The Week’s Winners And Losers: Elton John gets X-rated and Joan Jett lays the smackdown

A column that's hotter than the Hamburglar on the electric chair

Hey! Do you reckon anyone’ll ever make a biopic about you? I’ve got a hangover the size of Marvin Gaye’s cocaine habit so right now I’d say someone could make a harrowing kitchen sink drama about the first two hours of my day, as I thrashed around, wailing and crying, gasping for air, impotently enraged at the indignity of it all, like Roger Daltrey any time anyone mentions the EU.

Readers, we’ve crash-landed once more on the ill-connected island that is The Week’s Winners And Losers, an insular community with a curious ritual: assigning famous folks and/or things into opposing categories – those who came out on top this week, and those who failed big time – in exchange for ‘clicks’, a mysterious currency that people will do almost anything for.

It’s a bio-tastic week this week, with a couple of our winners and losers on the receiving end of the biopic treatment, the ultimate accolade for the narcissist (or then again perhaps not, as we’ll find out very shortly). Let’s have a look, shall we? Also that kitchen sink drama treatment is up for grabs if there are any producers disembarking the plane on our desert island. Yours for a click.

The winners


I saw Bohemian Rhapsody on a plane once and I have to say, I never knew Freddie Mercury was straight. Just goes to show that a good biopic can reveal lesser-known details about even the most infamous subject. There were fears that Rocketman, the upcoming Elton John biopic, would shy away from the more X-rated elements on his life. Well, keep your hair on, because actor Taron Egerton (why do actors have such stupid names now? They’re all called things like Geoffrey Depop and Tommy Revenue) has assured potential viewers that it’s a “no-holds barred” account, exploring both Elton’s sexual identity and vices. Saturday Night’s Alright (For Lighting A Spliff And Thinking About How Much You’re Gonna Spend On Flowers).

In other news, it’s been announced that Joan Jett will perform at WWE’s annual Wrestlemania next week, which is the most American thing that’s happened since the Hamburglar was sent to the electric chair for laundering Big Macs. She’ll play her classic 1981 single ‘Bad Reputation’ as the fabulously named Ronda Rousey enters the ring, ready to bounce some poor sucker from the ropes, as unstoppable as Roger Daltrey on Question Time.

The losers

Sticking with our cinematic theme, the pesky kids at North Bergen High School in New Jersey have put on a “spectacular” version of Ridley Scott’s 1979 chillfest Alien and it has gone “viral”. No! I cannot accept this. The production values for the play, as one proud resident’s video clips proved on Twitter, are improbably high. Not, like, Game Of Thrones high, but maybe Doctor Who high, though one of the ones from the end of Christopher Eccleston’s run, when he looked a bit tired. There’s an impressively rubbery Xenomorph costume, space suits, a fucking airlock, a video screen that depicts the freezing voice of the universe.

I was sent to a barren dystopia of a secondary school where you were more likely to be shoved into a locker by Darren Bigley from the year above than shepherd your mate to a fancy looking faux airlock, and I fundamentally resent the idea that these children are enjoying a sense of camaraderie and flexing their imaginations under the guidance of engaged teachers while – worse! – taking pride in their place of education. The kids are losers.


But even they don’t lose as hard as Mötley Crüe, who – ho ho ho! – unveiled their unvarnished (but very hairsprayed) biopic The Dirt, a ribald jaunt through such hits as breath-taking sexism and ill-judged dialogue. Given the sexist world that the ‘80s rockers lived in – one character’s whole role is to give the band members blowjobs – it’s such a weird movie to make in the post-#MeToo landscape, and makes both the Crüe and the filmmakers seem bizarrely out of step. Yeah – even more so than Roger Daltrey!

The Inbetweeners

All this discussion of legacy has me thinking about new wave icons The B-52s. They’ve announced that, after four decades in the clouds, they will board the aircraft for the very last time this summer. After a brief UK tour in June, Kate Pierson and the gang will never do ‘Rock Lobster’ again, and we’ll all be a touch worse off. At least they know when to call it a day, eh?

And so must I, as you leave me, exhausted, marooned on this desert island, searching for a rock lobster for dinner, pondering the possibility that somebody might one day make a biopic about my plight. Be sure to stop by next week to sift through another series of winners, losers and inbetweeners, which’ll hopefully bring in more clicks than Tommy Revenue’s IMDB page.

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