EastEnders in ‘crisis’ as ratings slump

EastEndersA tabloid report claims there is a crisis at EastEnders as ratings have slumped.

Last year it was Coronation Street which was in crisis this year it’s EastEnders if the tabloids are to be believed. The Mirror is claiming that bosses at the BBC are in crisis talks as ratings for flagship soap EastEnders have fallen, the paper claims, by 1.5 million viewers meaning it has fallen back behind long-term rival Coronation Street.

The paper also claims that there are concerns over the number of youth characters currently in the soap and how much attention they receive sparking criticisms that EastEnders is turning into Hollyoaks with older characters being sidelined leaving older audiences feeling alienated.

“EastEnders is going through a major transition, and some of the BBC’s senior managers are concerned the show might suffer long term if well-loved characters are sidelined.” – A “source” quoted by The Mirror

The paper goes on to say that BBC‘s drama chief John Yorke is at ‘odds’ with EastEnders‘ executive producer, Bryan Kirkwood, over the number of younger characters in the soap. The source told The Mirror ‘At the moment there are more youngsters in Albert Square than there are in Hollyoaks.  John is concerned that viewers may be put off by the new stars, and wants to get it back to a more traditional feel.  It’s a worrying time, and urgent action is planned’

There has been some criticism from viewers about the number of young characters in EastEnders and how much attention they receive. However, not all the characters that Bryan Kirkwood has introduced, Polly Perkins as Rose Cottonsince he took over as Executive Producer, have been young characters. Kirkwood has re-introduced characters such as Kat (Jessie Wallace) and Alfie (Shane Richie) Moon, David Wicks (Michael French) and Mandy Salter (Nicola Stapleton) with Sharon Rickman nee Watts (Letitia Dean) due to return shortly while his new characters have included Derek Branning (Jamie Foreman), Rose Cotton (Polly Perkins), Cora Cross (Ann Mitchell) and Michael Moon (Steve John Shepherd).

Do you think there are too many young characters in EastEnders? Is the BBC soap turning into Hollyoaks and is it in crisis? Post your comments below.