Picture Book on BBC4

Did anyone watch Picture Book on BBC4 over recent weeks? We recorded it and watched later, so this comment isn’t as fresh as it should be.

Very good programme, and quite informative, even if the choice of books was a little predictable. At times it seemed as if they had decided in advance who they wanted to interview, and they had to find something of theirs that actually counted as a picture book. As you know I love Philip Pullman a lot, but to count His Dark Materials as a picture book, is perhaps not strictly correct.

All the big names in children’s literature had been interviewed, and I was startled to realise how many of them I had actually met. I discovered I had even met one of the book characters mentioned, which is a little weird, having had afternoon tea with Hatty from Tom’s Midnight Garden.

It was nice to see Nicolette Jones and Nicholas Tucker, along with Davids Lloyd, Almond and Fickling, the laureates Jacqueline Wilson and Michael Rosen. Eoin Colfer was funny as usual, and it was good to get some background on Shirley Hughes’ books from Shirley herself.

Shirley Hughes illustration

If I haven’t mentioned all, and I know I haven’t, just complain. I’m used to it.

4 responses to “Picture Book on BBC4

  1. I have missed this series, which I am quite gutted about. Hopefully they will show it again. As a mother of young children, I read the ‘classic’ picture books all the time, as well as those by newer writers. I would be surprised if Janet and Alan Ahlberg were not mentioned in the series… Each Peach Pear Plum? Peepo? Burglar Bill? Genius…

  2. I’m fairly sure Allan Ahlberg was interviewed in the first programme, Claire. My children never read much of his, so he’s not as high on my horizon as perhaps he should be.

    Hopefully they’ll repeat the series soon, so look out for it.

  3. I watched and enjoyed it – although I agree about the predictable book choices and thought the series title was rather misleading!
    They could so easily have made a 3-part series just about picture books, past, present and future (and I mean actual picture books, not illustrated books which it banged on about for the most part).
    I also thought it was a shame it was ‘buried away’ after the watershed on BBC4, especially when ITV’s primetime Tonight programme was highlighting the growing literacy problems in Britain’s pre-school children. A perfect time to be championing picture books more noisily, I would have thought?
    I think I’d better stop writing before this turns into a rant! 🙂

  4. I thought it was rather buried even by being shown on BBC4. I still think five channels only, when checking the paper for something to watch.

    I suspect it was only intended for adults of a certain kind, so time didn’t matter. Ranting comes so easily, doesn’t it?

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