The BBC’s latest big-budget drama, wartime thriller ’SS-GB’, debuted last night, and became the latest TV epic to draw complaints from viewers about incessant mumbling.
Some critics went so far as to say the dialogue was inaudible, amidst a catalogue of sound quality issues, with others complaining they’d been forced to switch on the subtitles.
The last time viewers felt this strongly about problems with sound was for ‘Jamaica Inn’, which aired in 2014, while the most recent series of ‘Happy Valley’ also received complaints. ‘Rillington Place’ was another recent offender.
At the time of ‘Jamaica Inn’, the BBC responded, saying that “there were issues with the sound levels and for technical reasons they could not be altered during transmission”.
‘Jamaica Inn’ writer Emma Frost said at the time that the complaints made for uncomfortable reading when her drama debuted. “I spent one second on Twitter then reached for red wine and stepped away from computer,” she told the Telegraph.
’SS-GB’ is set in an alternative historical setting of Nazi-occupied London, with the city, including even Buckingham Palace, draped in swastikas.
It’s based on the 1978 novel by Len Deighton and stars Sam Riley and Kate Bosworth. The narrative is set in 1941, with the Germans, having won the Battle of Britain, now governing the United Kingdom. Which left one viewer commenting...
Catch up with ‘SS-GB’ on BBCiPlayer. (Subtitles are available.)