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Venger

Television Dramas - With Anti Hpi Messages?

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Foyles War and James Bond writer Anthony Horowitz is back with a brand new crime drama for BBC1. Starring newcomers Ben Tavassoli and Mark Strepan and set in modern London, New Blood aims, in Horowitz's words, to make crime drama "a bit more fun". http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2016-06-09/meet-the-cast-of-bbc1s-new-blood

Watched this tonight and at every turn we identified and called out what seemed like very deliberate anti-HPI messages, or intended to show impacts of HPI.

110198.jpg

New Blood

iplayer http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p03vfstf/new-blood-1-case-1-part-1

Edit update: ***Spoilers below *** (taken good advice from Ghost Bird, in post below) - suggest you watch the show. I don't watch much TV and we caught this show by chance... sorry; got a bit carried away giving my insight on it, without spoilers.

..More urgently V you need to throw some of that stuff into a spoiler box. Heard an interview with the creator on BBC R4 a few days ago (the first three episodes have been live on the i-player since 2 June) and the London house price angle is an intentional theme which is developed over the first three episodes.

(Obviously I watched all three - for HPC research purposes; I'm all about the high-brow, but compromises must be made ;) )

- Fraud Squad undercover guy on left, sharing a flat/house that shakes with the railway line. Gets home from work and his pals tell him landlord's been on the phone and wants to up the rent, and that he told landlord to 'speak to you'. Other flatmate tells him the toilet is broken. He calls landlord and explains he can't raise the rent because they have fixed contract that runs for another 3 months.

Detective: You have to give us notice, that's the law.

Landlord on phone: Don't tell me about the law. I Know the law.

Detective (frustrated and squeezing phone handset... smartphone handset): We're already paying you enough. We can't afford any more.

- Guy on the right - PC/Detective - comes home from work to quite large family house, on a row of such houses, which turns out to be his parents home. Lot of older people around. His pleasant sister (about the same age) says the people are friends of parents.... it's one of their birthdays. Tells his sister he has got Detective placement, and she's very happy for him. He goes into lounge... possibly out of a duty to be social for his parents, and is pleasant with them and all their guests, but then sort of goes into a wtf-this-life trance as the older (but happy and okay) people chat around him. Flicks over to other detective, also in a trance of not being where he wants to be in life, with his housemate pals having beers around him; tense.

- At the murdered late 20s/early 30s teacher's flat - sour older detective looks through paperwork and remarks that he has 'nice little flat - big mortgage though - must be getting some help from Mum and Dad.'

- There was another guy living with his Mum, but he was a bit of an odd-ball (something had happened to him) - not really anything in that.

- Less HPC.

One of the Serious Fraud Office higher-directors (a woman). This bit didn't make much sense. Abut a guy they were keeping tabs on (early 40s maybe) as a suspect/link in their hush-hush investigation. They had looked into his financial affairs. Young detective suspects him of taking backhanders... (perhaps this part meant to highlight mid 40s cushy [but in other aspects clearly still switched on] older SFO Director woman just totally out of touch vs house prices).

Detective: He has a Porsche. He eats at the best restaurants. He has a second home in the country.

SFO Director: He can afford to, he's earning £95,000 a year. And there's a wife who also earns.

Edited by Venger

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HP&TE thread really.

More urgently V you need to throw some of that stuff into a spoiler box. Heard an interview with the creator on BBC R4 a few days ago (the first three episodes have been live on the i-player since 2 June) and the London house price angle is an intentional theme which is developed over the first three episodes.

(Obviously I watched all three - for HPC research purposes; I'm all about the high-brow, but compromises must be made ;) )

The Dude don't do spoilers - it's pretty good. It ain't The Wire, but it will suffice as popcorn!

Edited by Ghost Bird

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Here's the interview with the creator; BBC Radio 4 - Front Row, 3 June 2016.

"It is so difficult to be growing up in London at the moment, unable to afford anywhere to live" (2:23)

(I trust that Porca will turn up soon to bear his scars about trying the same trick in the shadow of the last monster f**k-up. Yes, it was never easy, but we stopped keeping the cow in the house after we learned about bacteria living in the shit and I hold onto some hope that a more nuanced appreciation of the interaction between our arbitrary system of money and the arbitrary way in which we tax the economic rents derived from land may lead to a situation where we don't favour what even Merv the Swerve called the worst possible option, which I broadly understand as the socialisation of losses and privatisation of gains, though clearly I don't speak for Merv nor make any particular claim as to what exactly he meant.)

