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Smoking in dramas

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  • Message 1. 

    Posted by slippery (U16061964) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.

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  • Message 2

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    because they were...

    it was cool to smoke...

    non smokers were treated with as much disdain then as smokers are today...

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  • Message 3

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    Posted by swillott (U13835085) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I was never a chain smoker in the 60s, I smoked cigarettes!!
    But only about 30 a day.

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  • Message 4

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    Posted by Maxibaby (U14151672) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I was never a chain smoker in the 60s, I smoked cigarettes!!
    But only about 30 a day. 
    Virtually everyone smoked. It was a rite of passage to have your first Woodbine or Weights behind the bike sheds at school. I remember our GP always had a ciggy on the go when you went to see him, as did our Headmaster.

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  • Message 5

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    This posting has been hidden during moderation because it broke the House Rules in some way.

  • Message 6

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by gryzor (U15456777) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.  If viewers want shows set in the past to be realistic then you have to have most of the characters smoking. Even in the 1970's most people smoked, my Grandad wasn't a chain smoker but i rarely saw him without a fag end in his mouth until the day he just suddenly quit in the early 1980's

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  • Message 7

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    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    why on earth has my jagger story been removed...what was inappropriate about it...



    yes agree about the seventies...every day before school id have to get a pack of ten woodies for my old grandad...not even sure if they did them in twenties...

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  • Message 8

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    Posted by Malyndi (U14320297) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    If viewers want shows set in the past to be realistic then you have to have most of the characters smoking. 

    Indeed - my 74-year old dad recalls when he was a boy and poorly enough to have a home visit from the family doctor. The GP sat on his bed to talk to him - and promptly lit up a fag!

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  • Message 9

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    Posted by caissier (U14073060) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Apparently the 70s were the time of when the most people smoked. People who started in the 1920s were still around and it was very normal for young people to do it as well. Then the idea it might not be the best idea started to take hold ..... presumably because of idealism, food consciousness, ecology, consumer health movements, information, the green / alternative movement ..... questioning, education ...... all that.

    It's true, it doesn't always ring true in period dramas. Performers often make too much of it. It ought to be treated like having a cup of tea ..... underplayed.

    It's funny that many young people now are quite defiant smokers.

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  • Message 10

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    Posted by Ziggy (U14268308) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    It was normal to smoke everyone did. I am more annoyed at the smoking now
    especially in Eastenders.

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  • Message 11

    , in reply to message 10.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    surely it would be unrealistic not to show smoking in eastenders..

    id be more concerned that everyone goes to the pub every night...

    surely that's not healthy....

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  • Message 12

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by GARGLEBLASTER (U3191065) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.  Incredible as it might seem now, if you went to the cinema in the 60s, you would see the screen through a haze of smoke. Yes smoking in cinemas was allowed then.

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  • Message 13

    , in reply to message 7.

    Posted by mozamaack1193 (U15449563) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Yes, I'm sure they were available in 20s, but, more importantly to me at least, they were also available in 5s - at something like 11 old pence a packet!!

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  • Message 14

    , in reply to message 13.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    you could even get them in singles round our way...

    newsagents weren't too bothered in those days...


    theyd be locked up for life now if caught selling cigs to youngsters....

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  • Message 15

    , in reply to message 9.

    Posted by Rosemary (U7231409) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    It's funny that many young people now are quite defiant smokers.  Sadly, I think that's an inevitable teenage reaction to being constantly harangued that they shouldn't smoke.

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  • Message 16

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by Chelle (U3043549) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.  Because e-cigarettes weren't invented yet :-p
    I wonder how long before the film and tv industries are forced to ban smoking for reasons like the health of staff.

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  • Message 17

    , in reply to message 15.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    im afraid that fact is just not true...

    fewer and fewer young people are smoking....


    30 years ago for example 12 percent of under 16s smoked....this has gradually gone down to 4 percent last year...

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  • Message 18

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    Posted by Rosemary (U7231409) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I devoutly hope you're right, wolfie. Both my parents died of lung cancer, and I flinch every time I see a young person lighting a cigarette.

