One of my photos


July 18th, 2008 · Posted by Skuds in Life · No Comments · Life

I don’t usually find myself watching Five, but tonight I had a look at Superstars.   I tuned in because I half-remembered reading somewhere that the show was going to be in Crawley’s K2 leisure centre at some point: I kept watching because the format is pretty compulsive.

All those memories of Kevin Keegan’s bike crash and Brian Jacks’ squat-thrusts came flooding back.  The programme tonight was indeed filmed in Crawley, and I wonder if the whole lot will be.  One of the rounds is indoor rock-climbing and another is diving.  There can’t be many places in the country that can offer both in one place.

Rock-climbing and diving are new additions, but they still have the notorious gym tests with the dreaded squat-thrusts and dips on the parallel bars.  Our old gym teacher at school made us do squat-thrusts and as I recall they are a real killer.  Another thing that sticks to the spirit of the original series is the inclusion of people you have never heard of (if you are not a sports fanatic and mainly watch only football) who end up wiping the floor with the better-known names.  This time round it is the skier Alain Baxter who is the superstar.

Despite the changes, the whole thing has the spirit of the original show, which is a real surprise.  Resurrections and renovations of old formats so often just tramples on memories of the original – Doctor Who excepted of course.  And it all can’t do the area any harm in its attempts to become a base for some team in the 2012 Olympics.

Having said that, sport is now a lot more serious, as is the money involved.   I can’t see any current big-name footballers ever being allowed to take part, for example.  Training regimes and all the extra games must leave less time to sneak off for Superstars, and I can’t see any club being happy with the risks of injury.

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