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Thanks for the background info Ghost Bird !!


HP&TE thread really.

More urgently V you need to throw some of that stuff into a spoiler box. Heard an interview with the creator on BBC R4 a few days ago (the first three episodes have been live on the i-player since 2 June) and the London house price angle is an intentional theme which is developed over the first three episodes.

(Obviously I watched all three - for HPC research purposes; I'm all about the high-brow, but compromises must be made ;) )


Listened to your link to radio segment with the writer/creator. Very interesting. How he looked at situation for his 2 mid-twenties sons in writing it... challenges for younger people.

Looking forward to next episodes, if as you suggest, more focus on HPI issues. Now I know they're both on iplayer, I might watch them this weekend.

It may not be high-brow, but I for one welcome some popcorn/fun crime drama over the darker stuff. Especially when it shows some of the impacts economy is having on younger people - vs - some big-bad crime. White collar crimes - mad financial dealings, etc. If there had been more such focus in tv crime shows over the last 15-20 years, perhaps it would have seeped into wider consciousness and we'd be in slightly better place with the economy and fairness. Just possibility of less HPI crazyness and championing, and fewer mad financial dealings in quest to own all, no matter what the price, providing big pay and bonuses roll in here and now - for the self-gainz thinkers only.

Girl I watched this with told me their 'looks' - hairstyles... typical of 20-29 year old men now, out and about, and in her workplace. Cleanish cut. Honest. She also commented on the nice-cut/fabric overcoat the pc/detective on the right was wearing at one point..... when he went with the grumpy older detective who remarked the guy must have been geting help for small flat (big mortgage) from Bank of Mum and Dad.

Edited by Venger

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Episode two is on BBC1 at 9pm tonight, and all of the first three episodes are still up on iPlayer.

I liked it, I thought it was entertaining and surprisingly lighthearted given the subject matter. It strikes me as in a similar sort of vein to Luther.

The crappy housing situation for younger people is a running theme throughout, with some interesting choices in terms of signposting good and bad characters.

As with the posts above don't read the spoiler if you intend to watch the show.

The third episode ends with the two main characters going to view a flat with a view to buying it together, which given they're not romantically involved and didn't know each other at all at the start of the first episode is pretty d@mn insane.

However, my take on this is that this show is essentially escapist fantasy - it has a sort of comic book feel to it and a lot of the other plot elements are fairly ridiculous too, when you take a moment to think about them, but entertainingly so - and so I think that this twist is pretty interesting from a certain perspective.

Given the housing problems of the target demographic it seems to me that part of what this show is saying is it's no longer enough to get viewers to identify with characters and then have them turn out to be Die Hard style heroes once circumstances give them the opportunity, the show has to fix their housing situation too, otherwise it's not a proper escapist fantasy.

Also, I feel like the dialogue as they walk away towards their viewing encourages us to draw a parallel between buying a flat in London and their earlier high-octane adventures, i.e. both are unrealistic (but entertaining) fantasy.

I think it'll be interesting to see whether the housing market continues to play such a visible role in the show moving forward, or whether it was primarily the set-up to the main characters' new living arrangements (which could easily be a source of ongoing tension).

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Super read into it Neverwhere. :)

Third episode ending. Agreed. Insane.

I wasn't expecting so much action in this episode.

Bit of escapism I suppose (Die Hard - agreed) - the show has to 'fix their housing situation too' - haha 'otherwise not proper escapist fantasy.' - haha - but very unrealistic as you suggest.

I feel like the dialogue as they walk away towards their viewing encourages us to draw a parallel between buying a flat in London and their earlier high-octane adventures, i.e. both are unrealistic (but entertaining) fantasy.

Great point!!!

They teamed up behind their bosses backs, shared confidential departmental info, ended up losing their jobs, and took matters into their own hands. All came good (somehow - despite a witness who was no longer able to testify... just a lot of bulletholes in a building) and fantasy being both given positions back.

