Teens in the Wild

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Teens in the Wild is a four-part Irish observational documentary television series broadcast on RTÉ One. The series was presented by the clinical psychologist David Coleman,[1] who previously appeared in the television series Families in Trouble.[2] It follows six male teenagers, each with their own individual behavioural difficulties, as they undertake a three-week activity programme at Delphi Adventure in Connemara, County Galway during September 2008. It commenced broadcasting on 2 February 2009, airing each Monday at 21:30.

The camp was declared a "once-off" experience by Coleman in a live web chat held on RTÉ.ie on 11 February 2009.[3] He also claimed that he would be open to doing a similar series involving teenage girls, since this one involved boys exclusively.[3] To supplement the show, Coleman initiated a regular slot focusing on teenage issues each Wednesday on the daytime television programme, Seoige.[3]

The series producer, Christine Thornton, was reported as stating that the series would demonstrate "often dramatic and emotional insights" in relation to teenaged behaviour.[2]


Six teenagers took part in the series.[4]

Serie 1: Male participants
Name Published problem
Fifteen-year-old Mikey from County Westmeath has a habit of being verbally abusive both at home and in school.[4] He has been known to unexpectedly disappear for several hours on numerous occasions. He is regularly involved in street brawls.[4]
Fifteen-year-old Jamie from County Cork has been suspended from school on numerous occasions and regularly engages in disputes with his own mother.[4]
Fifteen-year-old William from Castlebar, County Mayo is regularly involved in street fighting and has been told he may be permanently excluded from school.[4]
Fifteen-year-old Kyle from Tralee, County Kerry is unmotivated and this presents difficulties at school.[4] Sixteen-year-old Noel from Dublin has a quick temper, is regularly in trouble with his parents and seems to have difficulty recognising authority.[4]
Fifteen-year-old Shane from County Kildare was a former a high achiever in school but has in the past year left without offering an explanation.[4]


Whilst reaction from participants in the web chat was generally positive,[3] some media outlets gave a negative response to the show. The Irish Independent noted the genre which the series placed itself in as being an "observational documentary" as opposed to reality television and questioned how the young people involved in the show could cope with their personal traumas in front of the cameras and general public.[5]

Second series

RTÉ are currently requesting a new batch of troubled teenagers to come forward to feature in a second series.[6] It has been reported that they are all in fact to be females.[7]

See also


  1. Tubridy Tonight line-up is revealed, RTÉ, date=2009-02-06
  2. 2,0 2,1 Teens in the Wild begins on RTÉ One tonight, RTÉ, date=2009-02-09
  3. 3,0 3,1 3,2 3,3 "David Coleman Webchat". RTÉ. Accessed 10 April 2009.
  4. 4,0 4,1 4,2 4,3 4,4 4,5 4,6 4,7 "The Teens". RTÉ. Accessed 10 April 2009.
  5. Why RTE is so wrong to air this reality show, Irish Independent, date=2009-02-07
  6. Do you want to participate?. RTÉ. Accessed 10 April 2009.
  7. seeks wild teens Sunday Tribune, March 29 2009

External links