I tried watching EastEnders a few years ago, and managed for about 6 months. Fairly addictive. But filled with miserable moments of destruction, it is a truly awful thing to behold. In my opinion. I was gradually feeling more and more hopeless as characters were aggressive, swearing, abusing one another, and I stopped watching it on the night that a reunited mother and daughter were running towards one another but never got to hug one another because a car slammed into the daughter and killed her. Oh and the mother wasn’t made welcome at the funeral. Lovely.
Whilst I’d escaped it, some have been reporting on a “TV war”, the battle of EastEnders and Downton Abbey for Christmas number 1.
EastEnders beat Downton Abbey. What does that make me think? Well the 9.9million people watching people tear one another apart and watching someone’s home burn down must have had a lovely Christmas evening. Hmm.
I’m sure the 8.6million (still more than the Queen’s speech) that tuned in for Downton Abbey came out feeling a heck of a lot happier, and I bet another couple of million recorded it so that they could spend more time with their loved ones that evening, while grouches in another house insisted on watching Hell on wheels.
Why do people watch soaps? To make themselves feel that their lives are better? To laugh at misfortune?
God knows. I tuned into Hollyoaks this Christmas being persuaded it would be different to EastEnders’ approach, and truthfully it is one of the less depressing soaps I’ve seen. Whilst someone jumped off a bridge into a big river, the point of the episode was to show how actually people did love him, even if he hadn’t noticed. A woman dressed all in white (supposed to be an angel) let him go back to earth to continue living and everyone shared a roast dinner. It was weird and still made me cringe, but it had a decent message.
EastEnders beat Downton Abbey? I certainly don’t see that as a victory… and the increasing number of horror films in the cinema and the paranoia of “political correctness” is a sure sign that the 8.6million Downton Abbey watchers need to bind together to bring a little more light, a little more love, a little more togetherness into our world.
If people have it in themselves to watch episode upon episode of EastEnders, perhaps more of those viewers should learn from it and use their remarkable endurance to combat the real life mayhem instead…
Downton Abbey is about coming through hardship, coming together, trusting in love. We need more of that eh? Yay Downton Abbey!