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  • Message 19

    , in reply to message 18.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    have a read of this...

    youngsters always get a bad time...but far fewer smoke than when we were their age...

    ash.org.uk/files/doc...

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  • Message 20

    , in reply to message 14.

    Posted by Bonny (U14396592) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I remember 'Coffin Nails' (Woodbines) very well. As a tiny girl I would gather my father's empty packets and fill them with the leaves of a Leylandi as they were exactly the same as the illustration on the packet....

    Good old days when things were more relaxed until the DO GOODERS emerged.

    Too many cups of tea? Do me a favour! What about the endless very large glasses of wine paramount in dramas these days? Always standing in a kitchen usually - discussing something......... or anywhere come to that.

    I do swear I'd be sick if I downed the amount of wine they do sometimes! smiley - laugh

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  • Message 21

    , in reply to message 20.

    Posted by meddaboy (U15031418) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    when you see family members and friends at the end of their days , coughing and in agony due to the effects of smoking , it gives you a jolt, nothing worse than to see a young lady puffing away , it effects ,their skin hair teeth and breath and thats just on the outside.

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  • Message 22

    , in reply to message 12.

    Posted by Gizmomoo (U10999499) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.  Incredible as it might seem now, if you went to the cinema in the 60s, you would see the screen through a haze of smoke. Yes smoking in cinemas was allowed then.  I was born in the seventies and remember smoking being allowed in cinemas so I reckon it continued into the 80s (at least) but it was OK because the cinema was divided into halves. One side smoked, one side didn't, so that made it perfectly fine smiley - winkeye

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  • Message 23

    , in reply to message 17.

    Posted by caissier (U14073060) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    im afraid that fact is just not true...

    fewer and fewer young people are smoking....


    30 years ago for example 12 percent of under 16s smoked....this has gradually gone down to 4 percent last year... 
    Well .... I don't know about statistics but I am struck by how many I do see smoking, given the known health dangers, especially girls. A friends two daughters were determined to smoke .... saying it calms them. It seems to have acquired a funny kind of contrary neo-coolness. Still transgressive, as ever, it appears.

    I have a feeling it is regarded as a temporary youth thing. All. I'm pretty sure, women smokers I've known have given up around baby time.

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  • Message 24

    , in reply to message 1.

    Posted by Polemicist (U14349342) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    What about all the grossly excessive consumption of alcohol that you reguarly see in films, televsion dramas and soap operas.

    No mention of that by the critical health lobby enthusiasts then.

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  • Message 25

    , in reply to message 2.

    Posted by Gill P (U15961217) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    because they were...

    it was cool to smoke...

    non smokers were treated with as much disdain then as smokers are today... 
    What absolute rubbish! I never smoked, hardly any of my friends smoked. The only close family member who smoked was my dad - who, by the way, died of smoking-related illness at the age of 64!

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  • Message 26

    , in reply to message 25.

    Posted by DelusionsOfAdequacy (U15449583) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I started working full time in 1982; council offices, full of smoke, no-one thought anything of it at all. Non smokers either didn't mindor felt they had no right to speak out because they were in a minority. Smoking in cinemas, on buses and trains, on the underground, it was indeed everywhere.

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  • Message 27

    , in reply to message 25.

    Posted by Rosemary (U7231409) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    because they were...

    it was cool to smoke...

    non smokers were treated with as much disdain then as smokers are today... 
    What absolute rubbish! I never smoked, hardly any of my friends smoked. The only close family member who smoked was my dad - who, by the way, died of smoking-related illness at the age of 64! 
    No, neither did I, nor did my sister. Probably because both our parents did - heavily - as did most of my aunts and uncles.

    I seem to remember that in 'The Hour' and 'Call The Midwife' many characters smoked, as they do in 'Quirke'. True, I was born at the very end of the fifties, but the level of smoking they portray is what I remember throughout the sixties and seventies. I think that in that respect, all three dramas are pretty accurate.

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  • Message 28

    , in reply to message 26.

    Posted by hollybeau (U13700692) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    It was also ok to smoke in hospitals in those days and I'm not talking about smoking rooms but on the baby ward with baby next to mother.They just lit up and nothing was said, indeed I remember watching an ep of I love Lucy when she was expecting and her doctor lit up on his home visit to her.smiley - erm smiley - laugh

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  • Message 29

    , in reply to message 24.

