Dramarama (TV series)

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Dramarama
Dramarama Title Card.JPG
GenreDrama
Science fiction
Created byAnna Home[1]
Starringvaried by episode
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
Production
Executive producer(s)varied by episode
Producer(s)varied by episode
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)ITV
Release
Original networkITV Network (CITV)
Original release12 September 1983 –
21 August 1989

Dramarama was a British children's anthology series broadcast on ITV between 1983 and 1989. The series tended to feature single dramas with a science fiction, supernatural and occasionally satirical theme. It was created by Anna Home, then head of children's and youth programming at TVS; however, the dramas themselves were produced by a total of twelve ITV regional companies.[2] Thus, each episode was in practice a one-off production with its own cast and crew, up to and including the executive producer.

Dramarama was largely a showcase for new talent to television and offered debuts for Anthony Horowitz, Paul Abbott, Kay Mellor, Janice Hally, Tony Kearney,[3] David Tennant and Ann Marie Di Mambro. It was also one of Dennis Spooner's last works.[4]

One of the stories, Thames' Dodger, Bonzo And The Rest from 1984, proved so popular that it was spun off into its own series and Christmas special the following year - the series starred Lee Ross and recounted life in a large foster home.[4] Another story, Granada's Blackbird Singing in the Dead of Night from 1988, was developed into the long-running series Children's Ward.[4] The original Dramarama story was co-written by Paul Abbott and Kay Mellor - at the time, working as staff writers for Granada.[5]

The series has rarely been repeated in recent years, although two episodes - Blackbird Singing in the Dead of Night and Back to Front - were broadcast on the CITV Channel as part of a 30th anniversary weekend in January 2013.[6]

Episodes[edit]

Dramarama: Spooky (1982)[edit]

  1. War Games With Caroline
  2. The Exorcism of Amy
  3. The Danny Roberts Show
  4. The Ghostly Earl
  5. In a Dark, Dark Box...
  6. The Restless Ghost
  7. The Keeper

90 episodes (1983–89)

Series one (1983)[edit]

  1. Mighty Mum And The Petnappers (TVS)
  2. Rip It Up (TVS)
  3. Venchvenchieie (Tyne Tees)
  4. Jack And The Computer (TVS)
  5. Because I Say So (Central)
  6. Bully For Cosmo (Central)
  7. Messages (Tyne Tees)
  8. The Young Person's Guide To Getting Their Ball Back (TVS)
  9. Sweet Revenge (Central)
  10. The Restless Ghost (Thames)

Series two (1984)[edit]

  1. Night Of The Narrow Boats (Central)
  2. Fowl Pest (TVS)
  3. Dodger, Bonzo And The Rest (Thames)
  4. Que Sera (TVS)
  5. Stalemate (Central)
  6. Snoop! (Thames)
  7. Mr. Stabs (Thames)
  8. Josephine Jo (Central)
  9. The Purple People Eater (TVS)
  10. On Your Tod (Thames)
  11. The Old Firm: Two For Starters (Granada)
  12. Rachel And Rosie (TVS)

Series three (1985)[edit]

  1. Easy (TVS)
  2. The Coal Princess (Tyne Tees)
  3. Look At Me (Central)
  4. The Young Person's Guide To Going Backwards In The World (TVS)
  5. The Audition (Tyne Tees)
  6. The Universe Downstairs (TVS)
  7. A Proper Little Nooryeff (Central)
  8. Frog (TVS)
  9. Private Eye (Scottish)
  10. Emily (TVS)
  11. Silver (Scottish)
  12. The Golden Conch (HTV)
  13. Purple Passion Video (HTV West)

Series four (1986)[edit]

  1. The Come-Uppance of Captain Katt (TVS)
  2. A Couple Of Charlies (Central)
  3. Wayfarers (Scottish)
  4. Play Acting (HTV)
  5. Last Days At Black Bert's (TVS)
  6. Maureen Reid, Where Are You? (Scottish)
  7. Flashback (HTV West)
  8. Direct Action (TVS)
  9. Waiting For Elvis (Scottish)
  10. Just A Game (TVS)
  11. Flyaway Friend (Tyne Tees)
  12. Pig Ignorance (Thames)
  13. Jessie's Place (Thames)
  14. Frankie's Hat (Thames)

Series five (1987)[edit]

  1. Cannondrum (TVS)
  2. Snap (TVS)
  3. The Horrible Story (Thames)
  4. My Friend Julie (Thames)
  5. The Creature Beyond Torches' End (TVS)
  6. My Mum's A Courgette (Scottish)
  7. Brainwaves (Scottish)
  8. Undertow Of The Armada (Ulster)
  9. Stan's First Night (Scottish)
  10. Living Doll (TVS)
  11. Peter (Central)
  12. The Halt (Central)
  13. Mr Magus Is Waiting For You (Thames)
  14. Tam (HTV West)
  15. A Spirited Performance (HTV Wales)
  16. Badger On The Barge (Border)

Series six (1988)[edit]

  1. Forever Young (Granada)
  2. The Macramé Man (Scottish)
  3. The Wrong Button (Central)
  4. Bubbles (Granada)
  5. Blackbird Singing In The Dead Of Night (Granada)
  6. Big T For Trouble (Tyne Tees)
  7. Room For One More (Scottish)
  8. Making Waves (TVS)
  9. Just A Normal Girl (Husson Productions for Central)
  10. Now You See Them (TVS)
  11. Bogeymen (TVS)
  12. The Alien (Border)
  13. The Secret Of Croftmore (Scottish)
  14. The Bubblegum Brigade (HTV)
  15. Playing For Wales (HTV Wales)
  16. Snap Decision (Husson Productions for Central)

Series seven (1989)[edit]

  1. Codzmorf (TVS)
  2. Ghost Story (Granada)
  3. Badger (Granada)
  4. Back To Front (Yorkshire)
  5. Monstrous (HTV Wales)
  6. The Pisces Connection (HTV West)
  7. Rosie The Great (Teliesyn Productions for Thames)
  8. Snakes And Loofahs (KPO Ltd/Border)
  9. Just Wild About Harry (Tyne Tees)
  10. Mitchin (TSW)
  11. In The Pink (Husson Productions for Central)

Only four ITV companies of the time did not contribute to the series: Anglia, Channel, Grampian and LWT.

TVS produced the greatest number of episodes.

Video[edit]

A videotape containing the episodes "Big T for Trouble", "Just Wild About Harry" and "Venchie" (all Tyne Tees productions) was released by Video Gems, c. 1990. It is now out of print.

DVD[edit]

All episodes produced by Thames Television have been released by Network DVD, who have also released the 1983 series Spooky which was shown under the Dramarama banner.

The home video rights to the majority of the remaining episodes are held by ITV Studios, aside from those produced by Scottish, TVS and TSW.

References[edit]

  1. ^ BFI biography of Anna Home, indicating her as responsible for the show's setup.
  2. ^ "Looking back at Dramarama: series 1-2". Den of Geek. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  3. ^ "'Scott and Jo' heading for Braehead to sign books". Paisley Daily Express. 1 November 2012.
  4. ^ a b c "Looking back at Dramarama: series 3-7". Den of Geek. Retrieved 29 November 2017.
  5. ^ Encyclopedia of television. Newcomb, Horace., Museum of Broadcast Communications. (2nd ed.). New York: Fitzroy Dearborn. 2004. ISBN 1579583946. OCLC 54462093.CS1 maint: others (link)
  6. ^ "CITV celebrates 30th anniversary with a weekend of classic children's programmes". Radio Times. Retrieved 29 November 2017.

External links[edit]