Even if fragrance isn't a passion of yours, the BBC Four's new miniseries about it is fascinating enough to enthrall even the most disinterested. The show, Perfume, offers an unprecedented look inside the multibillion-dollar global perfume industry and elucidates the complex and sometimes bizarre work behind the scents you experience every day. It's a story that would have been impossible to tell even a decade or two ago, when brands' perfumers and the process of fragrance creation in general were closely guarded secrets.
The program tackles everything from the research that goes into creating that laundry-fresh detergent scent to the industry's most unusual employees, the "skins," who attempt to re-create the eating and hygiene habits of specific groups for fragrance testing. One skin on the show even bathes less frequently and eats nothing but ramen and other bachelor staples to try to mimic the odor profile of a young adult male. Woefully stereotypical ideas about dudes aside, it's fantastic stuff.
If you're Stateside, you won't be able to watch the show on the BBC player, but you can still catch the episodes. Check out the first 15 minutes of the last installment above, and if you'd like to see the rest of the episode, just keep reading.