An entire generation of British adults will never forget being terrorised as children, by what would now receive thousands of complaints from child welfare groups, but which back in the day schoolteachers took a perverse delight in forcing kids to watch. The so-called ‘educational’ government information short films, designed to warn children of the dangers of doing pretty much everything, were an unavoidable part of growing up in the 70’s and 80’s.
“We did have to stifle a sadistic chuckle every time we showed ‘Apaches’ to the kids”, recalls Mr Gaylord, a retired English teacher from Hull. “Particularly that bit where the kid drowns in a vat of cow shit. Oh my God, the looks on their faces! They nearly died of shock, some of them. Ahahaha!”
Maths teacher from the 80’s Miss Beaver, from Runcorn, has fond memories of that one where the boy gets electrocuted retrieving a football from an electricity sub-station. “The sight of his smoking corpse made some of the children in my class gag. It was so funny to see the little fuckers squirm. Serves them right for taking the piss out of my name.”
Ex-schoolboy Ed Thompson, 44, remembers the films well. “After hearing Donald Pleasance at the age of 10 threatening you like a posh mafia don from inside your telly, about how a muddy puddle will probably kill you, you’d never want to go outside again. That’s why I don’t mind my own kids playing World of Warcraft with a KFC bargain bucket and the curtains drawn. Less danger of being picked off by the grim reaper.”
A selection of gratuitously violent recommended for children aged 7 and over are available now on You Tube.