    Posted by Bonny (U14396592) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    What about all the grossly excessive consumption of alcohol that you reguarly see in films, televsion dramas and soap operas.

    No mention of that by the critical health lobby enthusiasts then. 
    As remarked by me in Msg: 20.

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  • Message 30

    , in reply to message 29.

    Posted by z4mster (U14864348) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    What about all the grossly excessive consumption of alcohol that you reguarly see in films, televsion dramas and soap operas.

    No mention of that by the critical health lobby enthusiasts then. 
    As remarked by me in Msg: 20. 

    This is a thread about smoking, why the need, at all, for the "well, what about..." line of reasoning. If you feel there is excessive consumption of alcohol on TV then start a thread about it. I'm not sure it is actually a competition. At least the OP has hooked it on to something.

    I'm inclined to agree. The "authenticity" line is a red herring that is usually wheeled out for the convenience of the programme makers. While it may be remarked upon, from time-to-time, there are not hordes of angry, confused people wondering why Eastenders doesn't have characters f-ing and blinding, because that would add "realism", so I don't really believe any person, that doesn't have some kind of tragic personality disorder, would ever complain about the absence of smoking in dramas set in the appropriate period.

    Besides, they're too busy trying to work out what is going on through the muffled sound and gloomy images. smiley - winkeye

    Same applies to the news, too. Any news report about smoking typically comes with film of someone lighting up, a burning cigarette, etc. Completely un-necessary...though the tobacco companies are always happy with the exposure of their vile product.

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  • Message 31

    , in reply to message 29.

    Posted by Vox_Populi (U3226170) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I can remember the time when a lot of working blokes bought five weights or five woodbines on the way to work that had to last them all day.
    To eke them out to last all day a lot of them smoked half a fag, put it out and put the other half either back in the packet or stuck it behind one of their ears to smoke later.
    Nobody but nobody bought a packet of twenty back then, and you was considered well off if you bought a packet of ten.
    Imagine asking for a packet of five today?, most people buy the things by the hundreds costing a fortune, bunch of mugs really.
    I used to smoke but gave it up donkeys years ago, now I'd rather spend my money on something useful instead of seeing it go up in a puff of smoke.
    It reminds me of that old rhyme, "It wasn't the cough that carried him off, it was the coffin they carried him off-in. smiley - biggrin

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  • Message 32

    , in reply to message 31.

    Posted by Pumpkin_Patch_Paul (U14565900) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I grew up in the seventies and lost count of the people that sadly died from cancer who lived on our street, mostly men and good people. I remember my brother coming home on leave from the RN and bringing a suitcase full of cigarettes for my dad and himself, I think there could have been a link with the services and smoking in them days but who knows? ,most men of a certain age had served in the armed forces back then and a awful lot of them smoked.

    Just a thought thats all and of course I could be wrong. smiley - sadface

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  • Message 33

    , in reply to message 30.

    Posted by Polemicist (U14349342) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    "This is a thread about smoking, why the need, at all, for the "well, what about..." line of reasoning. If you feel there is excessive consumption of alcohol on television then start a thread about it. I'm not sure it is actually a competition. At least the OP has hooked it on to something." 
    Trust z4mster to, completely unnecessarily, find fault with my perfectly good contributory post on this subject matter.

    If you really want to be so pedantic and deliberately find fault, why don't you, instead, complain to the moderator, and claim that this entire thread is actually "off topic" and should therefore be closed down for contravening the house rules?

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  • Message 34

    , in reply to message 33.

    Posted by z4mster (U14864348) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    "This is a thread about smoking, why the need, at all, for the "well, what about..." line of reasoning. If you feel there is excessive consumption of alcohol on television then start a thread about it. I'm not sure it is actually a competition. At least the OP has hooked it on to something." 
    Trust z4mster to, completely unnecessarily, find fault with my perfectly good contributory post on this subject matter.

    If you really want to be so pedantic and deliberately find fault, why don't you, instead, complain to the moderator, and claim that this entire thread is actually "off topic" and should therefore be closed down for contravening the house rules? 

