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July 31, 2014

Secret Diary of a Call Girl: Episode 1- 01 (series premiere)

by Kristin Sample, posted Jun 16th 2008 11:33PM
Billie Piper(S01E01) Right after Weeds, we got our first look at Showtime's new original comedy series Secret Diary of a Call Girl. The half-hour show stars Billie Piper as Belle du Jour, a high-class London call girl. Tonight we got to meet Belle, who is Hannah the legal secretary by day, her agent Stephanie, her best friend Ben and a few of her clients.

We also got to hear Belle's rules: keep her two lives completely separate and stay in control. (There were others but those were the important ones.)

Then we got to see Belle break said rules.

Tonight's episode introduced us to Belle and some of the key themes of the show. For example, Belle told us straight away that she is prostitute (or whore, streetwalker, lady of the night...whatever you want to call her) and that it was her choice to enter this profession. You can see the character Call Girl is trying to develop: strong, witty, confident and modern. I like how she makes a note that she's not addicted to drugs, she's not broke, and she's never been abused by a relative (all the motivations society has come to attach to those in Belle's profession).

But that's not why Belle's character is compelling. She tells us proudly what she does and why she does yet goes on to explain that she keeps her real self, Hannah, completely separate from the character she's created for work, Belle. I think it's this set of opposing forces that makes Hannah / Belle multi-dimensional. We'll get to see her try to balance her personal and professional lives throughout the season.

Let's talk about this rule of keeping the two personas separate for a moment. Belle shows us her separate wardrobes, separate rooms in her apartment, and separate cell phones. "Hannah. Belle. And never the twain shall meet," she says assuredly. However, later in the episode, Belle breaks this rule when she gets too comfortable with a client Daniel and reveals her name. By the way, I hope we see Daniel again. His self-consciousness and sweetness was a nice foil to Belle.

While the show touts itself as a comedy, there really wasn't anything too funny throughout the episode. I think it's witty and intriguing for sure, but funny? I will admit, however, that I laughed out loud when they cut to Belle on the toilet saying "I'm very high class." But that was the one moment I even cracked a smile. This is not to say that I didn't find the show interesting. Indeed, I liked Call Girl immensely. I just didn't find it all that funny. What did you think?

What did you think of Secret Diary of a Call Girl?
I loved it.176 (45.8%)
Good enough to watch again.132 (34.4%)
Maybe I'll tune in next time.51 (13.3%)
I just wasted that half hour.25 (6.5%)

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Creep

Thank god for hair. Billie Piper was on Top Gear a while back. Helmet on, buckled in, she drove the course. God was she ugly. That face... However, in the right light, with her hair strategically mussed, one could easily fooled into thinking otherwise. Though, personality does go a long way. Here's hoping the rest of the series allows her to show that side off a bit more.

June 21 2008 at 6:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
William Whitaker

For some reason I kinda have the feeling that Daniel is going to be the guy with the accent that is tricking the girls with fake money.

June 17 2008 at 4:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Oreo

When she smiles sometimes her teeth make her look like a horse.

I think the problem isn't that she's not cute / hot, it's that she can't act.

June 17 2008 at 1:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
eujin

The premise of the show is interesting, but I don't get Showtime and will probably give this a pass. Count me in as another one who thinks Billie Piper is just not hot enough to want to pay money to for sex. In my book, she's a Butta Face.

June 17 2008 at 12:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
eric f

It was good, but seemed like it was cut short. how about 27 minutes? that can't be so hard!

June 17 2008 at 12:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Oreo

I don't like the way they did the narration.

June 17 2008 at 12:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dan

I just didn't like it. I wasn't compelled by Belle, didn't really enjoy much of it at all...the 22 minutes felt like 2 hours. Especially after watching a very satisfying Weeds episode and remembering Californication from last season, this show was not up to the standard I've come to expect from Showtime. Honestly, it felt like soft-core porn, and watching it with 4 of my buddies was really uncomfortable too.

June 17 2008 at 11:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ashley Boyd

Yeah that keeps annoying me (being as anal as I am :P) that it keeps getting referred to as a "Showtime original series". Yes. Its an original series. And yes its on Showtime. But it isn't an original series by Showtime. Its just...misleading.

But great show. And Piper does indeed expose herself, which suprised me as well.

June 17 2008 at 11:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Tool

I watched it. It has potential and is interesting that we get to see--as voyeurs--this world that she lives in. In that regard, it is a groundbreaking show.

But it occurs to me that this was a show that Showtime purchased from Britain and not really an original series that they developed for the US.

June 17 2008 at 10:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Edd

*goes off to torrent episode 5!

June 17 2008 at 8:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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