11 October 2017
Get thee to a nunnery
It has become a familiar trope of reality television programmes: take a bunch of spoiled, indolent, undisciplined, young modern wastrels and place them in situations so completely alien to them that they are challenged to examine themselves and mend their ways. At its best, it is telly entertainment acting as both social experiment and missionary outreach. For the viewer, the drama is in the confrontations and exposures, and the pleasure in the sanctimonious satisfaction that it is not you having to go to a 1950s grammar school/Edwardian house/army boot camp/desert island.
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