    "Trust z4mster"? I'm not sure I do make a habit of finding fault with other's posts, so I am not sure how you can make such a declaration. Anyone? It may have been a lack of question marks - for which I apologise - but it was actually an enquiry, on my part, and was not aimed at YOU explicitly, as I replied to another post, so I'm not sure why you are being so defensive. Feel free to say why. I am genuinely interested why these sorts of debates often turn into "X is worse than Y", or "If A happens, why can't B" debates when that is really not the point of the thread. As I said, I don't really think it is a competition.

    Also, feel free to tell us what you think about smoking in period dramas. As I went on to do.

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  • Message 35

    , in reply to message 12.

    Posted by GZ (U5310554) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014



    Incredible as it might seem now, if you went to the cinema in the 60s, you would see the screen through a haze of smoke. Yes smoking in cinemas was allowed then.
     


    Smoking was allowed on aeroplanes up until the late 1980s.

    Even now if you board an older plane they still have ashtrays in the arm rests.

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  • Message 36

    , in reply to message 35.

    Posted by Portly (U1381981) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Smoking was allowed on aeroplanes up until the late 1980s.  

    Yes indeed, and the airlines were keen to ban it, because it saved them money. The cabin air-conditioning uses fuel and after the smoking ban, they were able to recycle the same stale air over and over again, instead of pumping in fresh air.

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  • Message 37

    , in reply to message 22.

    Posted by Annie-Lou est Charlie (U4502268) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Why do producers of pre-1960 dramas assume that everyone was a chain smoker. Having to watch the cast acting and speaking through clouds of smoke at best becomes a little irritating and spoils the programme.  Incredible as it might seem now, if you went to the cinema in the 60s, you would see the screen through a haze of smoke. Yes smoking in cinemas was allowed then.  I was born in the seventies and remember smoking being allowed in cinemas so I reckon it continued into the 80s (at least) but it was OK because the cinema was divided into halves. One side smoked, one side didn't, so that made it perfectly fine smiley - winkeye  Yes Giz, smoking was still allowed in cinemas (at the back) and upstairs on buses when I arrived in London in the late 80s.

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  • Message 38

    , in reply to message 34.

    Posted by Annie-Lou est Charlie (U4502268) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    "This is a thread about smoking, why the need, at all, for the "well, what about..." line of reasoning. If you feel there is excessive consumption of alcohol on television then start a thread about it. I'm not sure it is actually a competition. At least the OP has hooked it on to something." 
    Trust z4mster to, completely unnecessarily, find fault with my perfectly good contributory post on this subject matter.

    If you really want to be so pedantic and deliberately find fault, why don't you, instead, complain to the moderator, and claim that this entire thread is actually "off topic" and should therefore be closed down for contravening the house rules? 

    "Trust z4mster"? I'm not sure I do make a habit of finding fault with other's posts, so I am not sure how you can make such a declaration. Anyone? It may have been a lack of question marks - for which I apologise - but it was actually an enquiry, on my part, and was not aimed at YOU explicitly, as I replied to another post, so I'm not sure why you are being so defensive. Feel free to say why. I am genuinely interested why these sorts of debates often turn into "X is worse than Y", or "If A happens, why can't B" debates when that is really not the point of the thread. As I said, I don't really think it is a competition.

    Also, feel free to tell us what you think about smoking in period dramas. As I went on to do. 
    I agree z4ammy, the "but what about...." line of argument (or "two wrongs" as I call it), is rather frustrating and usually not really relevant.

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  • Message 39

    , in reply to message 38.

    Posted by Bonny (U14396592) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    I just enjoy a fag and drink putting my feet up until the 'Big Brother Thingies' come to arrest me........

    What fun life is now eh? smiley - laugh All you can do really!!!

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  • Message 40

    , in reply to message 11.

    Posted by old git at 70 (U14213449) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    surely it would be unrealistic not to show smoking in eastenders..

    id be more concerned that everyone goes to the pub every night...

    surely that's not healthy.... 
    I believe as many people are affected by alcohol abuse and by drunks as are by Smokers.
    you never hear of smokers abusing emergency workers like you do Drinkers

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  • Message 41

    , in reply to message 40.

