Fair dos, the parents featured on this show were indeed some of the most cringe-makingly embarrassing people ever to have given birth. And good for them I say! It’s time we adults rebelled against the conventional, and the parental rebellion is well under way all across Britain it would seem.
Kids will always want to blend in with the crowd; whether that’s wearing the same trainers as everyone else does or having the same kind of upbringing everyone else does, but the fact is, we parents would like it known we have personalities and interests of our own, and we’re not going to sit in a corner knitting just to please you kids and to fit into your stereotypes.
Like Karim who featured last night, if we want to play air guitar and go to rock gigs, we dang well will. If we, like Jo Sperring, want to be a muscle bound pin up, well, we so will. And as Jo said last night as she strutted her stuff before her kids and one of their friends, “If I know it’s embarrassing them, I’m gonna do it just that litttttle bit more”. You go girlfriend. We forty somethings must stand together and shame our children at every turn and wherever possible. Why? Because it’s funny and because we can…
I do it all the time and thoroughly enjoy it. And I’m not alone it would seem because Tina Malone – of Shameless fame – feels the same. The message to her daughter, who’s infinitely more sensitive than Tina is, was simply, “put up with it or ship out”, or words to that effect. From her massive laugh to her phallic ornaments, Tina isn’t bothered about what people think of her, so daughter Danielle just has to accept her mum for who she is… but she doesn’t have to necessarily like it.
However, there is a line which even we rebellious parents draw, and some of the parents featured last night crossed it. Such as Kevin, the man so obsessed with Star Trek his entire life revolves around it, much to the embarrassment of his daughter. And then there was ‘Cyber Mum’ who loves raving, complete with hideous – and very revealing – neon pink outfits. I don’t have a problem with her recapturing her lost youth, but her taste in music and clothing was highly questionable.
We also met Vanessa Feltz and her daughter last night and between them, they’d wear me to a frazzle within minutes. Both talk at ninety to the dozen and both talk over each other. It was rather like watching two adult sized frenzied terriers at play.
Next up was a skateboarding dad, closely followed by an Osmond loving mother – who to be fair, was very embarrassing – and then the final two parents were very much over the rebellion line, parentwise…
Ian is a cross dresser who fully embraces his feminine side and alter ego, Susan. His poor son Jack was dragged out with ‘Susan’ by presenter Kristen O’Brien to “strut our stuff” around Leeds, and I really felt for the poor lad who will never, ever, be able to go into those pubs and clubs again. Mind you, he probably wouldn’t even want to, given that he was pretty much felt-up by several cross dressing men.
Now I personally would’ve put Ian/Susan at number one in the embarrassing parent stakes, but the show put 50 year old mum Janet in the top slot. She wants to look just like her daughter, 29 year old Jane, and has spent £10k on attempting to do just that. However, I have to say that Jane wore soooooooo much make-up, it was actually very difficult to tell her age or indeed what she truly looked like.
Both wear very ‘loud’ but – I guess, I don’t really know – fashionable clothes, hair extensions and as I said, copious quantities of make-up.
So Jane was crowned Most Embarrassing Parent, but as I said, I’d have gone for Ian/Susan as number one.
Overall, this was a very entertaining if pointless show, but it didn’t claim to do anything other than what it said on the tin. There was no point to the programme other than a fun hour in the company of Britain’s embarrassing parents. I’m just glad I wasn’t in there…