I'm secretly hoping this also means that some British content will be available to United States viewers. It would somewhat ease my frustration with my cable provider, who can't seem to justify carrying BBC America in their channel line-up no matter how many times I ask. It would be nice to satisfy my Brit TV craving without resorting to Netflix (or, even worse, The Pirate Bay).
Given how protective both countries are of their content, it wouldn't surprise me if this deal fell through. Regulation is a bitch, but Hulu is making some pretty big bucks right now for an Internet venture and I can't see how the media conglomerates behind this deal could be that resistant to profit.
It's been almost six years since viewers saw the last of the enigmatic detective Endeavour Morse (John Thaw) and his persistent sidekick Detective Sergeant Lewis (Kevin Whatley), when Colin Dexter killed the character off in the final episode, The Remorseful Day, only to be followed by the sad death of John Thaw in 2002.
However, the character of Lewis proved to be so popular with readers and viewers that ITV decided that it merited a follow-up series, and commissioned a one-off pilot to test the water.
I have to admit, I was cynical at first, but the quality of Morse productions in the past has never failed to hit the mark in over 30 feature-length episodes -- from the filming to the music, to the dialogue, acting and script -- not to mention to fabulous setting of Oxford in England -- and providing Carlton Productions invested the same time, effort and resources into Lewis, any fears of a watery sequel could be easily salved.
Warning: spoilers after the jump.
The final order ran like this: first out was Traci Bingham, then Pete Burns, followed by Samuel Preston, then Maggot, then Michael Barrymore -- and Chantelle was crowned the winner of Celebrity Big Brother 2006.
You can say what you like about the reality TV format, but Big Brother stands head and shoulders above the rest in terms of construct; it can really only be described as car-crash television at its best - and utterly captivating viewing, even at its worst. Who cares if it's mostly scripted and produced by cynically-minded manipulative TV execs? It's still a great watch, and this year's gang of paranoid, self-obsessed B-list nutcases gave us 23 days of insanely brilliant television.
No-one will be able to forget MP George Galloway mimicking a cat, or Pete Burns with a face like he'd been in the Aardman fire, or Michael Barrymore's obsessive cigarette hoarding, or Dennis Rodman's hyper-libido, or Traci Bingham's preening and pouting, or Jodie Marsh on the end of incessant bullying.
But most of all, it'll be remembered for making a mockery of showbusiness by placing a novelty non-celebrity into a group of desperate wannabes and handing her an career overnight.
Former Dead or Alive singer Pete Burns, disgraced entertainer Michael Barrymore, U.S. actress and model Traci Bingham, The Ordinary Boys frontman Samuel Preston, Goldie-Lookin' Chain's Maggot -- and, of course, the fake celebrity Chantelle Houghton from Essex -- will all line up and whittle down to one with a cash prize of £25,000 awaiting the winner.
The odds are stacked 1/5 on in favour of the young blond promotions girl who will celebrate her 23rd birthday next Thursday, whilst Michael Barrymore runs in at 28/1, Maggot at 25/1, Preston at 11/1 and Pete Burns a rank outsider at 50/1.
Personally speaking, I would rather see Preston win, but Chantelle has held her own for over three weeks with a bunch of bitter, so-called celebs and probably deserves her shot at fame -- not least of all for putting up with Dennis Rodman's excessive, leery behaviour for the duration.
Who do you want to win this year? Give us your vote in the comments section below and we'll do a full roundup of the whole series and the final outcome on Saturday.
In his post-eviction interview with Davina McCall, George was unrepentant about his behaviour towards his fellow-housemates and his cat-mimimickery performance with Rula Lenska, but appeared to be taken aback at the swathe of negative press he'd received whilst in the house - particularly from his fellow-politicians.
When Dennis was announced as the fifth housemate to be evicted, everyone in the house was shocked -- mostly because the eviction was unexpected, but partly because Chantelle had defeat him in the public vote. He waltzed out to his post-eviction interview with his usual swagger and couldn't-give-a-shit attitude, the dissed everyone in the house in an ungrudging fashion.
The final on Friday night is hotting up to be a blistering evening, with Pete Burns sidelined, Maggot a bit of a non-event, Michael Barrymore losing his grip on reality -- and only Samuel Preston and Chantelle holding their act together for the public.
George Galloway in particular has managed to single himself out for villain status, with Chantelle, Preston and Michael Barrymore all on the receiving end of his eloquent barb, but Pete Burns didn't escape the criticism for going a bit too far in making life difficult for Chantelle and Preston during the complicated banking task.
The result of the tensions has been a split down the middle of the house, with Dennis Rodman, Pete and George segregating themselves from Chantelle, Maggot, Preston and Michael. All the while Traci Bingham floats around in a bit of a daze.
In other news, rumors are circulating to suggest that six housemates will make it through to the final night on Friday, with no evictions on Thursday night.
Only time will tell.