    Posted by meddaboy (U15031418) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    watching dot cotton puffing away in enders makes me feel ill. no one now would think of of lighting up in your car or house , someone did in my house a few years ago and smell seemed to linger for ages , the old woman down the stairs from me smokes ,and if im in the garden and she opens her front door ,i can smell the smoke from her house 20 yards away.

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  • Message 42

    , in reply to message 41.

    Posted by Pax (U9699410) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    In those days it was considered the height of sophistication for ladies to smoke.
    A cigarette holder was considered almost part of their costume
    .And for the working man it was sometimes the only comfort he got.

    In those days you automatically put out ash trays when holding a party, even if you didnt smoke yourself.

    Why and when did this country get so rabid about smoking, you are treated as a pariah if you smoke- it is ridiculous.

    I started smoking when I was 50 and stopped when I was75 by then I was smoking 30 a day.and I am not apologising for it

    .I do not prevent people smoking if they come to my house, I know if you smoke that you need a cigarette if you have a cup of coffee etc.

    Incidentally, my father smoked heavily from the age of about 14, strong, non tipped cigarettes, and he never had lung cancer.He died at 72
    His brother.in law never went near a cicarette and died of lung cancer at 50, there is no rhyme or reason to it.

    But back to films showing people smoking, films show all sorts of things that happened in the past, we dont do all sorts of things that were done in Regency and Victorian times, but the past is what it was, we cant, and shouldnt seek to obliterate the past.

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  • Message 43

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    Posted by GZ (U5310554) ** on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    There are still some modern/current TV characters who smoke. They are a lot fewer, but they still exist.

    Kramer on Seinfeld smoked - a pipe and cigar.

    Tony Soprano smoked. Many of his crew smoked.

    Probably half the characters on "The Wire" smoke. Cops, gang bangers and junkies alike.

    Nurse Jackie sometimes goes out for a smoke.

    Andy Sipowicz (Dennis Franz) smoked in the earlier series of NYPD Blue.

    Abby used to smoke on ER

    Columbo of course was never without his cigar.

    Detectives Ron Harris and Nick Yemana on Barney Miller both smoked a lot.

    Sorry these are all from US television.

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  • Message 44

    , in reply to message 43.

    Posted by Martha (U14407302) on Monday, 2nd June 2014

    Sorry these are all from US television. 
    In an episode,from a couple of years ago, of the Scandanavian drama The Bridge it showed someone (not a patient) smoking inside a hospital!

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  • Message 45

    , in reply to message 42.

    Posted by Gizmomoo (U10999499) on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    Why and when did this country get so rabid about smoking, you are treated as a pariah if you smoke- it is ridiculous.
     


    When it was realised that smoking was killing people that did it and also harming (and sometimes killing) those that didn't.

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  • Message 46

    , in reply to message 45.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    I don't think some people get it...giz...even now...

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  • Message 47

    , in reply to message 46.

    Posted by z4mster (U14864348) on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    Because there are people that "know" other people that smoked every single day of their life and died peacefully in their sleep at 104, but also know people that never smoked but sadly died at 50 from a disease that is, typically, smoking related, that proves that there's nothing to see and any effort to discourage something that does actually kill many thousands of people - prematurely - every year, is "rabid", rather than just good, common sense.

    IT'S PC GORRRN MAAAADDD!!!

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  • Message 48

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    Posted by Lemon Sabotage (U9577550) on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    I might as well say that I knew someone who was killed by a car mounting the pavement when they were waiting at a bus-stop, and I also knew someone who walked across a motorway and survived, therefore I'll cross busy roads without bothering to look for traffic. It would be just as logical.

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  • Message 49

    , in reply to message 47.

    Posted by wolfie (U15842015) ** on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    as I said...some people just don't get it...

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  • Message 50

    , in reply to message 13.

    Posted by purwil (U14677803) on Tuesday, 3rd June 2014

    Yes, I'm sure they were available in 20s, but, more importantly to me at least, they were also available in 5s - at something like 11 old pence a packet!!  So you couldn't get five fags, a chippy lunch, two pints, the evening paper and a bus home for a halfpenny? smiley - smiley

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