What Went Wrong With… Stacey Dooley (& BBC Three)?

Caricature of Stacey Dooley by What Went Wrong With

If you aren’t familiar with this wannabe documentary maker then you are one of the lucky ones. Those subjected to her pointless documentaries in the UK find themselves cringing at her aimless and downright amateurish handling of serious subjects.

Stacey Dooley’s documentaries appear sporadically on BBC Three; a channel which dedicates almost nine hours a day to non-threatening and non-entertaining, dumbed-down televisual torture geared towards wannabe urban, middle-class kids. Amongst all the other banality on this pitiful excuse of a channel Stacey Dooley should not stand out, but with her whining Lutonian accent heavy in glottal stops it is hard not to notice her. And as she meanders around amidst potentially important topics and situations trying to look frail and unassuming, the audience is generally bemused not at the subject of each programme, but at the uncomfortable atmosphere of inadequacy she brings to such subjects.

With so many relevant documentary makers going un-aired on TV, it begs the question why someone this incompetent and unprofessional is given masses of airtime on mainstream terrestrial television. With the obvious amateurishness surrounding Dooley’s shows, it is a wonder why even the slightest amount of the TV Licence fee is spent on her meaningless jaunts, especially when the end result is something that resembles a home-made YouTube documentary.

As soon as Dooley encounters anybody outside of her social circle (everybody outside of Luton) she immediately looks uncomfortable, constantly slumped forward whilst maintaining a worried grin, she never has control of any situation. Standing slouched, she questions people with her perplexed look and nodding-dog head gestures pretending to listen. Dressed-down with minimal make-up and just-woken hair style, she maintains an inoffensive façade and a non-threatening pretence any Social Worker would be proud of. Then after a mild quizzing of random people, Dooley talks to the camera about her trivial thoughts and summations. And if this were not already the recipe for the worst TV documentary ever, she pointlessly narrates the whole fiasco herself like the dullest post-holiday slide-show from an annoying family member.

To make this televisual travesty look even more amateur, she is followed everywhere by a rag-tag bunch of talentless cameramen desperately trying to look hard-hitting by adopting the aesthetics of an undercover sting, but who end up creating what resembles a failed found-footage film. The end result makes a chimp with a camcorder look like Louis Theroux. It is anybody’s guess why people so under-qualified for such a job were ever employed by a mainstream broadcaster. But after the recent string of bad decisions and cover-ups, a lack of talent are the least of the BBC’s worries.

Stacey Dooley Dull, Duly Noted.


216 replies »

  1. The girl got lucky , was at the right place at the right time: just when some producers thought to sign someone with the least exposure(fresh face) to front their new “concept” of documentaries/programs. Personally, she grates on me because she displays too much smugness with no real “content” in her(knowledge, empathy, astuteness) to substantiate it. Very 2-dimensional, and she doesn’t seem to know that, seemingly oblivious to what effect she has on viewers.

    And the reason she stays smug, not caring/knowing how she can possibly grate on anyone at all(oh God forbid she’d never believe it i bet!) is probably because of what she learnt from her mum as quoted in the write-up on BBC about getting an MBE :

    “I’m so grateful to my mum, and she’s given me the best advice over the years. She’s always said it doesn’t matter how nice you are, or how lovely you try to be. Some people won’t like you, and that’s fine. That’s just life.”

    Thus, with a green card to stay ignorant about what she’s lacking, how she’s coming across to some viewers(smugness alert on Strictly!), because at the end of the day, what matters isn’t what others think, it’s what ‘she’ wants to do, say, portray.

    (And of course, as per some comments above, as long as she looks cute, that’s all that matters. She’ll get a vote. sigh…)

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