Robin Hood has been axed, a mild cause for celebration in many ways given the ongoing refusal of producers to acknowledge and fix the show’s glaring failings.
A weak main character, a near-schizophrenic leaping between high camp and poorly realised ‘drama’, wafer thin plots and those annoying whooshing caption slides whenever the locale changed to the other side of the Hungarian forest clearing, all ensured the show looked and felt like a refugee from CBBC.
But as much as I loathed the show, a small part of me is perturbed by its demise. When taken with the utter failure and inevitable demise of Bonekickers and the probability that no-one will bother to address the holes in Merlin‘s premise, it feels very much like the late 1980’s when Doctor Who was allowed to wither and die rather be given the resources it needed to succeed.
What followed was more than a decade of TV executives claiming no-one was interested in sci-fi and fantasy shows, rather than being honest enough to accept that the show, much as many of us loved it, just wasn’t as good as it could have been.
It’s not just the BBC of course, the increasingly skint ITV has pulled Primeval and (thankfully) the dreadful Demons, another show which could have been excellent but ended up as excrement.
Considering how little trailing the BBC gave the excellent Apparitions when it aired earlier this year I can’t help but fearl we’re witnessing British TV’s retreat from any form of home-produced fantasy programming.