The news that Brian True-May, co-creator and producer of ITV1 crime drama Midsomer Murders, has been suspended from his job for commenting to Radio Times about his refusal to cast ethnic minorities on the show, should come as no surprise. The way he chose to justify his stance read like comments from a bygone age that have no place in the modern broadcasting industry.
That said, I grew up not far from Midsomer country – north Buckinghamshire rather than the South Bucks/South Oxon used for the series’ location filming. And the rural villages of this part of the home counties were, in my youth, almost exclusively white. At my local school (which I left a little over 20 years ago), I think the number of non-white pupils out of the entire school roll of 650+ never got above single figures.
My post has been already been picked up by Anglophenia, BBC America’s blog covering UK television and culture.
Unfortunately, it’s also been picked up by a load of new commenters, who seem far too busy defending someone who won’t hire ethnic minorities – in the name, of course, of fighting ‘political correctness’ – to actually stop and think about the issue at hand.