Amazing Science: Medical Marvels (World, 8.55pm) demonstrates that unwritten rule of television programme names: anything with an exclamation mark, or an adjective like Amazing, Fabulous, or Whacky in the title is basically tabloid television. Amazing Science has all the pseudo-documentary bag of tricks, such as back-lit scientists saying things like 'it is not science fiction, but science fact!' as they boast about some unspeakably revolting new procedure. It also lives up to the tabloid television rule, by having tacky faux headlines to introduce each report. Number one deals with the horrid mouse-grows-human-ear experiment, which turns out to have some practical implications after all. Scientists are learning how to grow new bits of human beings, and have already found a ready supply of fresh clean skin to cultivate to make new skin for burn victims: the foreskins of circumcised babies. To do the programme justice, the voice-over does not linger too much on this source material, although we do get a bit of footage of a screaming infant wailing while a masked surgeon snips away. The back-lit scientist, who is not identified, at least not on the preview tape I had, shows less restraint. She cannot resist telling the cameras that one human foreskin contains enough cells to grow six football fields worth of new human skin. In the second report, Killer Poison Saves Kid's Life! there are more screaming children. They are slightly older, and they are all being injected with a strain of the bacteria which causes botulism, while their parents hold them down. It is not a kind of torture, but a new method for helping children with cerebral palsy. Later we watch a hypnotherapist help patients deal with surgery, a very sensible idea being researched by the American Public Health Department. The point of the hypnotherapy is that it supplements sedatives, instead of replacing them. The therapists make a point of saying that they cannot make the patients do anything they do not want to. Unfortunately, the producers cannot resist breaking up the interviews with ancient footage of some cabaret act making punters row imaginary boats. One New York critic was so incensed by the number of Oscars received by Roberto Benigni for Life Is Beautiful, that he persuaded his editor to let him have another chance to explain why he did not like film and considered it 'benign Holocaust denial'. Benigni would no doubt understand the accusations: he has long been making funny films about taboo subjects. For him, nothing is beyond the range of humour. In The Monster (World, 1am) for example, which he also wrote and directed, he plays a man wrongly accused of attacking 18 women. The police set an attractive undercover cop on to him (Nicoletta Braschi, of course) and a batty shrink (Michel Blanc), but to no avail. Only Benigni could make this sound like entertainment.