Going Bananas for Georgia… Or the Welsh star making waves on Channel 4

Anyone who saw any of Russell T Davies’ seminal TV series Queer As Folk will know exactly what sort of zeitgeist-grabbing he’s capable of, but this year’s return to the subject matter with georgiaCucumber, Banana and Tofu has shown that he still has stories to tell on the sexual lives of LGBT people.

Georgia Henshaw from Swansea pitched up in one of the E4 Banana stream, bringing a modern lesbian love story to mainstream TV.

When I spoke to her, She was thrilled to be involved with the project, and also open about the career she’s had so far. At just 21, she’s covered a lot of fields, but if her performance in Banana is anything to go by, this lovely, laughter-filled Welsh girl is just at the start of something very big indeed.

Read the piece here.

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Fighting the Ebola crisis… Or the tale of one girl’s trip to Sierra Leone

When the recent Ebola crisis kicked off in West Africa, there was a growing feeling of fear and unease as travel was clamped down and people began to fear we were all at risk.

One girl who wasn’t afraid to get stuck in and help was Oxfam worker Hannah Davies. The 23 year old didn’t hesitate to volunteer to go out to Sierra Leone when the charity asked for peoplehannah who were willing and able.

Once out there, she saw first-hand what was really happening – and what Oxfam were doing to help people living under the shadow of the disease.

After an interesting and moving hour on the phone, I decided that Hannah’s story was best told in the first person, with her own accent on the experiences which she had shared with me. I think it was the right decision.

Read the piece here.

The truth about history… Or how period TV dramas can miss the point

Historic fiction isn’t for everyone, and I’ll admit here and now that I’ve never read Wolf Hall.

Regardless, when I came to write about the rendering on TV of historical works like Hilary wolfMantel’s award-winning book, the main question for me was is it more harmful for people to watch TV dramas showing fictionalised accounts of real people.

The overwhelming response seemed to be that it doesn’t much matter, but that TV will always seek to ‘dumb down’ real events simply because an eight-part series delivered in hour-long chunks can’t possibly seek to represent the ins and outs of complex historical narrative in all their depth.

As it was, Wolf Hall – book and series – did seek to upset the received wisdom on historical characters like Thomas Cromwell and Sir/Saint Thomas More.

What the truth was about any of them is lost to history now, but there will always be theories.

Read the piece here.

Help the homeless… Or just because they sleep on the street doesn’t mean they’re different

I’ve never been homeless, which makes me feel pretty lucky and also guilty in that way humans have.

Without the experiences of someone living, sleeping and fighting through every day on the moose-Collagestreet, I couldn’t have imagined what it is that they need or desire to make their worlds just a little bit better.

When I interviewed the inspirational Jeff Smith of Big Moose, I found out that, like all of us, homeless people need the little things. Jeff spoke about their lack of toothpaste and deodorant, and when he spoke to them, he found that, as well as food and warm clothes, they wanted haircuts.

Big Moose is a non-profit organisation which exists to do good and their monthly visits to Cardiff city centre to try and make the lives of the homeless just a little bit better is one of the most touching endeavours I’ve seen.

Read the piece here and read more about Big Moose here.