Thursday, 2 May 2013

Why not today?

"On a political level, the serial began with Harold Wilson's election campaign of 1964, and it was finally scheduled to be broadcast at a time when the country was once again poised to restore an idealistic, revitalised Labour party to power.

The cycle of positivty leading to seemingly inevitable cynicism may be Flannery's way of predicting the ultimate demise of traditional idealology as the driving force of British politics. This is an assumption that would have seemed unthinkable when the play was originally written, but now seems a realistic possibility in light of 13 years of New Labour and a Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition.

In 1996 Flannery admitted he would be voting for Tony Blair's New Labour in the forthcoming election. "I'd love to believe that a New Labour victory would start a clean-up in politics, but I'm afraid they'll be trapped by the very institutions that support them."

The lasting message of Flannery's serial is, however, clear and positive: betrayals by our institutions and politicians may be inevitable, but the society built on friendship surpasses and transcends them all."

Marcus Hearn, Our Friends in the North: Viewers' Notes


Phil Knight said...

The pattern seems to be:

i)The Tories experiment with a deviant ideology.

ii)Then Labour cement it in.

This is why, unfashionably, I hate Labour WAY more than I hate the Tories.

Paul Hebron said...

What's the consensus on why the left lost it in the 1970s?

OFINTN though the characters of Austin Donoghue and Nicky suggest it was corruption and radical-induced factionalism up against Tories who, though divided, were all going in the same direction and saying the same things.

Anything else?

Phil Knight said...

Well, my take is that they didn't articulate a vision of the future that most people could connect to, and condense it into a series of easily digested narratives and symbols. It's the same problem today - all the Left wants to do is project the Right as "evil".

Christianity again really, innit?

Paul Hebron said...

If the left disappeared tomorrow, would anyone notice?