Sunday, 30 June 2013

Cher – A New Attitude

Cher was the 1980s. It was ALL about her. Oh sure there might have been a few other things happening – the occasional war here, the odd nuclear meltdown there. Some royals got married. But that was merely a footnote to whatever Cher was doing at the time. Ask anyone.
Cher first became known in authentically black and white 1960s when she used to duet with Gerard Depardieu singing the song from Groundhog Day. 
She kept herself busy doing TV work in the 1970s but it was all treading water, really. She was just biding her time until she could Mega-Cher it to the max eighties-stylee. She starred in righteous and schweet movies like Mask, Witches of Eastwick and Moonstruck. And she released some bodacious records. Any woman who listened to a Cher 1980s power ballad became emancipated just from the radiation alone.
Shit's about to go down, witches.
Her video for “If I could turn back time” was apparently the first music video to be banned by MTV. There’s no untoward behaviour in the video, save for Cher nicking a sailor’s hat and sitting astride a cannon in a manner that is in no way suggestive. I imagine that the decision to ban the video was entirely based on her outfit. 
Is anyone else feeling a breeze?
This seems a tad harsh. Perhaps wearing what appears to be a sheer body stocking with a couple of bits of gaffer tape for modesty may be a trifle risqué. But let’s face it, who hasn’t left the house to meet some sailors in a tearing hurry absent-mindedly forgetting they had only got half-way through putting on their BDSM Dominatrix outfit? I know I certainly have.
Cher continues to be awesome here in the 21st century. Mostly by being crazy as fuck on Twitter.  Do you want fanatical rants, non-sequiturs, a totally disregard for punctuation marks and EVERYTHING IN CAPITALS? Of course you do. This is Twitter we’re talking about. Following Cher will make you very happy indeed. It’s like Cher has distilled the very essence of Twitter and has made novelty cocktails out of it.
These were literally Cher's last five tweets at the time I wrote this review.
This workout video was released by Cher in 1991. Cher introduces it by saying “Have I got a gift for you ... It’s a present of my own personal workout programme.”
Thanks, Cher. I appreciate the gift, I really do. I mean, I was dropping hints about some new socks but the workout’s lovely. It’s just that – and I don’t want to sound ungrateful here – did you have to dial down the crazy quite so much?
Because if there is one thing I want from Cher it’s a devil-may-care attitude to normalcy.


Gold battle bikini, for example is an acceptable level of crazy.
Don’t get me wrong, in some ways she delivers admirably. Her outfit for the Step Workout is a thing of wondrousness. She looks like a cross between a Wild West prostitute and a Goth in babydoll pyjamas. You know Helena Bonham’s outfit in Tim Burton’s version of Sweeney Todd? Imagine an extra scene where her character gets the bottom half of her outfit ripped off after accidentally trapping it in a carriage door. And then does a fitness workout.


That aside, it is a very sensibly put together programme. There are three sections: ‘Step Workout’, ‘Healthy Back and Abdominals’ and ‘Hips, Bottoms and Thighs’. Cher is joined by her personal trainer, Keli Roberts and they deliver a workout which is comprehensive, well-explained and nicely challenging.
Things were a lot blurrier in the early 90s
It’s all very disappointing. I don’t want to know that Cher’s exercise regime consists of doing steps, squats, stretches and aerobics. Before I watched this, if you’d asked me how I thought Cher kept in shape I would have hazarded a guess that it was a combination of python wrestling, cat burglary and vigorous perverted sex.
Thanks for ruining the magic, Cher. Great gift.
Best Bit
The music is just fantastic. There’s everything from Dusty Springfield to Billy Idol. At one point Cher says to Keli “Stop talking! I love this song.” Brilliantly, the song in question is Cher’s own “Love and Understanding.”
Face it, she just knows how awesome she is.
Difficulty Level
Cher herself says “This programme is challenging. It’s not impossible but it’s challenging.” And she’s not wrong. Especially if by ‘challenging’ you mean ‘unbelievably hard work.’
Luckily Cher also says “You don’t have to start out perfect. You just have to start.” I was about as far from perfect as it is possible to be. I hope Cher would have been proud of me.
Cher throws down a challenge.
Would I do this workout again?
This workout is currently only available on VHS so I have to go through a bit of logistical nightmare if I want to watch it. Unplug stuff. Plug in other stuff. Rewind the fricking tape. You can appreciate my problem.
Ideally Cher should re-release her workouts on DVD. Better yet, she should release a brand new one. She is just about to release a new album and she still looks absolutely fantastic.

Go on, Cher. Only this time forget all the stuff with the sit-ups and muscle stretches. Show us how you really do it.

This sort of thing, perhaps.

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