Television Review - Arts and Entertainment - The Independent

Television Review

"A LOT OF PEOPLE take an instant dislike to me," Corinne said, bemused, "...and I don't know why because I'm only doing a job." There was ample evidence in last night's Inside Story (BBC1) to support her view that people don't like her - at one point, a man slunk past her with a muttered "See ya, slut". "He doesn't like me," Corinne added, to put paid to any ambiguity.

It can't help that Corinne's job is being a bailiff, seizing cars and three-piece suites to pay off council-tax bills in the Leeds area - as she admitted herself, nobody is happy when the bailiff calls. But Corinne did herself less than justice when she said she was only doing a job; it's a job in which she takes a lively satisfaction: "I meet a lot of arrogant people... and we knock them down a peg or two."

Robert Burns once expressed a wish that some "Pow'r the giftie wad gie us to see oursels as others see us", which probably seemed quite reasonable at the time, but didn't take into account the rise of the television documentary. Now practically anybody can have all their foibles spread out in front of them, and in front of a few million other people who really didn't have to know any of this, and you would have to be remarkably thick-skinned to find this an easy experience. Still, after seeing Corinne in "The Bailiffs Are Coming", I have to admit the possibility that thick-skinned is exactly what she is.

Supposing she isn't, though, Corinne might have been able to pick up one or two pointers from Richard Taylor and Ian Stuttard's film as to just why it is that people don't take to her. To begin with, she is an aggressive operator, at least compared with Mark, her domestic as well as her business partner. Mark had been to one address they visited in last night's film 14 times before; each time he'd knocked on the door, waited a bit and gone away. Corinne wasted no time: she pulled out an extending ladder, climbed up it and rapped on the bedroom windows until the owner opened the front door.

She could probably get away with it if her manner was a little more soothing, if she worked harder on the small-talk. Unfortunately, she regarded "I'm coming in your house and seizing your goods" as an acceptable conversational opening. Over the years, the couple have been attacked with hammers, threatened with shooting, their van has been kicked, and Mark was once assaulted by a one-legged man. "In Preston," he added, as if that explained something.

One thing about Corinne, though: she didn't give much sympathy, but she didn't ask for any, either. At her home, the camera lingered on her collection of ceramic knickknacks - little clusters of green and blue terriers and bunnies; and later we were taken to see her singing Patsy Cline to a karaoke machine. She didn't deserve to be patronised like that.

Blood on the Carpet (BBC2) continued to provide an acceptable alternative to badger-baiting and throwing Christians to the lions. Last week we got a morality tale that anybody could understand - mean, rich old Haagen- Dazs forced to cry "Uncle" by kindly, hippyish Ben and Jerry. This week, sympathies were more evenly divided. "The Frocky Horror Show" followed the stormy relationship between Elizabeth Emanuel, who designed Diana's wedding dress, and Shami Ahmed, the multi-millionaire entrepreneur behind Joe Bloggs. When her business backers went bust, she asked him if he would be interested in taking over. Ahmed, eager to break into a classier market, agreed, and at first looked like the handsome prince coming to her rescue. She, of all people, ought to have known that handsome princes never turn out to be what you expect. His palace was a grim-looking office block in Wembley, where he wanted her to relocate for reasons of economy. The relationship was soon on the rocks.

This was a thoroughly British saga of class antagonism. She despised him as a crass populist ("You're talking about a man who thinks the biggest thing ever is to design diamond- encrusted jeans and he thinks that's classy"), he despised her as a middle- class airhead. The partnership is now over. She has her freedom, he has her name, at least for the moment. Ahmed's Elizabeth Emanuel range is now aimed at women in their late thirties - the kind who go for pizza and chips with a bottle of chardonnay on a Friday night. Is it me, or does that sound like revenge?

Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke's video for 'Blurred Lines' has been criticised for condoning rape

Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'

music
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)

film
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black

Review: Cilla, ITV TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch star in the Alan Turing biopic The Imitation Game

film
Arts and Entertainment
Kanye West is on his 'Yeezus' tour at the moment

Music
Arts and Entertainment
Rob James-Collier, who plays under-butler Thomas Barrow, admitted to suffering sleepless nights over the Series 5 script

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence star in new film 'Serena'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Some might argue that a fleeting moment in the actor’s scintillating, silver-tongued company is worth every penny.

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Colin Firth stars as master magician Stanley Crawford in Woody Allen's 'Magic in the Moonlight'

film
Arts and Entertainment
U2 have released Songs of Innocence in partnership with Apple

musicBand have offered new record for free on iTunes
Arts and Entertainment
Brad Pitt stars in David Ayer's World War II drama Fury

film
Arts and Entertainment
Top hat: Pharrell Williams

music
Arts and Entertainment
Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum star as undercover cops in 22 Jump Street

film
Arts and Entertainment
David Bowie is back with fresh music after last year's hit album The Next Day

music
Arts and Entertainment
Keith Richards is publishing 'Gus and Me: The Story of My Granddad and My First Guitar', a children's book about his introduction to music

music
Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris has generated £4m in royalties from the music platform

music
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman stars as the Time Lord's companion Clara in Doctor Who

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Time and time again: the popular daytime quiz has been a fixture on Channel 4 since 1982

TV
Arts and Entertainment

To mark Tolstoy's 186th birthday

books
Arts and Entertainment
Rachel McAdams is reportedly competing with Mad Men's Elisabeth Moss for a major role in True Detective

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Sam Smith returned to the top spot with his album 'In The Lonely Hour'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Steve Backshall is set to dance with Ola Jordan on Strictly Come Dancing. 'I have a friend who's a dancer and she said to me 'You want Ola because she's a fantastic dancer and she can make anyone look good' meaning 'even you'!' he said.

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Sting and Paul Simon on stage together at Carnegie Hall in New York

music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

    Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

    The Imitation Game, film review
    England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

    England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

    Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

    Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    ‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

    Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week