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Becks braves the jungle ad-venture.


IF you believed all the pre-publicity, David Beckham Into The Unknown would see England's most decorated footballer tackle a deathdefying journey deep into the Brazilian rainforest.

So, to show some solidarity I set myself a similarly Amazonian task: to try and avoid all mention of Rebecca Loos as I watched it.

A big ask, I know. Yet somehow, with the love and support of my wife and children, I managed it.

Sure, I had some testing times.

Not least when Becks & co were trying to get the camp fire started and someone said "Keep blowing, keep blowing, keep blowing."

Thank God I showed such fortitude. Because I'm sure the last thing Team Beckham needed while they were glossily promoting the next chapter of Brand Beckham was some smartarse highlighting the redacted chapters.

And before you start throwing "national treasure" my way, these seven words tell you all you need to know about this documentary: "masterminded by Beckham's marketing guru Simon Fuller."

The fact that it began with what looked like - and may well have been - a new Guinness advert should have given the game away.

But I'm sure enough people still fell for all that guff about poor millionaire global superstar David's quest for just one moment of anonymity.

A simple man, though, might have asked Becks why, if he was so keen to do a Greta Garbo, had he taken part in a film that has already been sold to 15 territories, including the lucrative Chinese market?

Why our supposedly commercial-free BBC happily colluded in this project remains a mystery.

It can't have been on the grounds of quality, though. The film was enjoyable enough but in reality it was merely an overlong edition of Wish You Were Here? with added motorbikes.

More getting BBC1, B Moreover, while Beckham was getting a free 90-minute plug on BBC1, British Airways was enjoying a similar leg-up on BBC2.

You may have your own views on the BBC using our licence fee in this way. But someone's making money off it. Sadly, if we pooled the personal return on our collective investment we'd still need to borrow to buy a 1p Ryanair flight.

As for Beckham's film, while I do not doubt his family-man credentials, his "I love my kids" routine was so relentless I suspect the "cease and desist" letter from Peter Andre's lawyer is already on its way.

I also remain unconvinced he was in any real danger. I've had hairier bike rides through Center Parcs.

Plus, his visit to a recently cleaned-up and well-patrolled Rio slum was hardly going to trouble Ross Kemp.

Of course, I accept his encounter with the reclusive Yanomami tribe could've been tricky.

But only if the ancient script on one of his tattoos had turned out to be Yanomami for "I'm going to flatten your village and put up a ruddy great theme park''.

As it was, he got on brilliantly with the tribesmen until one of them piped up "What kind of work do you do in your land?" Erm.

Anyone know the Yanomami word for "promotional"?

I've known hairier bike rides through Center Parcs
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion Column
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jun 10, 2014
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