Fight Club, A History of Violence: Episode 2 Review

Fight Club: A History of Violence, Wednesday 17th October, Yesterday, 9pm

The first rule of Fight Club: A history of violence, is that if you don’t have a beard, you don’t know sh*t.

As such, this week’s episode of the four-part documentary series is essentially a collection of different facial hair telling you things about fighting.

In keeping with this, last week’s wonderful blogger-cum-historian Lucy Inglis has been ditched and replaced with a moustache, albeit a moustache which seems to know what it’s talking about and sounds like it’s smoked a hundred a day since conception.

On top of that, there’s also a beard that may once have been attached to a local historian and likes to lie in fields, and a wiry scottish goatee that used to be a prize fighter.

All of the beards and their attendant experts are, for some reason, exclusively shown wandering around the countryside, which is really rather pleasant and has afforded me the great pleasure of dubbing them the ‘experts in their fields.’

Even better, Sean Bean’s back with his trademark gravelly claptrap (“He had his first training – with his fists!â€?) and my favourite from last week, Professor Posh, has returned for another episode of genteel linguistic squirming.

Another return, albeit one less welcome, is that of the slow-motion, shaky-cam reconstruction fight scenes. Not only are they extremely boring, but I also worry that they and their ilk are raising a generation of children who think that a fight is conducted by aggressively shaking one’s head from side to side and listening to cello music.

Of course, this is no bad thing anti-social behaviour-wise, but it does raise the frightening prospect of a future documentary by an ancient, decrepit Sean Bean, announcing sagely that, “Young lads o’ t’ twenty fust century used ta settle thea bitta disputes by wobblin thea ‘eads ‘n listenin ta Elgar on thea i-Phones.â€?

Anyway, as the reconstructions are the only part of the programme that isn’t the knowledgeable rural beards talking, and the reconstructions are not only boring but actually socially-damaging, the entirety of the show depends on how interesting the aforementioned agrarian brain-beards actually are.

Well, the answer is, more so than last week, but still not as interesting as many people, having seen the show’s title, will expect.