I've been meaning to post about my new favorite summer show -- Rockstar: Supernova. I really expected not to like this show. As you might have gathered, my taste in music runs mostly to indie rock, which places a lot of emphasis on authenticity and having something original to say. This show, by contrast, is all about artifice. But I started watching it based on Alan Sepinwall's enthusiasm, and it is pretty awesome.
The premise of the show is that Gilby Clark (the latter-day Izzy Stradlin), Tommy Lee, and Jason Newsted (formerly of Metallica) are putting together a band, and they need a lead singer. Coincidentally, CBS just happens to have a reality show set up to look for rock singers. The three members of Supernova are the judges and they are assisted by Dave Navarro, who is also sort of a judge, but not really. Brooke Burke is the emcee. And there's a house band, which is fantastic.
On Tuesday nights, all of the contestants sing one song. They are given a list of songs, and have to haggle among them selves about who will sing each one. The judges give comments and then the audience can vote. At the end of the show, Brooke lets the audience know who are the 3 lowest vote-getters based on the first few minutes of voting. I think that this supposed to induce fans to vote for their favorites if they are in danger.
On Wednesday nights, the band chooses one person to do an encore, and that person does the same song they did the night before. Then the 3 lowest vote-getters each perform a different song of their own choosing. And then the band decides which person to eliminate.
Here's a quick run-down of the 8 remaining contestants.
1) Dilana. She's my favorite. She sort of has this goth look with metal studs in her face and red streaks in her hair. (This show could not exist without hair dye.) But she's really versatile and can do everything from straight ahead bar band music to more punky stuff.
2) Storm Large. That is supposedly her real name. I can see her winning. She is gorgeous, has a good voice, and an over the top personality. She's also a great performer in the sense that she apparently has no inhibitions.
3) Patrice. Boring. I feel bad saying that because she seems nice, has a great voice, and I think we have similar taste in music. She's been in the bottom 3 twice and once sang a Radiohead song and the other time she sang a Jeff Buckley song. But still, there's something about her -- too girl next door.
4) Zayra. Her forte is wearing skin tight outfits and singing really badly. They've basically admitted that they're just keeping her on for entertainment value. And I can't blame them, because there is something riveting about her.
5) Lukas. He is also one of the favorites. I don't like him because he looks like a little elf with he weird hair and eye-makeup. But he totally has the rock star strut down, and it was pretty cool when he forgot the words to "Celebrity Skin" and just turned his back to the audience and made up his own words. Last week, he sang "Creep" and was fantastic.
6) Magni. He is from Iceland and has no hair. For some reason the judges really like him, but he bores me -- too remniscent of Coldplay.
7) Toby. He's from Australia and looks like a country singer. Another mysterious judge favorite.
8) Ryan. What to say about Ryan? Until two weeks ago, he seemed like a boring emo boy. But then two weeks he did this version of "Everybody Hurts" on the piano that was fantastic and got the encore. Then last week, things went a little haywire. He came out in this hoodie, with a wig over it. And then when the lights came on he dramatically ripped off the hoodie to reveal his eyes which were covered in black eyemakeup, similar to a raccoon. And then he sang a weird goth version of "Paint It Black." The band was openly laughing and he was in the bottom three. But he survived with a rousing-if-oxymoronic rendition of "Enjoy the Silence."
Anyway, there's a new episode tonight and I'll have a recap tomorrow whether you want it or not.