We’ve had nine delicious instalments of The Big Reunion – taking nostalgic Nineties fans through the nitty-gritty details of the bust-ups and break-ups suffered by their former pop icons. 5ive, B*Witched, Blue, 911, Atomic Kitten, Honeyz and Liberty X have treated us to an emotional rollercoaster of the highs and lows of pop superstardom, culminating in their one-off gig held in front of their impressively dedicated fanbases (tonight, 9pm ITV2).
But why let a good idea go to waste when there are so many desperate line-ups ripe for another crack at fame? There’s got to be plenty of defunct bands bored of gracing the lower echelons of the Daily Mail and Heat magazine… All Saints may have sung Never Ever but surely they would never say never to a return to the limelight? Could we be about to see S Club 7 Bring It All Back? Will East 17 Stay Another Day? Here are our speculative suggestions for The Big Reunion series two…
Squeaky-clean pop act A1 – made up of Christian Ingebrigtsen, Mark Read, Paul Marazzi and the adorably curtain-haired Ben Adams – first burst on to the scene back in 1999, going on to score a number one with their cover of A-ha’s 1985 hit Take On Me. But sadly the days spent soaring through the air pursued by futuristic robots in electronically-enhanced music videos were not to last and, following Paul’s decision to call it quits, it was curtains for the band. Attempts at a reunion have since followed – including the dubious honour of representing Norway at the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest – but their recent material has failed to capture the imagination of their UK fans. Surely The Big Reunion is the next stop on their comeback trail…?
Reunion rating: 5/5 – the lads are clearly up for it, with lead singer Ben Adams even tweeting, “Anyone watching the #bigreunion and feel something is missing?” That’s hardly cryptic, is it?
Way back in 1997, four fresh-faced youngsters burst onto the music scene with I Know Where It’s At, baring their toned stomachs and brimming with attitude. Melanie Blatt, Shaznay Lewis and Nicole and Natalie Appleton rivalled the world-conquering Spice Girls, producing number one after number one, from Bootie Call to Pure Shores. But in a twist worthy of an episode of The Big Reunion, the girls split in 2001 to “clear the air between themselves” (we can already hear the violin strings playing in the background). Following an underwhelming reunion in 2006, Shaznay stated the group would Never Ever get back together, but surely a call from ITV2 bosses can get the girls to Rock Steady once again?
Reunion rating: 3/5 – if you believe the rumours, this was one acrimonious split, but airing dirty laundry in public sure does make for good television…
S Club 7
Rachel, Bradley, Jo, Jon, Hannah, Paul and Tina were a pop phenomenon when their brand of catchy pop first topped the charts back in 1999. Their CBBC TV shows Miami 7 and LA 7 may have demonstrated some terrible acting, but they instantly won the septet a loyal tweenage fanbase and their first number one Bring It All Back was soon followed by chart-toppers Never Had a Dream Come True, Have You Ever and dance-floor favourite Don’t Stop Movin’. But after the announcement of Paul’s departure in 2002, it wasn’t long before the band decided to Say Goodbye. While Rachel launched a solo career and Hannah branched into acting, Jo had an ill-fated run-in with Celebrity Big Brother, ending up embroiled in the infamous Shilpa Shetty race row. S Club 7 became S Club 3 when Jo, Bradley and Paul joined forces for an unsuccessful comeback in 2008, selling out nothing larger than a student union, but full reunion rumours will never cease to swirl with Rachel recently hinting to the Daily Mirror that plans could be afoot – over to you, ITV2…
Reunion rating: 5/5 – whether it be S Club 7, S Club 6, S Club 5…
This Dane Bowers-led quartet tapped into Nineties boy band mania back in 1998, but it wasn’t until their silky smooth number one single Freak Me that Another Level began adorning the bedroom walls of girls up and down the country. But Bowers, along with Mark Baron, Wayne Williams and Bobak Kianoush couldn’t sustain the superstardom and the band split in 2000, with Dane going on to pursue a solo career, at one point collaborating with none other than Victoria Beckham. Nowadays he’s more likely to be found cropping up on a cable channel’s latest reality TV format or gracing the bottom of the Daily Mail’s sidebar, so surely a primetime ITV2 slot is a preferable alternative?
Reunion rating: 3/5 – while there haven’t been many mumurings of an Another Level reunion, we reckon the boys would jump at the chance to Be Alone No More.
Cast your memory all the way back to February 2001 when bright young hopefuls Myleene Klass, Danny Foster, Kym Marsh (now Lomas), Noel Sullivan and Suzanne Shaw beat out thousands of hopefuls on ITV’s early reality format Popstars to form Hear’Say. Soaring to the top of the charts with their debut single Pure and Simple, the quintet rode the crest of the early reality publicity storm, following up their early success with The Way to Your Love and Everybody. But in a tale that surely belongs on The Big Reunion, cracks soon appeared in the line-up and Kym was replaced by Johnny Shentall in 2002. While their final single claimed Lovin’ Is Easy, topping the charts certainly wasn’t and the band soon disbanded. In the years that followed, Suzanne and Noel found their way onto the stage, Kym cropped up in Corrie, and Myleene slipped into her now-infamous teeny white bikini on I’m a Celebrity – and the rest was history.
Reunion rating: 1/5 – with Danny about to appear on BBC’s The Voice and Kym recently poo-pooing reunion rumours, it doesn’t look like Everybody’s on board.
Eager young pop quartet Eternal – made up of Louise Nurding (now Redknapp), Kelle Bryan and sisters Easther and Vernie Bennett – burst onto the music scene with their upbeat brand of cheesy pop in 1993 and debut single Stay. Their first album Always & Forever peaked at number two before Louise left to pursue a solo career – and, of course, her footballer husband Jamie Redknapp. The remaining trio ploughed on with three more studio albums, eventually landing a number one with I Wanna Be The Only One, but split in 2000 and we’ve barely heard a peep out of them since.
Reunion rating: 3/5 – rumblings of a reunion have abounded since 2006, but it remains to be seen whether Louise will re-join her former bandmates.
If you haven’t heard the heart-wrenching piano chords behind East 17’s number one smash hit Stay Another Day then, really, where have you been? Formed back in 1991 and named after their London postcode, Brian Harvey, Tony Mortimer, John Hendy and Tony Coldwell were marketed as a tougher, grittier version of princes of pop, Take That. Enjoying 11 top-ten hits, and that chart-topper, the quartet were popular Around The World (well, in Europe, at least) before Brian’s drug-related issues reared their ugly head, causing him to leave the group in 1997 amidst a media furore. Various line-ups have recently graced the reunion circuit, but surely The Big Reunion would provide the band with a well-needed leg-up?
Reunion rating: 4/5 – but whether their latest line-up would include fiery twosome Brian Harvey and Tony Mortimer remains to be seen.