‘Somehow, something clicked’: Russell T Davies on how soap opera changed his life
The It’s A Sin writer has always been obsessed with soaps – and now he’s put Helena Bonham Carter in one. Here, he discusses his new drama about Crossroads – the show that sparked his TV dream
Iwas transfixed by a bright yellow wall. It was the early 70s, and my mum had bought our first colour television set. Brand new, out of the box, but unplugged, blind, dead. She glared at me and my sisters, Janet and Susie. “I’m going to your nan’s, so don’t you dare turn that on without me. If you do, it will explode and kill you.” And they wonder why I became a dramatist. We waited all of two seconds after she’d gone, then ran to plug it in. And then it appeared.
Crossroads. Miss Diane was arguing with husband Vince, the postman. I think he was drunk. Actually, I think she was an alcoholic and seeing in him everything that had gone wrong in her life, or something. But never mind that – they stood against a wall that was so yellow! It would be trite to say that image burned itself into my brain so deeply that my entire career has been chasing that moment. And yet here I am.