The Week The Women Came, MOre4 - 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.
Tuesday 17 December 2013
Fiona and Elaine, the two stars of More4's The Week The Women Came documentary, suffered from low desire, one of the most common sexual problems, and had bravely/madly allowed cameras to film their sessions with psychosexual counsellor, Trudy Hannington.
Hannington's message for the viewers was simple: sexual problems are rarely just about sex. An estimated one in four women have trouble reaching climax at some point in their lives, and around 10 per cent never do. They can't all have a headache.
Fiona, in particular, had some very sound practical reasons for a flagging libido. Not only did she have two children (one teenager and one under five), but she worked nights while her husband did a day shift. I'd be impressed if these two ships even passed in the night, let alone found time to dock. Meanwhile, 58-year-old Elaine and her husband had slept in separate beds for four years, after the menopause brought their formerly satisfying sex life to a premature end. Both couples had almost given up hope until Hannington's techniques yielded some impressively speedy results.
There's no ignoring the inherent cringe factor in discovering so much intimate detail about two absolute strangers, but this documentary's sensitive handling of such a tricky – and potentially icky – topic was a marvel. It didn't feel like exhibitionism; it felt like a real public service.
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