With the remarkably late registration date for the course I have had the dubious privilege of watching more daytime television than I would have liked. Now we all know that daytime telly is shit so I wont waste time going on about it here.

Probably the best of them though is “ beat the burglar” at first glance at the tv listings I thought a dystopian future of live capital punishment had finally come in to fruition and eagerly looked forward to “stab the mugger” and “bite a shoplifters bollocks”. It’s not. At first glance its standard daytime tv fare: a rubbish cockney presenter twittering on, making lame jokes and saying things like “three lever mortice locks”, so far so dull, until we meet Mike. Mike is a scarred but softly spoken burley ex-burglar brummie who in his quieter moments looks like an intellectual pit-bull. Mike looks supremely uncomfortable on camera and mechanical when talking to the host.

mike loves fences

In fact the only time Mike does seem comfortable (and the high light of the show) is when he is burgling the shit out of a family’s house, while the family watches via a series of camera set ups including a burglar-eye-view strapped to Mikes ample frame.

Mike makes me proud to be a brummie and is by far the star of the show. He is surprisingly nimble for a stocky guy and only seems truly at home when mooching round someone else’s. As he swaggers around swigging the family’s lager and trashing a six-year-olds bedroom with casual unhurried ease you get the sense that he derives real job satisfaction. (I have yet to see the episode where he takes a shit on the living room carpet and daubs abusive graffiti on the wall with it so maybe we will see “beat the scally burglar” sometime soon.)

Obviously the programme aspires to be an informative home security makeover show. Mike does his best not to look disappointed when he attempts to break into the house a second time and is “beaten” by the new security measures. But it doesn’t try too hard not to be an excuse for the live burglary porn with the owner’s reactions the money shots.