Grange Hill. Series One – Episode One

I’ve slightly redrafted and expanded my thoughts on this opening episode. I’m also gearing up to tackle Series Nine – posts should start appearing at the end of next week.

Archive Television Musings

grange hill s01e01

Written by Phil Redmond. Tx 8th February 1978

Benny Green (Terry Sue Patt) has the honour of being the first pupil we see entering the grounds of Grange Hill. Quite why he’s so early isn’t explained here – but it’s obvious from his opening scene that he lives for football. He’s also black and poor – which were both considerable disadvantages in late seventies Britain, but he’s always a positive character and never spends his time complaining about what he doesn’t have.

This opener is quite effective in demonstrating how intimidating a secondary school could be on your first day and the key part of the episode is the way that the various pupils react. Tucker (Todd Carty) and Alan (George Armstrong) take it in their stride whilst Judy (Abigail Brown) and Justin (Robert Morgan) view the place with barely disguised horror. Both are isolated, since all of their old friends have gone to…

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