Cosy crimes and gritty sagas by Corrie Blog editor Glenda, published by Headline. Click pic below!

Monday 31 October 2011

The ghost of Anna Foster

Hmm. I've just been watching the Canadian timeline of Corrie. We're up to where Frank makes a play for Maria the day she starts work at the factory. He's just told her, while they are making dinner in his kitchen, that his mother never approved of anything he ever did but is dead now. He didn't seem to be lying, no shifty looks. I wonder if Anna Foster is a rewrite of history, yet again?

I wouldn't put it past them. The powers that be have previous.

Peter Barlow to bed Carla Connor at Christmas

Peter Barlow gets a right stocking thriller this Christmas when he ends up between the sheets with sexy factory boss Carla Connor, says The Star. 

I guess we've all seen this coming for a long time, but it's great to hear they finally get together. Poor Leanne, though! The paper says that Peter even vows to Carla that he'll leave Leanne for her.

See more Coronation Street Christmas spoilers here.

Winners announced in Coronation Street Blog competitions

Congratulations go to Coronation Street fans Matt Newton and Dan Timbrell who have been drawn at random to become the latest winners in our Coronation Street Blog competitions.

Matt wins a Coronation Street 2000s DVD Box Set and it'll be on its way in the post soon, thanks to Network DVD. 

Why not order it for yourself as a Christmas treat from Amazon?

And Dan has won two pairs of tickets to see Soap Star Secrets, live on stage at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage this coming Saturday night.  It should be a good night, with lots of Street secrets being spilled by ex-Corrie actors.

Book your tickets for the show here.

State of the Street: October 2011

We've come to the end of another month of the Street. Hard to imagine the year is nearly over! They're filming Christmas episodes now. As we look back to October on Coronation Street, it was a month of trials and tribulations for Fiz and Carla. Has Eileen met yet another loser or is Paul a good guy in a no-win situation?

And where's Pam and Bill? Why bring them back with all the publicity to shove them back into a hospital supply closet? And what would you do with Sally and Kevin? Keep them together, or give them new lives/storylines/partners?

Read more on State of the Street.

Last chance to win fab prizes in two Corrie competitions

It's your last chance to enter two of our special competitions we've got running on the blog as the deadline for both competitions is later today, Monday 31 October.

To be in with a chance to win a Coronation Street 2000s DVD Box Set - click here - deadline ends at 5pm on Monday 31.10.11

To be in with a chance to win two tickets to see ex-Corrie actors Charles Lawson and Nick Cochrane (Jim and Andy McDonald) spill Street secrets live on stage in Soap Star Secrets - click here - deadline ends at 6pm on Monday 31.10.11

And keep your eyes firmly fixed to the Coronation Street Blog as we'll have some EXCLUSIVE Christmas Corrie competitions coming up in the run-up to Christmas through November and Decemnber.  Oh yes!

Sneak preview of tonight's double Halloween Corrie

Coronation Street, Monday 31October
Fiz awaits sentencing for the murder of Colin Fishwick. Fiz is in turmoil over John but as she heads to court for sentencing she clings to hope that John’s confession will have changed things. Her optimism is buoyed by Chesney, as the police have called at the house and found the murder weapons (the hammer & handbag) which John described. In court her barrister makes her case regarding the new evidence and argues it renders Fiz’s conviction unsafe. Will the judge agree?
Chris tests Cheryl’s feelings for him. When a guilty Cheryl tells Chris she’s not sure what she wants anymore he arranges to move into Jason’s flat. Coming home to this Lloyd can’t hide his relief but Chery’s head is left in a mess.
Carla’s furious as Frank poaches a client. When a big client cancels a meeting with Carla, as he’s been offered better terms by Frank, she’s desperate to renegotiate. The client agrees to see her but is Carla really up to it?
Elsewhere Rosie’s shaken by her ordeal with John but pleased when Jeff secures her an interview with the Gazette. Julie & Brian move into the butcher’s flat.

