UPthf/N I». '7, ' BLACK LIKE BECKHAM Channel 4, Fri 25 Apr, 7.30pm 00

Is Dawzl Hecklar': the actuary. 's. but ’Z(:l(:l)'il~. dad?’ \.".’:l. Heal tvtadrizt ent'ce hin: array firm Manchester U"li‘:(l .'.’|'..'l enough dos'i to keep him ll‘ sarongs for life’? Is he a better singer than Victoria? All tough points .‘rorth debating. But the guestion posed in this half hour slot will raise eyebrows higher than that ill advised mohican: is Dawd Beckham the biggest living icon for black Britons?

Journalist Paul McKee/it;- clearly has a chum (possibly drunkl at Channel 11 who let him get away With this volley of proof: his R88 diva missus; the names of his dogs (Snoop and Puffy): his street dress sense; and the public enemy no 1 status he suffered after his 98 red card versus Argentina which meant he could relate to centuries of racist oppression. OK then.

But perhaps we st of all. MCKOll/lf} proves his lack of Journalistic mettle by allowmg one Manc buffoon to get away With appalling ignorance. 'Dawd Beckhaiii a black man“? He's not black! He's Englishll'

(Brian Donaldson)



Channel 4, Sun 27 Apr, 8.30pm 0...


Big busmess and ethical policies haven't always been the best of buddies. but the lengths and depths some companies Will sink to in the name of profit makes you want to weep. And that may well be your reaction With Brian The Dying Rooms Woods" unrelenting documentary

about drugs companies. with perhaps iust a touch too much bleakness ~~ echo effects on a baby’s cry close ups on needles Woods explores the ueg 'nonopoly that controls the hopes and needs of the u'xorld's most vulnerable. l-ollovang stories in Nigeria. the US. South Kerea and Honduras, he looks at three different areas of exploitation. saying the most distressing for last. And it arrives in the smallest. most frail. destroyed shape of 17 year-old Jairo. Nothing can prepare you for this and his pain is both iiiit)(-2arat)le and, what is far worse. totally unnecessary. This is searing. unforgivmg documentary making in the best investigative tradition. iRuth Hedges)

POLICE. DRAMA MURPHY’S LAW 8801, Mon 28 Apr, 8.30pm 00.

Here we go With the same old same old. Female business manager. male kidnapper. woman knocked around. put in her place. handcuffed in sub-88M style. whiiiiper. whimper, girlie. girlie . . . but then this vehicle for .Jaiiies Nesbitt takes a

Black Like Beckham misses its target

108 THE LIST .31 Al" 8 Max

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He has a" A l.r‘.'_le";:x.e' :fetefxn: who's made is mm wk»:- a ’iig?‘-profil-': terrorist i" ’1r’1ertesiareap'rsa" cell .'.':th alleged kidnapper Electric Bili‘ Kent." Dane and min ct a confession frci'i t‘i'n lf ,‘(tu Tiéll‘ stomach Nesbitt's chirp, :i.’h’i_{7(:, persona. 't's {if‘ entertainir‘g conceit written with some unit and filmed with alloye average imagination.

It looks like a promising start to the series. but then the two men get out of prison and it all goes awry. After so much Sl()\.'-"t)llflill‘-(; drama. the hurried conclusion is quite beWildering. Bad plotting is undoubtedly to blariie but it'll be interesting to see how subsequent episodes bear up. l'Mark l isherl

(if LEBRIW PHOf ll [.8 TABLOID TALES 8801, Tue 29 Apr, 10.40pm “O

It's always struck me as somewhat odd that Victoria Beckham was known as Posh Spice. Had the nickname- givers actually heard her talk before they handed her that moniker? She's about as well-bred as Jordan. of whom she may or may not have dedicated ‘Who Let the Dogs Out'. This is one of the showbiz rumours that Mrs Becks attempts to nail in this first of six stories about celebrity Victims of the downiiiarket press. Presented by Piers Morgan ~ Mirror edit0r and swom enemy of Ian Hislop and Naomi Campbell the show appears. on the eVidence of this opener. to be a lightly entertaining meander through a star's collisions With the hacks and a chance for them to answer back. Virtually unhindered. Though whether future StlbleClS such as Peter Mandelson and Jade Goody Wl” have their mum on hand to back them up is not yet known. iBrian Donaldson;

k S ' u.) CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM BBC4. Wed 30 Apr. 10pm O...

Middle-man Larry David fails to keep the peace

One of the best kept secrets in television is Larry David. The man who wrote the jokes which made the world laugh with Seinfeld now stars in his own sitcom, which may have the clumsiest title in the world (are devotees called Curb Crawlers?), merging Woody Allen's neuroses and the comedy of horrors perpetrated in Fawlty Towers.

With a bit of luck, more than just a handful of BBC4 viewers will eventually get to see this series made by those wonderful people at HBO, but for now, you‘ve just got to trust me on this: Larry David is a genius. The structure of each episode runs more or less like this: David (as himself) will encounter someone who offends him/is offended by him. A string of seemingly unrelated comic scenarios will play themselves out and at the end, one of these events will somehow link with the offended/offender.

In this last episode of series one (first released in the US in 1999), he meets up with an old flame who he grudgingly accompanies to a ‘victims of incest' group. Meanwhile, his wife (Cheryl Hines), has been auditioning for a role in a production of The Vagina Monologues. If you can make the link, you‘re truly gifted.

The low-fi, improvised feel provides Curb your Enthusiasm with its character and David’s script gives it weight. An hour-long ‘documentary' about his planned return to the stand-up scene which follows the episode only serves to muddy the waters where reality and fiction doggy-paddle with one another. One thing is clear: Curb your Enthusiasm is classic comedy. (Brian Donaldson)

CRIME; DOCUME NTARY cases. one in German, mutt. Hit/era, (,‘Ii/rii-r, HIDEOUS and one in Wales. that examines tho,- unfair.- CRIMES: ended disastrously in that has lllilfi‘.".7".f:l‘iil, ritual riiurder. Defying f;l)£l‘.'.’fl(:ll the

Five. Tue 6 May, into the macabre world perpetrators of these 10.50pm ... of fetish clubs. blood terrible (feeds. but

thankfully axwl‘. Item; so in a 'rir,r;il:sti'.

Doug .Jchrisforu:

drinkers and ‘haeriiosexuality' il'm sure yOU can work it

The rise of interest in the vampire myth has been extraordinary ovm the last few years tjtlSl type ‘vampire‘ into Google and see how many returns you geti. Of course the idea of the undead has always been a pretty intriguing one. loaded Wllll sexual symbolism and inyolying the guest for immortality and these days. Wlll‘i the help of the internet. there is now an underground comriiunity of millions f0‘.’(}l|lf‘.g in the fantasy.

lneyitably there are fringe crackpots who take the whole thing too far. and this Surprisingly siren-balanced and thoughtful documentary examines txrc Such

Hideous Crimes is a show with bite