The dark side of film makes good television
Not being a huge fan of shock documentaries that glory in, and usually mock, the afflicted I usually shy away from the human interest programmes broadcast on Channel 4.
I have no interest in seeing a 70 stone man have his backside wiped or watch badly disfigured souls make their first, tentative steps in the dating game.
But I did make an exception when I tuned in to Date My Porn Star (Monday, Channel 4 10pm) a production that you most certainly want to watch with mother - or your wife for that matter.
The premise was an interesting one: Take three “self confessed porn addicts” to Los Angeles – the home of this sordid industry – to meet and ‘date’ the stars, who they enjoy, ahem, watching do their thing.
As this was Channel 4, the channel which is airing promotional adverts informing the viewer its mantra is to challenge, push boundaries and educate as well as entertain, there was always going to be a moral to this pretty grubby tale.
From the very start we were told that the aim of the documentary was to show this shameless trio all aspects of this vastly popular and profitable industry with a view to determining whether they would have their minds changed.
And of course, in accordance with all well ‘managed’ fly-on-the-walls the director’s aim was achieved, but there was only ever going to be one outcome.
From the moment we met Kevin, the self-styled ‘Lothario of Leytonstone’, the ever-so-sinister Cumbrian Jonathan, who bears a passing resemblance to Dr Evil from the Austin Powers films and the sensitive porn fan Danny, the viewer knew they were in for a gruesome 60 minutes of telly.
The trio were exposed (while not exposing themselves) to all aspects of the industry. They all returned to Blighty claiming they were changed men. It was a neat ending to a predictably shocking, yet compelling documentary.
Meanwhile, stay on the same channel Homeland (9pm Sundays) is making a slow return to the peak of the first series. Three episodes in and Brody made a welcome first appearance of this latest ‘season’ (I am not American).
The action moved to Venezuela where the World’s Most Wanted is now being held against his will by a stereotypical South American gang.
With plenty of social commentary the setting is, what was set to be, the grandest building in Caracas the economic crash hit and the squatters moved in.
It was a stunning backdrop but, as always with such dramas, the imagination is stretched to its limit, especially with the introduction of the world’s most beautiful slum dweller, who happens to be the gang leader’s daughter. There may be trouble ahead.........