crossroads2003andbeyond.co.uk

LETTER TO PRODUCER PETER ROSE


This letter was first published on the Crossroads Fan Club website in 2002. Crossroads Co-Creator Peter Ling telephoned writer of the piece Daniel Landsberger to let us know he, as co-creator, agreed with everything Daniel had said. There was no reply from Peter Rose.

Dear Peter,

With a great deal of uncertainty surrounding the programme's future at present I have read with interest your comments blaming the media for the current situation. Many stalwart fans of the series will lay the blame elsewhere!

When we first heard that Crossroads was returning, old fans of the show were delighted. We felt that that the programme had never deserved to be axed in 1987, despite the fact that the programme was no longer quite the show it had once been after meddling attempts to "modernise" the programme had failed comprehensively. News that the programme was to be totally updated were not encouraging although we were pleased that 3 of the old cast were returning. We would have liked to see many more brought back but at least 3 was something and it included the popular characters of Jill and Adam Chance as well as Doris Luke.

When the series started many of us had mixed feelings. It was clear that the programme was being targeted at a juvenile audience with young characters and "sexy" storylines. Character development and old-fashioned story-telling were clearly of secondary importance. Still the return of Jill and later Adam were great moments for diehard fans although Jill's resumption of the married name of her last husband but one was a puzzle which remained unresolved. To give credit where it is due the scenes leading up to and immediately following the meeting of Jill and Adam after so many years were excellently done, a high point in the new series for many.

The new programme was sadly to be dogged by continuity errors and a complete disregard of the programme's history. Crossroads motel had been transformed (to the distress of most fans!) into "Kings Oak Country Hotel" by the end of the original series, a fact not registered in the new series. The new owners made references to their buying the "Crossroads Motel" - a glaring continuity error. They even referred to it as a "run down motel"! Doris Luke was rather improbably glammed up and looked and acted nothing like the Doris Luke of old. Jill Harvey (sic) suddenly owned 30% of the shares in the new hotel, although she had sold all her shares in the place at the end of the old series. Sarah Jane Harvey was introduced and once again continuity went out of the window when she returned embittered towards her mother for leaving her with her father in Germany (although in the series she visited Jill often and was on good terms with her) and she was unable to remember Adam Chance (although she had attended her wedding to Adam when she was about 16!)

I am afraid to say that these continuity errors, and the fact that what was a family show has been redesigned for children, are the reasons for the programme's failure. It started with a large fan base and a great deal of public interest but the producers squandered this good will and failed to hook the programme's long-term fans. The killing off of a much-loved character, Jill Chance, was the last straw for many of us and I for one have been unable to watch since that date.

Although Crossroads once more faces the axe it is surely not too late to turn the situation around. Bringing back a few old characters and introducing grown up storylines and sustained plots is surely the key to reviving the programme's fortunes. The question is: do the producers have it in them to admit their mistakes and take responsibility for the falling ratings? Or will you continue to peddle the myth that the programme's troubles are the result of media hostility?

Daniel Landsberger
Crossroads Fan Club


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