Red Chair Watches: The Bill

But first, a sort of throwback Thursday picture — because Mom’s house is full of stuff that have survived thousands of TBTs:

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This can of Woolite powder has been under the guest bedroom sink for as long as I can remember.  Mom and Dad moved to the “new” house almost 30 years ago, and I am pretty sure this container moved with them from the old house.  It would never have occurred to Mom to get rid of an unfinished can of anything if it were still usable, but the interesting thing is that she had a newer (newer being a relative term) bottle of Woolite under the same sink, sitting just in front of the old canister.   I understand that on Ebay, people sell this sort of vintage items for decorative purposes.  Perhaps I will leave the can on the counter for decoration.

On to The Bill, a British police drama that aired between 1984 and 2010.  I had never heard of it until this past summer, when I suddenly discovered YouTube.  Now, I have known  about YouTube (I once subscribed to the Queen’s YouTube updates), but I did not know just how much stuff was available on YouTube, legal or otherwise.  And then this past summer, I found all the episodes of Agatha Christie’s Poirot, and I binged.  I eventually landed on The Bill, and even with incomplete series, there are many hours of mindless and entertaining watching available.

I enjoy the time travel; in a sense, I “grow up” again while watching the series.  The hair!  The makeup!  The clothes!  The technology!  I remember the first cell phones — I owned a fairly clunky Motorola in 1995, back when phones had antennae, back when minutes cost an arm and leg, back when people talked loudly on their mobiles so that all the peasants would know they had mobiles.  I watch The Bill, and I remember.  I remember the Thatcher years, the economic depression, the racial unrest.  I think the series did a decent job of reflecting those unsettling years.  The episodes don’t always have neat endings, and they shouldn’t.  The characters are not always likable, and they shouldn’t be.  There are some amazingly politically-incorrect moments, as there should be.  And as a historian, I love the reminders of where we were, where we went, and where we could be.

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