THE TELEVISION SET — the humble box in the corner of almost every British household — has brought about some of the biggest social changes in modern times. It gives us a window into the lives of people who are different from us: different classes, different races, different sexualities. And through this window, we’ve learnt that, perhaps, we’re not so different after all.
Playing Gay in the Golden Age of British TV looks at gay male representation on and off the small screen — from the programmes that hinted at homoeroticism to Mary Whitehouse’s Clean Up TV campaign, and The Naked Civil Servant to the birth of Channel 4 as an exciting ‘alternative’ television channel. Here, acclaimed social historian Stephen Bourne tells the story of the innovation, experimentation, back-tracking and bravery that led British television to help change society for the better.