1 9 8 7 (UK)
4 x 30 minute episodes
Airing in September and October 1987 and broadcast on Saturday evenings, this four-part Channel 4 series – directed by Sally Potter – examined emotions through the eyes of men, women and children of different ages, backgrounds and cultures.
Each half-hour programme examined one of the four emotions in the title, with a range of people discussing it – from celebrities including actress Barbara Windsor, comedienne Irene Handl, Labour politician Paul Boateng and film director Michael Powell to professionals like psychoanalyst Juliet Mitchell.
The “Tears” episode (aired on 19 September 1987) examined what happens when you cry, when tears are acceptable and when they are not. “Laughter” (26 September 1987) looked at the representation of laughter in films and its day-to-day function and featured clips of Peter Sellers, Billy Connolly, Tony Hancock and Joyce Grenfell.
“Fears” (3 October 1987) featured people who had experienced widely differing kinds of fear, discussing both the psychological and physical aspects of the feeling, while “Rage” (10 October 1987) looked at why rage happens, how it differs between people, how children feel about it, and whether it can ever be a constructive emotion.
Tears | Laughter | Fears | Rage