Tuesday, 16 February 2016
My Corrie Quandary
I'm in a Corrie quandary. To be honest I'm holding out for a change in personnel. It might just be me but I feel like the show is coasting a little at the moment. I find myself all too often feeling like I've been there before. It feels like everything is being slowly run down before a new broom comes in.
I am beginning to watch the show after it has been broadcast so I can fast forward the bits I'm too bored to view. I used to just do this with the adverts. There is still plenty to enjoy - don't get me wrong. I have enjoyed seeing more of Rita, Audrey and Norris in the first two months of 2016. They have been brought back to the fore. There has also been plenty of Sally and Tim and much less of the Platt family, so that's kept me happy. And I don't mind the new Connors either. Alright, Aidan's constant moaning following the revelation that Johnny is Carla's dad has been off putting but as a family unit I think they work.
Despite this, there is a lot I'm not so happy about. The recent news that Kate Connor will become the victim of an abusive partner in the form of girlfriend Caz has also made me sigh and tut. We've had so many versions of this tale in Coronation Street that I can't believe we're going here again. I know that domestic abuse in all its forms is an important topic for continuing drama and one we should not shy away from exploring but it's already being done with the Simon and Leanne storyline. And it was done so well a few years back with Shelley and Charlie Stubbs. Again, I may be a cynic but it feels like the domestic abuse angle is being grafted in to allow Sophie Webster to get together with Kate as we know she will.
As I've mentioned the recent storyline which saw Carla find out Johnny was her father is just so old hat. Didn't the same thing happen in the factory several years back when Danny Baldwin found out Mike was his dad? Scriptwriters may have short memories but the loyal audience do not. Even without the similarities to the Baldwin story, this plot line feels like it has been done to death not just in the Street but in other versions of the soap genre.
I also cannot take much more Carla misery. Alison King is a superb talent and will be a great loss to Corrie when she leaves for good later this year. I just think the powers that be have loaded far too much grief, far too many traumas and far too many trips to hospital on the poor woman. I know realism doesn't come into play with Coronation Street these days but Carla has had so many terrible things happen to her in the past ten years it beggars belief. It also diminishes the shock value so the more often it happens the less original drama can be squeezed from the situation. I had to fast forward some of the scenes between Tracy and Carla last night. There was nothing original or different in them. The feud between this pair is dragging on and on and I have very little sympathy for either woman. The vengeful Tracy act is becoming very tired.
I am also no fan of the resurrected Pat Phelan story. I think the actor who plays him is superb but it all feels like too much of a retread. I think Debbie Rush is a great actor but I really dislike the shrewish Anna, who seems to be front and centre once again. I felt tremendous sympathy for her the first time around but this time I couldn't understand why she didn't just tell Kevin the truth. She's made the whole situation ten times worse for herself by keeping quiet. Again it all feels too familiar like we've been there before. I think the return of Phelan was an easy option and signifies the staleness in the show at the moment.
I will try to end on a positive. I have completely changed my mind about Erica. To begin with I just saw another soap actor switching programmes and I didn't see the point of the character. Now, I feel differently. I think Claire King is doing an excellent job and Erica is a breath of fresh air with her positive attitude and support of the likes of Mary and Izzy. I really like the character and hope they develop her further. Some more scenes with Liz would be great as the Rovers Landlady really needs a close female friend now Deirdre has gone.
I know the new Coronation Street producer has promised no major cast culls when she takes over later in the spring and while I don't like the thought of hard working actors losing their jobs, I can't help but hope the cast and the storylines are shaken up a little.
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