Television choices used to be much simpler
LAST Friday I got a blast from the past, as I learned that Channel Four celebrated their 36th birthday.
For anyone born before the 1980s when RTE launched RTE2, this was a time when there were only four TV channels available to watch - RTE1, BBC1, BBC2 and UTV - and living here so close the border, we received those UK channels. If you lived anywhere in the midlands or west coast, the only station available was RTE.
Instantly Channel 4, was a game changer and they commissioned many exciting and pioneering programmes such as Brookside, which was much edgier and than Coronation Street and others such as Scrapheap Challenge, The Word, TFI Friday, while their news programme was vastly different than anything on air at the time.
Channel 4, also helped give rise to reality TV which has changed the TV landscape with the arrival of Big Brother.
Looking now, it is hard to imagine just how limited TV viewing and choice was then, five channels, no video recorders, Sky+ was unimaginable, the television and there was only one, in many houses in the 1980s was only black and white, no colour and no remote control, you actually had to get up off the sofa to change channel, adjust the volume or turn off the television.
The funny thing is, you never heard anyone complain about there been nothing to watch, which is a regular cry today, that TV with hundreds of channels, Sky+, Netflix and there is nothing to watch other than re-runs of Friends, Only Fools and Horses or Last of the Summer Wine.
Yes I know, I’m getting old.