The 7 Up Series Featuring The Life Of Jackie Basset The 7UP series documentary is a film that is based more on a sociological aspect that aims to show how social standing and background of individuals affect their lives in the future. It is based on a quote from a Jesuit maxim saying “Give me the child until he is seven and I will give you the man”. 14 British children were selected from different environmental settings and their lives monitored at a seven years interval.
Jackie Bassett was an instant hit with the viewers at that tender age of seven. She was bold, full of life and had a naughty smile and boisterous laugh. She was chosen from a primary school together with her two friends, Lynn and Sue, who later became formed long standing friendships later in life.
She shared her hopes and dreams of marrying an average man, building a family and living in a modest house. At that age, she was a blond ugly duckling from east London. Her energy and optimism in life in which her two friends prominently featured, was a magnet to viewers. These three even went to the extend of calling themselves, ‘The Three Musketeers’.
At age 14, the 70s hit and the subjects were in their teens. It was the beginning of a new decade and it was duly noted that the children seem to have the same leverage at making it in life. Jackie was now in a comprehensive school that she extremely proud of since girls were able to join the metalwork and woodwork classes. Boys were forced to do the cookery classes. She was schooling with Sue at the time. They were so self conscious that Jackie admits that she still feels ashamed when the cameras were shooting when her skirt was up to her thighs. This was because she shudders at the thought of airing her ‘big thighs’. The boyfriend issue was raised but the she and her friends did not give concrete answers.
Come 21 and the whole undertaking began to take a different standing from what was perceived earlier in life. Jackie felt as if she was being tormented. Serious questions were asked on personal matters. At first, it was all good since she had married at a tender age of 19 and had even gone ahead to buy a house, a fete that was one of its kind in her family. She was now working in a bank and had decided not to have kids, something that later changed. Judgment was something that she loathed then but it was unavoidable.
At 28 years, Jackie was hard at work as she put in long hours of toil at their Turnpike Club in Cambridgehire together with her husband and parents. In her 30s, life changed dramatically for her by the loss of her mum to cancer at age 53. Her marriage was broken up too due to unavoidable differences.
This sorrow later changed face with the gift of a pretty little blond-haired son by the name of Charles. He was the bundle of joy that she had swore never to have. He was the epitome of joy in her life. Ian was a man that came into her life later and together they had two more children by the names of James and Lee. This new family made a new move to Scotland and made it their home. She again split with her husband but the children still kept contact with him. Much later she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis that made her quit working since she was always exhausted. However, she was very proud of the way her life had turned out though the disease depressed and weakened her. She did not let her illness define her as she was stronger than it rendered to be. At 49, she was most happiest in her life.
Jackie’s life shows one of resilience and determination to make it through no matter the circumstances. Her outlook in life was positive as was the way she perceived society in general.
Original 7 Up subject Jackie Bassett on being part of the first reality TV show. (2009, October 25). DailyRecord.co.