The Riordans, a drama about life in a rural Irish village, was the most successful serial in the history of RTE, running for 15 years (1965-1979). The Riordans emerged into the midst of the Ireland of the Lemass era and was an integral part of the struggle between liberal and conservative views and values that was playing itself out with some vigour in these years. The Riordans was firmly modernising in its mission, while giving sensitive and sympathetic expression to traditional values. Despite being given a voice in such well drawn characters as Mary Riordan, this section of the society did not respond well to their values being challenged in any way at all. They mobilised again and again to put pressure on RTE and the programme was surrounded by considerable controversy.