TV Review: Riot Girls, C4

I think it would be fair to say I'm not in Riot Girls' target demographic. Then again i'm younger than former Labour spin doctor Alistair Campbell and he tweeted that this new hidden camera sketch show was the funniest thing since Jeremy Corbyn in a Russian hat. Or something like that anyway. But then again, he was frank enough to point out that his daughter Grace was one of the four budding pranksters alongside Sophie Duker, Jen Wakefield and Cam Spence. And at least they didn't call it Riotgirlz, which would have definitely alienated anyone over twelve.

Basically the show was a post-feminist Trigger Happy TV, with the quartet coaxing members of the public into various awkward situations while the camera caught the responses. It wasn't cruel and some of it worked, although some of it didn't. All of it was setting out to make a point as the stats about male/female things such as the gender pay gap at the start of each skit made clear.

Some of the best moments were when the public were totally blindsided. At one point the foursome set up a stall – the "Fannispa" – in a shopping centre offering alternative beauty products. Steam your vagina by squatting over what looked like a toilet. Or have your privates cleaned by fish nibbling at them. Some of the passers-by looked quite interested. If this wasn't in the name of comedy they might have even made a few sales.

The programme ended with a diatribe about the post-pornification pubic hair mountain. There was so much of it in the sea thanks to women opting for Brazilians that fish were choking on fanny fur balls, Blue Planet-style. A militant anti-depilation group had set up a shop where women who opted to grow their pubic hair could have it styled. A scene where they auditioned male barbers for the job by revealing their own neatly ribboned foliage (fake I suspect) was maybe the best moment of this one-off. Whether it could stretch to a series I'm not so sure.


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