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EDITIONS
Sunday, 8 September, 2002, 04:35 GMT 05:35 UK
Popstars: Where's the rivalry?
Popstars: The Rivals
10,000 hopefuls have been whittled down to 120

Come back in a month or two.

Having been a surprise hit in its first series, Popstars is back for a second run with the smart idea of extending the premise to manufacture two bands that will compete for the UK's next Christmas number one.

It is a clever idea - and before we have heard the songs, before we have any idea about the singers, you can guarantee that this show will produce a hit.

Any record company that has been planning its own Christmas release had better ponder a New Year one instead.
Davina McCall
Davina McCall is hosting the show

Yet that battle is three months away and just for the moment the show is indistinguishable from its previous run, bar a new line-up of judges.

It is a parade of chiefly appalling would-be stars and, like last time, it reveals that hardly anyone wants to be a singer, they just want to be stars.

Skin deep

But then music is apparently not a priority for the judges either. One contestant, Jacob, was rejected over his singing but then had another chance because Geri Halliwell decided he looked good.

It was a revealing decision and harder still to justify when the show made a big deal out of limiting the numbers of contestants being picked to get to the next round.

Three young women, for instance, were told that they were all good enough to go through but that only one would be picked.

That decision took place either side of an ad break, a specious way to bring some tension into a show that is really devoid of it so far.

The show will be a hit again and its new format will pay off at the end, but right now at the start of the run, the show is unsatisfying.

Popstars: The Rivals is on ITV1 on Saturdays at 1915 BST.

See also:

08 Sep 02 | Entertainment
29 Jul 02 | Entertainment
04 Sep 02 | Entertainment
09 Aug 02 | Entertainment
05 Aug 02 | Entertainment
04 Feb 01 | Entertainment
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