Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Secret Diary of a Call Girl, Season 1 (2007)

Hannah Baxter is a typical young woman living in London, with a deathly dull job as a night-shift legal secretary for a multinational corporate lawyer.

Except that she's nothing of the sort.  Her actual job is that she's an exclusive - that means expensive - call girl.  She keeps this quiet from pretty much everyone except her clients and her agent.  Not even her best friend and former lover, Ben, knows of her occupation.

Secret Diary of a Call Girl is based on the memoirs of "Belle de Jour", a real life sex worker from London, who relied on the income while completing her doctoral studies.  The TV version of the character is in a bit of a different situation as she seems to be planning to pursue this as a career for at least some time, but many of the other characters and situations draw inspiration from the memoirs.

So obviously this show is going to deal with sex a lot, and it's certainly not shy on that front.  This season tackles jobs involving BDSM, foursomes, sex parties, and "gay for pay" lesbianism, to name just a few topics, and does so with a wryness and frankness that I find very appealing.  This is a funny show, as long as you're not easily shocked, with clever writing and an engaging cast.

Side Note: it's also quite fun to play "spot the British actor".  Fans of Doctor Who are likely to be particularly amused when Matt Smith briefly turns up and sleeps with Billie Piper's Belle.  Or maybe not, given how many people seem to hate Piper's character from Who (I'm not one of them).

Pretty much the only reason I can think of not to check out this show is if you're not comfortable with the subject matter.  In which case you should definitely stay away.  If that's not you though, I recommend you at least give it a try.

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