I've been watching the latest 3hr instalment of the mother of all TV series, Up. Begun in 1964, it follows the lives of 14 British children, who were then seven years old, and revisits them every seven years to see how their lives are progressing. The most recent instalment was last year when they turned 56. It's exactly the sort of thing I love so I still can't understand why I'd never seen a previous episode.
Anyway, it is of course fascinating - for all sorts of reasons. How people's lives are to some extent pre-determined by social background; how the programme itself has, in some cases, affected the course of their lives; how loyal the participants are to it - only one has dropped out completely (ironically he's a documentary film-maker now); how they're all still going; and the fact that director Michael Apted has been involved in all eight episodes (as researcher in the first and director of all the others).
It's an extraordinary piece of television and social history, in parts terribly sad (you feel for their individual disappointments, lost opportunities, divorces etc) but ultimately I found it uplifting. The story of what it is to be a human being.