Alison Steadman – early dramas

At the Flatpack Film Festival on Sunday 24 April 2016, at the Midlands Arts Centre, there was a screening of two of Alison Steadman’s early films. The dramas were both in the Second City Firsts slot of 30 minute films, which brought new talent to the small screen.

freeze frame from Girl

freeze frame from Girl

IMG_1356

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first film was a studio drama, with an entirely female cast, and practically all set within a single room, which makes it feel quite claustrophobic. The copy was quite poor quality, presumably due to the transmission copy being lost. It tells the story of Jackie, played by Steadman, who is being discharged from the army due to being pregnant. She is portrayed as quite a vulnerable character, preyed upon by the predatory Corporal Harvey. The drama features the first lesbian kiss on British television. Below is the original entry from the Radio Times for 25th Feb 1974:

“A season of six original plays from Birmingham 2: Girl by JAMES ROBSON
Jackie is leaving the Army. While waiting for the car she re-encounters Corporal Harvey , her previous lover …
Script editor TARA PREM Designer MYLES LANG
Producer BARRY HANSON Director PETER GILL

Contributors

Writer: James Robson
Unknown: Corporal Harvey
Editor: Tara Prem
Designer: Myles Lang
Producer: Barry Hanson
Director: Peter Gill
Harvey: Myra Frances
Jackie: Alison Steadman
Maggie: Stella Moray
Bailey: Eileen McCallum”

http://genome.ch.bbc.co.uk/df9338563bc143718869eb3742639393

Helen (played by Steadman), pops next door

Helen (played by Steadman), pops next door

Helen with Vinny

Helen with Vinny

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The second film was shot on location in Oldham. It was Alan Bleasdale’s first TV drama, and features the adulterous Helen, played by Steadman, who is brightening up her mundane life as a housewife, by enjoying some extra marital sex with Vinny, the young athletic next-door neighbour, who is about to leave for university.

Here is the original Radio Times entry for Early to Bed:

“A season of new plays from Birmingham Early to Bed by ALAN BLEASDALE
There’s Helen (top). She’s on her own in the mornings after Frankie (middle) goes to work. But young Vinnie (bottom) from next door comes calling …
The pupils of HiNBUY AND .RRAY GRAMMAR SCHOOL Designer Michael EDWARDS
Script editor William SMETBUttST Producer BARRY HANSON
Director LESI PEBLAiR ,i Birmingham*
Birmingham welcomes careful writert: see Jeature beginning page 13

Contributors

Unknown: Alan Bleasdale
Designer: Michael Edwards
Producer: Barry Hanson
Director: Lesi Peblair
Vinny: David W Arwicic
Helen: Alison Steadman
Mother: Patricia Leach
Frankie: Johnny Meadows
Mr Hughes: Clifford Kershaw
Postman: Ashley Thompson
Frankie’s mates: Charles Hatton
Frankie’s mates: Cliff Duncan
Diana Marina: Barbara Ruan
Musicians: Sylvia McPokald
Musicians: Jack McDonald”

[NB mistakes are in the Genome project entry]

http://genome.ch.bbc.co.uk/schedules/bbctwo/england/1975-03-20

 

Stay Informed

Choose the way you would like to be notified for latest posts.

Bookmark & Share

Share this with your friends.

No Comments yet

Be the first to write a comment

Leave a Comment