Well, if you thought Ant and Dec exaggerated a bit when they opened the final ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ show with the words ‘the whole world is watching’ – you were wrong.
It’s not just Britain, it’s not just the English-speaking world. Poland – where the show has its local version called (rather less patriotically than its British equivalent) “I have talent” – also devoted a lot of time to Su-Bo and how she ‘conquered the hearts and minds of the world’ (not exactly my words or feelings, but never mind).
Less than an hour after Diversity were announced the winners in London, some Polish online papers and portals announced the results as if the show was a worldwide search for the next pope. (Although to be fair, one of my Twitter friends who’s doing doing a night shift in the BBC News newsroom tonight has just told me there’s nothing else on the wires but Susan Boyle).
The show has been analysed with almost the same fervour as many Polish shows, which means that Su-Bo, Diversity or Aidan Davis are almost domestic names in Poland now.
British shows have always been big in Poland – from ‘Fawlty Towers’ through ‘Dempsey and Makepeace’ (oh, yes), ‘ ‘Allo, ‘Allo!’, some fantastic BBC productions of Shakespeare’s plays (with top-quality voice-overs in Polish – a rare thing on Polish TV) to (ahem!) ‘Benny Hill’.
So the fact that ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ gets so much attention is no surprise. The only difference is speed.
Years ago we’d have to wait months if not years for the shows to be shown on Polish TV.
In 2009 it takes minutes for those clips to be available worldwide on YouTube.