Saturday, January 07, 2006

Charles Kennedy out, Menzies In?

Update, Charles Kennedy Has Quit. We're STILL backing Menzies Campbell and Laying Simon Hughes. Sky confirm Menzies will stand as a leadership candidate. Menzies will also assume the role of caretaker leader. Update - Update 15.45 - Menzies confirms his candidacy. Update 09/01/06 - Newsnight suggests that Marc Oaten is going to run. Official announcement not yet made but he invited the media in for breakfast with his family and appears to have set the process in motion. Update 10/01/06 10.04 - SkyNews confirms Oaten will stand.

Paddy Power have odds available here;

Today's Evening standard carries the story of their own proprietary survey of Lib Dem senior front bench MPs. They say 16 out of 23 that were questioned want CK to resign "without delay"

Special Bets believes that a contest involving CK is now highly unlikely and as we said yesterday would be backing Menzies Campbell Menzies Campbell is the #1 choice among Lib Dem senior MPs as a consensus candidate that would enable younger "Orange Bookers" to take over from Sir. Menzies at a later date... UPDATE 16.17 - Sky News says "20 Lib Dem MPS refuse to work with CK" UPDATE: Statement expected at 5.45pm from Lib Dem Shadow cabinet...

Statement of opposition to CK was headed by Ed Davey and Sarah Teather, followed by Norman Baker,Tom Brake, Jeremy Browne, Alistair Carmichael, Nick Clegg, Tim Farron,Jenny Featherstone, Andrew George, Sandra Gidley, Julia Goldsworthy, Evan Harris, Nick Harvey, Martin Horwood, Chris Huhne, Norman Lamb, David Laws, John Pugh, Dan Rogerson, Adrian Sanders, Jo Swinson, Matthew Taylor, Stephen Williams, Jenny Willott.

Use SpecialBets to compare Lib Dem Leadership odds here;

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CBB - Now Then Now Then Now Then! JIMMY SAVILLE to join the house?

According to The Sun Sir Jimmy Saville is set to join the quoting show insiders "A Big Brother source said last night: “We are planning to put him in the house at some point in the next week.” The price on "Any Other" has dipped slightly on Betfair (last trade 19.5 from 20+). Special Bets would remind readers of Sir Jim's program with Louis Theroux - he's quite an odd old chap and quite prickly at times - not a contender in our view but should be amusing if not another Red Herring... Compare odds on CBB from multiple bookmakers here;

UPDATE 09/01/06 Sir Jimmy Saville has agreed to pay the house a passing visit, according to the Yorkshire Evening Post. The former host of Jim'll Fix It, apparently turned down a £150,000 offer to become a fully-fledged housemate but has agreed to pop in for a spot of lunch some time this weekend.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Chantelle - Celeb or not a Celeb - that is the question..

Chantelle went into the Celebrity Big Brother 'diary room' last night to inform Big Brother of a potential problem in her secret mission to pretend to be a genuine celebrity - Jodie Marsh might already know her.
"I've seen Jodie out clubbing in town before on a few occasions, when she walked through the door I'm sure she recognised me" Chantelle informed an unaware Big Brother.
The reality here is that Chantelle and Jodie are both "Celebs" or "Non Celebs" depending on your view. Chantelle has been trying to become a Celebrity for some time - just like Jodie.
Here's Chantelle appearing on Sky's Soccer AM program - she's number 6;

Here's Chantelle looking for business as a Paris Hilton lookalike;

Here's Chantelle's modelling agency hompage;
Chantelle Houghton has also done glamour modelling for Max Power Magazine and others.. so.. in the context of Celebrity Big Brother's definition of celebrity - what makes her not one? Does this mean that she can't fail her secret mission? Find out on Sunday....Use Special Bets to compare best betting odds;

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Thursday, January 05, 2006

Celebrity Big Brother Live Show 05/01/06 - In Running;

CBB in its wisdom has invited a non sleb into the house "Chavtelle" who's role is to attempt to convince the 10 celebrities in the house that she is in fact a genuine celebrity. Chavtelle doesn't appear too bright to Special Bets. We think that this is a very poor twist and are sceptical Chavtelle will be successful.. here she is being a Sky Soccerette;

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Confirmed Celebrities;

