As we near the end of 2016, you have to admit that it certainly has been an interesting 12 months. It’s been a busy year, what with Brexit, a new Prime Minister, the election of Donald Trump and the ongoing civil war in the Labour Party. Sadly, it also saw the passing away of many legends, not least David Bowie, Prince and Leonard Cohen.
Anyway, here are some of my highlights of 2016…
Best Campaign of the Year – The trade union Unison ran an excellent campaign titled Public Service Champions which reminded the public of the crucial role which public sector workers play in our society. They even used a press officer as one of their case studies!
Worst Campaign of the Year – It has to be the Remain campaign at the Euro referendum. Rather than sell us the benefits of EU membership, David Cameron and friends instead concentrated on what they saw as the dire consequences of a Brexit vote. If they had learned one lesson from the 2014 Scottish Referendum it should have been that negative campaigning can easily backfire on you.
Surprise of the Year – I know that many people were surprised to see Donald Trump elected as president of the USA. But who could have predicted that the UK would end the year with Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary?
Film of the Year – Woody Allen’s Cafe Society and Almodovar’s Julieta are both strong contenders. But for me the most powerful film of the year was Ken Loach’s I Daniel Blake; an uncomfortable look at austerity Britain.
TV Highlight of the Year – Perhaps a personal choice, but I enjoyed the various crime dramas on the BBC. The second series of The Missing was excellent, as was The Fall. However, my favourite was Line of Duty which was brilliantly scripted by Jed Mercurio and superbly played by an excellent cast.
TV Disappointment of the Year – I can’t help thinking that The Apprentice has reached the end of the line. The current series has been rather dull and the candidates are a pretty uninspiring bunch. It really hasn’t been the same since Nick and Margaret left.
Media of the Year – The Daily Telegraph has had a good year and has had a number of high profile exclusives, including the expose which resulted in the resignation of Sam Allardyce as England manager and the story that a Premiership club had paid off the victim of child sex abuse.
The second part of my review of the year will be posted next week.