Five Star Treatment
[Smash Hits Magazine]
What do pop stars do when they go to America? Well, if you're Five you travel around in a limo, visit Elvis' house and, erm, fall asleep a lot. Smash Hits joins the lads in Memphis…
"They're cute and they're from another country! You can run your fingers through their hair!… Those guys are just super-hot! Hummana hummana ha-ooter!" There's a very long queue of Five fans stretching through Memphis' Hard Rock Café. It's 10pm, and they've just seen the band perform a short, super-sweaty concert. Now they're hooked. When The Lights Go Out has slipped into the American top 40 and in the coming six weeks will move steadily towards the top ten. Five have made it. But they'd rather be in bed.
"Our single's a hit? Which one's that?" asks a tired 'n' bewildered Scott in the backstage area (basically a back yard - it's sweltering hot). J complains that someone's put ice in his underpants(!) and explains, "We're exhausted. Over the past two days, we've had planes that have been cancelled, ones we've missed, flights that have been delayed, luggage that's gone missing..."
Rich wanders about, joking. "We're chuffed to Brits!" while Abs chats to some local kids and shouts in Smash Hits' ear. Meanwhile, Sean looks forward the following morning, when Five fly to New York for a day off. "I'll chill out big time," he yawns. "See the sights? Nah, I can't be bothered with all that."
Abs and Scott wander over to the car which has been hired to drive them around while they're in Memphis. It's a very showbiz, white limousine. "English fans, we're in a LIMO!" hollers Scott in excitement. The pair pile into the back…
So what do you think of America so far?
Scott: [Examining his drink] I'm drinking a coke instead of a beer… how depressing. I'll speak for the rest of the band… What do you think, J? [Puts on a Warrington accent]. Yeah. What do you think, Sean? [Adopts a Leeds accent] Don't really know. Abs? [In a chirpy Cockney voice] Yeah, it's wicked, man.
Abs: I love it. Everyone' really nice. It's really hot, though, innit? I'm sweating like a pig. Can I have your watch?
Erm, no. What are you planning to do when you get back to the hotel?
Abs: [Joking] What's it to you? You're so noisy! I'm tired. Can I sleep with you in your room, Scott?
Abs: Cheers, mate. Good friend you are!
Scott: We need to sleep. [They both laugh.]
Abs: [To Smash Hits] You're welcome… baby.
What did you think of the girls you met tonight?
Scott: Lovely… they were really smiley and happy. They all fancied me? [Judging by Smash Hits' brief survey of the crowd, they did!] Yeah, I think so.
Abs: Definitely. Scott gets away with them all! He's a slag, isn't he? A male one. Put that in the magazine.
Scott: [Chuckling] There was this bit in It's The Things You Do when I was being a bit of a slag. I was looking at all the girls and swivelling my hips!
Did they like your accents?
Scott: Well, they didn't understand mine or Abs' accents. But, to be fair, we didn't understand half of theirs either. We were like, "What's your name?" and they went…
Abs: Mayundie! [As in Mandy.]
J, Sean and Rich join us in the limo. Abs leaps onto Rich's knee, tripping over Smash Hits in the process and getting his foot trapped in the door. Sean gets annoyed with Scott because Scott accidentally knocks his jewellery against his head, and J leans back, slapping his tum in time to the loud blues music that's playing.
What are you looking forward to seeing while you're in America?
Rich: I wanna see the Statue of Liberty in the flesh!
J: There is no flesh!
Sean: It's stone mate.
Rich: I was speaking hypothetically there, guys.
Sean: [Muttering] Speaking pathetically, you mean…
Scott: Oooooh! I like the way you mince words!
Has it lived up to your expectations so far?
Sean: I knew it was just going to be burgers and Coca Cola, basically. And fatties.
Rich: [Sounding slightly more enthusiastic] LA was cool because we got to see the Hollywood sign up in the hills. When I saw it, my eyes filled up!
J: I think American people are quite OTT.
Rich: No pun intended, hahaha!
J: They're just larger than life, aren't they?
Sean: And larger.
What American celebrities would you like to meet while you're here?
Sean: I'm not that bothered, me. Just any beautiful ladies, really.
J: I want to meet that lead singer from Destiny's Child because I'm absolutely, madly in love with her.
Rich: I'd like to meet the boring old Eddie Vedder - you know, the lead singer of Pearl Jam [grungy US rockers]. And I'd also like to meet, er, Brad Pitt. Not because…
Scott: No 'cos you fancy him…
Rich: No, not 'cos I fancy him - I just think he's a really good actor. I've seen him in a few films, and 'cos he's that kind of Hollywood heartthrob character, everyone's like, "Oh, he's just good-looking, he's not a good actor". But he is a really top actor too, you know.
J: [Giggling] Did you hear him getting all carried away over Brad Pitt just then? Hee hee hee!
Rich: [Protesting] No, I think he's a good actor - like I think Sean Connery's a good actor.
Scott: Aww… do you know who I'd like to meet? Jerry Springer [host of the rowdy US chat show].
Abs: Oh, he's the Don [ie. the boss]. I've got his video - it's £15.99, really expensive. But it's worth it because it's funny and there's people beating each other up. [Getting a bit carried away] There's this one bit that's really wicked. This geezer comes on and it turns out his wife was once a man…
Abs is cut off in his prime 'cos the rest of Five have spotted two enormous private jets. "Stop the car!" shrieks J. "What are those?" We've arrived at Graceland, home of the King of Rock'n'Roll himself, the late Elvis Presley. They all dash up to Elvis's private planes, Abs and Scott rapidly shinning up the fence surrounding them. "What are you doing?" yell a horrified J and Rich. "You'll get shot!"
The naughty pair climb down and there's a brief photo session in front of the Grraceland sign. Everyone strikes Elvis poses until they notice the huge insects which are dive-bombing them, attracted by the light. J screams as a cricket crawls on his leg, while Rich is also jumpy.