Backstage at the World’s Got Talent show, the tension was palpable. Rupert’s parents were anxiously whispering to one another in Japanese, in between making encouraging comments to Rupert in an effort to bolster his confidence, and showing a brave face to the camera. Their main concern was the little upstart competitor, Ivy. Even younger than Rupert, she was already set to be an international celebrity. She came from a family of stars in the American tradition, and neither she nor her parents seemed to feel the slightest hint of self-doubt about her ability to win over the audience. Rupert’s mother noted that there was something almost obscene about her: so small and innocent and yet somehow sleek and seductive. And multi-talented – she could perform almost every trick in the book. Rupert, on the other hand, being an avid reader and having absorbed an encyclopaedic range of knowledge at his tender age, seemed rather intellectual and nerdy in comparison. Perhaps he would appeal to the older, more sensible members of the audience?
But the real wild card was Ivy’s younger brother, Ivan, who had, only weeks before, emerged into the public eye. His developmental years had been shrouded in secrecy, and this was to be his first public appearance. Leaked reports from journalists and bloggers in-the-know indicated that Ivan was a rather simple fellow, and was never likely to be able to perform a great range of tricks, or even to do more than one thing at a time. But his stunning good looks and irresistible charm were said to have swept even the most sensible and mature observers off their feet.
[to be continued]
15 May 2010