TV show competition to father child


By Sherna Noah, London
A CONTROVERSIAL TV show could see a thousand men compete for the chance to father a child, with one idea certain to spark anger being a televised sperm race.

Make Me a Mum is the brainchild of independent TV company Brighter Pictures - whose parent company, Endemol, makes Big Brother. Men who want to father a child will be whittled down during the series, until two candidates are selected to compete against each other.

The childless woman will chose the man she believes makes the best father - judged by sex appeal, personality, wealth and fitness.

A second man will also be selected on the basis of genetic compatibility and the quality of his sperm, according to the TV and radio magazine, Broadcast.

The finale of the six-part series could feature a sperm race, thanks to new technology, with viewers watching which of the two finalists' sperm reaches the female's egg first.

Yesterday, a spokesman for the anti-abortion campaigners, Life, criticised the show, saying it "sounds like prostitution".

The show comes after parents got the go-ahead on Wednesday to have donor siblings, test tube babies designed to save the life of a seriously sick brother or sister. The decision on so-called designer babies sparked accusations that children were being turned into commodities.

The Life spokesman said: "We're opposed to this all the way. It's absolutely despicable, it's exploitation with no consideration for the child that may or may not be created.

"If the child learns that he or she was fathered, not out of love, but for the purposes of a TV programme, that's extremely psychologically damaging.