Style in British Television Drama by Lez Cooke (auth.)

By Lez Cooke (auth.)

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It was this which contributed to its success with the rapidly expanding working-class television audience. In 1954, when The Grove Family started, there were fewer than four million television licences and television was still largely a middle-class preserve. By the end of 1960, when Coronation Street made its debut, the number of television licences had tripled to nearly 12 million and television was well on the way to becoming the dominant mass medium. The regional, working-class ethos of Coronation Street is signalled right from the beginning of the first episode.

2 Dissecting the space (courtesy of the BBC/BFI) The Bond (BBC1, 1965) 47 that Len speaks and this profile shot is the most we see of him. There is no opportunity, without giving a reverse angle, which would have been as impossible in continuous recording as it would have been in live drama, to frame Len frontally. This is one of the problems of having people seated on all sides of a table. The solution here is to have the character who talks least seated with his back to camera, or out of shot most of the time.

A cut back to the previous camera position captures their exchange of looks. There follows some quick cutting between these two camera positions as the beginnings of an argument develops between them. ’ Mrs Barlow tries to intervene and change the subject by saying ‘That new pullover’s turned out a treat . 4). 5). In the same shot Mr Barlow replies ‘Don’t they do this at college then? ’ Even Mrs Barlow’s complaint about her bad back is grist for Mr Barlow’s mill: ‘That’s what comes of doing that rotten job of yours.

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