Monday, 16 February 2015

Fan or fanatic?

It's the question that many of us perhaps ask ourselves at least, ooh, twice an hour. By the very fact that you are reading this blog (and that I am writing it) we can congratulate ourselves that we have graduated from being merely a causal viewer. We are perhaps, further up the table than 'interested' and 'appreciative'. Fans of Corrie, yes but have we crossed the threshold into the world of the fanatic?

The super-fans permeate the televisual, musical and sporting worlds in abundance. Football fans who drag themselves around every league ground in England. Doctor Who devotees who can list the Time Lord's assistants and the order they appeared. Sad creatures who can recount Turkish entries to the Eurovision Song Contest (ahem . . .) Does the ongoing drama have the same kind of appeal?

I fear it does. In this week of 'celebrations' for that other soap ("Rickeeee", "Get outta my pub", "You ain't my muvva" etc.) I have to admit that I've never met anyone who feels as passionately about 'Enders as I do about Corrie. Surely they must exist though? The hardened fans who can talk you through Lou Beale's family tree or wax lyrical about landlords of the Queen Vic. Where are they? Perhaps they are all hokey-cokey-ing dahn the Strand, 'avin a banana.

Recently, viewing from the safety of social media, I watched as fans of the BBC drama The Archers, tore themselves to shreds over ongoing plot developments and recasting of characters. It was a thing to behold as middle England rattled its tea cups in unison, demanding that everything revert back to its cosy former self. Amusing for a casual listener like me but what must it be like to be in the depths of such soapy shenanigans?

Do we care too much about our fictional friends in Weatherfield? Of course not, he said, surrounded by dozens of Corrie DVDs, books, a dog-eared TV Times from 1978 with Ena and co on the cover, worn paperback books with titles such as Trouble at the Rovers, a signed photo of Pat Phoenix acquired when, bizarrely, she turned up outside my house in an ice-cream van, an LP (get me to a museum . .. ) of Corrie actors murdering hits of yesteryear . .. on it goes. I obviously reached the point of no return around the time that Kevin was growing his first 'tache.

Are there moments when you question your own Corrie-related sanity? I still recall with a certain amount of horror, the day when a woman in my office asked me "What's the fragrance of that after shave you're wearing?". Without a moment's hesitation I barked out "Woman, Stanley, woman!" Civilisations rose and fell in the silence that followed.

Fanatical about Corrie? Probably. Very probably. I haven't yet reached the point where I record episodes when I go on holiday. I didn't find myself soaking up in the sun in Nassau and thinking "I wonder what Sally's doing now?" I've not yet become the kind of loon who sends ITV a wreath when a character dies. That time may yet come. When it does and I'm found marching up and down the back ginnels of Greater Manchester decked out in an army great coat and hairnet (not that there is any hair worth saving), then it will be time for me to be gently led away and be whacked over the head with a ham barm. Until then, I'm happy to be counted as a Friend of Weatherfield. Now, where did I leave that Ivy Tilsley commemorative ornamental lavatory brush?





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12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Chuckling as I glance at the shelves above my computer with my Corrie accumulations...

AmandaB said...

That was so funny......and so true.
Well said that man.

AmandaB said...

Just thought though, you can't be that bad, after all you don't have a photo of yourself as a Corrie barmaid!

vintgal003 said...

Ummm...this Cdn. gal would be in the *fanatic* category...have the books, cookbook and articles I have collected over my 30 years as a member of the collective and wouldn't have it any other way!

Tvor said...

I think I'm somewhere in the middle of the ladder. I wouldn't go so far as to get characters tattooed all over my body, for instance, but I am having themes of Corrie included in my wedding invitations and decor! I'll get me coat ;)

Anonymous said...

Did you know you can now get married at the old Corrie set? We have a licence so that you can get married in the actual Rovers Return used by the cast right up until Dec 2013! Book now tho as the street is being demolished by the end of the year.

Llifon said...

I'm in the fan stage where I know most of the characters' and show's history and have some books and memorabilia and have visited the set (which was magical) but I don't collect autographs and would not certainly send a wreath when a character or even an actor dies. But who knows, if I lived closer would I go to Media City often to catch a glimpse of the stars. Who knows?

I'm a huge fan but I also know there is life apart from Corrie.

On another note, I watched the first ep of Eastenders on iPlayer just to see how it was compared to Corrie's. But then I thought about the fans of Eastenders. They're mainly young people who probably have no idea who Lou Beale, Ethel, Dr Legg, Pete Beale or possibly Dirty Den was. Eastenders has a strong history as well but I don't think the fans appreciate it.

We Corrie fans appreciate Corrie's history and we love it when there's a reference in an episode. And I think Neighbours fans also cherish the show's history as is exemplified during its 30th year.

Humpty Dumpty said...

I was about to say that I've never been into Corrie merchandise until I realised I have a Corrie apron. In some ways, I wish I was more of a fanatic as it would be a lovely club to join. I was more inclined that way, say 25 years ago, when plotlines were not broadcast and you were glued to the seat twice a week. Having said that, if there was a Corrie meet-up in my area, I might join!

AmandaB said...

If anyone is interested in some memorabilia I'm selling my VHS tapes of Viva Las Vegas (Jack & Vera) and the QE2 cruise feature length (Mavis, Rita, Curly & Raquel).

Zagg said...

Well I have to admit, I have a few Corrie things at home, a mug or two, a magnet, a Rovers Return sign, a couple of books and a T-Shirt for my better half that says "Real Men Watch Coronation Street." And I do record episodes when I am on holidays.
As most were gifts, I still consider myself to be just a fan, not fanatical. Yup, that's what I keep telling myself.

Anna said...

I laughed aloud at the revelation that Pat Phoenix appeared in an ice-cream fan outside your house. The mind reels!

Anyway, I don't have any desire for Corrie memorabilia but I actually do record it when I'm away - I have it set up as a series record on my DVR! And then when I return I spend a lazy Sunday afternoon catching up. And while I do love affectionate mockery of the show, I like the fact that our feelings about Corrie are genuinely warm. I can't imagine not watching it.

Anna said...

Um, I did mean to type "ice cream van" not "fan" in my comment above. An ice cream fan sounds even more insane...

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