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Channel 4 premiered its new series Naked Beach tonight April 11 — but the decision to air it before the watershed was met with some questions.


Naked island cast: full line-up of influencers helping body-conscious guests strip off on channel 4

Skip ! Story from TV Shows. The first episode of 'controversial' new reality show Naked Beach aired on Thursday night.

A serious show requires serious people and that's where the fully clothed boo! Another genuine and serious person is mental health expert and body image campaigner Natasha Devon MBE, who tells us that basically, Britain's body image is in our boots. Devon says this is a global health issue that affects our mental health and has links to depression. And so the premise is this: Each week, three 'guests' whose body confidence is painfully low are sent off to a self-esteem bootcamp or should I say, BOOTY camp at a luxury villa in Greece, to spend time with some naked people who love their bodies.

These naked 'hosts' are a diverse range of shapes and sizes and skin colours, and each one was selected because they are part of the body confidence movement, which I cannot and will not be flippant about. And yet despite its serious goals, the show gets very, very silly. In episode one, guests Elysia, Darrell and Kaye are cajoled into nude wheelbarrow races, hula hooping and life drawing lessons on the lawn, before stripping off each night in front of their rigged-up mirrors and telling us how they feel about themselves.

Channel 4 viewers question why new show naked beach aired before watershed

At the end of each episode, a titillating finale looms: will they choose to bare all? Were it not for our serious science boffin doing pieces to camera you'd be forgiven for forgetting you're watching a serious effort to transform the nation for the better and not just some shameless excuse to ogle a few naked millennials while you wait for your Dr.

Oetker pizza to cook. If I sound cynical it's because I am. Are we willing people to get naked for their self-esteem or is it just a cheap payoff for the viewer? Twenty-seven-year-old Kaye from Preston works in a fish and chip shop and hates everything about her body except for her toes.

Elysia has had a kid and says her self-consciousness impacts her life every day.

And now to the elephant in the room: no one in Naked Beach is actually naked. In fact they're all wearing more than I did getting my last Brazilianthanks for asking.

Meet the brave cast members baring all on new channel 4 show the naked beach!

The very brief explanation offered at the beginning of the show is that the nylon codpieces are to help ease our very body-conscious subjects into the process but that didn't seem credible to me, so I asked a spokesperson for the show to explain. Was it a watershed thing?

Did the hosts not want to strip completely?

Here's what they had to say: " Naked Beach is about body image not genitalia or gratuitous nudity. Both [Devon and Dr West] agree that people with very low body image usually also really struggle with nudity and so, given the details of the four-day process were initially concealed from the guests, the experts felt that meeting a group of entirely naked hosts from the get-go may be unnecessarily confronting and so body paint and modesty covers were introduced.

Naked beach

Fine, but maybe don't call the show Naked Beach then? Oh and all that body paint is going to be a nightmare to clean out of the swimming pool filter. Despite my reservations about the show's worthy intentions, there are takeaways here. We need more of that, everywhere, every day.

R29 original series

And if I haven't made this clear, I believe body issues should be taken very seriously. I grew up in a home where the only thing enforced more strictly than the Bible was the Weight Watchers points system. My mum and her mates used to carpool to their WW weigh-ins once a week in what they called "the fattybus".

All through my teens and 20s I have been tortured by body confidence issues, done more dumb crash diets than I care to recall and often skipped social engagements because I felt like Kaye does about her wedding dress. Naked Beach is on Thursdays at 8pm, Channel 4 and on All 4.

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Three 'Guests' with critically low body image jet off to a sunny Greek retreat to live with a group of unclothed, body confident 'Hosts', who have little more than elaborately deed paint to cover their modesty.


The show will be led by Dr Keon West and Natasha Devon, who will seek to help the cast members on their journey to body positivity and confidence.