Television Drama offers an account of British television drama from its origins in live studio drama in the prewar and immediate postwar years, through the Golden Age of the single play in the 1960s and 1970s, to its convergence with an emerging British art cinema in the 1990s. It relates the development of television drama to movements which were going on within the culture. In particular, it is concerned with a series of arguments and debates about politics and form which centred around issues of immediacy and naturalism, realism and modernism in public culture. The book addresses contemporary television in the form of the television film and the classic serial, and raises new questions about such issues as adaptation and acting.
The importance of the book lies in its attempt to place television drama at the centre of late twentieth-century British culture and to relate the criticism of television drama to a wider history of aesthetic debates and arguments.