When I was just a wee little lass, I was hugely inspired by Granada Television's World In Action series, 7 Up.
Back in 1964, World in Action looked at the Jesuit saying: “Give me the child until he is 7, and I will show you the man“, or woman, and they did.
My introduction to the Up series of documentaries was through school, with much of my "O" Level Humanities coursework based on watching the programmes made in the sixties and seventies. It is still, without a doubt, my all time favourite documentary. Even though I have been but a mere trespasser in those peoples lives, each and every one of them has encouraged me to open my mind and appreciate life from different perspectives.
Today, much of the increasingly popular reality TV is nothing more than a centre stage to emulate illusion and delusion in a wannabe fame seeking section of society with subjects morphing into media marketed beings.
I guess everyone is entitled to their 15 minutes of fame, but the 7 Up programme started something very real and truly special, in my humble opinion. Something that many reality producers and stars may not even comprehend today. The series mapped out changes in our society, highlighting how preordained projections based on stereotypes and social status may make assumptions that do not always materialise, for many different reasons. The snippets of those different peoples' lives have shown evolution and individual growth according to an ever changing world of challenges, opportunities, circumstance and personal abilities, not by media hype.
Every 7 years I have eagerly awaited an update, and despite knowing that an instalment was due to be aired this year, I missed it. Thankfully, I was able to catch up on 56 Up - Part 1 on ITV Player
Real people inspire me. I appreciate the insight that life is not always about what you have, or don't have, but what you do with those variables. And with that in mind... I'd like to thank all the people who took part in the Up Series over the years, in front and behind the cameras, for being a big part of my real life education.