2009 TV: Five Things I’d Like To See

The year’s nearly over and in addition to building our Celebrity Big Brother special, I’ve been reflecting on 2008’s TV year. We had: Vera Duckworth’s death in Corrie (ta-ra chuck!); the comparative flop that was Big Brother: Celebrity Hijack; an ex EastEnder going all Bionic before the Americans pulled the plug; Ashes To Ashes proving that, sometimes, one should just leave well alone; EastEnders’ Max-buried-alive storyline illustrating that not only is the watershed a joke as far as soaps are concerned, but also, nothing is sacred in Albert Square; reality/talent TV continuing to dominate with my own personal favourite, The Apprentice, plumbing new depths of uselessness as far as the calibre of the candidates was concerned; Eurovision 2008 reinforcing its reputation as a big partisan party and also, it was Sir Terry’s last hurrah; Blue Peter’s Valerie Singleton admitting to a fling with co-host Peter Purves (tooooooo much information Val!); Fern Britton exposed as a diet cheat (but we still luv ya Fern!);

Carol Vorderman left Countdown, Richard and Judy left Channel 4, Fiona Phillips left GMTV and David Tennant is leaving Doctor Who; Rachel Rice won Big Brother…but nobody cared. In the same series, two unpleasant idiots were removed for unacceptable behaviour (one for spitting and one for….well, just being her); the BBC axed Grange Hill (flippin’ ‘eck Tucker!); Kerry Katona shocked everyone by slurring her way through an interview on This Morning and Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross proved, yet again, that they are stoooopid adolescents trapped in men’s bodies.

I’ve been thinking about what I’d like to see in 2009……so far, here is my list.

1. Broadcasters treating viewers like adults – A case in point, I was watching both Frasier and Two And A Half Men in the wee hours of the morning on the Paramount Comedy Channel and…..they were edited for language! Words like ‘bitch’ and ‘ass’ were muted. And don’t you get all smug E4 – the way you butcher Friends is an absolute disgrace. The irony is, one can see worse on Hollyoaks and that’s on much earlier! I really wish broadcasters would ensure that edited versions of TV series are not screened after the watershed. I cannot begin to tell you how much this annoys me.

2. Broadcasters treating viewers like adults. Part 2 –  I am also sick of seeing programmes and movies scheduled for daytime, only to be cut-to-pieces for compliance reasons (Five and Ryan’s Daughter, ITV4 and The Professionals et al). Either schedule them in later slots, or don’t bother with them at all.

3. The Americanisation of our commercial breaks – The next time I sit down to watch something on terrestrial TV and an ad break appears within the first five minutes, I’m turning over.

4. The UK taking back the Christmas No 1 – Since 2005, the Christmas No 1 has been the domain of X Factor winners and it has to stop. Yes, the TV show is a huge ratings winner but why does Simon Cowell have to take over Christmas too?!? Don’t let him do it!

5.  Less quantity and more quality in the soaps – I dip in and out of the four major UK soaps (‘Enders, Corrie, Emmerdale, Hollyoaks) and I honestly believe that the writing is not what it was in most of them, especially Emmerdale. Is there really a need for so many episodes of the rural soap each week? Haven’t the powers that be heard of the adage, ‘less is more’?


Today I am mostly lovin’ – The Blackadder Rides Again and University Challenge tributes on the Beeb. Both made for fantastic telly and it was wonderful to see The Young Ones again ("Crop rotation in the 14th century…")

Today I am mostly hatin’ –
The fact that It’s A Wonderful Life was missing from the TV schedules, yet again this year. I’m beginning to think that UK broadcasters don’t have the rights to it anymore….   

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14 Responses to 2009 TV: Five Things I’d Like To See

  1. captain says:

    Bring some laughter and drama back to BBC. Less of the depressing characters in East enders- emerdale and- coronation streetLife is what you make it."Hold That Thought and Live Your Dream" Happy new Year to you all.

  2. famous says:

    lets have more uplifting drama and other progs(a lot less doom and gloom.i\’m beginning to think the writers are looking for more bizarre plots to capture the ratings!!)while i\’m at it ,aHAPPY NEW YEAR to you coops and all the best to every one else.

