there a new spin on events two days later?
Before and during recordings Simon had been explicitly stating:
“I wanted to make sure we’d got David Walliams. I like David because he’s weird and he makes me laugh without trying to be funny. David Walliams is insane! He could be unpredictable. He might turn up as a woman day one. Anything goes.” (Which, if you think about it, is a strange statement to make about someone who recently admitted to being bipolar.)
So it seems as if Simon got what he wanted. If the producers had wanted someone like Michael Mcintyre they should not have let Simon hire David. Both David and Simon have admitted that Cowell had been chasing him for years to do the show, so Simon must have known David’s style by then. David was hired to be all out camp and the other judges egged him on in that. Amanda even fed him a banana. Had he been told to not go all out before the shows started, he could have done that too. David is actually very able to tone it down. You can see it in his kids books, the quiz shows he presented and his One Show appearances. He was egged on by the team to go “all out and be unpredictable”. He was told he was hired to “provide comic relief”. So he’s damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t.
Then there is this bit. Another so called insider claims that David outshone Simon, telling Digital Spy:
“Simon picked David because he likes his sense of humour and knew he’d be a success. But in doing so he may just have put himself in the shade – and that’s somewhere he doesn’t enjoy being.”
Sounds like this might have a bit of truth, as the articles followed claims David was more popular then Simon after only one session.
What really doesn’t sit right with me is the fact that the producers and media hint that it is his camp tendencies that the producers disapprove of. Although he is married….to a woman….. David is the closest Simon has ever come to hiring a real gay judge (sorry Louis). So is it the gay jokes they are scared off? In the past, in my opinion, Britain’s Got Talent and X Factor have been slightly edged towards homophobia.
God forbid children should see David laugh and joke with some camp sailors and claim to be excited by a pretty man. Instead Simon getting aroused and talking dirty for the one millionth naked or barely dressed dancer or stripper or another X rated performance by Christina or Rihanna is not going to damage them, of course.
Whatever did or did not happen. David has been painted in a bad light in every paper and every showbiz site in the UK, even on some sites around the world. Talk about a bad start on a new job. It is really sad, with David saying:
“BGT yesterday was the most fun I have ever had doing a TV show. I even ended up on the stage! All will be revealed! Simon Cowell and Amanda Holden were really welcoming and helped Alesha Dixon and I through the first day. At the end of it we felt like a family, albeit a dysfunctional one. I can’t wait for Tuesday when BGT hits Blackpool. I still can’t believe I am actually getting paid to have so much fun! I think I have a new double act partner, Simon Cowell! I haven’t laughed so much in years.”
Poor David, it feels so wrong as if they misled him. David is such a generous lovely man. I am not just talking about the wonderful things he has done for charity but in general. He is polite to a fault, cares for everyone and genuinely cared for the acts onstage. So why is everyone stabbing David in the back all of a sudden? It makes you think the Little Britain star is being sacrificed to create some tension and drama that hasn’t been brewing because the judges have all been getting on. The girls aren’t jealous or fighting. The only other drama there is to report is on how long Amanda can or can’t keep walking on high heels as she is getting more and more pregnant.
I was so happy with the choice of David. For a brief moment it looked as if things would be different this year. Other people felt this way too. This year more people that felt they were “different” and “camp” and would have never been accepted in the past signed on, purely because they felt that David might like what they do. He did and said: “That is why I wanted to be part of this show. I love eccentrics. I love the nutty people, I have a kinship with them.”
But, despite audience regulars saying it was the most fun they had at a BGT recording ever, David has been reprimanded and told he has to reign himself in. He might as well quit. Because now he will clearly become static, thinking of what he can and can’t say and will loose everything that made him funny and different in the first place. Maybe ITV just doesn’t want good ratings for the show anymore. Stay yourself David!!