Barrymore - We'd forgotten just how unfunny MB is...We think he looks depressed to boot (which is understandable). He's been installed as the favourite.. we don't think It'll last.
Pete Burns - Now we know about the medical condition we covered yesterday; Despite his obviously bizzare appearance, Pete seemed very likeable on first impression.
Traci Bingham - oh dear - We prefer the conclusion of Pete's plastic surgeries.. We don't like her, like, already. *Carmen Electra was her bridesmaid so she must know Dennis Rodman well.
Maggot - Maggot is from comedy band Goldie Lookin' Chain. Special Bets know that the GLC areWelsh middle class hoaxers pretending to be Welsh chavs but we still think they're ace. His "I'm just here to make the numbers up" comment showed the kind of humilty CBB voters love.
Rula Lenska - See earlier post and Wikipedia biography here;
Jodie Marsh - We think Jodie is a nice girl actually but have no idea why she's forged this career for herself.. see earlier post about her and Jordan;
Dennis Rodman - Oh yes, he knows Traci - and possibly doesn't have happy memories..not known in the UK among the younger demographic - a real celebrity but he'll have to impress.
Faria Alam - no comment. We are disappointed in this choice and reckon Chavtelle is more of a genuine celeb. Can't see her resonating with anyone unless she knows a few jokes.
Preston - Seems like a nice guy but comes accross as rather arrogant and swears a lot. Special Bets thought he might be quite good looking but he seems more average on the live feed - a Spencer type character?
George Galloway - we posted earlier we'd noticed he had cleared his diary.. Special Bets are not big Galloway fans. Galloway has an enormous ego and we also think he's going to be really bored in there... a potential walker.

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Celebrity Big Brother - A list of 10 intial contestants "leaked" on Popbitch?

"george galloway, jodie marsh, michael barrymore, denis rodman, faria alam, samuel preston (ordinary boys), traci bingham, maggot (GLC), ppetebburns, rula lenska"

That's how the post was (badly) written on leaky rumour site Popbitch. Is that rubbish or accurate? The number is correct - there will be 10 initial contestants (there will also be at least 2 others - there are 12 beds).

Sam Preston, and "Maggot" are news to us, though we'd heard the rest and commented on most in the posts below. Be warned that there have been a number of "red herrings" thrown in by producers to keep us guessing...

We noticed earlier that Galloway's speaking diary is free;

The Ordinary Boys cancelled their January dates in Japan recently; and on their forum, Preston is being discussed as "being on the telly in January".

You can Bet on Celebrity Big Brother here;

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Charles Kennedy fires the starting pistol on the Lib Dem leadership campaign;

as told to Sky News

Sources close to the situation believe that the "Orange Book" group of bright young things in the Lib Dems are keen to have a "placeholder" successor to Charles Kennedy - Sir Menzies Campbell - for the time being. They believe that the grass roots would support Menzies who would would give way to one of the Orange Bookers such as Nick Clegg, Mark Oaten, David Laws or Ed Davey at a later date. We would back Menzies - currently 3.4 on Betfair and Lay Simon Hughes - Last trade on Betfair at 4.6 Paddy Power have the Lib Dem replacement market here; Update: Menzies Campbell and probably Simon Hughes say they won't STAND AGAINST CK - We're sticking to our guns on Menzies being the likely next leader of the Lib Dems. We also believe that there will be increasing pressure on CK to just step down - what was wanted by many in the party before, which won't have changed after today's desperate act from Kennedy.

Mike Smithson has a useful article here;

CBB - Pete Burns has a "medical problem"

CBB - Daily Mirror pictures Dennis Rodman Arriving At Heathrow;

-That's good enough for us. Welcome to CBB Dennis! In other news, Today's Sun online says Rula Lenska born Countess Roza-Marie Leopoldnya Lubienska is a confirmed contestant- this should put an end to the rumours yesterday originating from This Morning about a contestant with "lovely hair" (she became famous in the USA for hair care commercials). The Sun also maintain their view that Anna Nicole Smith is confirmed but also unfortunately Faria Alam

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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

CBB - Gender Of Winner?

The Gender of Winner market has started to take shape with one Bookmaker showing an appealing price on winning male;

Go Straight to Betfair's market only HERE;

Celebrity Big Brother - The Special Bets Preview.

Here's Special Bets' Celebrity Big Brother Preview. We'll keep this updated until the show starts proper (Thursday 5th at 9pm).

