I am a huge supporter of the BBC. It is a fundamental part of our culture, something that unites what can often be a fractious and unhappy nation. It makes the best radio (via Radio 4) and the least worst television in the world. Without the BBC, and the unique way it is owned and funded by us all, Britain would be unbearable.
Alas, the one thing the BBC has been incapable of doing of late is reminding us all of that – just at the time it is under the greatest attack, from a fearfully right-wing government and their friends in the big media companies. The last time the BBC was hammered in this way, it responded with real style. Under the dreadful John Birt, the Corporation continually reminded viewers and listeners of how great the BBC was.
Now, the BBC is a wounded beast, seeking to hide from the aggressors and failing to even do the minimum needed to defend itself. It is seriously in danger of being broken up and privatized – as is the NHS – on the basis that doing so worked so very well on British Rail 15 years ago. BR didn’t stand up for itself particularly well (although it did the very best it could to ensure that the Board’s staff didn’t get the shitty end of the stick as much as the government wanted, thereby doing a very good job as an employer even as the Board carefully packed BR away). The NHS has us all standing up for it, including the nurses who have finally got rich twat Andrew Lansley to kneel before them (it won’t work, he’s still going to screw the NHS, and us, over).
The BBC doesn’t even have the BBC standing up for the BBC. Instead we’ve all had to do it, and we’re all eminently ignorable by this terrible government.
So it’s nice to see a small fight-back. During the coverage of some wedding or other on TV today, they aired the above video. Neatly done, a nice reminder of the BBC’s strengths, right in the middle of a top-rated broadcast. Well done!
Of course, it’s not as good as the best ensemble promo ever done (in fact, the best promo ever done, I suspect) but then it’s hard to live up to the standard that “A Perfect Day” set.