Last night’s Eden was intense viewing for everyone, including myself. Eden was a crazy experience that I’m proud to have been a part of, but the episode did make me question that pride. I’m active on social media and enjoy interacting with people so I was amazed, impressed and inspired by the conversation provoked by the programme.
Some of what we saw last night was a genuine surprise to me — I had slept through a lot of what happened in my controversial home on the other side of Eden and I’m generally an early-to-bed, early-to-rise person thanks to the habits of years of rowing.
Was what we saw last night on TV an accurate view of what happened? Editing can push a particular story and create both good and bad guys in a programme, I think we can all agree on that. But editing can’t put words in your mouth, nor can it force you to do something you don’t believe in.
These things did happen. Yes, the presentation is condensed into a short programme, with months of footage squeezed into a mere handful of hours, but doesn’t that make it even worse? The pressure you see on the screens is most likely the peak of the tension within the Eden community, but it’s also the tip of the iceberg. Imagine living and coping with that 24 hours a day for months on end — the anxiety being forced upon you and then released again without any warning of when it might apply its grip again.
I struggled with the bullying but the women had to deal with so much more. I believed before Eden that we were a population in transition, sexism and racism being old beliefs of the previous generation. For example, a recent YouGov study showed that 49% of 18-24 yr olds identify themselves as something other than 100% straight and that’s a hell of a lot.
The whole experience made me question whether I’ve been too optimistic about the changes in society, but thankfully the social media response to last night’s episode has reaffirmed my thinking. I am not a member of a gender of Neanderthals (well not entirely) and the debate that has ensued has given me hope.
Tonight’s show is the big one for me, as I think the preview showed, and so I probably won’t be responding a great deal on Twitter this evening. I may drop in a few personal comments but replies and likes will have to wait until tomorrow. In the meantime I hope you’ve enjoyed the programme so far, and there’s plenty more to come.
I’ll leave you with this comment I received from another (female) member of the Eden community this morning:
“It sounds silly but I feel really validated. It happened and it was seen — it felt like the boys were so sly that they got away with everything and just looked harmless.”
Anton so admire your dignity and restraint in the situation you were in in Eden.
A real role model for some young men .
thank you Gayle, kind words 🙂
You left with your dignity intact and i’m sure you had a great experience at times.
Congratulations on the bonfire. That was an epic fire to be proud of !
Thanks Richard… a few potatoes and we could have made a night of it 😉
Indeed !!! You and Raf have alot of good things to come. With you guys receiving an insane amount of good praise (well deserved) i would be amazed if CH4 haven’t been in touch with a new project with you both.
Were there any bad words said to you in person about the bonfire ?
I admire your strong personality and your friendship with Ralph in Eden! Congrats for all your achievements!
Thanks Ana, I do feel like we achieved a lot in a short time, couldn’t have done it without Raph though…
Everyone loves a good bonfire – and you made one that most of us could only dream of making!! Regardless of editing, what was said, was said on camera in very plain sight – you were unfortunately a victim throughout your time on Eden, but the fact that, since the show, you have focused more on the positives than the negatives, tells me everything I need to know about an individual. I doff my cap to you Sir and to Ralph – you both fell victim to playground tactics with the popular kids getting all the weaker ones on their side, yet you both stood your ground and stood for what you believed in – bravo!!
Hi David, i think you raise a lot of very valid points and thank you for your praise. It would be easy to be bitter and moan but there is no reason to be, I had an amazing time and loved every second. I’m also very lucky to have met Raph so what could there possibly be to get upset about? #Rafton
YOU NEED TO MAKE THOSE TSHIRTS HAPPEN. TOO MANY LOGS AND THERE IS STUFF EVETYWHERE. I LOVED YOUR QUIRKY WAYS AND NOT FOLLOWING THE OTHERS. OLI ORCHESTRATED THE WHOLE THING. I AM USUALLY SO GOOD AT MATHS AND THE GIRL HE WAS HOLDING HANDS WITH ON THE BED SAYING THAT OLI HAD TAKEN A VOW OF CELIBACY DID THAT HAPPEN AFTER SHE TOLD HIM HER FEELINGS VERY CONVENIENT WOW HE IS SOME PIECE OF WORK.
Have yet to watch the final episode, but I was so utterly horrified by the way you were treated that I feel moved to message you. You behaved with dignity and honour. I am ashamed by behaviour of people I don’t even know. I hope that you have been able to put this behind you and understand that those vile people do not represent the majority of us although it may have seemed so as the time. I hope that you have remained friends with Raph, who, along with you, has all of my admiration. I am so sorry that you have had to experience such horrible bullying when I am sure you were expecting to have a wonderful time. The bastards.
Hey Karen, I haven’t put it behind me because tbh I want to embrace it. It was an amazing experience that was enriching and also fun to be part of. I am however overwhelmed by the love and support Raph and I have been getting, very VERY grateful, Thank you and keep an eye out for #Rafton getting up to loads more mischief…
Hey Liz, don’t worry the t-shirts will happen also mugs which i think is very apt 😉
Glad you enjoyed the show, Raph and I certainly did #Rafton
Wow .. what a show! You and Raph shone out like beacons of hope to me, gutted when you left. At 43, bit of a loner, struggle tolerating BS, I would definitely have been with you and Raph .. I was practically begging you to burn everything when voted out .. cheered when you did. You are my new TV hero. Respect.
Hey Mark, glad you liked the programme.
A lot of people are relating with my experience and that makes me feel very glad, maybe we aren’t all alone after all 🙂
Anton via #Rafton HQ (where i’m not allowed matches)
Just watched episode where you were evicted.
They were disgusting to you. They did not deserve to have your hard work.
All the best and stay true to yourself