Monday, 30 November 2015

Coronation street episode review, Monday 30 Nov


Young Max is not happy about his one line - ‘I’m sorry but there’s no room.’ It is a crucial one though. Ironically, there was room for his dad at The Platts’ residence. Speaking of which, Sarah returns home and appears upbeat and cheerful. David is confused. She tells him, ‘You told me to pull myself together, so I pulled myself together.’ It could be an act and David seems keen to prove that it is. He forces her into Gail’s annexe.

‘The thing is Sarah, you were the weak link and you still are and you’re never going to be able to deal with the fact that he is under that floor.’ Judging from her expression, David is not far wrong.

Behind the bar in The Rovers, as Aidan chats her up, it would be hard to guess that she had any problems at all. Gail notices her newly returned daughter and Aidan and says, ‘ You’re not letting the grass grow are you? Anyway, he’s an improvement on Callum.’


Out on the cobbles Eileen and Michael are having an altercation. Michael is angry with her for not waking him up. Eileen tells him that another ten minutes won’t make any difference, because Brenda will be hanging around hoping not to arrive home before her husband has left for work – an enlightening comment on the state of the marriage. Gail is inly too pleased to witness the argument and smugly asks, ‘Is everything alright?’

Sally goes over to Gail in the pub and tells her that she saw Eileen and Michael arguing. She asks Gail, ‘Don’t you think it’s about time you let go of Michael? You might come across a bit…’ Before Sally can finish Gail says, ‘Kevin. That’s all I’m saying.’

Michael falls asleep in the cab office and Tim, waking him up asks, ‘Who’s this Dee then?’ Eileen takes it upon herself to field Dee’s calls but she manages to get through on his mobile. Michael, Eileen needs her pelmet doing!

Sophie is enjoying bossing the men around but has no interest in a discussion with her mother about what to eat at Christmas. This is perfectly understandable given that it is but months since Maddie’s tragic death. But – it was hard not to notice the appreciative glance Sophie had for Kate. Surely something is going to happen there.

Michelle is not thrilled with having Aidan as a houseguest and when he appears wrapped in just a towel, she tells him that he could have the flat at Streetcars. He turns down her offer on the grounds that Steve told him it was a dump. Later she offers it to Johnny who is in a B&B but is suffering with a bad back from the bed there. They go to have a look and find that Aidan is also there having changed his mind. Carla conducts a game of paper stone and scissors, which Johnny wins. I have to say that I found this difficult to watch and though the Connors may be growing on some people, I’m afraid, I could well do without them. I’m not sure what they add.


Craig is reading about Banksy and Caitlin, who smells smoky, of Cedarwood, tells him he could be as good as Banksy. Craig suggests they watch something at his house. One of the highlights of tonight’s episode, was the revelation that Beth would speak the lyrics of Take a Chance on Me by Abba to her young son. Craig only twigged when he was older.

Their plan to be alone is foiled by Faye, who had spotted them earlier. A bit of the green monster maybe…?


David is under discussion between Sarah and Kylie. Kylie says he is worried about Sarah, but Sarah knows him better than that. ‘Kylie! Wake up! He’s worried about me in terms of how it affects him. It’s always only about David! He will sell anyone down the river – you know it.’

By Ruth Owen


Deirdre: A Life on Coronation Street - official ITV tribute to a soap icon. Available here.

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Coronation Street Christmas spoilers 2015

In today's rather wonderful double issue of Inside Soap magazine, there's a whole host of soap spoilers.  So if you don't want to know what's going to happen this winter in Weatherfield, look away now.

But if you would like to know what's planned for Christmas on Coronation Street, here we go!

With Nick about to pop the question to Carla next week on Corrie there's only one thing for Carla to do (after she says 'yes' of course).  She asks Roy to give her away at the church and walk her down the aisle.  I love the sound of this, although I'd personally like to see Carla with someone tall, dark and handsome (like Robert) rather than a short, fair mums-boy like Nick.

At the Underworld Christmas party, Eva cosies up to Aidan Connor.

