‘Waking up a quiet country, five nights a week‘, Inside Story, 13 April 2017
Is it really 50 years since This Day Tonight started? The late Bill Peach, TDT’s first compere, had a good grasp on the significance of time. On an earlier anniversary, he said on live television, ‘We’ve all passed a lot of water since then’, which perhaps was a nice way of saying, ‘Let’s not overdo it, folks!’ Time passes us, every one.
Goodall rightly notes TDT’s early clunkiness but makes some favourable comparisons with how television current affairs is done today. No modern descendant of TDT has the same weight or, amid media diversity, one would guess, anywhere near the same relative audience. ‘As TDT got into its stride’, concludes Goodall, ‘it played a significant role in bringing critical issues to public consciousness, and contributing to changing frontiers of public opinion’.