11 December 2012 7:06 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Do we really need this many programmes starring middle-aged blokes, from Heston Blumenthal to Stephen Fry, simply mucking around?

After unsuccessfully dabbling with new identities since the loss of Big Brother – variously becoming The Home Of Celebrities All Running a Hotel Together For Reasons That Were Never Made Clear, and The Home Of Property Shows That Still Struggle With the Concept Of Recession, among others – Channel 4 currently seems intent on rebranding itself as The Home of Men Who Elaborately Muck Around For No Discernible Reason.

Just look at the listings. At first, it might have seemed like Heston's Fantastical Food was an anomaly – the sort of nebulously directionless thing that gets made when a channel has a presenter that it doesn't quite know what to do with. But it isn't. Stephen Fry: Gadget Man is basically the precisely the same programme as Heston's, but with all the big sausages replaced with motorised rollerskates. »

- Stuart Heritage

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