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The Fried Chicken Shop

The Fried Chicken Shop

Mon Sep 16, 9-10pm, C4

By Phil Harrison
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Episode one
Is fried chicken the new Gypsies? A strange question perhaps, but watch this and you’ll know what we mean. Emboldened by the success of a one-off, fly-on-the-wall documentary about the Rooster Spot chicken shop in Clapham, C4 has commissioned a series along similar lines. And, like the apparently endless ‘Big Fat…’ franchise, it looks like diminishing returns will set in sooner rather than later.

Thanks to the largely likeable characters we meet, ‘The Fried Chicken Shop’ is still a pretty easy watch. But everything about this episode (the first of three) calls into doubt the true nature of the enterprise. How many cameras are in the shop? To what extent are the punters aware that they’re being filmed? Is this edging close to the dreaded ‘scripted reality’?

In short, has Rooster Spot been turned from a real slice of London life into a set? ‘The Fried Chicken Shop’ just about gets away with it for now. But already, it’s living dangerously…
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