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Who do you think you don’t know you’re born…

February 5, 2007

There are some things in life that I just can’t get my head around. The sign in my doctor’s surgery toilets not only asking users to wash their hands, but also showing them how, step-by-step (no, rilly: step one, wet hands; step two, lather with soap…); those strange trainers with wheels on their heels that are all the rage these days (how can kids not fall over and crack their skulls open? and why? why don’t they dagnammit?); ahem… how a (rather hip) 26-year-old can openly say ‘all the rage’ in a blog… *sigh* I’m getting old.

Anyway, another thing that I’ve been about confused over is just how much telly these days is just regurgitated stuff from another channel. I mean, okay, we all know that there are no original ideas, but these days it seems that TV peeps aren’t trying to make their progs look even slightly different.

Take the obvious example – You Don’t Know You’re Born (ITV) and Who Do You Think You Are (BBC) where celebrities trace their family trees back to find out, well… who they think they are and actually discover that they don’t know they’re born. The programes even have the same (or very similar) theme tunes and opening credits. Then there’s Strictly Dance Fever, Dancing On Ice, Strictly Fevering Celebrities On Ice (oooh, sounds good!)

But some telly copies are a bit more subtle. I accidentally stumbled across After You’ve Gone the other day (a mistake I won’t be making again in a hurry). It’s about a divorcee who (hilariously!) ends up living with his mother in law. I gave up thinking about how ludicrous the premise was because the rest of it really reminded me of a similar BBC family orientated sit com. Apart from the whole divorcee thing, it’s very similar to My Family. Hapless father who pretends to hate kids when actually loves them: check; Spouse (girlfriend or wife) who has the mental upper hand and treats the husband/boyfriend with endearing distain, check; gormless (but charmingly funny) good-looking brother: check; Annoying daughter who drains father’s funds: check… Even the sets are similar, and you can almost see where they’ve papered over where the Harper’s staircase used to be…

Has anyone else got any other Telly Doppelgangers?

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