Mind The Age Gap is a brand new series, where two groups of people from opposite ends of the age spectrum, move into a house together to find out if they can bridge the ever-widening generation gap. Is age the biggest factor which separates us in the 21st century?
With society more divided than ever 12 volunteers from two different generations (half over 62 and the others below 30) are attempting to bridge the age gap – by living together in a fully rigged house in Bristol. Coming from all walks of life, and bringing with them their own polarizing opinions, they decide how to live together – there are no tricks, tasks or evictions – but books, newspapers and technology are provided to fuel debates. Across the series, there will be controversial and explosive opinions, tears – and laughter. Can these two very different generations learn something from each other, will an unwillingness to understand each other end in catastrophic fallout or are our differences based on more than just age?
The younger generation across the series view their older peers as out of touch, set in their ways, overly nationalistic – and owning the nation’s assets. The older generation moving in see their youthful companions as self-centred, unpatriotic and hedonistic - with an attitude to match. What happens when two sets of headstrong and opinionated characters – from two very distinct worlds – collide?
Eating, sleeping and living together in close quarters, can the younger generation deviate from their firmly entrenched views to understand more about the elders and benefit from their knowledge, wisdom and experience? Over 14 days, could the older generation cast aside any pre-conceptions about the younger group and see the world through their eyes?
In an era of rapid social and political change, Mind The Age Gap is a redemptive TV experiment, exploring whether we can overcome the generational differences to make the nation more understanding, more tolerant and more united.
With society more divided than ever 12 volunteers from two different generations are attempting to bridge the generation gap. No topic will be left untouched but will a willingness to understand each other cause catastrophic fallout?
Even on arrival tension is in the air and Gay Marriage is the first topic that divides Old and Young. Archaic views on homosexual relationships collide with the loose sexual attitudes of the millennial generation. During the first dinner, an attempt at getting to know each other triggers an uncomfortable debate about the use of the racial slur, “Paki”, which reveals controversial opinions from the older generation.
While the older generation are keen to debate the youngsters see an opportunity to get drunk and a split emerges along the age divide. Naman (27) and Jed (24) have more fun than most and their alcohol fuelled embrace becomes the talk of the new community. Jed’s insistence on having a good time leads to a painful fall from grace and a guilty conscience, with the morning bringing more than just a hangover as he is left with a terrible mess to clean up.
An innocent game of guess the celebrity quickly turns into a raging debate about the EU. Members of all ages clash and for the first time we see that the divide might be more complex than first thought.
South Londoner Tyrrel (25) and Ex Met Officer Bob (67) engage in debate but an initial miscommunication starts a feud between the pair which blows over into fierce allegations about police corruption and racism. As the disagreement develops, Bob’s attempt to make peace backfires and Tyrrel takes drastic action to prove a point. The pair are left poles apart and the different generations are forced to take sides as the argument envelops the new society.
Day 3. Naman is feeling isolated. Kevin interrogates him about his religion, questioning how he can be a true Muslim when he drinks and eats pork. Naman snaps back ‘No-one has a right to judge, do they?’
The clash continues for Bob and Ty. Still angry at Bob for his racist jokes, Ty adopts a new approach and ignores him completely. When Bob decides to cook spaghetti bolognaise for everyone, Ty refuses to eat it saying ‘‘He doesn’t feel like he owes me an apology so why should I eat his food?"
After dinner, Jed confronts Bob about his discomfort with homosexuality. Ty then challenges Bob about his racism but Bob won’t apologise, stumbling on his way out. When the youngsters laugh, Bob huffs "Oh its really funny that I’ve had f****** cancer, isn’t it?"
Day 4. Wifi access is introduced for the first time. Single mum Tracy joins Tinder and enrols octogenarian Dee in her man-quest. Despite the 50 year age-gap, they have the same taste in men.
Naman takes Ty aside to talk through their issues but it backfires massively, setting them further apart from each other. Meanwhile, a game of ‘Would You Rather..’ reveals that Bob would be disappointed if his son was gay, much to Jed’s dismay.
Day 5. Bob and Ty venture out of the house. Ty confronts Bob about his opinions and he eventually concedes. Bob opens up to Ty about his cancer and gets very emotional.
Back in the house, Ty asks Bob for a massage. He then massages Jed and when Jed jokes that he's getting aroused, Bob slaps him around the face. Jed reacts badly and storms off.
Isolated, drunk and angry with Ty and Jed, Naman finally explodes, screaming ‘I’ve f***ing had enough!’ and leaves the house.
After an explosive row with Ty and Jed, Naman has left the house.
Bob attempts to understand Tracey by asking her more about her childhood – she reveals a troubled past of childhood bullying, the motivation behind her reinventing herself as a glamour model.
She may have won sympathy from Bob, but as she gets ready for her Tinder date, Tracey shocks even the younger lot with her attitude to sex and lack of self-awareness. Dee tags along for the ride – although she’s unimpressed with Tracey’s choices, her initial bemusement of online dating quickly dissipates once she realises how much choice there is, regardless of age.
Whilst some have begun to form friendships, the youngest volunteer Eden, is feeling isolated. After an argument about the Police, she clashes with Ty, and begins to question if she can find her voice in the house. As tension builds between them, she decides to leave the experiment, despite Eddie and Tracey begging her to stay.
With bonds seemingly fragile, the group share photographs of their younger selves. Jenni reveals a troubled marriage, Ty cries over her fragile relationship with her mother – and Jed speaks of a shattered childhood caught between his father’s death and mother’s alcoholism. Sharing with each other freely for the first time, the group seems united as they view one another in a fresh light and with more respect. But can this moment of unity last?
SCREENER COMING SOON!
After two young people left, there are just 4 young and 6 older volunteers in the experiment. As the remaining 10 attempt to bridge the generation gap the debate turns political, exposing deep divisions that threaten to overwhelm the harmony of the group.
It doesn’t take long until the arguments have switched from the political to the personal, opening old wounds and creating new rifts. Fresh alliances soon form, but how much will they be determined by age?
When Brexit supporting Dee (83) clashes with self confessed leftie Eddie (73) the debate gets heated, and Dee, the oldest member of the group, is left feeling isolated. The pair attempt to resolve their differences on a politically charged trip to meet UKIP members, but it doesn’t go to plan.
Having opened up and settled into the community, Tye (25) is feeling more secure, but after a late night she clashes with her fellow volunteers - and her behaviour sends shockwaves through the group, jeopardising her place in the experiment.
As we enter the last 48 hours of the experiment the community is split and not everyone is willing to forgive Ty when she returns to the house after an explosive row with Joey and Jed. With tension in the air, Ty's impersonation of police brutality during a game of Articulate is the tipping point for Bob and Kev who have had enough of the youngsters’ behaviour.
The following day, the group enter a discussion about death and mortality and their fears and experiences with both. After hearing stories from Bob and Kev's time as police officers, Ty breaks down and the three bond with a newfound respect for each other.
During the experiment alcohol consumption and the resulting behavioural affects on some of the members of the group have been a divisive factor within the house. The group are asked to take an individual liver test to gain a better understanding of the long-term affects of their drinking habits. Jed and Bob, the two highest scorers, are sent to see an addiction psychiatrist to further understand the health implications of their drinking.
As the experiment comes to an end, drawing on their experience and time together in the house, the group reflect and write letters to their younger or older selves. A surprise party for Jenny's birthday unites everyone as we find out what lessons the two generations have learnt from each other.
SCREENER COMING SOON!