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Trains, food and family trees – the stuff that factual television is made of

Why is factual TV so obsessed with just a handful of topics? And will we soon be watching Dining on the Wildlife Genealogy Express?

After being told that the three best-selling subjects in publishing in the 1970s were golfing, cats and Nazis, the journalist Alan Coren famously gave a collection of his columns the title Golfing for Cats and put a swastika on the dust-jacket. In a similar spirit, the current TV schedules suggest that any hopeful factual programme-maker pitching for a commission would be well advised to come up with a series called Dining on the Wildlife Genealogy Express.

Trains, food, family trees and animals have always been regular features of the TV schedules but seem currently to be – to adopt the appropriate metaphors – accelerating, fattening, reproducing or running loose.

Locomotive enthusiasts who have run their DVDs of Great Railway Journeys of the World until they are fuzzy can

See full article on The Guardian - TV News