The Voice 2016: Battle Round 1: 27th February 2016

** SPOILER ALERTS IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THE OUTCOME OF TONIGHT’S SHOW! **

As mentioned in my post from last week “The Voice 2016: my ones to watch“, I’m a massive The Voice fan. I picked out my favourite 9 auditions and this week we saw whether any of my favourites made it through to the next round. So, away we go!

It was such an emotional night, I’ve never seen so many tears! This year, part one of the battle rounds seemed less shouty than last year, and left you able to hear how good the singing was as opposed to just how loud some of them could scream.

Jolan (Team Ricky)
Jolan was paired up with Efe Udugba to sing The Jam’s Beat Surrender.
It’s a great song that you really don’t hear often. I really couldn’t call it, as they were both so invested and sang their hearts out. In the end, Jolan won and sadly no-one stole Efe. It’s such a shame to lose anyone this talented, but I know you can only have a certain number go through to the next round.

Chloe Castro (Team Ricky)
Chloe was paired up with Alaric Green to sing Hope There’s Someone by Antony and The Johnsons.
It was a really emotional performance with both Boy George and Ricky Wilson tearing up. Their voices really complimented each other, and even though I hadn’t favourited Alaric’s initial audition, I really enjoyed him tonight. Again, I couldn’t call it, but happily Chloe was picked, though Alaric was stolen by Boy George, so he’s also through to the knockout shows. He’s got a great voice, so it was fantastic that he’s through too.

Tobias Robertson (Team George)
Tobias was paired up with Laura Begley to sing Love Will Tear Us Apart by Joy Division.
It was a slowed-down version and sounded beautiful. I felt both were equally pitched during the song, but when Laura was picked, I could see why. So, Tobias is my first loss of the battle rounds, but I’m sure we’ll see more from him as he’s really talented.

Bradley Waterman (Team Paloma)
Bradley was paired up with Rick Snowdon to sing a mashup of I’m A Man/Something’s Got A Hold On Me by Bo Diddley/Etta James.
What a battle! I hadn’t favourited Rick’s audition, but he can sing! It was a very rock concert performance and both singers gave their all. Sadly though, Paloma chose Rick, but Bradley was stolen by Boy George, so he’s still in!

Cody Frost (Team George)
Cody was paired up with Heather Cameron-Hayes to sing Nothing Compares To You by Sinead O’Connor.
Another amazing performance! To say I was underwhelmed by the auditions, quite a few people have impressed me tonight where I hadn’t favourited their original audition, and Heather is one of those people. It was another emotional performance, with Boy George crying pretty much throughout. I couldn’t call it, but George chose Cody but Paloma stole Heather.

So still to battle next week are:
Kevin Simm (Team Paloma)
Vangelis (Team George)
Mia Sylvester (Team Ricky)
Rachel Ann (Team Ricky)

This means that this week, I still have the below in the running and going into the knockout round:
Jolan (Team Ricky)
Chloe Castro (Team Ricky)
Bradley Waterman (was Team Paloma, now Team George)
Cody Frost (Team George)

But we sadly said goodbye to Tobias Robertson (Team George) 😦

The Voice 2016: my ones to watch

I have been watching The Voice since it started in 2012 and I love the format. In this superficial world that we live in, you can tell that some singers have been passed over in previous competition-type shows because of how they look. The Voice forces the judges to listen to the singer and their, erm, voice, and not be distracted by aesthetics. The last blind auditions show for this year has just been broadcast, and now we know who the judges have for the upcoming Battle rounds. Below are my favourite auditions so far, but I have to say that I was disappointed by this year’s quality. I felt that last year was much stronger, however, there are some great performers and if the right people get through, it will be a great set of live shows.

Cody Frost
Which team is she in? Team George
Cody sang a very different version of ABBA’s Lay All Your Love On Me, it was simply mesmorising. She was the first person I was really excited to see.

Kevin Simm
Which team is he on? Team Paloma
Kevin used to be in Liberty X (the group formed from the people who didn’t get into Hear’Say, and were much, much more successful!), and you can see why he progressed so far in Popstars. It was a flawless performance, and I can’t wait to see him in the Battle rounds.