Simon refuses to go to counselling.

Tyrone asks Fiz to marry him.  But Tyrone ends up deep in debt after he tries to bring Lapland to Weatherfield for little Hope.

Tracy is convinced that Robert is going to propose to her (for the second time). But she's also got the hots for ex-love Rob Donovan who turns up next week in his prison cell.  Will it be Rob or Robert?

Kylie and David are set for a showdown over Callum this Christmas, so there'll be no peace and joy in the Platt household.

Meanwhile at Sally's house, she ends up cooking Christmas dinner for herself and Tim, Sophie and Faye, Anna and Kevin.  Can Sally keep herself from interfering as Anna and Kevin get on like a house on fire?

Even more spoilers for Christmas on Corrie!

Corrie Christmas TV schedule



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Top 25 Favourite Corrie Males - No. 5

PETER BARLOW (205 VOTES)

Duration: 1965-1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1978, 1986, 2000-2003, 2007-2014, 2015
Played by: John Heannau, Christopher Dormer, Mark Duncan, Linus Roache, Joseph McKenna, David Lonsdale, Chris Gascoyne
2012 character poll position (men): 7

One of the twins born to Ken and Valerie Barlow fifty years ago. After appearing sporadically over 21 years, he was re-introduced in 2000 and it is this Peter that has won fans’ hearts.

After Val’s death in 1971, Peter and his sister Susan were packed up to Scotland to be raised by their maternal grandparents. Peter later joined the navy and married Jessica Midgeley in 1990.

Newly divorced Peter returned to the street in 2000. He wooed both Shelley Unwin and Lucy Richards and married them bigamously. He was never punished by the law, only by a punch from Shelley. Lucy gave birth to Simon in 2003 although she refused access to Peter. Peter then left.

He returned in 2007 with Simon, who Peter had to take on after Lucy’s death and bought the local bookies. Struggling with fatherhood and women, Peter became fond of the drink and ultimately became an alcoholic. With the support of his family and girlfriend Leanne Battersby he sobered up. But when Leanne briefly left the street, he nearly killed himself and Simon when he drunkenly left a cigarette to burn in his flat.

Peter also escaped death when a tram crashed into the street. Afraid that he was going to die, he married Leanne. Unknown to Peter, Leanne had been having an affair with her ex Nick Tilsley. When Peter found out he confronted her at their marriage blessing. The marriage survived but Peter then had an affair with Carla Connor.

Peter and Leanne divorced and Peter got engaged to Carla. But then the Barlow gene hit again as he embarked on a fling with Tina McIntyre. Peter and Carla did marry but the marriage ended when the affair was exposed. 

When Rob Donovan pushed Tina off the balcony of the builder’s yard, he framed Peter who spent months in prison. It was Rob’s confession that led to Peter being released. 

Peter left the street once more in 2014 only to return briefly when Deirdre died in 2015.

A fan of Peter? Should he return once more?


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Preview of tonight's Coronation Street - Monday 30 Nov

Note: Only one episode tonight at 7.30pm

Monday 30th November

SARAH RETURNS TO WEATHERFIELD WITH A BANG An upbeat Sarah arrives at No.8 bearing gifts from Italy. David’s unconvinced by her apparent breeziness. David accuses Sarah of putting on an act and tests her by suggesting she goes into the annexe. Her fa├žade crumbling, Sarah flees. David’s fears are confirmed. David’s intrigued to witness flirtatious Aidan and Sarah setting up a date. Kylie orders him to leave Sarah alone but when he watches her flustered attempts to avoid talking to Billy, David urges her to go back to Milan before she cracks up. Sarah angrily snaps that she won’t let David dictate her life before letting rip to Kylie, issuing her with a stark warning about David...
IT’S FLAT-OUT WAR WITH THE CONNORS Michelle’s had enough of Aidan living at the pub and offers him the Streetcars flat. Aidan refuses, claiming it’s a dump. So when Johnny complains about the B&B he and Kate are staying in, Michelle offers to show him round the flat. But as Michelle gives Johnny and Kate a tour, Aidan arrives having had a change of heart. Kate backs Johnny as he argues with Aidan over who gets the flat. Arriving Carla’s forced to referee a game of ‘rock, paper, scissors’ between Aidan and Johnny. Who will be victorious?
EILEEN WANTS MICHAEL TO STOP DOING IT HIMSELF Finding Michael asleep at the switch, Eileen’s annoyed and takes him to task for wasting all his energy running errands for Dee.
ELSEWHERE Caitlin turns up on the street to surprise Craig. He invites her back to No.5 but as they move in for a kiss they’re interrupted by the arrival of Faye. Sally’s saddened when Sophie announces she has no interest in celebrating Christmas without Maddie.