Open Betting Markets;
Our Irish Friends Paddy Power have the first market to open on the show here; This is in the style of an ante-post market.

William Hill now also now have their market up which you can compare here; to other markets as they become available. PP and Hills markets are not comparable as you get you money back from Hills if your contestant is a "non runner".

TV Coverage;

The CBB Live Launch is at 9pm on Thursday January 5th on Channel 4. E4's Live coverage will follow the show. Big Brother's Little Brother with Dermot Leary has been folded into Channel 4's breakfast output - coverage daily at 8.05am as Celebrity Big Brother's Little Brother. The inaugural Celebrity Big Brother's Big Mouth starts straight after the CBB Friday show at 10pm.
Here are some pictures of the inside of the house;

Contestants & Biographies;

It has been announced that there will be a total of 10 contestants entering the house.
We believe that it is likely that there will also be at least one surprise contestant but given rumours, we would guess 2 or more.

Special Bets believes there are 2 types of contestants mentioned in the tabloids - those mentioned as they are real contestants (such as Barrymore) and those fed to the media such as Esther Rantzen and Macauley Culkin for publicity reasons (and to generate a bit of a smoke screen).

Likely Contestants In Our View;

Dennis Rodman - has a reality background and according to this digispy post he "confirmed" his forthcoming appearance during an unamed interview.
UPDATE - UK Daily Mirror 05/01 pictures Rodman arriving at London's Heathrow airport -
That's good enough for us!

Boy George (AKA George O'Dowd) - Boy George has been a constant mention in the tabloids as a contender after manager Tony Gordon "confirmed" his appearance to The Sun and notably he requested an adjournment (delay) to his court case to "work on musical projects". What else do we know? well BG is booked to DJ in Austria on Jan 14th - although he's known for cancelling gigs at short notice (including this NYE in Brasil). One of the posters on the "everything Boy George" forum said that the man himself had said on his website "IamBoyGeorge" that "George says he's not doing it and that he's no f***ing desperate housewife." but hey.. maybe he just wanted more money (that quote was some time ago) The website is not accessible currently, launch is delayed - busy are you George?

As for Mr. O'Dowd's chances in the show, Special Bets have had a couple of notable personal experiences with the man himself. A member of the Special Bets team used to man the smoke and lights machines at a popular northern house club where he met international DJs such as Roger Sanchez, Todd Terry, Gusto, Jeremy Healy, Judge Jules, David Morales etc.. but only George O'Dowd threw a hissy fit and demanded (Greta Garbo style) to be alone in the DJ booth....then there's another story about a loft party but we'll leave that for another time..

Johnny Vegas - the lovable Johnny Vegas is our current favourite to win the show (if he appears). We can't think of a reason to doubt his appearance as Johnny has a history of experimental TV and being up for a laugh in general. Our only reservation with Johnny is his apparent mental instability.. his wikipedia biog should be illuminating...

Update - Johnny's been installed as favourite check it out;

Michael Barrymore - All we will say about Barrymore is that it is not due to popularity in the UK that MB chose to take refuge in New Zealand - rather the opposite. CBB producers knew that paying the reported £150,000 to this controversial celebrity bankrupt (formerly the highest paid person in UK TV) would generate huge publicity for the show - but we find it very hard to see how this troubled fallen unfunny relic of prime time TV could actually win the show.

Liza and Jimmy Tarbuck - we'll deal with Jimmy and daughter Liza together as that's how we're guessing the producers are. We view Liza as a very likely contestant (she was confirmed by none other that The Sun that she was appearing). We like Liza but don't really see her as charismatic enough to motivate people to pick up the phone and vote for her. Jimmy Tarbuck shares the same agent as former CBB contestant Les Dennis "International Artistes" and his name keeps coming up. We presume that Jimmy is more of a hope and Liza is a reality for the CBB producers although one thought we've had is that Jimmy may well appear later in the show as a surprise guest...regardless we think Jimmy unlikely to resonate. As was seen with Bobby Ball and Tommy Cannon, ghosts of comedy past don't generate votes in reality TV.

Pete Burns - (Wiki here if you haven't heard of him) appeared to drop a major hint on his website confirming tabloid (The Sun) news that he was in the house. Special Bets reckon that Pete is supposed to clash with fellow transvestite queen Boy George but we happen to know that they are friends these days so if they do, it will all be pantomime... we don't see Pete clicking with the voting public (too acerbic) but his appearance should be amusing - he is a known TV "rent-a-gob" unafraid to have "strong opinions".

