SIR,—In your issue of January 20 I find a vehement
condemnation of the whole ITV set-up on page 67. On page 72 Charles Curran offers a brilliant analysis of 'The New Estate in Great Britain.' On page 80 Brian Inglis is kind enough to regret the premature death of Sunday Afternoon.
If we accept Mr. Curran's estimate, and I do, we find that the majority of TV licence holders choose the Tabloid projection of—`a simple, cheerful, manageable universe, a warm cosy place of sex, excitement, triviality and fantasy.' It isn't enough to say 'Clap hands for the BBC' when they present intelligent documentary and to down thumbs on ITV when they present Liberace. The citizens of 'The New Estate' switch off the former and switch on the latter.
1, am altogether on the side of those who demand a balanced programme, but until we can give a clear answer to the question 'Who
for?' we have to reserve judgement as to where the blame lies for the present position. The risk in Democracy is that the majority will make what the minority reckon to be the wrong choice. When they do, the minority can submit (ITA) or attempt to remove choice (the Beaverbrook Press) or can hope that in time increased leisure will improve public taste.
I tried with Sunday Afternoon to present an experimental show which was easy to watch and yet contained some ideas. Would it, as Brian Inglis hints, have captured a large audience in time? I don't know, and I can't complain because ATV did not choose to spend £20,000 to find the answer. After all, it is their money.
I wish to find an outlet for my knowledge of the craft of TV and I find my present choice of appearing to be a popular prostitute or neglected wallflower uncomfortable to say the least, as it leaves me crying, 'Will some kind gentleman see me home?' What gentleman?
4 Darnley Terrace, Kensington, W11