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Sunday, December 06, 2015

How to make the British love you - a guide for show folk

The Media Show interviews the TV producer Natalka Znak about how come "I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here" continues to appeal to British TV audiences and yet two different attempts to launch it in the USA have failed.

She explains that whereas Americans like to celebrate the success of their celebrities, the British only feel affection for them when they've confessed their sins and asked forgiveness.

That chimes with my experience. It was this that made Q's big interviews work. Elton John or Phil Collins or Mick Hucknall would outline the full extent of their trespasses in eye-watering detail and then tell the interviewer that after a while even the greatest excess made them feel hollow.

The reader could nod sagely, secure in the knowledge that they had somehow dodged a bullet by never having gone to bed with three strippers and a mountain of cocaine.

The story told in these interviews always followed the same line: I struggled, I triumphed, I fucked up and now I'm sorry.

In this country it never fails.