It’s not easy being yourself on camera…just ask Julia Morris, Nazeem Hussain, Hamish Blake and the cast of Celebrity Glasses Box.
The first celebrity version of the long-running show screened last night on Foxtel, taking us – ostensibly – inside celebrity homes where the stars sit on the couch and judge the television.
It was fascinating to have a peek inside the houses, tastefully furnished with plants, books and booze, and your average run of the mill AACTA Award, tennis trophy and dancing with the Stars mirror ball trophy. White is the prevailing decoration for Tim Campbell & Anthony Callea, Alex Perry, Joh Bailey & Cheyenne Tozzi, Julia Morris, Nazeem Hussain.
Seeing how people watch television was almost as insightful for me as the reactions of the cast. Last night Hamish Blake spread so much among the men we almost caught a peek, Alex Perry – you guessed it – wears sunglasses indoors (it’s a name brand thing, apparently), Dave and Holly Hughes sit on separate couches and Lachy Hulme — clearly channeling his foodie friend in a suit — spent the entire episode with Matt Preston at a table watching TV. Who do it?
There was beer, champagne, gin, cocktails, water, cats, a dog, and multitasking on the phone while watching TV. In the display list there were Australian survivor, married at first sight, Dancing with the Stars, Celebrity Masterchef United Kingdom, SAS Australia, the powerful Disney documentary The rescueAmazon Prime doco Shane (Warne) and the new US drag series They were here.
So what have we learned?
Julia Morris thinks Jonathan LaPaglia is a “dreamboat”; Dylan Alcott wants to keep competing Australian survivor; Julia Morris and Lachy Hulme have never watched Married at first sight; Luke McGregor wants to continue Married at first sight (here’s an idea… The bachelor?); Dave Hughes was hanging out with Ricki Lee and her kids don’t care; Nazeem Hussain has no idea who Cameron Daddo is; Alex Perry wants to move on SAS Australia; and Anthony Callea partied in Shane Warne’s basement and with Khanh at the nightclub.
But we also saw Hamish Blake hold back tears watching American drag queens, Robert Irwin actually saying “Crikey!”, and everyone remembered Melissa Tkautz’s “Read My Lips.”
It was fascinating that almost all of the talent was involved in reality shows, but didn’t give much insight into how reality shows are constructed (Matt Preston and Hamish Blake made passing mentions). But also that they’re happy to throw shade at those on screen. So does that mean it’s acceptable for average moviegoers to do the same with celebrities? I guess so, at least in the privacy of your home. Uploading it to social media and amplifying it to the world may be another matter…
I thought Robert Irwin was the revelation of the cast… smart, naturally funny, (I barely heard that from Mama Terri), but overall this cast wasn’t nearly as funny as the regular cast. Were they too cautious? Did they try too hard? Did I expect more? Who knows, really…
Would I watch it again? You bet. If Hamish Blake wears pants.
Celebrity Gogglebox airs tonight on the 10th.