'East Enders' is twenty-one years old this week. Doesn't that tell you something about this nation's cultural decline? The BBC soap has surely got to be one of the most depressing programmes ever made. Every time I've ever switched on (accidentally, believe me) and its been playing- one character is fighting or arguing with another.The middle class graduates who make the programme no doubt think this terribly 'authentic'. But anyone who does know a little bit more about working class life, will know it's just pap. Working-class people can, believe it or not go ten minutes without screaming and shouting, organising contract killings or contracting AIDS.
Whatever happened to television programmes that were uplifting? Escapism, adventure and romance are dirty words with our programme makers nowadays. So too it seems is good drama. For realistic, non-patronising portrayals of working-class life, don't look to East Enders. Buy the box set of WhenThe Boat Comes In.