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Rise and Rise of the Independents, The: A Television History

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Rise and Rise of the Independents, The: A Television History.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Ian Potter(Author)

    Book details


A history of UK television beyond the broadcasters, from the 1950s to the present day, featuring contributions from the makers and deal brokers who changed the face of British TV. It also explores the nature of UK television through the people who shaped it, including Peter Bazalgette, Paul Smith and Jane Featherstone, to find out how the industry got where it is today and where it is going in the future.
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Supported Devices Windows PC/PocketPC, Mac OS, Linux OS, Apple iPhone/iPod Touch.
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Flowing Text / Pages Pages
Printable? Yes

Book details

  • PDF | 320 pages
  • Ian Potter(Author)
  • Guerilla Books (18 Nov. 2008)
  • English
  • 9
  • Music, Stage & Screen

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Review Text

  • By Wilhemina Henrietta Foy on 21 November 2008

    A really good read at many levels, there's enough detailed research for the anorak and well constructed interviews with the key players which give an intriguing insight into the growth and development of the industry. Well draughted and put together with style and humour. Highly recommended for all students of television and broadcasting.

  • By Stephen Owens on 29 March 2013

    TV in Britain started out as a Heath Robinson improvisation, keen to try anything it could think of, and has ended up a huge but frightened industry, afraid to do anything that hasn't worked eight times before. Ian Potter's fine book mostly concentrates on a period roughly halfway along, through the eyes of the country's many independent production companies.A book of this type has two stories to tell: the nuts and bolts of corporations formed, commissions made, deals done; and the story of what those programmes were like to make and watch. Potter's main tactic is to let the producers do the talking - big chunks of detailed interviews with the prime movers run through the book. As you'd expect, there are many great stories, but sometimes this can be a bit much, as the brain struggles to follow long, looping conversational digressions. In the second half of the book, though, Potter's gambit makes perfect sense. Up until the late 1980s, the subjects reminisce in a style somewhere between theatrical anecdote and war story - warm tales full of bizarre detail, punishing conditions and human oddness. Gradually, these give way to more self-justifying, colder talk of demographics, formatting rights and mergers. It's a shock to go from Anne Wood talking about putting Pob the puppet in a bank deposit box for safe keeping to Peter Bazalgette waxing wonkish about reality show "story arcs", but it perfectly captures the fundamental change in the way TV was made.This might make the book sound like one of those lumbering "oral histories" of unadorned and unsorted quotes, but there's much more to it. Potter has strong opinions, but wisely resists any polemic himself, leaving the producers to make his points for him, even (especially) when they don't agree with him. The inevitable end chapter on thoughts for the future - a grim necessity in this sort of book - is done this way too, and as a result is better than most. (Comedy bigwig Paul Jackson is especially perceptive and candid here.)For some strange reason books about British TV mainly divide into hardcore academic study, or zanily vague collections of old gags about watching Crossroads while eating crispy pancakes. It's a rare book that tries to steer a course between the two, capable of telling the real story of television in an informed way to intelligent people with a casual interest. Fortunately it does occasionally happen, and this book is a fine example.


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