The Secret Life of Students, Channel 4 - TV review
Ellen E Jones
Ellen is The Independent's TV critic. She writes a daily review of Last Night's TV and a weekly 'Inside TV' column for the i paper, as well as a column on general topics for the main paper most Wednesdays. Ellen is a former Hollywood correspondent and a contributing editor to Little White Lies, she's written on TV, film, lifestyle, travel and politics for publications including the Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times, Esquire and Total Film.
Thursday 03 July 2014
Nobody had any secrets in The Secret Life of Students. That’s just the way of young people these days, which was convenient for the makers of Channel 4’s new four-part documentary series. It enabled them to keep up with the lives of 12 Leicester University first years, not only via the usual documentary methods of interview and observation, but also by sharing their every tweet, text, email and status update with the audience at home.
All of last night’s freshers fitted neatly into the stereotypes that all grads will remember – if not from their own student days, then from the sitcom Fresh Meat. There was J.P.-a-like Aiden, a self-described “right-wing conservative” whose idea of a big night out involved inserting a vodka-soaked tampon up his anus. His unfortunate prey Josie, even shared the name of her sitcom equivalent.
Despite their questionable choices, they were a sympathetic bunch, particularly teetotal, history boff Lauren. This episode, she was confronted with the dilemma at the crux of all socialising:“the dilemma all anti-social people must face; lead a life of miserable solitude? Or ingratiate yourself with the surrounding morons? Lauren did her best to fit in with her hall-mates, but she drew the line at a Nazi-themed drinking game. “What’s wrong?” asked one girl, putting a sympathetic hand on Lauren’s shoulder, “Do you just really hate Hitler?”
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Sainsbury's '50p challenge' poster telling staff to encourage customers to spend more placed in shop window instead of staff room
- 2 Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
- 3 Isis an hour away from Baghdad - with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
- 4 Yes, the iPhone 6 is a miracle, but it's Apple's tax affairs that deserve a double take
- 5 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
Before They Pass Away: In pictures
Kylie Minogue, Kiss Me Once tour, London O2 - review: Pop princess still reigns supreme
Miranda Hart and Sarah Millican lead female comedy breakthrough
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'
The Simpsons death: Character killed off - but not the one you thought
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
- < Previous
- Next >