Channel 4 Docu-Lamentaries
If ever you feel like watching something inspirational or educational, don’t look to Channel 4. Their documentaries seem to have gotten more and more vacuous lately and, quite frankly, it’s beginning to bore me.
Beauty and the Beast: The Ugly Face of Prejudice: what an offensively righteous premise for a TV show. It pairs a size 8 glamour model with someone who has a serious facial disfigurement. Off they go to live each other’s life for a week. Do they learn anything? Not really, other than the fact that the glamour model needs therapy sessions to deal with deep-seated body image issues. Didn’t we know this from the start? The whole exercise seems futile.
Now, we have a fly-on-the-wall series called The Model Agency. Once again, I don’t feel I learnt anything from watching the first episode. Models really do have to be skinny and unnaturally beautiful. They have to be tall. And very often they’re really, really young. OK, I’m bored now. Then, an agency scout starts crying on hearing that one of her models, India, has decided to quit the industry. India is 16 years old. She’s probably just going back to school. This is a good thing – why are you crying, woman? Someone give her a tissue because the sniffing is getting annoying. The real world seems to have totally bypassed these people. Given that I want to clobber most of them over the head with a wet fish, I don’t think I’ll be tuning into this show again.
So there you have it: Channel 4 can’t do documentary. I understand the need to entertain the Big Brother generation, but this was the channel’s opportunity to bring something different and more substantial to the table (along the lines of The Family, perhaps). They failed.