The fine mess that RTÉ has gotten itself into could be easily sorted out by bringing back to our screens all the successful shows it once broadcast, and by dumping the frightful rubbish it now produces.
A bit like a sheep farmer culling his ewes before breeding season begins, RTÉ needs to go through the flock and pull out all its programmes with lame legs, prolapse, or pendulous udders.
It’s the only way back for our national broadcaster.
RTÉ needs to be like a good sheep farmer. The heart cannot rule the head.
And while getting rid of duds is essential, bringing back successful shows is just as important. Many successful programmes were set aside years ago for reasons best known to RTÉ. Chief amongst them was Glenroe.
Glenroe should have never been shelved, just as a vigorously performing ram should never be corralled. It was going full pelt, and then all of a sudden a stop was put to the gallop. A mistake of the highest order was made. Glenroe needs to return, and the sooner the better.
Now, as for plot lines and concerns about characters who might no longer be with us, there’s no need to be getting bothered. I have all the twists and turns essential to make the show a hit once again, locked away in the back of my head.
All we really need, is to bring back the lights, camera, action and, of course, Biddy.
Glenore cannot run without Biddy, just as my tractor cannot run without a push.
The way I see it, Glenroe’s rebirth could be staged simply by having Biddy in the shower and she suddenly realising it was all a dream.
If I recall Dallas did something like it years ago. I’m not exactly sure how it went at this remove, but the storyline was that it had all been a dream, and there was no more to it.
Biddy dreamt everything up. Dinny, Miley, her marriage, the children, even Miley’s romp with Fidelma in the hay was all a dream.
Admittedly t’was the longest dream ever recorded, but t’was a dream none the less.
And now we find Biddy at home with her mother Mary and her ailing father, whose name escapes me. Mary is still doing a line with Dick Moran, and needless to say, Dick is doing a line with almost everyone else. He’s still the devil for the bed, a martyr to the cause.
Anyhow Biddy is just after having this awful dream in the show, a dream that went on for far too long in the shower and now she faces an emersion/electricity bill that is simply staggering.
There’s no way of paying for it, only to farm her way out of trouble.
So I have a story made up where she buys 60 Friesian bull calves in the spring time, bucket rears the lot and two years later, selling them she makes a mighty profit.
Laugh all you like. I know full well that ‘tis fantasy stuff. But isn’t that the idea behind good television? Just like the movies, it’s the place where your fantasies can run wild, where you deal with the unbelievable.
Walt Disney brought you a car that talks and a snowman that sings. Well I can go one better, and bring you a beef farmer who makes a profit! And her name will be Biddy.
Yes, Biddy will make a profit from calf rearing and I’ll write it in such a way that you will believe it too. She will make enough to pay her electricity bill.
And RTÉ, by returning to rural Ireland once again, will light up our screens like it used to do.