Ken Stott blasts BBC over referendum coverage

Ken Stott has blasted the state of modern TV, complaining British broadcasters no longer blaze a trail. Picture: PA
Ken Stott has blasted the state of modern TV, complaining British broadcasters no longer blaze a trail. Picture: PA
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Scottish actor Ken Stott - who had supported Scottish independence - voiced criticism of the BBC for its coverage of the referendum, saying the corporation was a “mouthpiece” for the establishment.

He said: “The BBC were pretty disgusting throughout all of it. You only have to look at the time given to the candidates, you only have to look at the fact that in the majority of cases the last word was given to a No campaigner. The BBC backed that.”

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Stott also blasted the state of modern TV, complaining that British broadcasters no longer blaze a trail as well having an overreliance on “reality” formats and property shows.

The star - who has been back on screens in BBC1’s The Missing - said he was in “despair” and also grumbled about the overuse of special effects, which he said prompts him to turn off programmes.

In an interview for the new edition of Radio Times, he said: “We’re in trouble in Britain. The warning signs were obvious some years ago, that we’re no longer leaders, we’re followers in most aspects of broadcasting.

“I despair. In every area we seem to have thrown everything away and embraced reality television. It’s nauseating, programme after programme. How to trick somebody into buying your house, followed by how to trick somebody into doing up your house, into how to trick somebody into not doing up your house, and what to cook while you’re doing it.”

Stott, who has appeared in The Vice and detective Rebus, went on: “I like documentaries, for example about climbing Everest, but we don’t do that any more. The new documentary that we watch is how to make a blancmange.”

BBC accused of pro-union bias in Scottish independence coverage

To hammer the point home, he continued that reality TV “could drop off the side of a cliff and we’d all be better off for it”.

The 60-year-old was also dismissive of the over-use of glossy high-tech effects on shows, telling the magazine: “As with all new toys, we play with them too much. Whenever I see pointless use of special effects, I reach for something else.”

• The interview appears in the Radio Times edition which goes on sale today covering the period December 6 to 12.

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