Derek Achorah
-Wow! What can we say about this guy apart from we hope he never appears on TV ever again?Derek's name has appeared often in CBB rumours and he fits the mould of a number of "controversial" contestants - Les Dennis, Barrymore etc -given his background as a low grade football player turned dodgy psychic. Darling Derek is scheduled to appear at Manchester Opera House on January 12/13th and the Liverpool Empire on the 14/15th - can't Dezza see into the future far enough to cancel those dates already?

Joan Rivers
- The Sun reported that CBB producers were keen to book elderly comedienne Joan Rivers - another red herring from the producers? - she seemed rather busy; to us... but then we noticed her Jan 11th tour date had been cancelled? Could be a fun house guest but no chance of winning in our view given demographics. (See linked biog).

Jocelyn Jee Eisen
- is known for her appearance on seriously unfunny comedy show "3 non-blondes" a show title which we presume was amusingly nicked from the group 4 non-blondes . Rumour has it that Jocelyn has been hired as a stand in... we just hope its true.

Gillian McKeith - We think she may be in. She's the bossy Scottish bird from the "you are what you eat" show. Special Bets finds this know it all Scottish nutritionist very annoying to watch. We presume that she's there to lecture the likes of Johnny Vegas - which we feel will expose her methods to ridicule. Is she in her prime? We think NOT.

Anna Nicole Smith
has been mentioned regularly as a likely contender in CBB. Why would she appear on the show? Well she's still fighting for her share of her dead Billionaire husband's estate - so she needs the cash. Special Bets thinks that betting on ANS to win CBB would be akin to setting fire to your wallet... if you don't believe us have a look at this PA from the former Playboy Playmate.. she's a crazy troubled gal...

Daniel MacPherson - who is this guy? Apparently he's the tottie given his wiki entry and has a reality TV past presenting X Factor in Australia. Does being in Aussie soap Neighbours from 1998-2002 make you a "celebrity" in a UK reality show? Special Bets thinks not and given the short duration of CBB, Daniel's chances of winning UK TV voters hearts to be slim.

Jodie Marsh and Jordan (Pictured) - Apparently Jodie "Nose Like A Builder's Elbow*"*Katie Price Marsh is a contender for CBB this year. Special Bets thinks that this has a good probability given Jodie's known rivalry with Katie Price (herself no stranger to publicity). If the CBB producers could architect this on-screen"showdown" (perhaps via one of them being a "surprise" guest) they would jump at the chance however we suspect that Jodie is an uninteresting Contestant "sans Jordan" so without Jo' we reckon there'll be no show for Jodie. We don't think either could be potential winners either so any further debate seems pointless.

Paddy Power's ante post market is here; William Hill now also have their market up which you can compare here; to other markets as they become available. PP and Hills markets are not comparable as we mentioned earlier.

Go Straight to Betfair's market only HERE;

Best Odds

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

CBB - A quickie on Joan Rivers;

The Sun today reported CBB producers were keen to book elderley comedienne Joan Rivers - another red herring from the producers? - she seemed rather busy; to us... but then we noticed her Jan 11th tour date had been cancelled? Could be a fun house guest :) Bet on Big Brother right now here; Use Special Bets to compare odds;

PS - you need to click on the drop down box on that link to see that her Jan 11th live date is cancelled.... hope this helps! Special Bets.

Celebrity Big Brother - the First "Poll" results;

Hecklerspray has added some value early in this year's CBB. with some informal "poll" results conducted between December 20th and January 2nd. The Hecklers claim that 48.5% of readers that filled in their poll (we don't know the voting figures yes to assess statistical significance or the exact questions) "think that Johnny Vegas will win the series". Boy George followed Johnny Vegas with 17.2%, then Australian soapstar Daniel MacPherson with 9.1%. making up the rest of the list, in order of popularity, were Jimmy Tarbuck, Derek Acorah, Anna Nicole Smith and Gillian McKeith. Bringing up the rear were big-toothed TV presenter Esther Rantzen and Jocelyn Jee Esien from forgotten BBC Three comedy show 3 Non Blondes. This was a pre- Barrymore and the other recent rumours came to light. Full Heckler article here;
Bet on Johnny Vegas in the only available BB market here;
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