Everyone was gathered in the lounge on Saturday afternoon and Preston read out a transcript of a conversation George had with Rula Lenska on Thursday about who he would have nominated in his previous punishment with Preston (also for discussing nominations).
Big Brother then erected a polling booth in the main area of the house and instructed all of the housemates, except George, to cast their vote on whether George should be allowed to nominate. They voted 4/3 in favour of denying the Member of Parliament his two nomination votes. In the ensuing round, Chantelle, Dennis Rodman and George were all nominated to face the public vote during Wednesday's double-evitions live show.
In other news, the housemates were forced to don Lycra leotards for a silly dance task on Saturday, and then Big Brother set the group a complicated money-counting task on Sunday which involves Chantelle and Preston gaining access to a luxury private club, which they must keep secret from the other housemates (although, the other housemates can see them on the monitors), whilst the rest of the house must keep up the pretence of counting money and deliberately fail the task.
Dramatic news hit the Celebrity Big Brother house
today when George Galloway and Samuel Preston were called jointly to the diary room last night to answer for their
actions, after they had been caught on camera discussion nominations earlier this week.
Both had previously received warnings from Big Brother for discussing nominations and were advised they would now be punished for their additional discretions, and were forced to jointly nominate three other housemates who would then automatically face the public vote for eviction on Friday night's live show.
Unbeknownst to the pair, the other housemates were watching the diary room proceedings on a monitor in the lounge, and when the lads returned to the house, they were met with a betrayed Traci, Maggot and Rula.
Meanwhile, Pete has been giving Traci a hard time for "being false" and Preston's relationship with Chantelle continues to blossom.
Chantelle is now 11/10 favorite to win the show, followed closely by Preston on 3/1 and Pete on 9/1. Rula is the rank outsider at 66/1 and favorite to leave on Friday.
George Galloway, Maggot and Michael Barrymore all selected her during Monday's private nomination process, and the public voted to eject her from the show in a stand-off with Pete Burns and Dennis Rodman.
In other news, the house appears to have recovered from the confusing race row which erupted yesterday, after Faria finally owned up to her involvement in sparking off the whole issue -- and most of the housemates spent today preparing for a potential eviction when Big Brother awoke everyone with an alarm of gloomy bell tolls.
Later in the day, Preston kicked off a spate of therapeutic hugging around the house, before everyone was set a task to paint self-portraits, depicting themselves "inside and out".
Following a 'Mods and Rockers' party to celebrate Preston's birthday last night, the housemates have discovered that Faria Alam, Pete Burns and Dennis Rodman will face the public vote as a result of yesterday's nominations (which presumably included Rula's "pants of power" nomination).
As a result, the mood in the house has shifted considerably, with a race row flaring up over misinterpreted comments made by Faria over the possibility of a non-white housemate ever winning Big Brother, which ended up with Traci having the finger of blame pointed at her by Dennis.
In other news, George has been chosen by Big Brother to take part in a secret task to win the housemates a luxury food budget, and has been cleared of any wrong-doing out in the real world when Member of Parliament Chris Bryant asked the Speaker of the House of Commons if it was "entirely in order" that George could sign parliamentary motions put before the Commons during the time he has appeared on the show.
It's not that she contributed anything worthwhile to the house -- in fact, she was positively egocentric for most of the time -- but she simply didn't deserve the incessant bullying treatment she received from the group over relatively trivial matters. Watching her fight back tears as BB presenter Davina McCall interviewed her post-eviction was a little bit saddening. Personally speaking, I wanted Pete to go; he's honest to the point of brutality, and I'm certain he partly influenced Jodie's exit from the house.
Apart from Jodie's summary dismissal, the housemates spent much of today preparing for the eviction night, with George Galloway rising from his bed early -- as though he was fighting an election campaign -- and Jodie questioning Preston on the size of his manhood in the pool, but they both promised a passionate embrace if they jointly reached the final week. Alas, we won't get to see such a tryst.
Never mind, Channel Four confirmed that Jimmy Savile will arrive in the house over the weekend when he appeared on-stage with Davina and Jodie during the closing credits. Honestly folks, the man looked like he had escaped from a high security rest home, so things should brighten up by the time we update tomorrow night.
Jodie Marsh is starting become horribly isolated from the entire group due to her behaviour, and spent most of last night alone in her bed away from the other housemates, while everyone worked on their latest task, which included Maggot and Chantelle trying to learn Japanese overnight, Rula Lenska eating spinach to prove if it makes you stronger -- and Preston eating a box of chocolate liqueurs to find out if they would make him drunk.
George Galloway seems to have "bonded" solidly with Rula, suggesting to her that he feels Preston masterminded the first round of nominations.
Perhaps he's starting to fear that the public may opt to keep Jodie and Pete in the house in favor of dumping him?
(UPDATE: This is a fake post, created for the purpose of our April Fools contest)
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