Bill Turnbull: Staying Alive details the BBC Breakfast presenter’s fight after he was sadly diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer in 2017, this coming shortly after filming The Great Celebrity Bake Off for Stand Up to Cancer.
He was only 61 at this time in his life, and openly declares that he ignored potential early warning signs for so long, that the cancer had spread from his prostate to his bones. He had chemotherapy over the course of ten months, and while this attacks the cancer, it will also attack the good cells in the body, hence leaving him so tired all the time.
In this one-off documentary, Bill Turnbull looks at ways to see if the inevitable can be put off for as long as possible, or if it actually no longer is inevitable.
His first step was to take cannabis, which put one young lad on the road to recovery, and those doing the research are aiming to target the cancerous cells. I’ll let Bill go into detail about how it actually might treat cancer because it’s a bit above my understanding.
Along the way, we see him spending time with his wife and children, plus talking to Stephen Fry – who was also diagnosed with prostate cancer but who managed to get it treated early. Also, Bill meets a man with Stage 4 prostate cancer who’s trying to stave it off by changing his diet by replacing meat with a meditation retreat where he ditched all the trappings of modern life such as social media, and only eating vegetables.
Overall, this is an essential documentary to watch, so if you missed it when broadcast, then check it out on All4.
Producer/Director: Ashley Gething
Bill Turnbull: Staying Alive is available to watch on All 4.
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.