We're being told that the BBC is really on a roll with their drama productions:
Whether it is down to Tom Hiddleston’s clean-cut good looks, John Le Carre’s scintillating plot, or the cinematic qualities afforded by its blockbuster £20 million budget, the show is a bona fide hit, to the delight of executives at Broadcasting House, the BBC’s central London headquarters.
Following hot on the heels of War and Peace, another lavishly-funded Sunday night epic, the corporation is currently enjoying a purple patch in drama, which insiders credit to a decision by Lord Hall of Birkenhead, the director-general, to raid tens of millions of pounds from the budgets of other departments, funnelling licence fee cash into the genre.
Super, isn't it lovely that the taxpayer is getting something for their scalping? However, not that this is what they think they're saying, even the BBC agrees that this is no longer necessary:
Lord Hall describes it as a “flight to quality”, and says that the corporation cannot hope to match the spending of an organisation such as Netflix, which plans to spend $5 billion (£3.5 billion) on original commissions this year.
“We can’t win against a Netflix or an Amazon, because their budgets are just so much bigger,” he says.
The argument in favour of the, or even a, BBC is that it provides something the market unadorned cannot or will not. Might be the scale, might be the type, but something that competition will just not produce. And here we have the BBC stating that not only can that market produce those goods, they produce them better than the BBC does.
At which point there is no argument for the BBC to be doing these things, is there? Or, perhaps, any things?