Why, Oh Why, Oh Why?

By | January 1, 2008

AlexSuze, AlexOK, a little word of explanation here. The title of this post is a reference to the opening line of many letters which viewers send in to a BBC TV programme called “Points of View”, usually prefixing a criticism of the quality of the content from the channel.

This post is both the same and subtly different from those letters.

You see, as you know if you’ve been reading for a while I do have a great deal of loyalty and respect for some of the UK’s TV channels. Specifically BBC (1, 2, 3 & 4) and Channel 4. Even Channel 5 commissions interesting TV from time to time.

Lately my patience with the channels has been stretched due to some monumentally ill-judged drama and documentary making and a general decline in the once adventurous nature of commissioning editors.

I’m making no friends here, but who fucking cares? When audience share becomes the driving force behind decision making in TV it is the diversity and richness of programming that suffers and in turn the very viewing public who the channels are trying to woo.

Granted there is a school of thought that, as with government, the public gets what they deserve. I believe that even that maxim doesn’t apply because of the way in which the admittedly thinly spread budget is being distributed to programme makers.

Like movies and video games all programmes have to deliver what the TV execs consider value for money. They all have to be successful. So Programmes are all derived from a few proven formulas.

What sparked off this little rant?

The BBC renown for high quality drama has created yet another adaptation of “Sense and Sensibility”. Did we need another period drama? Wouldn’t the money have been better spent encouraging new talent, innovative writers and producers?

So, to usurp another catchphrase, “Is it just me” or is TV in the UK really that crap and unimaginative these days?