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TV3 slammed over reality show with pathologist Marie Cassidy


The Restaurant on TV3 Marie Cassidy and Stephen McAllister

The Restaurant on TV3 Marie Cassidy and Stephen McAllister

The Restaurant on TV3 Marie Cassidy and Stephen McAllister

TV3 is remaining silent today after a press release for reality TV show The Restaurant was heavily criticised by a group who assist the families of those who died violently.

State Pathologist Marie Cassidy is to appear in tonight’s programme and the pre-publiclity material for the episode contained a number of “ghoulish” references to death.

These included: “State Pathologist Marie Cassidy hopes to knock ’em dead on TV3’s ‘The Restaurant’.”

“Hoping to blow the diners away with her classic menu, Marie is keeping it simple but full of flavour,” it said.

Referencing her choice of dessert, the release stated: ‘Although worried that the runny consistency of the custard won’t be for everyone, Marie is dead set on sticking to her childhood favourite.”

It added: “With diners and critics impressed before service, Marie is hoping this carries through after tasting – but will the simplicity of the menu be a grave mistake?’

John Whelan, chairperson of Advic, a support group for families and friends of people who have died from murder or manslaughter, said the tone of the release demonstrated disregard for those suffering the loss of a loved one.

“It’s insensitive and they’re trying to thinly dress it up as humour,” he said.

“The puns and the one-liners are a bit childish and insensitive. The ‘knock-em dead’ and ‘grave mistake’ line stood out, but the whole thing is juvenile.”

He said some families of murder victims will take exception to the tone of the release.

“Will there be any references to families of people who have died on the programme? I don’t know. I’ll definitely be watching it to see. It’s not the biggest thing in the world that we have to deal with in Advic, but from the perspective of families or anyone who has had dealings with Marie Cassidy and her office, it is insensitive and juvenile.”

He would like TV3 to demonstrate “more awareness” when issuing press releases in the future.

A TV3 spokesperson this morning said it had “no comment” on any suggestion of inappropriate language in the press release.

In tonight’s show, Ms Cassidy will serve up a menu that includes chicken liver parfait, lobster linguini and pan- seared haunch of venison. For dessert, she makes warm custard tart with toffee apple compote, or chocolate and brandy mousse with brandy snaps.