YWTT: Why Exactly British TV Is So Damn Good
This post is part of the You Write the Title series – title submitted by Karen.
Take a compact former superpower with eons of reverence for education and drama. Ensure it retains a sensible comfort with socialism that subsidizes entertainment not reliant upon lowest-common-denominator ratings. Encourage nepotism and cronyism among the clever. Sit back.
I believe that’s called an embarrassment of riches.
Do we have that in the States?
We do not. We have a vast land mass that shunts the best theatre to one city on one side, and filmmaking to one city on the other side. We have a certain level of shaming for intellectualism. We have a fervent worship of popularity and ratings.
Doesn’t mean they don’t have that too. And it’s not that America has only terrible television whereas Britain’s is great. Not at all.
But for a small place with small budgets, you get an amazing concatenation of actors and ideas, so you don’t have to watch a lot of British programs before you find yourself saying things like:
“Oooh, is that that dishy North & South guy / MI-5 officer / Guy of Gisbourne / Thorin Oakenshield hooking up with the Vicar of Dibley back in the day?”
You may not say all that. Your nerd levels may vary. But my point is:
If I believe in one thing, just one thing, I believe in the BBC.