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EastEnders is 'not realistic' working class life

EastEnders is 'not realistic' working class life
EastEnders is 'not realistic' working class life

EastEnders is not a realistic portrayal of working-class life in today's East End, the BBC One's soap boss has admitted. John Yorke said the flagship BBC1 drama, which sparked controversy with a baby swap storyline, contained an 'emotional truthfulness'. He told the Radio Times: "EastEnders' East End and its version of working-class life are very stylised... "It's not realistic in that respect, but you look for an emotional truthfulness." The BBC's controller of drama production admitted that the BBC1 soap 'may be significantly white compared with the real East End'. But he added: "It's considerably more multicultural than it was even five years ago and is easily the most multicultural show on telly now." Meanwhile, Coronation Street executive producer Kieran Roberts told the magazine that the ITV1 soap was 'sufficiently real'. He said: "I doubt there are many streets in Britain that function quite like that, but it's not that alien an existence." He said: "The ethnic mix is something we're always conscious of. Statistically, we're probably getting it about right, but I don't think that's the way you should judge things. It's about how things feel. "I'd be very worried if viewers - especially viewers from ethnic minorities - were saying they didn't think the show represented them fully."

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 


An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.