Where is the Love?

February 19, 2008

Let’s face it, Singapore is an achievement-fuelled nation. That’s the reason why the Singapore Flyer was built to become the world’s highest ferris wheel (at least for now), while all sorts of missions are frequently organised such as to write the nation into the Guinness Book of World Records (Longest popiah, anyone?).

I suppose that is precisely why, despite the numerous believable conspiracy theories abounding that the voting system was flawed, when local contestant Hady Mirza won Asian Idol (which should more effectively be named South East Asian Idol because it only featured contestants from around the region, with the exception of India. What about Taiwan and China, the land of the singing competitions? Are they ineligible just because those countries chose to be original and not rip off the tried-and-tested, yet unreliable, idol format?) against all the powerhouses, his pretty mug was unabashedly splashed all over the front pages of all local tabloids AND the advertisements were replayed over and over again on television.

Total Overkill.The Amazing Race Asia

Now, Adrian and Collin from The Amazing Race Asia 2 have gone one-up on fellow Singapore competitors Sharon and Melody from the previous season by winning the whole damn thing, furthermore on home soil. And they won by being the underdogs too (like Hady), being last for most of the final leg back in Singapore!

That would have been, all by itself already, such a strong media storyline (and I have not gone into the fact that Adrian is the first hearing-impaired contestant ever casted on The Amazing Race. How’s that for a sweet victory?) Yet, their victory was marginalised to small articles within the newspaper itself.

Where’s the front page news?! Where is the Love? The achievements of Hady shagging his lungs out against other vocal powerhouses in the inaugural Asian Idol is probably on par with the achievements of Adrian and Collin shagging their energy out for close to a month against other competitors from around the region, flying 4 continents in the process.

Is this because The Amazing Race Asia 2 is unavailable on free-to-air television here?
Or is this because Asian Idol is more prestigious just because it is shown live?