RTS event

Christmas TV's past, present and future

The 1971 Morecambe & Wise Show, featuring put-upon composer Andre Previn (Credit: BBC)

Christmas ratings are not what they used to be. Many think that festive television is trading on past glories. Now it is threatened by streaming. When bingeing on box sets is more common than keeping up with the latest from the soaps, can Christmas telly survive?

In December, an RTS early-­evening event summoned up the ghosts of Christmas TV past, present and future to look back at festive classics, discuss the 2018 Christmas schedules and predict the role TV will have – if any – in Christmases to come.

Rethinking Barbie: new documentary takes a fresh look at the icon

Caroline Frost, Andrea Nevins and Kim Culmore (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)

Some feminists might choke at the idea that the highly controversial Barbie doll was actually invented by an ardent feminist. This was one of many fascinating insights to emerge from an RTS event devoted to a new feature-length documentary Tiny Shoulders: Rethinking Barbie.

The film examines the changing face of Barbie from a feminist – and occasionally anthropological – perspective since the doll’s debut in 1959.

"It's just wrong": Harriet Harman and senior TV figures hit back at gender pay gap

The former Minister for Women and Equality was the key architect of the Equality Act 2000, which introduced a requirement to report gender pay gaps.

“We should not be discussing it anymore – we should be setting targets to close [the gap],” she continued. “Year on year, we need to see progress and we need to have stretching targets – these gaps are not there for us to be gnashing our teeth at or for admiring those that have lower gaps, they are there for us to make progress towards equal pay.”