Cutting Edge (TV series)

Cutting Edge (TV series)
Cutting Edge
Cutting Edge logo.png
Cutting Edge logo
Genre Documentary
Narrated by Various
Country of origin United Kingdom
Language(s) English
Producer(s) Various
Running time 49 minutes
Original channel Channel 4
Picture format PAL (576i, 16:9)
Original run February 1990 – present
External links

Cutting Edge is a British TV documentary series broadcast by Channel 4, it has been its flagship documentary series since 1990 that focuses on political and social issues.



There have been numerous episodes since 1990 and some of the highlights include:

Shops and Robbers

Original airdate: 1994

Received some of Channel 4's highest ratings.[1]

Graham Taylor: The Impossible Job

Original airdate: 24 January 1994

About England national football team's unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the 1994 World Cup. Manager Graham Taylor was harshly criticised by the tabloid press during these two years (1992–93), and the fly-on-the-wall documentary revealed a stressed team camp. It also gave birth to Taylor's catchphrase, "Do I not like that" (a statement rather than a question).

Anti-Social Old Buggers

Original airdate: 22 June 2005

Run of episodes in 2005, about "Anti-Social Old Buggers" which included elderly recipients of Asbos), "The Black Widow", "Gridlock" and "The House Clearers".

Blind Young Things

Original airdate: 30 April 2007

A 2007 documentary following students at the Royal National College for the Blind in Hereford. The film won a Royal Television Society award for Channel Four and the Cutting Edge team in 2008.[2]

A Boy Called Alex

Original airdate: 24 January 2008

Broadcast in January 2008, is a documentary that follows 16-year-old Alex Stobbs who suffers from cystic fibrosis as he attempts to conduct Bach's Magnifcat at Eton College.[3] This was followed by a second documentary in October 2009 called "Alex: A Passion for Life", which catches up with Alex at King's College, Cambridge, and member of its world-famous choir.[4]

The Human Spider

Original airdate: 15 April 2008

Cutting Edge covered Alain Robert, one of the most daring climbers in the world, on some amazing free climbs around the globe.[5]

Madeleine Was Here

Original airdate: 7 May 2009

Follows Kate and Gerry, the parents of missing child Madeleine McCann and investigators, two years after her disappearance as they try understand what happened.[6]

Captive for 18 Years: The Jaycee Lee Story

Original airdate: 1 October 2009

About the kidnapping of Jaycee Lee Dugard with interviews with people close to Jaycee when she was young, including family members, classmates and her headmistress.[7]

Katie: My Beautiful Face

Original airdate: 29 October 2009

Followed the recovery of former model Katie Piper from a brutal acid attack[8], and which with 3.3 million viewers was the most-watched edition of the Cutting Edge strand in 2009; Piper's case has been subject to a large international response, and following the success of the original documentary Piper was invited to give Channel 4's Alternative Christmas Message for 2009.

The documentary was nominated for "Best Single Documentary" at the BAFTA Television Awards in June 2010, but did not win - the trophy was awarded to BBC One's Wounded.[9] The previous month, director Jessie Versluys had won the Breakthrough Talent prize at the 2010 Craft BAFTA ceremony, for her credits including Katie: My Beautiful Face and The Hospital.[10]

Octomom: Me and My 14 Kids

Original airdate: 12 November 2009

Follows single unemployed mother Nadya Suleman from California, who in January 2009 gave birth to eight children.[11]

The Men Who Jump Off Buildings

Original airdate: 28 July 2010

About Dan Witchalls and Ian Richardson who participate in the adrenaline sport, base jumping. It follows them jump off some the most iconic buildings in the United Kingdom including Nelson's Column, The Millenium Dome, Wembley Stadium and Blackpool Tower.[12]

My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding

Original airdate: 18 February 2010

Follows four Gypsy and Traveller brides as they plan their wedding day.[13] Screened in February 2010, drew 4.5 million viewers[14] and was subsequently commissioned for a spinoff series called Big Fat Gypsy Weddings.[15] This proved to be very successful with the second episode getting 7.4m viewers at its peak, Channel 4's highest ratings since Big Brother in 2008.[16]

Raoul Moat: Inside the Mind of a Killer

Original airdate: 18 August 2010

Looks at the 2010 Northumbria Police manhunt and the following investigation, with interviews with friends, relatives and neighbours who knew Raoul Moat.[17]

My New Brain

Original airdate: 25 August 2010

Follows 20-year-old Simon Hales on a journey through rehab. Simon was on a night out in Newcastle when he and a friend tried to get back into a nightclub they'd been thrown out of by mistake. Simon jumped over a fence not knowing there was a 20 feet drop the other side landing on his head, suffering a severe brain injury. Lucky to survive, it took Simon five weeks to wake from his coma.[18]


  1. ^ "Channel 4 at 20"
  2. ^ "Hereford students' key role for Blind Young Things". Hereford Times. 21 July 2008. Retrieved 28 November 2009. 
  3. ^ A Boy Called Alex at
  4. ^ Alex: A Passion for Life at
  5. ^ Human Spider, Cutting Edge from Channel 4, retrieved 4 May 2008
  6. ^ Madeleine Was Here at
  7. ^ Captive for 18 Years: The Jaycee Lee Story at
  8. ^ Katie My Beautiful Face at
  9. ^ Television BAFTA winners/nominees 2010 -
  10. ^ 2010 BAFTA Craft winners/nominations -
  11. ^ Octomom: Me and My 14 Kids at
  12. ^ The Men Who Jump Off Buildings at
  13. ^ My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding at
  14. ^ MediaGuardian
  15. ^ Orange: MBFGW series report
  16. ^ BBC News - My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding: Why is it a hit?
  17. ^ Raoul Moat: Inside the Mind of a Killer at
  18. ^ My New Brain at

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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