When I first heard that The only Way Is Essex was nominated for a BAFTA last year, I thought it was some sort of late April Fool’s joke. And so did everybody else it seems. Despite being a life-long TOWIE fan (well, for the few years its been going at least), I had always associated the BAFTAs with serious film and television making. The type of award ceremony that everyone who attended was expected to act very proper, incase the Queen made a surprise inspection. And for the rest of TV, there was always the National Soap Awards to flash your knickers at. So it did jar slightly when the cast of The only Way Is Essex dismayed everyone and actually won the award, voted for by the public. Who’d have thought, hey?
However, despite TOWIE unfortunately not receiving any nominations this year, ripples from the splash they created have managed to still trickle down in to the nominations pool. With Made in Chelsea, TOWIE’s biggest and poshest rivals being given a nod in the Reality and Constructed Factual category, as well as my personal favorite, Celebrity Juice, being nominated for two awards (including Best Entertainment Programme I’ll have you know), I am starting to wonder if the BAFTAs are finally getting off their high horses and finally taking note of what the majority of the Great British population actually enjoy. And rewarding it rightly so.
Despite my toes curling at the very thought of an episode of Made in Chelsea, I can comprehend, unlike Jan Moir who ripped in to Caggie & Co courtesy of the Daily mail recently, that this form of ‘is it’ ‘isn’t it’ reality TV has in fact captured the attention of the nation, and there are few channels left who haven’t spawned their own docu-soap drama for your viewing pleasure.
And with regards to Celebrity Juice, I for one honestly relish clocking in with Keith, Holly Willobooby and Fearne once a week and laugh my head off after a hard day’s work. Surely this deserves just as much credit as some serious crime drama blah blah blah. Leigh Francis’ cult character Keith Lemon has even managed to land a spin-off, prime time Saturday show in the form of Lemonaid. Even my Gran loves him now because of this, despite being strictly banned from watching any of his post watershed shows.
So all that remains now is to see if Hugo, Spencer and the rest of the Chelsea set follow in the footsteps of their BAFTA award-winning Essex counterparts and bring home the gong on May 27th. Not that Spencer needs his ego inflating anymore…