It is beyond my comprehension why anyone would subject themselves to the relentless tsunami of misery that is EastEnders. Yet millions of people do, four times a week. I don’t think I have watched an episode voluntarily since the 1990s, but when I have been unfortunate enough to catch a segment of this utterly dreary and ridiculous programme I have found myself incredulous that the BBC continues to pour enormous resources into making such utter drivel. I’m a staunch defender of the BBC and the licence fee, but EastEnders tests my faith. TV Go Home, the legendary spoof TV listings page written by Charlie Brooker, perfectly summed up the show by describing it as a “Soap opera so transparently fictitious it might as well be set on the fucking Moon”. And that was in 1999; there’s been another 12 years of this bollocks since then.
The show has been at the centre of a significant controversy of late due to its current storyline which, as I understand it, goes something like this: two characters both gave birth to baby boys on the same day. One of the babies dies from SIDS (or Cot Death). Grieving mother of the deceased baby switches it with the other woman’s baby when no one is looking.
So far over 6,000 people have complained to either the BBC or Ofcom, enough to prompt a rethink by the producers of the show about how long they are going to drag this story out for.
Viewers should be complaining about the contempt the makers of the show clearly have for their intelligence. Leaving aside the upsetting nature of the subject matter itself, are people expected to believe that new parents wouldn’t notice that their baby had been switched? It is simply beyond the bounds of plausibility (even for a soap opera). I can tell you now, my son’s facial features would have been instantly recognisable to me if I had only seen him for a few seconds after the birth. If he had been replaced with another new born baby it wouldn’t have gone unnoticed. Yes, you could argue that new borns all look a bit similar, but not to their mum and dad. It’s a biological thing, you see: the baby looking like its parents.
What a risible pile of old toss.
Why am I writing about this, you might ask? Why am I spending my time engaging in the debate about the credibility of a soap opera story line? That’s a good question. I have no answer to that. I’m going to bed.