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Sunday, 29 November 2015

In Praise of Eva Price



I have been loving Catherine Tyldesley's performances as Eva Price recently. She is such a breath of fresh air and having her back has made me realise how much I've missed both the character and the actress.

Eva is without a doubt the best thing to come out of the Price family. Do you remember the rest of them? Eva provides great comic relief and is the kind of character that fits in all over the street. She is great in the factory with the rest of the girls, she fits in well behind the bar of the Rovers bantering with the punters, she is a reliable if unlikely friend to Kylie and a terrific support to half sister Leanne.

Indeed Catherine's recent scenes with Jane Danson have been superb. Given how much Eva and Leanne disliked each other when they first met, it's lovely to see these characters bond over their difficult lives. I have found Leanne and Simon hard to watch during this recent storyline but Eva's return and direct involvement has added a very welcome extra dimension. Her support and care for Leanne has been fantastic to watch.


Of course Eva's love life is often at the centre of her storylines. I really liked her with Jason Grimshaw and it's a shame that won't happen now that actor Ryan Thomas is leaving. New factory boss Aidan Connor has been sniffing round and although if I was Eva I'd jump in feet first (as it were), I get the feeling he's a love 'em and leave 'em type of man so perhaps she's better off steering well clear of him. 

I love seeing Eva behind the bar of the Rovers. I know comparisons have been made with the classic Rovers barmaid Raquel. This is probably unfair to both Catherine Tyldesley and Sarah Lancashire. Raquel is an iconic character, one of Corrie's best ever and played by a fabulous actress who has gone on to great success since leaving Weatherfield behind. While there are similarities between Raquel and Eva I think Eva has enough strengths for her to stand out on her own as a great Corrie woman.


I'm glad the powers that be had faith in the character and kept Eva on after the rest of her family departed. Catherine Tyldesley has really come into her own over the past year and long may she continue to brighten up our trips to Weatherfield. 

You can follow me on Twitter @GraemeN82





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Zeedan to burst soap bubble?

It was interesting, but not surprising, to hear Zeedan express a wish to move on from the gym on Friday’s Corrie, when we promptly saw the managerial mantle pass to Gary.

Zeedan has fast become one of my favourite characters on the street at the moment. His development from a sullen, almost disdainful young man, into an intelligent, considerate, capable, respectful and responsible individual provides us with a great role model and an interesting character who is infinitely watchable thanks to the talents of Qasim Akhtar.

Like all of us, Zeedan is not perfect, and his momentary lapses ensure his complexity. Look no further than his attempt to vandalise Barlow's Buys on finding out Tracy started the fire which killed his father, and his altercation with Jason when the news broke that he had slept with Alya. The important thing about both instances was that he could be reasoned with and talked out of doing any damage.
The finest example of his positive traits, which far outweigh any negative ones, can be found in the support he continues to offer Leanne and his investment in Simon. In addition, his desire to honour his father’s memory by doing sterling work at the gym, and the manner in which he didn’t allow his initial anger at and disappointment in Alya to prevent him from comforting her, offering his support, and reassessing his initial perceptions of what she had done, showed great strength of character.

The question now is, where does Zeedan go from here?

My personal hope is that he honours his potential while remaining on the street. This would involve him breaking the mould and working or studying elsewhere, but returning home in the evenings and/or weekends. 

