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My mother wouldn’t be able to hear…

In television there’s a belief that … ordinary books make good television. Like all other beliefs it isn’t 100% reliable, but in my opinion it does explain why, say, Agatha Christie comes across so well on the small screen. Her work provides great storylines and very little else so the writer dramatising them can use precision to turn…

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It’s been done before, only better….

I’ve been harping on about television’s lack of new material lately, so much so that I’m beginning to feel like a regular TV columnist. I tend to home in on the re-hashes of old, ostensibly ‘safe’ stories, though why 10 Rillington Place should have attract so many writers/producers down the years I can’t imagine. Can it be that…

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Versions of the same story…

Book, film, TV adaptation, radio, stage play? Well, a new one joins the club. Subtitles. I know they’re not a new invention and they’d be pretty difficult to achieve on radio, but just lately they’ve come into their own. They used to be dreadful, but I’ve been watching ‘The Bridge’ on Amazon lately and the subtitles are superb….

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Expletives not deleted…

When I worked as a script editor in BBC drama, a hundred years ago, not only was the F word an unthinkable prospect, but the powers that be were nervous about using the word ‘God’ in any context. And, unbelievably now, there was a Unit housed in an ivory tower somewhere that read every script that went out!…

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It doesn’t have to be simple to be clear…

The first thing I ever wrote for real money was an episode of The Onedin Line, a BBC TV drama series. The script editor said he wanted a story that wasn’t patronisingly simple but clear in the telling. Last night I watched the Icelandic noir thriller ‘Trapped’ and gave up after episode three because it’s too simple and…

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