Boys from the Blackstuff 1982
“Gizza job. Go on, gizza job. I can do that.” The hectoring catchphrase of Yosser Hughes, the character played by Bernard Hill in Alan Bleasdale’s classic BBC drama Boys from the Blackstuff, passed almost overnight into the language under the first Thatcher government.
The original TV play, The Black Stuff followed Yosser and a gang of Liverpudlian tarmac-layers as they went on a mishap-laden job in Middlesbrough. The subsequent 1982 series, Boys from the Blackstuff, depicted the effect of unemployment on the same characters just as the number of those without work in the UK topped three million.
Alan Bleasdale’s 1982 series vividly captured the mood of the nation, driven to despair by rising unemployment. It was set in Liverpool, but it could have been in any city or town in Britain where men felt thrown on the scrapheap of life, no longer able to provide for their families.

DVD5 + 2xDVD9 | PAL 4:3 | 103 + 306 minutes | 19.4 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: English

Cast: Michael Angelis, Bernard Hill, Alan Igbon, Tom Georgeson
Country: UK
Genre: Drama

Of the five main characters Yosser Hughes, played by Bernard Hill, was arguably the most memorable as he raged against his situation and tried to keep hold of his children.

Dixie, the gang’s one time foreman, was played by Tom Georgeson, George played by Peter Kerrigan was a diehard trade unionist and docker while Loggo (Alan Igbon) seemed the only one coming to terms with being jobless.

Michael Angelis’s Chrissie was perhaps the most poignant of the five, crushed by the loss of not just his livelihood but his dignity.

Still considered one of the finest pieces of TV writing, Boys From The Blackstuff was named among the 40 greatest shows in a 2003 Radio Times list and four years later Channel 4’s Top 50 Dramas saw industry professionals rank the series at number two.

The Blackstuff, Alan Bleasdale's original 90-minute play, is presented as a prelude to the series with the bonus of an insightful commentary from the author and the director, Jim Goddard.
This episode is from the anthology series Play for Today. It had been delayed for broadcast for over a year but was met with such acclaim when it finally aired that a sequel series was commissioned.

- "Jobs For The Boys" (54:03)
- "Moonlighter" (57:19)
- "Shop Thy Neighbour" (59:52)

- "Yosser's Story" (67:37)
- "George's Last Ride" (67:38)