Dubplate Drama follows the life of a group of young adults determined to become successful in the music industry. They all want to make it big in the music business, but there are always obstacles to overcome. Throughout the drama, the characters are constantly being faced with a range of dilemmas from drug issues, to unplanned pregnancies, domestic violence and assault. The question is which path do they take?
Strangely enough, it’s not up to the writer’s as to how the plot unfolds, but the viewers. That’s because Dubplate Drama is ‘the world’s first interactive drama’. So, at the end of each episode, the viewers vote on what happens next. In series 2 we saw Dionne, played by Shystie, facing tough decisions as to whether or not she should keep her unborn baby, Bones played by Adam Deacon gets brutally attacked and dies and Hoodman who plays Warren gets hit over the head with a vodka bottle by Bones’ mum. And up until series 3 got released, and you got voting, not even the Dubplate creators knew where all of this was going.
You can also expect to see appearances from Jay Sean to Tim Westwood in the third series. Not to mention a few new faces such as Charles Mnene and Issac Ssebandeke who plays Devil and Millz, respectively. N-Dubz singer Tulisa Contostavalos who plays Laurissa, a drug-addicted victim of domestic violence, is also no stranger to her character and tells Flavour how she herself experienced being ’drawn-in and controlled’ by someone she loved when she was younger. There were also cameo’s from Donaoe, Wretch 32 and other well-established names from the UK music scene who gave a brief performance of ‘Let it out’, a song presented in association with Dubplate Drama and Childline.
It’s hard to believe that a television drama which is aired to thousands of people across the country, started-out as mainly only being accessible on mobile phones. It’s popularity and the support it received was what led it to be on our TV screens today. From the start, the programme has always offered thought-provoking storylines and has featured various music artists such as Ms Dynamite. ‘The reason why Dubplate Drama works is because it’s based on reality’ says Wretch 32. The drama is also sponsored by Childline, which aims to encourage young people to address certain issues they may be going through.
Although Dubplate Drama mainly speaks to young adults, it’s such an eye-opener on what’s actually going on today that even your mum would want to watch it. It therefore works to educate those who aren’t really aware of why certain children and young adults may do things that aren‘t necessarily approved of. On speaking to Flavour, Roger Griffiths who plays D-Brain, reflects on his own generation’s experiences of growing-up and says that back then ‘it wasn’t so drastic, we weren’t carrying as much weight on our shoulders’.
The message behind Dubplate Drama is very clear: sometimes we’ve got to make tough decisions in life, but it’s better to address them than push it to one side. The drama is very similar to Noel Clarke’s film ‘Adulthood’. Both offer a raw, but realistic interpretation of what life can be like for young people growing-up in the UK. In fact, Clarke can also be seen playing the role of a Hostel manager in series 2 of Dubplate Drama. Being involved in the programme must have felt like filming Adulthood all over again. Dubplate Drama’s not only loved because of its spot-on depiction of issues young adults growing-up in the UK are sometimes surrounded by, but also because it‘s simply an addictive and enjoyable piece of drama to get stuck into. I can only hope that this drama is the start of many more British like it to come.
Words by Eshe Challenger