Reviews written by registered user
|5 reviews in total|
This show lasted for most of the 1980s, and had its moments, but plots
were usually dishwater thin and often painfully unfunny.
Terry Scott and June Whitfield were wasted in this sitcom, they both deserved better, but it does provide some fond memories and I have found myself smiling at some repeated scenes. June Whitfield's talent for comedy is allowed to shine through on occasion (when she is not being a foil to Terry) and she really is clever.
The 1980s is the last decade where you will find this kind of middle class, middle aged comedy, and many people remember it fondly, but I prefer to remember the decade for alternative comedy and the biting satire of Spitting Image.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Twin Peaks - I adored it. The pilot was filmed from early 1989 and was
completed mid-way through the year.And it all clicked instantly. The
town's characters, Demon Bob (a supernatural force or merely the evil
that men do?) and everything else were excellent. Such visuals. Such
music (recorded in 1989, and once again a feature right from the pilot
onwards. Everything was "in place" from the word go!).
Going to series in early 1990 was great, but series two lost its way a little when David Lynch left for awhile. It seemed that things were becoming a little too factual as the Black Lodge was revealed as an old Native American legend in the show and its location (or at least an entrance to it) was discovered via a map.
David Lynch returned for the final episode and turned it all wonderfully surreal and nonsensical again!
I think that this show suffered because the BBC was so determined to
re-write the 1970s as a wonderful continuation of the 1960s and
literally POURED IN 1960s and 1980s fads to the "I Love 1970s" series
to make that decade sparkle.
In consequence, the 1980s were left looking very threadbare, robbed of at least eight of their fads (No, BBC, CB radio was a craze of the early 1980s in Britain when it was legal and widely available - not 1976!).
The BBC also chucked tacky 90s fads into the 80s series like Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles - sure they were invented in the 1980s, but actually a part of widespread pop culture in Britain in 1990. In "I Love 1988", the animated Turtles stated that was the year they "ruled the world". Huh! The Chopper bike was invented in the 1960s, but the BBC had no trouble in slotting it into the 70s where it rightly belonged - remember the series was supposed to be about POP CULTURE! The things that were thrilling us all, year-by-year.
There was a resurgence of the spirit of protest in Britain in the 1980s as controversial legislation was passed by the government, and environmental concerns rocketed. Why wasn't that reflected? Because the BBC decided that the 1980s were a very bad thing, totally greedy, and rewrote the decade as an absolutely dross era (having already rewritten the 70s as WONDERFUL!) The 1980s series was total rubbish, a fitting companion for its 70s counterpart.
Look through the local newspaper archives at your local library. Advertisements and articles on happening fads make fascinating reading. You can discover for yourself that the Space Hopper was actually a late 1960s trend, not from 1971, and find out that the personal stereo really became pop culture in the early 1980s, not 1979. There's much else to bring back memories. It's not being an anorak. It's fun.
It's far more nostalgic to get an accurate picture.
Then write to the BBC and demand better research for your licence money.
It was well acted, had some great characters, warmth, humour... but it
failed. Why? "Albion Market" was supposed to be a companion soap for
Granada's other Lancashire-based drama "Coronation Street", but somehow
the setting did not inspire. And, although characters were often
likable, the show often felt bitty and disjointed as it flitted round
the market, the café, certain characters' houses and the market
Perhaps a large, central family group may have made a difference? Favourite characters included Jewish crockery sellers Morris and Miriam Ransome, Peggy at the market café and her daffy assistant Carol, fiery Lynne Harrison, and long-suffering Derek, the market superintendent, and his gormless side kick Keith.
It was certainly grim. An abandoned baby was found in the back of a traders' van and an unemployed man attempted suicide. There was no sign of the glitzy side of 1980s life at first.
As "Albion Market" failed to impress viewers, shoulder pads and blonde highlights for several of the male characters were imported, and 60s singer Helen Shapiro arrived as market hairdresser Viv.
But before we could see if these new ploys would work, the show was axed. It had lasted one year.
"I Love the 1970s" was a show which sought to create the kind of
nostalgia about the 1970s which we all enjoyed about the 1950s in the
70s. It failed.
The main problem for fans of the show is people who remember the era without rosy coloured specs and those with access to newspaper archives. Flared trousers, Lava Lamps, space hoppers and Afghan coats were all selling like hot cakes in the late 1960s, and the personal stereo and many other featured items were not available until the 1980s.
And then there were mistakes in years within the decade. For instance, Punk took flight commercially at the end of 1976. It was more a trend of 1977, but "I Love 1976" presented Punk as the trend of the year.
The most ridiculous thing was that the show left out details of the recession and just what a slog life could be for adults in the 70s. They were hard times for many. But (mainly as perceived in retrospect) social conditions of the 1980s were much commented upon in the "I Love 1980s" series.
I lived through the 1970s and did not recognise a great deal of what was presented as "70s" in these shows. I would not recommend them for serious 70's historians.