To be honest, I can’t understand why this isn’t the case for more characters. I know the various businesses need people behind their counters, but we did have a rare instance where Deirdre worked for the Council, and to my recollection, we never saw any scenes filmed there. Nor was the drama the poorer for it; we barely noticed. If anything, talk of somewhere ‘untelevised’ enhanced the realism; how many of us have any personal knowledge of the workplaces our friends and loved ones speak of, aside from their descriptions of them?

I like the fact that filming restricts itself to the street and its environs, with on-location shoots in the vast minority, but there's no reason why its characters can't temporarily inhabit other places.

The most fitting tribute to a character of Zeedan’s quality would be to see him spend his days elsewhere fulfilling his potential while at the same time enriching the street while he’s home with news of beyond its parameters, and his interactions with neighbours, friends and family. This is not to say he would be deprived of a storyline of his own; in our own lives, we find ourselves negotiating plenty of situations outside of work or university.

I think it would be a great loss to the programme if Zeedan’s desire for more meant he had to leave the street, like so many before him. In the wake of The Guardian asking why there aren’t more graduates on Corrie, and Scott’s excellent 2013 post on how young cobble-based folk attempting to better themselves do so at their peril, let Zeedan be the one who bursts this soap bubble.

By Emma Hynes
www.emmahynes.wordpress.com
Twitter: @ELHynes




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Countdown to Corrie fans' all-time favourite fella

Our blogger Llifon has done a sterling job collating your votes in our recent polls asking for you to nominate your favourite Coronation Street man.

We whittled the list down to the 25 most popular men as voted by you and the countdown began some weeks ago when we blogged numbers 25 though to 6.

Starting tomorrow - Monday November 30th - we'll bring you the top 5 all-time favourite Corrie men as voted for by our readers!   On Monday we'll blog No. 5 in the poll and will count down one each day.  By Friday of next week you'll know who has been voted as Corrie fans' favourite all-time man.

Who do you think will be in the top 5 and at number 1?

Here's the run-down of the favourite Corrie men as voted for by our readers so far...



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Coronation Street double episode review, Friday 27 November 2015

Debts appear to be mounting for Tyrone, with Fiz none the wiser. Considering the manner in which she often treats him, I’m not surprised he’d try to deal with it privately, even though that probably isn’t the best idea. As the battle mounts between what he can afford, and what he wants to be able to, he buys an inflatable Santa for the front of the house, and makes Fiz believe it’s a gift.

The suggestion of help from Roy to inflate it is met with disdain from Tyrone and is followed by some deplorable treatment when they arrive home from the hospital to find it deflated. Sure, the money worries have him stressed, and he wants to give Hope a perfect Christmas, but none of this warranted his behaviour towards someone who has been consistently good to him and, as street residents go, is one of the very best. Nor was it typical of Tyrone, even in the worst of circumstances, to behave in such a fashion.

Cathy continues to be Roy’s champion, and not in the aggressive way some are on t’cobbles when it comes to defending their other halves. She is delicate and subtle, yet solid. Nor does she dismiss the offender, encouraging an awkward Tyrone to stay and chat with Roy over a brew. Her reaction is similar to Roy’s in that he forgives, and remains concerned about Tyrone despite his poor behaviour. Roy feels there might be more to the aggression than meets the eye, however, and guesses it might be money. Calling to their house, Roy tactfully and sensitively offers Tyrone financial assistance, but his pride won’t allow him to take it, and after Roy leaves hoping he hasn’t embarrassed him, Tyrone dials a loan company.

If you put his refusal to take help down to anything, it must be the manner in which he’s regularly emasculated by those around him, including his own partner. It follows that his inability to stand up to those he should sees him assert himself with one he shouldn’t. I feel the real Tyrone, finding himself in the circumstances he’s in, would swallow his pride, and take Roy's assistance; after all, the consequences for his family of not doing so are too great.
Things go from bad to worse for Steph as she begins receiving messages from friends who have seen the pictures Jamie disseminated online, and her parents find out. As she cries in the Bistro kitchen, Leanne shares her own stories of humiliation, offering words of encouragement about how she can deal with it.

