Derren Brown has run a number of experiments, dabbling in illusion, magic and suggestion. In this episode he gets a really nice, very well-liked man to confess to a murder he did not commit.
The series is explained as "A four-part series featuring an inventive and jaw-dropping mixture of stunts, magic, illusion, suggestion and thought-provoking entertainment, combined with psychological insight."
The series was run on the Channel 4 TV channel in the United Kingdom.
In this episode he asks, can an innocent person be persuaded to confess to a murder that he hasn't committed?
Brown explains that we all fall prey to guilt, that we are often controlled by it, and that guilt is a primary cause of depression.
The innocent person involved in the experiment is called Jody, a happy and smiling guy who works with children under 5-years-old and thoroughly enjoys his job. According to family and his girlfriend, he is one of those people that everyone just loves on sight. Genuinely an all-round nice guy, and the last person you would expect to commit a murder.
Jody is invited to speak at a completely fabricated conference, and has no idea that Brown is involved. Jody also has no idea that everyone he is going to meet at the conference is an actor. The "conference" is held a historic, country house hotel in the U.K.
Brown uses the actors to trigger a series of events that will hopefully compel Jody to confess to a murder he did not commit, and that, in fact, hasn't even happened.
Jody is carefully screened by interviewing his family, to find out if he is strong enough to handle such an experience, and then is invited to speak at the conference.
Almost resembling one of those murder "whodunit" weekends, Brown takes us through the whole process of convincing this innocent, and just plain really nice guy, to confess.