Tuesday, August 05, 2008

The Secret Millionaire

I think this is the one reality-type TV programme that never fails to move me to tears. The premise is that a millionaire goes undercover for a week in a disadvantaged area. The explanation for the camera crew following is that a documentary is being made about volunteering.

The secret millionaire then has a week to find out who the people are in the community who could benefit from financial support. It's not simply a matter of paying off the debts of spongers and fakes. Normally some remarkable people turn up - tonight a couple who opened their house to kids with no addresses and in trouble with the law acting almost as surrogate grand-parents and doing all this with help only with food costs, the expenses eating into their pension. They had space for ten teenagers.

What I like most is that many of the millionaires start out as arrogant types who have seen all their life in terms of a competition they have to win to end up with the most money. For many it turns into a journey of discovery; discovery that not all people have the same starting point and that helping others has a grace of its own. They find out that you don't need to be rich to start helping. The millionaires end up helping people who are already helping others, by and large.

There's good news for the poor and bad news for the rich; what is rarely noticed is that vice-versa is equally true. Good tele. And a warm settee rather than a cold field in Shepton Malibu.


Mr Gnome said...


Mr Gnome might be persuaded to buy one of those telly machines.

Shepton Malibu - sounds SO attractive.

Other locations....

Shepton Malfunction / Malleable (er, prob not) / Malingerer / Malice aforethought / Malaise / Malaga / Malaria / Malaprop...?

Hannah said...

I agree Steve, totally brilliant TV, the sort of thing I'm happy to pay my tv licence fee for, that and the olympics coming up!!

Matt Wilson said...

when i saw the new series coming i was like

Oh yea its gonna be like too pushed and hard work its not gonna be as good as the other two

then i still ended up finding myself watching it with the missues, was totally crying by the end it

just class tele