When size really is everything

Somewhere between advance publicity and screening, Sharon Parker changed from The Women With No Brain to The Women With An Extraordinary Brain.

This was thanks to the makers of the latest documentary in the Extraordinary People series. The title change was necessary after staff nurse Sharon, who comes from Barnsley and is married with three children, discovered the truth about her condition. She's used to being called brainless because, as she herself pointed out, it's a medical fact. Since childhood, doctors have told her she has only ten to 15 per cent of a normal brain, although she functions normally.

To her mother, told that her daughter wouldn't live, she's a miracle. To neurosurgeons at a hospital in Cleveland, Ohio - where the film-makers sent Sharon - she's a source of amazement. Using new technology, they measured her brain and found it was bigger than her husband's, although spread around thinly rather than lumped in the middle.

Brain size, we learnt, isn't related to intelligence. Just as you don't have to be unhappy because - and be warned, I'm going to use the f-word - you're fat. The Biggest Women In Britain aimed to show that big girls can be as strong, sexy and fun-loving as other females.

This hardly justified the hour-long running time, although big women would contend they need space to put right all the bad, dismissive things said about them. The most interesting participant was Jackie (size 24 plus), Britain's only female sumo wrestler. She, at least, had a story to tell.

After her parents died in their early 60s, when she was 40, she was determined to change her lifestyle. She began going to the gym and enjoying exercise. She didn't want to get thin, just strong. Now she competes in power sports at international level and is attempting world records at 47.

This served the big women's cause better than the interviewer (male) asking, as one large lady reclined on her bed, "When was the last time you entertained a gentleman?". He wasn't talking about cooking him dinner.

Ladies' night was completed by the start of Servants, the latest series from Soldier Soldier and Peak Practice creator Lucy Gannon. Anyone expecting Upstairs, Downstairs would have been shocked by the use of modern day expressions and swearing. I'm sure Mr Hudson never spoke of shaking hands with the bishop in anything but a religious connection.

The drama remains firmly below stairs, with barely a glimpse of the family of the 1850s country house being waited upon. Christopher Fulford's head butler Jarvis and Orla Brady's housekeeper Mrs Ryan run the place with a firm hand, but I fear the arrival of cheeky new footman George (ex-EastEnders Joe Absalom) will tax their patience. He's more interested in sex than service.