This website use cookies and similar technologies to improve the site and to provide customised content and advertising. By using this site, you agree to this use. To learn more, including how to change your cookie settings, please view our Cookie Policy
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
US
Pocketmags Digital Magazines

Backward BBC

The Thirty-Nine Step

On December 24th 2017, Vicky Allan wrote in the Sunday Herald about the dearth of Scottish literary works adapted for television by the BBC. She certainly has a point; try this - can you think of anything by a Scottish writer which has been adapted by BBC TV since 2000?

I came up with three; the ho-hum 2008 TV film of John Buchan’s The Thirty-Nine Steps, the New Zealand-shot version of Kidnapped screened in 2005 and Monarch of the Glen, the contemporary-set embarrassment that was claimed to be inspired by the work of Compton Mackenzie, who is probably still rotating at a considerable rate underground. Scottish writers do, of course, write drama within the system (Steven Moffatt, for example) while the odd Scottish setting does creep in, such as in Shetland. However, the BBC shies away from any meaningful depiction of Scottish life, past or present, and takes refuge behind unconvincing statistics about the level of Scottish-originated drama output. These figures are always misleading because, to give one example, the dire Waterloo Road schoolsoap was classed as Scottish output even before its narratively-improbable relocation to Greenock.

READ MORE
Purchase options below
Find the complete article and many more in this issue of iScot Magazine - October 2018
If you own the issue, Login to read the full article now.
Single Issue - October 2018
$2.99
Or 299 points
Annual Digital Subscription
Only $ 2.58 per issue
Get the last 12 back issues free with this subscription
SAVE
14%
Was $30.99
Now $30.99

View Issues

About iScot Magazine

issue 46 is now available to download. C’est la gemme !