Meanwhile Luke and Andy are roughing Jamie up at his local and revealing his true colours in front of a potential next victim who tips a pint over his head before storming out. As they leave, Steph, Leanne and the police conveniently converge, and Jamie is arrested.

While this was an interesting and important subject to tackle, I’ve not really enjoyed this storyline, namely because of the manner in which it has played out. From the start it has struck me as an issue seeking a plot.

In any event, I found it questionable that, following Jamie’s arrest and Andy’s suggestion of a weekend away, Steph would joke about going somewhere without internet access. I half expected to hear canned laughter followed by some comedy exit music and the credits rolling over a freeze frame. It would have been far better, and more realistic, to see Steph escorted away in tears as she prepares for a period ahead of coping and coming to terms with it all, but thankfully surrounded by those prepared to support her through it. Instead, I fear we will see her back to normal by Monday, breezing around the Bistro in the refreshing way she normally does. I do, however, look forward to many more stories involving the brilliant Steph.
I love how Jonathan Harvey writes for Mary, and she looked positively glowing as she enjoyed a drink with Brendan in the Rovers. She’s overjoyed to be asked to accompany him to a convention; that is until he rather slyly drops the bombshell that he’s married. Patti Clare’s performance was second to none as Mary’s heart broke in her eyes, and she fled to the bathroom. Her dignity in the face of being so cruelly deceived spoke volumes as to her character and showed Mary at her best.
It’s a shame that Norris and Rita have incessantly sneered at her new found joy, and in the aftermath of Brendan’s revelation, Dev proves himself to be a better friend than either of them. There was thankfully nothing patronising about the scene in which he respectfully offered her kindness and a shoulder to cry on if needed without embarrassing her by putting words on it.

I think I was as disappointed as Mary to learn Brendan was married; not so much because I thought they were well paired, but because I feel it high time that Mary had some joy and a storyline that brings out the best in her. I hope she’s whisked off her feet by someone better deserving as she picks herself up from this inexplicable disappointment.

Meanwhile Simon has been to counselling but Leanne tells Robert and Eva that he remained silent throughout. I do love Eva, but it’s as if her funny laugh and often inappropriately timed gags have become 'a thing' now, and I’d find it regrettable if she was to slide into the 'comedy Gail' category. She’s better than that; and so is Gail.

Over at the gym, Sharif still has reservations about Gary, but Zeedan encourages his grandfather to give him a chance, reminding him that it was Alya, not Gary, that compromised their relationship, and telling him that he no longer wants to work there himself. While Sharif accepts his grandson’s desire to move on, what really seems to resonate is Zeedan’s talk of Gary's connection to Kal through the army.

Bolstered by Gary’s discovery and eviction of a gym goer on steroids, and without taking any time to think about the situation, Sharif promptly offers him the job of manager, and Zeedan tosses his badge in his direction. Failing to think has Sharif in a situation where he has offered an irrevocable contract to someone he has doubts about, and so I thought he might at least sleep on this latest decision. In any event, I look forward to seeing what lies ahead for Zeedan as he departs the gym. I have high hopes for one that has fast become one of my favourite characters to watch.

By Emma Hynes
Twitter: @ELHynes

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Corrie weekly awards for Nov. 23 - 27

Life of the Party award: "Bren Bren" apparently bores for England.

A Woman of all trades award: Now that's what we like to see...a woman (Erica) that knows how to use the business end of a drill!

You're new here award: Robert thinks his clashes with his own father, they getting on each other's nerves is anything at all similar to all the loss and tragedy Simon's had in his short life.

Pathetic Loser award: Jamie.

Sacrifice award: Steph called Jamie's bluff. He did it. But Luke is free from the blackmail *and* she had Jamie arrested!

Cat out of the bag award: Leanne finally admited what Simon's been doing and Luke finally admitted that Jamie was blackmailing him over Steph's photos.

