Saturday, 23 March 2013

What makes Corrie fans so special?

Rather than write about the Corrie cast or a particular plot line I thought I would turn the spotlight on the fans of Coronation Street for a change. This blog is extremely lucky to have a  loyal following that always seems to be growing in numbers!

Now I don't really know that much about other television soap operas or their fan bases but I imagine that Coronation Street fans are particularly passionate about their favourite television programme, its cast and its characters. My eyes have certainly been opened during my brief tenure as a contributor to this blog. I am constantly amazed by how much people care about Corrie.

From what I've seen Coronation Street fans are particularly passionate about preserving the show's strong history and enjoying the nostalgia that comes with that. They are also quick to point out anything they disagree with in the present day. Probably the most striking example of this was the reworking of Corrie history following Betty's death. Nothing gets Corrie fans' collective dander up more than the powers that be mucking about with Corrie history!

Of course this passion sometimes bubbles over and goes too far. Quite often I've seen people confuse fact with fiction and television characters with real life actors and actresses. 

For me a fine line divides actors from their characters, particularly if the actor concerned has played the same Weatherfield resident for a lifetime. However in my opinion it is crucial we keep both fact and fiction separate. 

So what do you think makes Coronation Street fans so special? And just what is it about Corrie that makes us so passionate, either when things go right or go wrong?

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Llifon said...

I think it's because Corrie has been going on for so long, fans know the characters and have a sense of its history.

Anonymous said...

I got hooked on Corrie when Katie Harris killed her dad..that was it. I may moan and b*tch about the plots and IMO ridiculous storylines but I love my Corrie. I suppose it's the characters....not barbie/ken dolls and they can act too. I often compare the acting on Corrie and other UK soaps to the American ones, and I can't sit through them..really. The acting is sooo bad but the one thing they have in common is the re-hashing of tragedies using different characters...the Rover's fire..personality re-makes (Sunita) same story repeated 6 months later (Peter/Leanne/Carla)
How many times in Y&R has Victor married Nicki? So...Corrie isn't the only soap that does it and in all fairness to the writers, I really think they've done a good job this past year trying to think of an original storyline...Kirstie and Tryone. The only think that really grated on my nerves was that they decided an affair between Fiz and Tyrone was a good thing.

Janice. said...

I think it is a sense of community. In a world getting more individualistic, something which connects us to others is valued. That connection need not always gushing over the soap. I have enjoyed being part of the rants on here just as much. It is the being part of that is important. Corrie and comedy go together. I see that here in this blog (but not on the Canadian ones) both the posters and the commentators. Fans may be passionate but most are not serious (meaning they have humour).

Flaming Nora said...

I've been a Corrie fan for over 40 years and can't, ever, understand why people get actor and character confused. I love my Corrie, but I know it's not real.

dol said...

Eeeeh, R Graeme, that's a good one! Corrie is special for me because not only have I grown up with it from the begining (alright I was only 2 when it started but it was always on in our 'ouse when it was aired), but ,like many people on this blog, I was also brought up in those Salford streets as well. So our family 'knew' an Elsie or a Mrs Walker or a Hilda, and the success of Corrie was that so many people could identify instantly with it. So when 'people' muck about with characterisation or plots, or think that any old 'northern' accent will do, or that they can play fast and loose with Corrie history they ignore the fact that it is Corrie's relevance in (some!) people's lives which has given Corrie its longevity.

Sorry, Graeme, you did ask :) And I also know the difference between actors and real people. Must dash, need to pop a 'get well' card for Stella in the post.

Dolly Tubb said...

oops, soz, that last post was written by me,not 'dol'!

IdaReigns said...

I'd say that Corrie fans have a strong sense of connection with the characters and often discuss plotlines as though they are from a real community (but not confusing reality and fiction); it is the sense of community that draws passionate Corrie fans together. I also believe it is that same passion that makes Corrie fans so vocal about the show; the only fans who can moan about it every day/week and still tune in with devotion. Sort of like a disfunctional family that stays together hoping against hope that things will get better some how.

Mary Prankster said...

Janice, I must object to your comment about the lack of humour on the Canadian blogs. We must be reading different ones! I find John's blog on "Corrie Canuck" to be witty and often downright hilarious. "Blanche's Polish Hip" often makes me laugh outloud (no mean feat!), "Corrie by Mare's Dad" is equally funny, and "Bluenose Corrie Blogger" is written by Tvor, the same person who writes for this blog. Humour is a personal thing, but the same writer is no less funny when she/he writes for a different blog.
As for the reason Corrie fans are special, I'd like to think it's because we have such incredibly good taste, [ ;-p ]and are able to recognize authenticity, in both acting and writing, when we see it! That's also why we get so upset when the show gets something wrong

Chatty Kathy said...

I'm from Rhode Island, USA, which is in our northeast, along the Atlantic coast. So I'm just across the pond.

I discovered Coronation Street over 40 years ago when a local "educational" tv channel (as they were called then) broadcast many UK shows, amongst them Coronation Street. I remember one of the story lines featured Len Fairclough, and a young Dennis Tanner was always getting himself in one scrape after another, and frustrating his beautiful mother Elsie, who was always in some romantic entanglement or other. (And I never did like Len any more after he hit Elsie.)

It was love at first sight for me. Corrie wasn't what I was used to at all in a soap opera. The characters weren't all "glossy" and gorgeous, or rich, with glamorous jobs like high profile lawyers, brain surgeons, magazine moguls, business tycoons, etc. These were real people, working in factories, corner shops, pubs, or just scraping by with odd jobs.

I loved tuning in every day and immersing myself in this very endearing show. I have no idea if the episodes were current or 5 years behind; I just enjoyed this working class drama.

Then PBS stopped running Corrie, and I had no watch one of my favorite shows any more. It was like losing a friend. It wasn't until a few years ago that I discovered that some kind folk in the UK uploaded the episodes onto You Tube! I could watch my beloved Coronation Street again, usually on the same night it aired, because of the time difference. (I'm 5 hours behind GMT). It was like making connection again with a long lost friend. Although the characters and actors had changed (except for Rita, and then later the return of Dennis Tanner), it was still the much more real stories about characters you could often relate to. The Corrie villains didn't have private jets and their own desert islands where they could hold their kidnap victims for months. The Corrie damsels in distress didn't have money problems that were suddenly solved by a high paying and glamorous job that her friend, the billionaire business mogul, created for her on the spot. Characters on Corrie didn't die and then return as their evil twin. That's why I don't watch American soaps, and why I have taken Corrie to my heart.

I may not live in the UK (although I am half English), but I think I love Corrie almost as much as many of you do who have been watching your whole lives. Maybe it's because of the English blood coursing in my veins that I get the British humor, and I'm so comfortable with the people.

Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that Corrie resonates to many people, even those of us not in or from the UK. And also, these forum blogs enhance my whole Corrie "experience". :)

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