Chloe Castro
Which team is she on? Team Ricky
Chloe has a lovely style, and I loved her outfit! Straight after I had seen her audition, I put in the YouTube comments, “I have been really disillusioned with this year so far, and Chloe has just grabbed my attention and made me want to watch it again! She’s got a lovely tone to her voice and I can’t wait to see what she sings next.” It’s true, this year has been a real strange one for talent, but I was so glad to see Chloe go through. I think she’s got the right coach as having seen Ricky coaching last year, you know he really cares about getting the very best out of each person.

Tobias Robertson
Which team is he on? Team George
Tobias sang You’ve Got A Friend In Me which you don’t hear as an audition often! He has such a gorgeous tone to his voice.

Bradley Waterman
Which team is he on? Team Paloma
I thought Bradley’s audition was great, a different spin on Cee Lo Green’s song. It will be interesting to see who Paloma pairs him up with in the Battle rounds, but I really hope he progresses on as he’s really good.

Vangelis
Which team is he on? Team George
Vangelis was very brave taking on a Culture Club song when Boy George is one of the coaches, but clearly it paid off. It was a great version, and I can’t wait to see more from him.

Mia Sylvester
Which team is she on? Team Ricky
Mia has an amazing voice and I have no idea why only one judge (Ricky) turned. It’s just crazy! She’s such a great find for the show, and I can see her progressing quite late on into the final shows. Such a great audition and I loved Ricky’s reaction when he realised that he was the only coach to turn, and that he didn’t have to battle with the other judges!

Jolan
Which team is he on? Team Ricky
Before Jolan’s audition, I really thought that Kevin Simm was my all-time favourite, but then Jolan came along and barged Kevin out of the way! I love Terence Trent D’Arby, and you don’t hear his music very often, unfortunately. Jolan did an amazing (or “flawless” as Ricky said) performance, and I must have watched his audition at least 10 times by now. Not only does he have a great voice, he’s cute too and seems like a genuinely nice guy. Bring on the Battle rounds, I really hope he gets through!

Rachel Ann
Which team is she on? Team Ricky
To say that Rachel Ann is only 16, she has such a great voice, simply phenomenal. To say that she was also playing the keyboard too is outstanding, as I should imagine that trying to concentrate on just the keyboard alone in such a big audition would be enough to throw anyone off! A great audition 🙂

So, this year I have someone I’m interested in in all teams, but the scores so far are:

Team Ricky = 4 contestants (45%)
Team George = 3 contestants (33%)
Team Paloma = 2 contestants (22%)

Actually, not all of the teams. Weirdly I have none from Will’s team, which I hadn’t noticed until just now! I just went through all of #TeamWill again to double check that I hadn’t forgotten to save anyone’s audition videos, and nope, I actually don’t have anyone in #TeamWill!

Special mention goes to Lester Preston Jr, whose audition I loved, but sadly no-one turned for him (just, how?!). Hopefully we’ll see him again in the future.

Only 7 days to go until the Battle rounds, I can’t wait!

Netflix Review: Jessica Jones (2015)

Starring:  Krysten Ritter, Rachael Taylor, Eka Darville, David Tennant, Carrie-Anne Moss, Wil Traval, Susie Abromeit, Mike Colter, Erin Moriarty
IMDb synopsis: A former super-hero decides to reboot her life by becoming a private investigator.

My verdict: Now, I must be honest and say that I only really started to watch Jessica Jones because I fancy David Tennant. I would watch that man read the phonebook to me, hour upon hour, if that was possible. Michelle and I usually watch Netflix series episodes during dinner (one episode a night), and this is what we intended with Jessica Jones. We settled down to watch episode one on Tuesday night, with the belief that we’d only watch one episode. Wrong. We went to bed at 12:30am after binge watching the first six episodes. Then we had a conundrum on Wednesday night as there were seven episodes left to watch. Should we watch four on Wednesday and three on Thursday? Five and two? We did neither. We binge watched all seven and went to bed very late. Were the late nights worth it? Yes, totally! I felt truly bereft at work on Thursday as I had run out of episodes, which meant no more David Tennant, though I did get my DT fix by watching him hosting the Doctor Who special of Never Mind The Buzzcocks on YouTube…

I’ve never really been into Marvel; not the comics, not the films. So, I was going into this with no super-hero background knowledge. It didn’t matter, as even though it is a Marvel show, my lack of knowledge didn’t detract from the show.

