8.3/10
1,091
3 user 2 critic

How TV Ruined Your Life 

A comedic documentary series in which Charlie Brooker uses a mix of sketches and jaw-dropping archive footage to explore the gulf between real life and television.
Reviews

Episodes

Seasons


Years



1  
2011  
2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

More Like This 

Screenwipe (2006–2009)
Documentary | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

Satirical TV show critique.

Stars: Charlie Brooker, Al Campbell, David Firth
Newswipe (2009–2010)
Documentary | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Hosted and written by Charlie Brooker, this sardonic series follows and critiques both current news stories and the way television portrays them.

Stars: Charlie Brooker, Tim Key, Doug Stanhope
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Charlie Brooker Highlights The Weeks News In A Comic Fashion.

Stars: Charlie Brooker, Diane Morgan, Al Campbell
Charlie Brooker's 2013 Wipe (TV Movie 2013)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Before we all plunge into the depths of January despair, it is time to put on your party hat and reflect on 2013 with Charlie Brooker's annual Christmas and New Year shindig. This is a ... See full summary »

Directors: Andy Devonshire, Lorry Powles
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Al Campbell, Diane Morgan
Charlie Brooker's 2012 Wipe (TV Movie 2013)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Charlie Brooker takes an irreverent look back at 2012. It was a busy year crammed full of Olympian events, including the jubilee, some elections, pussy riots, exposed regal flesh, The Valleys and also some actual Olympian events.

Directors: Andrew Chaplin, Lucy Forbes
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Al Campbell, Diane Morgan
Charlie Brooker's 2010 Wipe (TV Movie 2010)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Since you've probably already forgotten what happened this year, Charlie Brooker's 2010 Wipe is here to fill in the blanks. From the Chilean miners to the General Election, from Sherlock to... See full summary »

Director: Al Campbell
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Grace Dent, Doug Stanhope
Charlie Brooker's 2011 Wipe (TV Movie 2011)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Charlie Brooker takes a comedic look back at the hectic events of 2011 - a mad year of royal weddings, Gypsy Weddings, riots, phone-hacking and Desperate Scousewives. With contributions from Doug Stanhope, Adam Curtis and Brian Limond.

Directors: Al Campbell, Lorry Powles
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Adam Curtis, Susie Boniface
Charlie Brooker's 2014 Wipe (TV Movie 2014)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Charlie Brooker covers the funny side of politics and the popular topics of 2014.

Directors: Andy Devonshire, Lorry Powles
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Gilad Atzmon, Al Campbell
Charlie Brooker's 2015 Wipe (TV Movie 2015)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

Charlie Brooker's annual review of the year 2015's news and cultural events.

Director: Lorry Powles
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Al Campbell, Diane Morgan
Charlie Brooker's 2016 Wipe (TV Movie 2016)
Comedy | News
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Charlie Brooker takes a satirical look at the biggest news stories of 2016.

Director: Lorry Powles
Stars: Muhammad Ali, Kirstie Allsopp, Ed Balls
Gameswipe (TV Movie 2009)
Documentary | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Charlie Brooker sets his caustic sights on video games. Expect acerbic comment as he looks at the various genres, how they have changed since their early conception and how the media ... See full summary »

Director: Al Campbell
Stars: Charlie Brooker, Dara O Briain, Graham Linehan
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A few hours before the polls open, Charlie Brooker presents an irreverent look back at the 2015 general election campaign, mixing the big stories with the funniest and strangest moments ... See full summary »

Director: Lorry Powles
Stars: Natalie Bennett, Adam Bolton, Russell Brand
Edit

Cast

Series cast summary:
Charlie Brooker ...  Himself - Presenter 6 episodes, 2011
Liz May Brice ...  Karen Itis / ... 5 episodes, 2011
Kevin Eldon ...  Damien Spent / ... 4 episodes, 2011
Beth Cordingly Beth Cordingly ...  Morning TV Presenter / ... 3 episodes, 2011
Lucy Thackeray Lucy Thackeray ...  Siobhan Laine 3 episodes, 2011
James Holmes ...  Morning TV Advisor / ... 2 episodes, 2011
Thaila Zucchi Thaila Zucchi ...  Desirable Woman / ... 2 episodes, 2011
Glenn Hugill Glenn Hugill ...  Himself / ... 2 episodes, 2011
Edit

Storyline

A comedic documentary series in which Charlie Brooker uses a mix of sketches and jaw-dropping archive footage to explore the gulf between real life and television.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

tv mini series | reenactment | See All (2) »


Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 January 2011 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Zeppotron See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in The British Comedy Awards 2011 (2011) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Familiar material at times, but nicely packaged and typically acerbically funny – even if it is a little judgmental at times
19 April 2015 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

Those familiar with his old Guardian column Screenburn, or the show Screenwipe and variations that came from it, will already know where they are with this show from the very start. In this show, in picking apart the impact of television, Charlie Brooker shows us how it has ruined our lives in regard to relationships, technological advances, our fear of the outside world, our contentment, our aging process, and how we learn things. And don't say it hasn't, because it has.

When I watched this show recently, I wasn't really sure where it fitted into the timeline of Brooker being on television – was it something that led to Screenwipe, or was it after it. As it transpired, this show seems like a companion piece to Screenwipe, where essentially the format is the same, but rather than looking back at the week or so in television and news, there is more of a structured documentary approach. The success of this is mixed, although mostly it works pretty well and fans of Brooker's style will enjoy this because all the usual aspects are here; the acerbic worldview, the imaginative and colorfully grim use of language, the sense of the crushing depressing futility of the majority of television. It doesn't sound funny, but mostly it is, thanks to the writing and the delivery.

The documentary structure is also interesting, although it doesn't totally sit well with Brooker doing his stuff – the two feel a little at odds even when they are working together. The impact of television and the development of that impact is interestingly portrayed; it is not Adam Smith perhaps, but it is a case reasonably well made. The main problem I had with mixing the two things was that, while normally Brooker is mocking populist television, here the show is about the impact on those who watch it – and the shows and examples given are predominately not shows that people like Brooker would watch – and I think this because I also do not watch them. So there is a general feeling throughout that, while the point is valid, it is one that isn't applied to the makers, or the viewers of the show – instead we watch more high-brow things like HBO's output and get our news from "proper" print journalism and more informed comment pieces rather than rolling news networks. It is not a massive issue perhaps, but as a whole show, it did smack a little of elitism – and I say that as one on the inside of that feeling. A smaller problem is that some of the material feels recycled from Screenwipe, so if you have watched that show throughout, then you will feel that aspects of this one are recycled.

Still though, the documentary structure works by being interesting enough to engage, but also allowing for all the usual comedy from Brooker, which is as funny as usual (which will be to personal taste is that is criticism or praise!). Worth a look for Brooker fans even though personally I think the Screenwipe format works better in Screenwipe than it did here.


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 3 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed