'Naked Beach'. Aesthetics of the body. The shy and the proud. April 2019, TV channel 4
Three people said to be ashamed of their bodies are sent to stay on a Greek island with a larger
group who are proud of how they look. This supposedly helps the worried 3 accept their bodies
and be happier. By the end the three bare all or almost all and go naked bathing with the confident.
It's interesting and unusual to see an array of naked bodies that don't fit current ideals.
There are a few odd things happening.
Would men and women who have a problem being seen naked really want to be shown without
clothes on tv?
The ashamed and the proud share an obsession with their own bodies.
Each week includes someone whose body looks to have only a slight imperfection such as small
stretch marks or minor areas of impetigo.
Each week one is reported to have gone on to make a business designing lingerie or clothes for
larger figures. Maybe they expected more publicity for this than a brief mention of it with no trade
None of the shy mind repeatedly hugging all and sundry naked.
The confident ones appear at first covered in highly decorative body paint and g strings and later
the shy ones are similarly decorated and applauded. We don’t see who body paints them or discussions of the designs.
Although the program advocates uninhibited nudity some shots show women coyly covering their
breasts and there are few full frontal images.
Women refer to trimming their pubic hair as though to leave it growing would be distasteful.
Each shy one pairs with a non-shy person of the same sex to compare bodies behind towels.
No mention is made of sexual orientations or sexual activity.
It's a mixture of the coy and the flamboyant. There's immense peer pressure to join in parading
about in the nude and a lot of whooping and cheering when this happens.
The shy ones seem genuinely newly delighted with themselves.
One of the unashamed ones has his shoulder and arm missing but we don't find out why.
We do find out a bit more about the nervous ones personal lives.
The attractive black male doctor keeps his clothes on as he talks about research and procedures from a distant location.
The glorious camouflage afforded by body paint or clothing becomes emphasized as we view the
sort of overweight flesh that hasn't been popularly admired since Rubens or the Willendorf Venus.
No one discusses how or why our ideals have evolved or why some people have body dysmorphia
and others are vastly overconfident.
Next week's episode will be virtually a repeat just like all the other many programs with set formats.
I have heard no one discussing the program and wonder if the audience figures could be
Has 'Naked Beach' got its heart in the right place or is it voyeuristic pandering to an uneasy