Still, have have to recognise it's a feature of the market, although these two friends had rented together before buying together.

http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?/topic/206236-were-not-gay-just-priced-out-the-minefield-of-buying-a-flat-with-a-friend-d-tele/

Can only hope it falls through, and they don't buy together. Although if they do buy and it's a 'source of tension' going forwards (joint mortgage on flat, at high price), that might be interesting as well. Nevertheless it was a surprise to me, and left me feeling so cold. Had been enjoying the fun of the show until that point. It was a massive disappointment for me. However they make their own decisions - or the writer has done. Even if they don't buy (next episodes will find out), it reveals how they think and see the market/value. One of them had it pretty cushy as well, living in nice house with his parents and sister, within easy commute. More options than most. Straight to looking at flat to buy with a new friend, simply because he missed appointment to go and see a room in a house (for rent), that went to someone else when he rang back...? As though no more rooms in house shares available, that joint-renting nice place with a pal/new friend, not a sensible alternative.

The young man who raised it, didn't even know anything about the other guy's savings (for deposit). It was just all so insane. They don't really know each other yet, despite both being likeable honest guys.

--------------------

It's been on the market a while. They've reduced the price. (What..... by how much? To make it any sort of value? In this recent market?)

------------

So why did you want to me here? (both having coffee at a cafe - reflection of housing on widow they're both looking through)

I just thought you might be interested...

What?

I'm looking at a flat.

What to rent?

To buy.

Why would I be interested in that?

..I can only afford half the mortgage. .. It's been on the market a while. They've dropped the price.

(Takes paperwork) Looks alright.

Yeah.

vNgaa0wk.jpg

Two bedrooms.

Yep.

Alright; I'll take a look.

Why not.

Cant' get a fix on location from particulars. Probably just made up for the show.

Edited by Venger

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You never know, they might get outbid by a BTLer in episode four. ;)

Alternatively they may also find that stretching and compromising to be homeowners in this market is not the promised land they think it will be.

It will certainly be interesting to see where the show goes with it if they do buy together and then the market turns in real life...

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At least they didn't go through with it. Busy at work. Although one of them hasn't run any numbers it seems to me.....

Buy vs rent calcs - 'should always buy' he says.

Also read this Daily Mirror 2015 article the other day (it was on a thumbnail from another housing story I was reading)..... associating it with part of Ep 1 + 2.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/money/letting-agents-tell-disabled-couple-5996637

I watched Ep 4+5 last night, with only Ep 6 still to catch up on.

One of them has it very cushy at his parents house imo, with his sister. The sister (nurse) doesn't seem in any rush to leave, and i personally wouldn't blame her in all of the circumstances simply for 'independence' - although I know people differ about that. Stefan doesn't have that option to stay with parents - and the other guy does have loving parents. When Stefan (?) came around unexpectedly with a bottle of wine to apologise for getting him drunk (lol), they had house to themselves and chilled in the nice kitchen. Also they're all out working, including an all-night shift.

*And certainly not for a place he was getting excited about. A room in someone else's small house, with teddybears all over the lounge.

Housing/money/VI still a big theme in this TV crime-drama-lite.

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Have now caught up with all episodes broadcast to date.

One boomer couple returned to their swish London home, from a weekend away in Wiltshire (where they have a house) to discover they have been burgled.

Rash and Stefan are involved in trying to find one of Stephan suspects (fraud investigation), and are creative in gaining entry to a top-end mews-house in Notting Hill, and soon realise that no sign that anyone has actually been living there. Just empty.

Rash and Stefan view a rental property, and it's a swish apartment. Owned by a company who for some reason are offering the apartment at an attractive price. Then loads of other people turn up at viewing, and they are told they will have to be vetted and interviewed.

And in previous episode, I forgot to mention there was suggestion of not all being right with fancy towers of apartments being built for investors to buy-and-leave.

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I'm not sure if ep. 7 has been broadcast or if it's just up on the iPlayer as a preview, but spoilers so don't read the below if you intend to watch it.

The housing theme remains very strong IMO. It seems to be as prominent as fraud and crime - and the two main characters are a serious fraud officer and a police officer!

What I think is especially striking about it is that in every case so far at least one of the "baddies" has turned out to be either a landlord or a property developer:

  • Case 1 - the minister (?) trying to undermine an SFO operation owns the flat that his niece, who works for the SFO, lives in and uses this fact to corrupt her.
  • Case 2 - the ultimate orchestrator of all the murders is a property developer whose PCL development is going south.
  • Case 3 - the fraudster lawyer who is arrested as a result of work done by the main characters is revealed to own the suspiciously good value flat they're now renting and to have sinister plans for making sure that they were the ones that got to rent it.

I'm expecting a cameo appearance from Bustamove any day now! ;)

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