* Krysten Ritter plays Jessica Jones, a former super-hero who is now a private detective, trailing cheating husbands and wives around New York City. All she’s trying to do is get rent money and move on with her life, but her past keeps coming back to haunt her.
* Rachael Taylor plays her best friend Trish Walker, a former child actor and now talk show radio host.
* Jessica has an apartment in the same block as drug addict Malcolm Ducasse, played by Eka Darville, who she takes care of a lot, but later in the series, the tables turn and he ends up looking after her.
* David Tennant is wonderfully brilliant as Kilgrave, someone Jessica is trying to avoid who is back from her past.
* Jeri Hogarth is a lawyer who supplies Jessica with her detecting jobs, played by Carrie-Anne Moss who I must admit I haven’t seen since The Matrix (I know she’s done loads of films since!).
* Wil Traval plays Will Simpson, a NYPD sergeant who stumbles into Jessica’s life after being sent to kill her best friend Trish.
* Susie Abromeit plays Pam who is Jeri’s assistant and also lover, even though Jeri is married. Tut tut.
* Mike Colter plays Luke Cage, who has some pretty amazing super-hero skills of his own.
* Hope Shlottman, played by Erin Moriarty, is someone Jessica has been tasked with locating after she goes missing.

I don’t really want to give too much away about the plot, so I won’t, but I have to say this: Jessica Jones is brilliant! It’s one show where all of the characters are interesting, and even though there are main characters, you care about all of them equally. I was genuinely sad when it ended and I really hope that there’s a second season 🙂

Rating: 5 glorious stars out of 5

Exciting news about Peep Show

I have always been a big fan of Peep Show, and I was always hoping that there would be another series. So, I was really excited to find out that there would be another series, only, sadly, it’s to be the last series.

I love Olivia Colman and one of my favourite parts of hers is Sophie in Peep Show. I’ve just spotted this article “Olivia Colman WILL be in the final series of Peep Show: Here’s picture proof“. I also love Neil Fitzmaurice as Mark’s arch enemy, Jeff, and so I’m excited that he’ll soon be back too! “Neil Fitzmaurice hints at return of old faces in Peep Show series 9: ‘Maybe one final kick in the nuts’



Feature on: BoJack Horseman

I am a big fan of Netflix and the highly random things it suggests that I might like watching. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I would say that “BoJack Horseman” is definitely on the winner’s pile. Series 2 starts on Netflix on Friday 17th July and if you haven’t watched it, I recommend binge watching all 12 episodes before the big day.

So, who is BoJack Horseman? His Wikipedia page says, “In a world where humans and anthropomorphic animals live side by side, BoJack Horseman, the washed-up star of the 1990s sitcom Horsin’ Around, plans his big return to celebrity relevance with a tell-all biography that he dictates to his ghostwriter and recent love interest Diane Nguyen. BoJack also has to contend with the demands of his agent and on-again-off-again girlfriend Princess Carolyn, his freeloading roommate Todd Chavez, and his frenemy Mr. Peanutbutter, who is also Nguyen’s boyfriend.”

BoJack is played by Will Arnett, Princess Carolyn is played by Amy Sedaris, Diane Nguyen is played by Alison Brie, Mr. Peanutbutter is played by Paul F. Tompkins and Todd Chavez is played by Aaron Paul.

Below is the trailer for the second season of BoJack, just to whet your appetite!

 

Made Television on Sky

As you may or may not know, I’m originally from Leeds even though I live in Liverpool now. I recently found out that I can watch Made In Leeds TV outside of Leeds, and that I could do so by following the below instructions (but this only applies to Sky):

As you can see from the image, this also applies to Bristol, Cardiff and Tyne & Wear, so you can watch those channels also if you’re out of the natural catchment area 🙂

You can find out more at their website: http://www.madetelevision.com/