Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Hermaphrodite: Miriam

Six men are suing Sky TV after they took part in a reality TV show in which they competed to win the affections of a beautiful woman - who later turned out to be a man waiting for a sex-change operation.

The contestants have instructed law firm Schillings, which specialises in media cases, to begin legal proceedings against Sky One and the show's producer, independent company Brighter Pictures.

The men claim they were tricked into kissing, cuddling and holding hands with the "woman", Miriam, and say it was only after three weeks of filming that they were told she was male.

While viewers know from the start that Miriam is a male-to-female transsexual, the contestants, who include a Royal Marine commando, a ski instructor and an ex-lifeguard, only discover the truth when Miriam picks the winner and then lifts up her skirt.

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Lawyer Rod Christie-Miller, who represents the men, told BBC News Online the programme had "a devastating effect on these young guys" and warned this would be "magnified a millionfold" if the broadcast went ahead.

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