>Did EastEnders go to far?

>I’m writing this post as I watch the EastEnders omnibus. It’s been a week where we have seen Jean Slater try to drown herself in the bath, Kat Moon haemorage at home in bed after giving birth to her baby son and Ronnie Branning discover her newborn son has died in his sleep before swapping her dead baby for that of Kat Moon.

It’s hardly been easy watching to say the least. But have they gone too far?

All of the storylines that have been featured are hardly dreampt up out of the writers imagination, they are things that happen every day. People suffer so serverely from depression that they try to take their own lives or feel like they just can’t carry on, women haemorage after giving birth, some so severely that sadly they lose their lives and terribly, babies die of cot death which in itself is harrowing. But what takes this particular story that step further is Ronnie discovering her baby has died in his sleep and in a moment of madness borne out of grief for the loss of her tiny baby, abducting the child of another woman and replacing him with her own. Again, something that probably does happen.

We all read stories of women who abduct babies from hospitals, some because they can’t have children, some because they have lied to a partner that they are pregnant and others because they have lost their own child and are trying to replace that baby. Then you have the women who lure pregnant women to their homes and cut the unborn child from their wombs – thank god EastEnders didn’t go down that route with the story line! What EastEnders has done is surely nothing new, only rather than reading about it in a newspaper or magazine it has been brought into our homes through television. But there were complaints about the programmes even before they were aired, about both the content and when they were aired, siting that children would be watching tv with their parents at the time the programme was aired and therefore it would be unsuitable for them to watch. If that is the case and you are aware of what is going to happen and you feel it’s unsuitable for your children to watch, turn the channel over! There’s four other tv channels to choose from, or hundreds more in the case of households with Sky Tv.

Losing a child must be absolutely horrific, having a miscarriage is awful enough (and I’ve had several), but to lose a living, breathing, baby that you have given birth to and held in your arms must be absolutely agonising. I can’t even begin to imagine how much pain and heartbreak a parent must go through. People sometimes do crazy things when they are grieving and this storyline only goes to highlight that, it isn’t the norm, it’s something that could happen and in a roundabout way, does happen in “real life” but thankfully only in very few cases.

The scenes have been shocking and upsetting, but it doesn’t mean that the programme shouldn’t have been aired and there was actually some very good acting going on at points throughout the programme. What do you think, was it a step too far?

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6 responses to “>Did EastEnders go to far?

  1. >I think the issues are worthy of coverage but not so early in the evening..I no longer watch Eastenders..I got too fed up of the general negativity..I do like soaps and still watch corrie which also covers issues, but with a lighter touch somehow..I have a 6 year old, and the day she asked me what a crack addict is..(Phil Mitchell) I decided enough was enough..and I simply don't enjoy it enough to bother watching later when there are far better things on.

  2. >I have never been into Eastenders so didn't watch it. Although I did pick up on the storyline after the OH watched it at his Mum's and told me. I'm not sure I would have been comfortable watching it but surely it is the same type of thing as a recent 'Doctors' storyline where the mother had been abusing her 2 year old daughter ending with her drowning her and then trying to pin the blame on the father (who conveniently had a restraining order against him). If I didn't want my child watching it I would have, as you suggested turned over. These soaps highlight issues many of us probably rarely think about and we do, ateotd, have the choice of watching them, or not.

  3. >I am a big fan of Eastenders and tend to watch every episode if I can. The issues portrayed in this storyline have been harrowing but very real life and even though were well acted the part that has annoyed me the most is the concept of baby swapping with Kat and Alfie not recognizing their own baby. I find this the most insulting to the viewers. New parents never stop looking at their babies and I find it very hard to believe that they wouldn't recognize their own child, however new. It's all very good to say turn over or don't watch but it is very disappointing when we feel this has to be the case. CJ xx

  4. >Totally agree CJ, that was the bit I found ridiculous too. Were they wearing the same clothes? I didn't think to look at that, but how can you not possibly recognise your own baby!

  5. >I agree with CJ too about the whole not recognising your own child. I would know in an instant if Freyja got swapped, without a doubt. I didn't watch the episode, but after reading about it in the papers, I am interested to watch what all the fuss is about. I personally don't see why they had tons of complaints about the episode. Yes, it was on before the watershed – but this sort of stuff is real life (albeit dramatised a bit…) and I admire soaps for tackling these issues.

  6. >I think anything that involves babies and death is going to be harrowing and as you said it does happen. I suspect the complaints arise from families touched by these tradegies. Hollyoaks a few years ago did a premature baby storyline and I found it very harrowing and very upsetting as it was very insensitvely done for someone who had gone through it, and very unrealistic for those who had been there. To the outside world though it is like you would imagine it. I don't watch Eastenders but probably would of avoided this episode anyway as we nearly lost our son at 8 weeks old and it would of been a little too raw for me.

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