Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Moving Echos

I've watched a little of both Moving Wallpaper and Echo Beach. I'm not going to get into whether they are any good or not, but let's just say they ain't on my must see list.

Moving Wallpaper is my favourite of the two, but I don't really see it as ITV primetime. The in-jokes are too in and does a prime time audience really care about the ongoing shenanigans of a bunch of TV luvvees? Ask Aaron Sorkin.

Echo Beach has enough to worry about apart from actual quality. Putting it on after Moving Wallpaper is tantamount to bungee jumping with a playdoh rope. Okay there are a couple of clever moments when we see situations arising in Wallpaper that come to fruition in Beach. But WTF?????

Who in holy Jeebus thought that an audience watching a show satirising a soap would then choose to tune in to see the actual soap played dead straight?

It beggars belief. It does more than that. It's an insult to those tens of soap fans who watch Beach. Soap relies on the immersion of the audience in the characters and the world. Showing what a bunch of dickheads they are in the preceding programme and how fake the world is destroys the posibility of anyone taking it seriously.

I heard that originally the two shows were to be on different channels. If one or both are to survive I think that has got to happen. I'm no expert on scheduling but it seems like common sense to me.

I haven't been watching a lot of TV lately. I was begining to hear good things about The Palace but that seems to have been bumped to a late time slot?

The BBC updated fairytales took a bit of a dump. I didn't see any but wondered who they thought the audience was for them. It seems to me it was most likely a concept thought up by an exec rather than a writer. One of those dreamt up in a 'blue sky' coffee and croissants meeting 'here's a spiffing wheeze' ones.

I did see the last episode of The Street, which I thought was a work of genius. But would anyone other than Jimmy McGovern get away with 15 minute two handers? Not likely. The power of the exec-producing writer overcoming the cries of 'No we've got to have a cutaway, the audience willl get bored' .

I don't think it's any coincidence that the most popular dramas on TV are the ones where the writer has most say.

Thanks to all for the comments. I will try to post more frequently as life begins to settle down again.


Robin Kelly said...

I gave up on Moving/Echo but it was a brave thing to try, I suppose.

I thought The Palace was well written but I didn't really care enough about an updated Upstairs and Downstairs to keep watching.

I like Honest and Mistresses (but not honest mistresses ;-)).

English Dave said...

Robin - I'm torn between applauding their bravery and booing their lack of insight.

It's a clash of agendas.

freebooter said...

" It's an insult to those tens of soap fans who watch Beach"


Dave are you me? My own boy is 18 and currently working on his own first feature script, in fine style I'm glad to say, on Final Draft.

Been watching Mistresses myself and was hoping it wasn't going to descend into absolute melodrama because they seriously wouldn't do what I suspected and have the 9/11 guy not dead after.... Oh. They did.

But I suspect I'm watching it because I can't roll my tongue up when Shelly Conn's on.

Colin McBride said...

For some reason I've persevered with Wallpaper/Beach. But the one does undermine the other. In an ideal world we would have had one standalone season of Echo Beach first to establish the show before then running Moving Wallpaper to then tear it down.
Have to agree that The Street was one of the best things on last year. McGovern is still one of the real powerhouses working today I think