San Weatherfield Fault award: I think Robert's discovering a very major fault under the foundations of what he thought was a reformed Tracy. (See the winning line of the week)

 
New View! We don't usually see Dev's living room from this angle, with the fireplace wall in the scene. The camera is usually shooting towards the couch from that wall.

Black or White award: In Tracy's world, things really are black or white. No shades of grey there. No compromise.

Soap cliche: Steph intended on lying to Andy about what's going on. Lies, lies and damned lies, they're a soap staple but they don't half wear me out.

Lines of the week: 

Winner: Robert to Tracy "Get out, you poisonous little bitch!" (OH!!!)
Tracy about Simon "I'm not having him shouting at my daughter. That's my job"
Tracy "Oh quick, Amy, go get your violin cause my heart's breaking here"
Mary about Dev "He's a charming if slightly delusional shopkeeper, not a serial killer"
Mary to Dev "I don't think Erica wants your hand upstairs or anywhere else, for that matter"
Ken to Tracy "When it comes to bad behaviour, I hardly think you can sit in judgement"
Gary "I'm swearing off women" (yeah, right)
Ken to Tracy "Amy runs rings round you. When she's not running rings round me"
Norris to Mary "You're like a walking Mills and Boon"
Leanne to Tracy "When it comes to self defence, you're a pro" and "I've been with Robert all day and he'd rather boil his own head than spend another second with you"
Mary to Norris "Reign in your rudeness, sweet cheeks"



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First-look pic: Rob Donovan returns to Coronation Street

Rob Donovan will set the cat amongst the pigeons once more on Coronation Street when he starts calling the shots from his prison cell!

As this exclusive picture shows, Marc Baylis will reprise his role as murderer Rob Donovan from Friday 4th December when viewers will see him in prison.

Rob will send a number of visiting orders to some of our favourite Weatherfield residents, a year after he got sent down for Tina McIntyre’s murder, after being arrested on his wedding day to Tracy Barlow.

Rob’s reappearance spells trouble and it soon becomes clear that he holds the key to a huge Connor family secret, one that he could use to his advantage.

What is Rob’s end game and could it throw a spanner in the works for Tracy and Robert’s relationship, just as it looks like Tracy’s put her past with Rob to bed and is moving on with her life!

Marc Baylis said: “Rob’s had a lot of time to think about things over the last year and ponder why he ended up where he is. He’s got a sternness to him, he’s a bit colder than he was before. Rob’s of the attitude that if he’s having it so hard for the foreseeable future then why should everyone else have it so easy. He feels that he’s been hard done by and he just wants a little bit of payback.”


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Saturday, 28 November 2015

State of the Street - November

I like to put the spotlight on some of the storylines that made an impression on me during a month, good or bad. This month, I've had a bit of a rant about Ken and Nessa, well...mostly about Nessa, a grasping and selfish woman. Would Ken have thrown himself into a new relationship so soon after Deirdre's death if Nessa hadn't thrown herself at him and presented herself on a plate? I think not.

I'm very glad Simon is getting the help he needs even if it does look like it's going to be an uphill battle with the boy. I hope Zeedan continues to be a big brother figure, Simon needs that. I'm not so sure he needs yet another father figure which may or may not be Robert. Tracy's attitude might push Robert right into Leanne's arms and that might not be so good for Simon in the long run if it's yet another doomed relationship. I'd like to see Leanne refuse to take anything more from Robert  other than friendship. He can still be a support for Simon without warming her bed.

The story with Jamie blackmailing Luke was fairly brief, brought in to add a bit of drama around Maria's exit but focussing on a very modern issue. I didn't mind the storyline and I really liked the way Steph handled things when she found out. She was upset, yes, but with support, she stood up and looked Jamie in the eye and had him arrested. The actor playing Jamie was great, suitably icky and creepy and played very well. Tisha Merry was top notch and I liked seeing more of the brother-sister relationship between Steph and Luke.