  3. Coops - says:

    famouseccles my Spurs-supporting mate! How are you? Happy New Year to you an\’ all. To paraphrase the great Bette Davis in All About Eve: fasten your seatbelts…it\’s going to be a bumpy year (bloody credit crunch). People, I too am looking for less doom and gloom and a whole lot less of the BBC\’s Robert Peston to boot. I swear he should be wearing a black cape and totin\’ a scythe around. Talk about being a harbinger of doom…Anyway, I\’ll do what I can to lighten the mood 🙂

  4. Louis says:

    What the great British public want and need is some fun… Enough with the reality shows, swearing cooks, dieting on ice, Camera Police arrest court release, and all the depressing soaps. We need a tv series that is light hearted and that lifts the mood of the nation… Get in touch, English Cad has the remedy. PS get the programing right, get the advertisers back.

  5. Alex says:

    Bring back Playdays

  6. schnitzel says:

    It\’s A Wonderful Life NOT being shown at Christmas? but its traditional- like turkey and carol singing…!

  7. Vlada says:

    I\’ve never seen It\’s A Wonderful Life and was hoping to see it this year at Christmas. May be better luck next year!

  8. Paul says:

    Completely agree with you about the X-Factor single. Peter Kay, of Jeff Buckley should have been number one this year. I don\’t think I could take another year where the X-Factor winner is number one over Christmas!!

  9. Mr says:

    Tv Is Run By The Government And The usa. To keep our already warped brains entertained whilst they come up with more plans, to turn is into law abiding pupppets or if you like sheep

  10. SDF says:

    At last sum1 who understands wats happening u shud be promoted to the points of view programme because the views are almost never taken on board. My main gripe is that programmes are always showing us what happens in the next programme so there is no chance of anticipation and expectant excitement. This is especially so with Doctor Who -why have they done away with the cliffhanger endings and the longer in-depth story lines of more than one episode. A series these days is as long as just one story in the old days!

  11. Coops - says:

    SDF, if you stick around, no doubt you\’ll hear more of my TV gripes. However, I plan to do a celebration of good ol\’ Blighty soon otherwise I\’ll get a reputation as a moaning minnie.

  12. Andrew says:

    I\’m totally with you on the edited-to-fit-the-timeslot thing – this is one of my bigger TV bugbears. Anyone remember when BBC 2 still had the rights to The Simpsons, and Channel 4 tried to claw back a few viewers by screening gory Buffy spin-off Angel at 6.00pm? The resulting hacked-to-pieces episodes were virtually unwatchable, and more or less killed the series in the UK, and the same goes for their weekend afternoon showings of the entertaining Alias.One extra plea I\’d add to the list is for for broadcasters (I\’m looking at you, Five) to be a bit more careful with the trails for their programmes. Having seen them, I often feel I needn\’t bother watching the next episode of CSI or whatever, given that every salient plot detail is frequently served up beforehand either in the promo itself, or, most annoyingly, just seconds before the show actually starts by the gobby continuity announcer.I\’M ALREADY GOING TO WATCH THE RUDDY PROGRAMME, YOU DON\’T NEED TO TELL ME WHAT\’S GOING TO HAPPEN.

  13. Jude says:

    Coops – it seems we live in an era when "them upstairs" ie Directors, producers & Editors, think that we are all unable to do anything with our real lives, and that the only thing we are able to understand is the childish portrail of soaps, adverts and general programmes. Adverts are getting longer, more complicated and can go from 3 in a break to 8 (yes I decided to count them!) I have pretty much given up on television now. I download from the bbc what I WANT to watch! (WOW!) and am trying to do something similar with the other stations – however, they are incapable of allowing us downloads, or even allowing us to catch up on a series without the so**ing adverts.My desire to get me using the monster in the corner, is something that is spell binding, has a realistic feel, has a REAL ending so you know that this is the entire series, has something to make me think, is pertinent to the time it is shown, and has no vile language, actions or stupidity.I know – I live in a totally unrealistic world, and such things cannot happen but, I can if nothing else, hope, pray and keep to downloading or catching up (it takes 2 hours to watch a 1 hour episode due to the slowness of the speed of broadband out here in the "sticks"). I am allowed now thankfully to choose what and when I want to watch programmes. So I do feel more of a "liberated adult" – at last!

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