Thirty-Minute Theatre (1965–1973)
Two new Whos and a Potter
Archive television fans gathered on London's South Bank last Sunday to witness the BFI's annual showcase of newly discovered shows that had been thought lost, or "wiped". The big news was the announcement of two Doctor Who episodes. More interesting, I thought, was an early TV play by Dennis Potter.
Emergency Ward 9 was broadcast in 1966 as part of BBC2's live Thirty-Minute Theatre series. A riposte to ITV's soap opera Emergency – Ward 10, Potter's play is set in a shabby London hospital ward and centres on the patients: an opinionated old man; a prissy preacher; a cocky businessman. The latter is black, and the casual racism he suffers forms the crux of the play. In
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