All this and more on this month's State of the Street.


Tvor (Twitter @tvordlj)





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Watch: The Secret of Soaps - video highlights

Our blogger Stevie attended this week's Royal Television Society event The Secret of Soaps. You can read his great blog post here.  

The event in London took the form of a  panel discussion and Q&A with Tina O'Brien (Sarah Platt), scriptwriter Debbie Oates, Producer Stuart Blackburn and MD of Continuing Drama at ITV John Whiston.

The RTS have uploaded the highlights from the evening to YouTube and you can watch these below. You can also read the RTS write-up from the event too.



Coronation Street writer Debbie Oates told the RTS what it takes to become a soap writer:

Coronation Street producer Stuart Blackburn revealed the production process behind making the hit British soap.



The RTS asked the masterminds behind Coronation Street what their favourite episode was from the much-loved show.




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The wonder of Weatherfield

Over the past few months I have, admittedly, been struggling with my love of all things Corrie. It happens. We've probably all been there. There comes a time when the show seems to hit a stream of storylines that fail to resonate. You ask yourself the usual questions - 'have I fallen out of love with the soap? and 'will it ever get better?'

The real problem was that the one particular storyline which ground me down just happened to feature a couple of my favourite actors. Yes, the disposal of Callum Logan had me cheering. The dreadful old campster had been dispatched and with him, a tedious period in the show's history. Not so. Kylie and David then found themselves trudging through endless episodes of 'what ifs'. Paula Lane and Jack P. Shepherd tackled them with aplomb. However, I couldn't escape that sinking feeling every time that nasty little sofa and the awful kitchen hove into view. Thankfully, simpering, whinnying Gail had been bundled off to Italy along with her daughter and grand-daughter, otherwise I'd have been tearing up that manhole cover and hurling myself in.


Of late though, a little respite. We all know that the story is going to resurface and despite assurances from all involved, part of me still believes that Callum will resurface at some point. Otherwise, and quite rightly, Kylie's off to Cell Block H and we really don't want to see Paula Lane exit stage left.

In the past couple of weeks though, sunshine through the rain. I'm enjoying my cobbles-based dramatics. There have been some cracking episodes and to me, it feels as though the show has had a hefty kick up the bum. I'm loving the cat-and-mouse shenanigans of Erica and Dev. Comedy Dev has always been a guilty pleasure (more so than sobbing, dramatic Dev) and in Erica he's met his match.

The Mary-Brendan relationship is one of those quirky couplings that Corrie does well. I loved the scene where Mary told Emily to butt out. Mrs Bishop is beloved by many but I'm not a fan so this was quite  moment. I can't wait for her to get started on Rita!


I cheered for Leanne. The poor woman struts up and down the Street with her 'Scream' mask facial expressions but at last, she has the support she needs to deal with Simon. Isn't it good to see Eva back too? When she first joined the show I thought she had all the appeal of a wooden spoon but now, she's Corrie gold.

Leanne isn't the only resurgent female on the Street. Liz dealt with Tony wonderfully (sad to see him go though), Kate got feisty at the faktry and new, shiny Tracy reverted back to her shrieking Harvester barmaid persona.

Elsewhere, I feel that other characters are entering their comfort zone. Mine too. I like the Nazirs, especially Yasmeen, who is the kind of nurturing soul the show needs. The Roy/Cathy relationship feels 'right', Carla seems buoyed by her re-discovered family and attentive boyfriend. There's been some lovely acting from Jennie McAlpine and Alan Halsall as Fiz and Tyrone struggle with their awful news. All the stuff of which any good soap is made.

Of course, one man's meat is another man's poison and no doubt there are many who will have loved the high drama of Callum's comeuppance or the conclusion of the Gary and Alya romance. Not me though.

I hope that Corrie has weathered a hum-drum autumn only to burst forth into a contented winter. For me, there certainly seems to be a different feel to recent episodes and for that, I raise a glass of milk stout to those in charge of t'cobbles.

By David Bridgman (twitter @bridglondon)


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