ColumnistsDaragh Keany

I don't get to rave about RTE too often

Daragh KeanyBy Daragh Keany
Operation Transformation
Operation Transformation

I don’t get a chance to rave about RTE all too often.

There was the phenomenon of Love/Hate, there was my defence of Ryan Tubridy’s wages and there was my shock announcement that I bloody love Room to Improve. But other than that, I tend to rant in the direction of the national broadcaster as opposed to lay on praise. 
So today I have to set aside my grudges and admit that RTE bosses have created a VERY impressive TV monster in the form of Operation Transformation. For the first time in years I found myself hooked in by the show. I didn’t just watch it for entertainment value – I watched it because I was rooting for the leaders. 
There were seismic highs and lows in every single 22-minute episode as Mark, Louise, Éilis, Veronica and my main man, Alan, literally changed their lives on camera for the addicted viewers at home. 
No subject was off limits as poos, excessive sweating, periods, hideous layers of fat, diabetes and even Louise’s fertility issues surrounding her weight were dissected by the experts. 
The only blemish in the regard and respect I hold for the five leaders was the night Wexford café owner Éilis decided to go to the races and drink 11 vodkas. It undermined the process and was a two fingers to the hundreds of overweight applicants who missed out on the opportunity. 
But the other four were remarkable candidates from day one. 
On top of the actual Leaders,  OT is remarkable for its multi-platform broadcasting model. It is not just a TV show. There is an incredible website, regular radio slots and even an app. It is a genius and unique format that should be commended for what it has achieved. I’m already looking forward to next year’s series. 
Next week I’ll be back to normal. I promise.