In 1987, Crossroads introduced a young character called Jason Grice, played by Simon Lowe. Jason was about eleven or twelve and in the past such child characters had rarely featured in story-lines, or, if they had, were usually played by older actors or stilted "extra" types, just wheeled on for a few minutes of airtime.
But in 1987 we got to view life in King's Oak from a kid's point of view. Jason was a cynical little geezer - not surprising with a boozing layabout father like Ray and a moaning sister like Beverley (AKA Chloe). Life seldom seemed to surprise him. His family had moved to King's Oak to run the village stores - an enterprising ambition of Jason's mother, Margaret. Jason didn't really help much. His main contribution to the day-to-day running (or should that be ruining?) of the shop was nicking crisps.
But can you imagine the temptation of having a shop full of such temptations on tap?
Jason was happiest plugged into his Walkman or playing Dungeons And Dragons, it seemed. He was bored by Daniel Freeman and Fiona Harding canoodling outside the parish church, scornful of his father's "saucy" videos, and loved annoying his older sister. The sparring between Jason and Beverley was brilliant. So true of many siblings. Jason hated his new school - they didn't even do computer studies until the fourth year!
In early 1988, Jason fell into the river whilst fishing, giving his family a terrible fright. What else he got up to was sadly never known as the show ended in the April of that year.
Jason was an excellent representation of working class 1980s youth, and Simon Lowe's portrayal was inspired.
Such a shame the show didn't continue. The Growing Pains of Jason Grice would have been an excellent ingredient for the continuing saga of King's Oak.