There’s obviously something here that I am not getting. Because love “Yesterday” as I do, I still don’t quite get it.
That is, the “Yesterday” channel, which is often on in my bedroom late at night, as I prepare to sleep, or wind down with a spot of late night dilation.
Now, for those who aren’t aware of the channel – or who are aware but don’t watch – the idea is simple. Its, er, a TV channel dedicated, mostly, to the past.
The clue is in its original incarnation as UKTV History.
Which is splendid. Because there’s so much past to choose from. Anything, everything from the Pharaohs to Kruschev: Julius Caesar to Ho Chi Minh.
I like my history, espesh my social and cultural stuff, so I look forward to sitting down to in-depth analyses of the role of women in ancient rome. Or morality in the Victorian era. Or pretty much anything in between.
Only they don’t do that stuff. Instead, here’s a clue: World at War.
The Channel Islands at War.
D-Day to Berlin.
And on and on. There is a certain same-iness to it all. And while they might also regularly show repeats of the antiques roadshow, last of the summer wine (which is scarcely “yesterday”, apart from the fact that the prog had whiskers on it the day it was released) as well as a succession of swashbuckling bodice rippers from the pen of Catherine Cookson, the entirety of history, as far as the average Yesterday viewer is concerned might as well be crammed into a period of six short years (1939 – 1945).
Or even one year, since the proportion of programming that focuses on the run-up to and immediate aftermath of the Normandy landings is pretty high within the mix.
I mean, don’t we have enough interesting other history? What happened to a thousand years of Britainicity? Our kings and queens, our laws, our social progress and religious strife.
Why, why why this obsession with war – and in particular just that ONE war.
Opinions, on a postcard, please.