I've never watched any of these talent/reality shows, like American Idol. I'm not so much on the television watching.
But there was a time I was hopelessly addicted to a campy, intoxicating show called Xena: Warrior Princess, starring former Miss New Zealand Lucy Lawless in the title role.
I knew Lawless (Battlestar Galactica) could sing, since XWP had several musical episodes (I told you it was campy), so it makes sense that a B-list celeb fest like Celebrity Duets might include her. It pairs entertainers not known as singers with musical legends - usually code for "has-beens," and there are a few of those, but many genuine legends as well, including Smokey Robinson, Patti LaBelle, and Gladys Knight.
It's not hard to see where a show like this could suck. It's hard to see, in fact, how it couldn't. And if you're sitting there thinking I'm going to tell you it doesn't suck, you're wrong. Because it sucks so massively it's causing a disruption in the space-time continuum. It's sucking at Olympic levels. It's sucking like the last sucky thing in the galaxy.
Are you getting the picture?
Let me give you an example, much as it pains me.
Actor/comedian Hal Sparks (Survival of the Richest, Queer as Folk, stupid VH-1 series I Love the 70s, I Love the 80s, and I Love the 90s) and Dee Snyder (Twisted Sister) singing "We're Not Gonna Take It." The sheer badness of this duet is, frankly, indescribable, although that won't prevent me from attempting to describe it for you. Sparks is notable for having been called "too white" by Celebrity Duets judge Marie Osmond earlier in the show, and when Marie Osmond thinks you're "too white," honey... you're too white. Not just to sing Motown, which he tried to do, not just to sing, but to GO ON LIVING.
But I'd rather see him singing Motown every day for the rest of my life than have to live through his duet with Dee Snyder again. It was tuneless and soulless and horrifying. He was wearing too much eyeliner, and in his case, any is too much.
And I must not be the only one, because despite much diligent searching, I can't find video of this nightmare performance on YouTube or anywhere else people upload these things.
As soon as someone uploads it, I'll show you Jai Rodriguez (Queer Eye for the Straight Guy) singing "Lady Marmalade" with Patti LaBelle. She can still sing like some kind of goddess even though her wardrobe needs serious attention. And Jai looks like a debauched paperboy. Just listen but don't watch, because vocally? They owned me.