Last Wednesday, a friend of mine called me and said "you like the Wright Stuff, don't you?" I do -actually it is probably one of the only programmes I like on day time TV. You've got Jeremy "Vile" on ITV (no comment!), kiddy TV, re-runs of American sitcoms or a (fake) dose of the "real" housewives of Beverly hills, yawn, yawn... You can actually watch the Wright
(Me, above trying to pretend that there Stuff and feel that no one is trying to
wasn't a big camera shoved in my face) drain your brain of its precious neurons. So
yes, I like the Wright stuff, "Why?", I
"I've got a spare seat for tomorrow's show" she said. "Would you like to come?"-- Would I like to come? Sure I would. I've never been on a TV set and what's more, wouldn't it be great to see how they make TV shows? What's more I do like Matthew Wright, he seems genuine and nice anyway so yes, I was sold. I arrived at Whiteley's Shopping Centre in Queensway where the Wright Stuff studio is randomly situated. There, we were told to meet at Starbucks, this already set the tone; this was going to be a very laid back affair.
There, we were greeted by Eric (right) and we had to fill in a disclosure form. I have no idea what that form said, hopefully I'm allowed to write this post - oh well. Anyway, Eric behaved as if we had met many times before. Turns out that this was partially true as quite a few of the participants were regulars. They all greeted each other enthusiastically then complimented each other on the amount of screen time they each had received that week . I felt like I was being introduced to a strange new world.
Prior to coming, I had been warned that those shows were running like clockwork and that I would not be allowed to excuse myself to go to the loo for the duration of the programme, nor take pictures. "Four hours and no break?" - I asked Eric and he responded: (re: loo break) "when you gotta go, you gotta go" (Nuff said, turns out I didn't need a loo break. I do not have a weak bladder but I do have a feeble mind so knowing that I could go did the trick!) - (re: camera) "sure, bring it in". Wow, this was great!! So in we came and the studio pretty much looked like it does on TV. This is a small production team with a very welcoming, "family type" feel.
There were not that many of us in the audience and we we were close to Matthew and his guests which was nice. Matthew was not feeling very well that day. Clearly he had barely made it in and yet as soon as the cameras were on, he was his usual bright and cheery self. I was amazed by his professionalism. Like Eric and the crew, he was also incredibly nice and gracious, chatting to us between breaks etc.
It has been a long running theory of mine that a boss defines his/her team. Ie: a horrible boss makes horrible/miserable employees and a nice boss makes very happy/open/successful employees. Nowhere more than the Wright Stuff, was I proven right. Everyone on the set was a happy, welcoming soul and so was their boss.
As a matter of fact, despite feeling rundown and poorly, Matthew graciously agreed to have his picture taken (left) with a nice laugh and chat to boot. Weird to say this, but when we left, we felt like we were part of the family. It was brilliant and I would go back in a heartbeat, beats a "live" Jeremy Vile any day, that's for sure (although to be fair, I'm only guessing).