Last Night’s TV – Material Girl

by Lynn Connolly

Oh God… another programme for which the prerequisite in terms of viewer demographics is to have nothing but fluffy pink tumbleweeds floating through your brain accompanied by birdsong and perhaps shiny things.

And of course, quelle surprise, it’s all about the ‘glam’ world of fashion and clichés abound; there’s the bitchy one, the gay ones, the girl-next-door character and the hunky bloke. It’s all very predictable and bit Ugly Betty without the fun.

That said, Dervla Kirwan did a good job of portraying a super-bitch, but there, Dervla Kirwan could do a good job of playing the role of a 90 year old Jamaican man. She’s just that versatile. And Lenora Crichlow is convincing as Ali Redcliffe, but it’s just all so… done.

I don’t know what it is lately – either I watch too much telly and see comparable shows in most of what’s churned out and labelled ‘new’ these days, or there really is nothing ‘new’ going on. Everything seems to be a rejigging of something that’s been done before, and again, and again. And the BBC seems to be one of the worst culprits for grasping onto a concept that’s worked elsewhere and applying said rejig tools to it.

And I must also add that I am probably biased because anything to do with fashion and clothes etc., bores me to death. I can’t stand shopping, I literally loathe it, and clothes shopping is the worst of all fates as far as I’m concerned.

I also don’t get some women’s obsession with shoes and handbags. I have a utilitarian quantity of both and that’s it. Does anyone need more than that??

I also don’t read the mags that accompany these passions, and frankly, couldn’t care less what this season’s trends are going to be and which celeb was spotted at Jimmy Choo’s. It’s boring; toxically boring for it seems to turn devotees into mindless blimps, unless they were already and places like JC’s just give them a venue in which to congregate and swap vacuous tales of who’s wearing what.

So a series about the vagaries of this world was never going to be high on my must-watch list. In fact, I’d rather watch paint dry or wood warp, so perhaps I’m too biased to truly appreciate Material Girl.

That said though, and as I’ve already mentioned, I can appreciate good acting, regardless of the setting, and I can’t deny, there was good acting afoot. But would that alone be enough to make me tune in again? Hell no.

Lynn is an editor and writer here at Unreality TV and is trained psychotherapist and the author of two books. She's addicted to soaps, period drama and reality TV shows such as X Factor, I'm A Celeb and Big Brother.