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Childbirth dominates BBC3’s schedules this week, and ITV gets in on the act tonight at 9pm with ‘Home Delivery’, a functional and self-explanatory doc about the increasing trend towards going through the whole messy business in more familiar surroundings. Of potentially more interest is ‘The Baby Bomb’, a provocatively titled but somewhat contrived examination of the pressures of young parenthood.
Plonking three new parents and one single mum-to-be into the same south London tower block probably makes for a cheaper documentary, but also creates a hothouse atmosphere that rather undermines any insights we might have gleaned from looking at the couples in isolation, or from following an NCT group instead. Is Maddy suffering from post-natal depression? Why doesn’t Charlotte cut Sean some slack? Why won’t young Shannon (who accuses her partner of prioritising work over family for going out and earning a crust) grow up a bit?
The gossip flies as thick and fast as the reconciliations and bonding that inevitably follow. It’s moderately diverting and graphically illustrates the sheer exhaustion of caring for a newborn, but ‘The Baby Bomb’ doesn’t add much to the sum of human understanding.