My Daughter Grew Another Head And Other True Life Stories Review
MY DAUGHTER GREW ANOTHER HEAD AND OTHER TRUE LIFE STORIES: Thursday 4th March, Channel 4, 9pm ALERT ME
‘My name’s Sue and I was eaten alive by my pet python’.
Considering stories like this are read by nine million people each week, you can see why Jane Austen went out of fashion. With the explosion of reality TV, joe public can’t get enough of the original, the gruesome and the frankly quite odd.
With stories that make talking to yourself look perfectly normal, a woman can’t help but giggle at the man featured in Thats Life! who got a broom jammed up his back side. ‘It’s called ‘a brush with death – haha!’
This programme seems to want to cram in as many shock stories as possible. ‘I breastfed my cat’ drifts sleepily along the screen along with ‘Evicted cuz’ I smell of fish’. ‘I snogged a swan’, declares a man. I’m guessing he’s the lonely type.
Karen Jones, ‘true life’ journo extraordinaire, has heard it all. ‘T.O.T’s’ aka Triumph over Tradegies are the big sellers, she says, along with ‘womb tremblers’ – that’s motherhood and babies to you and me.
The show also does nothing to alleviate the obtrusive journalist stereotype; writer Angela Epstein is shown striding into a kitchen with notepad in hand interviewing a chef about his cannibal friend while he chops up a lettuce.
‘He writes to me all the time with menu ideas,’ he tells her.
‘Does the thought of getting menu ideas from a cannibal not turn your stomach slightly?’
‘It does but he was a good chef, he was a better chef than me.’ Well that’s alright, then.
Editor Natasha Smith sells stories on your behalf. Tip: if you’ve done a ‘UK first’ as she puts it, it’s a guaranteed money maker.
Speaking of which, Henry from Essex made a grand as the first man to have bum implants. Which he’s using to have more surgery. To hopefully sell more stories. It may sound a bit creepy but it works for Henry.
Not surprisingly, many stories are skewed for entertainment purposes. Turns out that man didn’t snog a swan after all; he was actually giving it CPR. But for £100, I doubt he minded.
The narrator, in an attempt to make sense out of all this, goes all Jerry Springer on us. ‘These stories can seem unreal but they teach us to become comfortable with the people around us, to move on.’ Alternatively, how to make relatively easy money.
Although, the man whose fiance left him by faking her own death might be onto something.