Brian’s Story

At the age of 21 Brian Davis graduated with a degree in English from Cambridge University, seven years later he was a published author and by the mid eighties he had become one of the best known journalists in advertising, today however he is homeless and penniless.

In this profoundly moving documentary created by the BBC, we see how a man who appeared to have it all in terms of career and way of life managed to loose it all, finding himself living on the streets of London, whilst suffering from depression.

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  1. It was made by LWT, not the BBC, hence the advertising breaks.

  2. Harrowing documentary, very difficult to watch. Just a minor point, Cutting Edge are Channel 4 documentaries, not BBC, and in this one they had a few points where they were about to cut to adverts.

    I’m sure it’s not made in 2015 either!

  3. Alcoholism aside, why is he drinking in expensive pubs? And how is he switching from ale to wine as an experienced drinker? Can’t he just buy a twelve pack and go back to his room like a normal drunk? That 700 lbs could have lasted at least two weeks, even in London.

  4. I lived the life of an out of control alcoholic for a few years and hitting bottom is hard, and stopping the drink is harder.

    This man needed to rid himself of alcohol before handling his other demons. In my case, anxiety disorder was treated by me with alcohol. It worked! But there is a payback. Once I finally quit drinking, I got real treatment for anxiety and my life became normal.

    That was 22 years ago. I just retired with a good nest egg and have never had a desire to go back to drinking. It would be easy to fall into that trap again, but I will not, as best I can tell. I don’t see it happening anyway.

    It is very hard to feel sorry for this fellow even with my similar background. He had no desire or even a seeming awareness of how his alcohol abuse was the cause of his major problems. He would never get well without quitting drinking first. He never had a chance as his disease of mania wouldn’t let him see his first problem. He saw himself as normal and tomorrow would be better.

    Very painful to watch and again, very hard to feel pity for him. He didn’t even pity himself. He lived like a pig and thought it normal. Burned up a house twice and thought it normal. Lost money and thought it normal. Drank until drunk and thought it normal. He even forgot where he was staying and thought it normal.

    He had two very difficult issues to deal with and didn’t stand a chance on his own.

    • Very good post. I watched this doc with growing frustration and a sense of weariness. The points you’ve raised must have been blindingly obvious to the makers but they managed to stretch it out to 50 minutes. I’ve known a few like him in the past and the denouement came as no shock or surprise. He chose his poison and thereafter cast about for everything and everyone else to blame, despite his obvious intelligence. Just another delusional self pitying drunk.