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How TV Ruined Your Life

It’s good to see Charlie Brooker return to something worth wile after watching his dismal droning and obvious discomfort on last week’s ‘10 O’Clock Live. How TV Ruined Your Life is essentially ANOTHER Screenwipe-esque clip show, even down to the classic Brooker-sitting-in-the-sofa cam and using the; A Clockwork Orange theme music over any of the clips that are trying to instil a sense of dread. Except this series takes a deeper root in the themes of psychology, sociology and how television has affected the ideas and feelings of the mass population more than we’d initially imagine. Looking at T.V. culture in a deeper sense than just Brooker’s monotonous low ranting frequency gives his intellectual observations very fresh perspectives, which appear to have taken a lot of inspiration from Adam Curtis’ documentary style such as Century Of The Self and The Trap.

In ‘Fear’, the first part of the series, Brooker describes how television programmes often attempt to instil their themes and ideas through tactics of fear, changing the viewers perceptions of their surrounding environment into a misconstrued television version of reality. Brooker puts his witty throw away quips into a more extensive context by showing government backed infomercials from the 1940s onwards and discussing psychological theories.

Stuck half way between Screenwipe and Adam Curtis, How TV Ruined Your Life pushes Brooker’s ranting into a more insightful format than ever before.

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