The Enemy Within
As it turns out, Doctor Who’s most powerful enemy might not be Dalek, Zygon, nor Cyberman, but rather a beleaguered English bureaucrat looking for a fight with the BBC.
SPOILERS!!! Political rants ahead… 🙂
Culture Secretary John Whittingdale is said to be proposing a new set of rules designed to crackdown on “competitive scheduling” that would prevent the BBC to stop broadcasting its most popular programming at the same time as its rival ITV. If implemented, the move would mean that BBC favorites like Poldark, The Night Manager, Sherlock, and of course Doctor Who would effectively be banned from weekend prime-time slots.
That’s like saying you can’t schedule another popular show against, say, Big Bang Theory.
The Conservative politician claims that because the BBC is funded through television licensing fees (what amounts to a national TV tax), aggressively competing with commercial stations for ratings is both a misuse of funds and gives the BBC an unfair advantage.
So he has an ITV agenda, then. Not like any Conservative I know. But then again a lot of “Conservatives” in this country are hardly conservative to begin with or consumed with their own power and agenda.
He talk more like Liberals in this country that don’t like competition (but yet they try everything to rig it in their favor curiously enough) and want it to be “fair”. You know the type that has some kind of competition and then gives out the same award to everyone “equally”. Thus no one “wins” and certainly no one “loses”. Except that everyone involved.
Whittingdale’s opponents immediately fired back calling the proposed rules a “completely unacceptable interference in the independence of the BBC.”
Luckily, for Who fans on both sides of the Atlantic, it looks like a beef with the BBC is the last thing Whittingdale needs on his already-full plate. A fairly controversial figure in British politics after a number of private scandals,
Apparently, the press that he has been hounding and regulating caught him having a relationship with a woman who worked in a brothel.
A public shaming. In this country they just call that “bigotry”. 🙂
it appears Whittingdale is already walking back this potential controversy. A government spokesperson publicly denied reports of the proposed changes Sunday, but the opposition party had already pounced: Labour Shadow Culture Secretary Maria Eagle released a statement accusing Whittingdale of “behaving as if he ran the BBC.”
While the denial has temporarily calmed the waters, history shows that going after the BBC is a priority for Whittingdale. The Cultural Secretary has been linked to a right-wing think-tank which has called to privatize the BBC due to an alleged “left-wing bias,” and previously has attempted to revamp the fee structure for the BBC’s streaming service.
Yeah, the BBC is left wing. No doubt. But a true Conservative wouldn’t use a Leftist tactic, would they? 🙂
If the potential shift in scheduling does happen, it won’t have a huge impact on BBC America audiences, at least at first. However, as ratings have continued to slump over the past few years, rumors of the show’s cancellation have only intensified. (Inverse)
The 2016 “hiatus” anyone?? 🙂 Shades of 1985.
Being barred from the coveted weekend night time slots, could be the nail in the show’s coffin.
Maybe we should have another “Trial of a Time Lord Series in 2017. 🙂