Thursday, August 2, 2012

(from M.Christian's Technorotica):

The Year of the Sex Olympics is a 1968 television play made by the BBC and first broadcast on BBC2 as part of Theatre 625. It stars Leonard RossiterTony Vogel,Suzanne Neve and Brian Cox. It was directed by Michael Elliott. The writer was Nigel Kneale, best known as the creator of Quatermass
Influenced by concerns about overpopulation, the counterculture of the 1960s and the societal effects of television, the play depicts a world of the future where a small elite control the media, keeping the lower classes docile by serving them an endless diet oflowest common denominator programmes and pornography. The play concentrates on an idea the programme controllers have for a new programme which will follow the trials and tribulations of a group of people left to fend for themselves on a remote island. In this respect, the play is often cited as having anticipated the craze for reality television.

Kneale had fourteen years earlier adapted George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four as a classic and controversial BBC broadcast and the play reflects much of Kneale's assimilation of Orwell's concern about the power of the media and Kneale's experience of the evolving media industry.


Fulani said...

This was a strange one - not least because it had Leonard Rossiter playing a non-comedy role. I don't think I've seen the whole thing, but did catch bits of it on late-night TV a decade ago. And yes, it did anticipate the reality TV thing. A dozen celebrities dumped in the jungle, carrying out tasks like eating maggots? A bunch of people shut in a house together with enough pressure that they start acting weird? Sooner or later someone will actually make a reality TV show based on the plot of this movie...

M. Christian said...

I'm just so glad that someone posted it. As a huge Nigel Kneale fan it was a frustrating not to be able to see it. I just wish more people would see it!