Timothy West: Soaps don't value older characters
- Bang Showbiz
- 25 March 2014
'EastEnders' newcomer Timothy West thinks TV soaps nowadays don't put enough emphasis on good older characters
Timothy West says TV soaps don't value older characters enough.
The 79-year-old star has just joined the cast of 'EastEnders' as Danny Dyer's on-screen dad Stan Carter and is glad he is able to breathe new life into the soap's older generation.
Asked whether older actors were represented enough in soaps, he told Radio Times magazine: "I find they're not valued so much and I suspect that's one of the reasons why I've been brought in [to 'EastEnders']. From what I hear, there hasn't been enough interest in older characters.
"Or enough older characters to be interested in. I do, though, have enormous respect for June Brown [Dot Cotton]."
However, Timothy insists that isn't the main reason he accepted the role and claims it's simply an advantage.
He added: "I took it because it's a good part."
While the theatre veteran doesn't think there was a "golden age" of television, he does regret the demise of the weekly play and believes soaps have filled that gap for the British public.
Timothy explained: "I do miss things like the single play. It was the event of the week. Now you have more channels, you don't get that conversation at the bus stop about what you saw last night.
"[Soaps are] not the same. But, in one way, they are similar, in that they offer an alternative to genre serials like police dramas. You know the detective is always going to solve the crime. But soap operas put characters in different situations that often have different outcomes."