Amish: A Secret Life, BBC 2,9pm

When’s a secret not a secret? When you’ve got a film crew following you around. David and Miriam Lapp risk excommunication from the Old Order Amish faith in Pennsylvania. There’s a stricture in forbidding photography. There’s a stricture against having a phone in the house, but having one in a shack outside, or in the garage, is acceptable. The garage isn’t a place where the car is kept. That’s where the horses are kept that pull those wheeled buggies that the traffic snarls up behind. In one of the scenes Mirian hitches up the horse and goes to the bank for money. It’s a drive through teller, which should be a comedy sketch. There’s probably a stricture against Woody Harrleson lookalikes that are allowed a wispy beard, but not a moustache, or hair, around the mouth, where the devil can hide. I’m betting they still use cut-throat razors. And in Witness Kelly McGill plays a young Amish widow called Rachel Lapp. From the little I seen there weren’t many Kelly McGill’s types running, or walking sedately, around their flocks of children. There was, however, plenty of black bombazine and lots of blond haired cute kids. There must be a missing link, from cute to looking slightly goofy that was missed out, or is still to be discovered. Perhaps the adolescent is taken away and left to rot in some garret for a few years, like a strong cheese. David before he buys a farm has a job in construction. I think the Amish community owns the company or he does. I wasn't sure about that bit. There’s an incongruity about driving a horse drawn trap to work and working with JCBs, lorries and diggers. What they have is a strong belief in the rightness of what they are doing. A God given right. And they're armed. Cue armageddon.


I watched it with interest last night. You're right, loads of young blonde haired kids but no teenagers anywhere! Then there was the bit about him not being allowed to drive a car, but gets a lift to work from someone else in their car! Isn't that the same as not being allowed to buy a drink but accepting one from everyone else. There's a word for that "Tight". Shall we just say that Mrs Lapp was "unfortunate" in the looks department!


Yeh, I think it's a kind of voyeurism, having a quick peek at someone else's life (lives). I did find it quite interesting. One of the bits I liked was when they asked one of the younger kids what bit of worship he liked and the kid said the last hymn. Ouch. Thanks for reading.