If you didn’t watch Derren Brown’s Apocalypse, then the following will be meaningless…
I suppose all television is a kind of charlatanism, a usually agreeable deception to which the rest of us more or less willingly sign up. We know, at the back of our minds, that TV is fake. Which is why Derren Brown’s Apocalypse was salutary viewing: clearly, demonstrably, faked – and even beyond that obnoxious in its presumptions. Sort of TV incarnate, in exaggerated microcosm. The audience are mugs, the supposed representative from the audience – the protagonist of Brown’s fifth form horror show – a mug who can be lifted from his humdrum torpor and selfishness only through the redemptive intervention of television. And still Brown insists it was all real, unconfected (and he has called the accusations of faking ‘hurtful’) – despite the seven or eight different camera shots within the bunker in which the protagonist was hiding, all of them showing him in the centre of the shot and perfectly focussed. Which I suppose makes Derren the mug: will anyone ever believe him again?
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