Sometimes it’s hard to explain why you choose to watch a TV show. I’ve probably watched every episode of the two series of “Tattoo Fixers” and now we’ve got a holiday special spin-off of eight where the team do their best to cover disastrous (usually drunken) ink choices.
I’m of the generation that didn’t go for tattoos. When I was young it was redolent of the elderly man, the hairy arm and half-faded nautical number. I can’t really pinpoint when they started to come back into fashion (Robbie Williams’ tribal ink?) but now a sizeable proportion of under 40’s have permanent artwork on their bodies.
In the early-mid 90’s I did contemplate having something done, but I knew I would not be able to make up my mind about having some forever statement inked onto my body. Oh, if only the Tattoo Fixers’ clients had just a modicum of my own apprehenstion – but then there wouldn’t be a programme and I wouldn’t be sat with my jaw dropped at their drunken decisions of what to have tattooed and where to have it on their bodies.
Paisley, Alice, Jay and Sketch
One of the main reason I watch this is because I really like the Tattoo Fixers team. Sketch, with his alarming array of inkwork, Alice (who joined the show last season) who comes across delightfully “mumsy” at the stupidity of some of the clients, Jay, a combination of hair and teeth that I can’t take my eyes off and the delightful Paisley, the receptionist, whose, I believe, sole tattoo is a dot on one of her fingers. Sketch, Alice and Jay would all look better with a bit less body art but then I’m showing my age. (Anyone watching “Naked Ambition”, Channel 4’s nude dating show where body parts are systematically revealed and the aspect most quoted as being the most attractive part of what’s on display is the inkwork? Only the guy with the inappropriately placed elephant face has shown any remorse).
There’s a lot of remorse in “Tattoo Fixers” which has relocated for this spin-off to a holiday location not clearly specified- no doubt, one of the spiritual homes for the drunken tattoo. However, we haven’t seen any instant repair jobs yet, no next day realisation of what they have done. The clients here have all been living with their mistakes for some time.
On this week’s episode (#2) we meet Jaimee, a buxom club rep with “Sideboob” tattooed on her sideboob; Lewis, whose brother inexplicably set him up with a posterior monstrosity in Thailand even being allowed by the tattooist to add his own flourishes; Sophie, who had an “eel in a heel” inked on after a drunken night in Ibiza; gay best friends Laura and Sam whose stick men they no longer felt appropriate; Danny who needed his nipple tattoo sorting (he’d had “.com” added because the tattooist said he’d do that bit for free) and Arran whose word selection would take you beyond the point of despair. For people whose imaginations take full flight when they are drunk whilst sober they opt for a limited selection of flowers and skulls with the odd bit of “Gothic Alice In Wonderland” (it’s a new language) slipped in. The tattooists quickly sketch their suggestions and there’s always one that is chosen whole-heartedly (I know that this is most likely a trick of the editing suite). Most covers end up significantly larger than what they are hiding and the clients are without fail delighted in them. “I’ll give you a few minutes to admire the detail then come over to the station to be wrapped up.” In a few cases I’d like to see a “Tattoo Fixers Tattoo Fixers” follow-up because some of them are not going to like the results when the novelty of not seeing their original work has worn off. Although that seems unlikely as the web is awash with rumours about this show, of clients being silenced and all not being what it seems……………Come on, it’s a Channel 4 show. To take it completely at face value would be like thinking “Come Dine With Me” is a cooking show.
A tattoo consultation
I watch “Tattoo Fixers On Holiday” with a mixture of amusement, squeamishness, horror and occasional dismay in the human race. The “Fixers” superhumanly patch up these lapses of judgement but even they haven’t got to the stage where they have seen it all before. (Alice’s response to Arran’s offensive tat was priceless). The one thing that irks me is Channel 4’s continual “coming up………….” and post advert recaps, padding out a 40 minute programme to the hour. Can we stop doing this now please? Who needs these recaps. Even goldfish are now said to have better memories than we once thought.
Tattoo Fixers On Holiday is broadcast on E4 (Tuesdays 9 pm) and repeated on Fridays at 11.50. Previous episodes are currently available on the All-4 catch up service.