Monday 31 October at 8.30pm
Fiz makes plans. Fiz is stunned by her latest change in circumstance and is forced to make plans for the future. Has she been sent down for life or will she be returning to the street? Back at the pub the residents have mixed feelings to the news and as row breaks out the Websters are right at the heart of it.
Carla plays Frank at his own game. Getting straight down to business Carla betters Frank’s offer and gets the client to sign the contract on the spot. How will Frank react to her small victory?
Cheryl risks losing Chris. When an upset Russ reveals to Cheryl that Chris told him he and Cheryl were getting back together she races out to confront Chris. As she lays into him he claims he moved out as he can’t bear seeing her with Lloyd, he loves her too much. The wind taken from her sails Cheryl admits she’s falling back in love with Chris but is she prepared to break Lloyd’s heart?
Elsewhere Julie’s desperate to starts a family with Brian and he’s only too happy to oblige but is there something he‘s keeping from her?

Helen Flanagan reveals why she's leaving Coronation Street

Helen Flanagan has given an interview to Hello! magazine in which she talks about the reasons why she's leaving Coronation Street.

She told the mag about playing Rosie: "I didn't enjoy playing her when she went through a promiscuous phase. I'd always felt I would leave by the time I was 21, but when I made up my mind, it wasn't even as if I had a choice.  I just knew instinctively. After 12 years playing Rosie, it is time to be myself."

Helen, who dates Swansea footballer Scott Sinclair, said she loved her character apart from when she was sleeping around.
Helen said of her recent break from the show: "One of the first things I did was cut my hair and dye it blonde. During my time away from the Street I felt free."

Helen's last scenes as Rosie Webster will be aired in February 2012.

Alice Cooper wants to be on Coronation Street

The latest celebrity to jump on the Coronation Street bandwagon is golfing rocker Alice Cooper.

Alice is currently appearing in his Halloween Night of Fear at Glasgow and said at the weekend: “I’d love to turn up in Coronation Street. I think a serial killer role would work very well. That show needs a higher body count”.  

Well, there's certainly one or two characters he could kill off for me, starting with the dreadful Cheryl and Chris.

Do Corrie fans want product placement on Coronation Street?

News in over the weekend is that Coronation Street is going to be the first TV show to include product placement, or in other words, accept cash in exchange for even more advertising within the programme. 

The product placement is going to be for Nationwide Bank when a cash machine turns up inside Dev's shop to replace the unbranded cash machine that's already there, and an advertising banner for the bank will appear outside of the shop too.

The deal, thought to be for an initial period of four months, marks the first product placement in a UK primetime show.

Do Corrie fans have any strong feelings one way or another on product placement in our favourite show? 

Sunday 30 October 2011

Betty Williams' Corrie funeral to be aired Spring 2012

Betty Williams' funeral on Coronation Street will be shown on screen either February or March of next year, says today's Sunday Mirror. 

The paper also repeats the rumour that Julie Goodyear might return to Corrie as Bet Lynch for Betty's funeral. It also says that other Street legends such as Jean Alexander (Hilda Ogden), Julie Goodyear and Roy Barraclough (Alec Gilroy), Sarah Lancashire (Raquel Watts) and Cheryl Murray (Suzie Birchall) are among those who could appear at Betty's funeral.

Now then, much as I would love to see all of the above back on the Street for Betty's funeral, it's hard to know who will return and who won't - or can't.

For instance, if we read newspaper reports from last year when Corrie tried to get Jean Alexander to return as Hilda for the 50th anniversary, then it's very unlikely Jean Alexander will return to Corrie as Hilda.  Read more on that here.

Also, Sarah Lancashire returning as Raquel Watts seems unlikely as she once famously said "I'd never return to Coronation Street, not  for a million quid".  Read more on that here

And while it would be fantastic to see Cheryl Murray return as the goddess that was Suzie Birchall, the last we heard of the actress was that she was quite poorly, but if anyone has an update on Cheryl, do please let us know as we would love to hear how is. She's always been and remains a firm Corrie favourite in our household.

However, it is possible that Roy Barraclough might return as Alec Gilroy, as he's still a working actor.  And Everton Football Club chairman Bill Kenwright, who used to play Betty's son Gordon, could also appear.

Corrie producer Phil Collinson is reportedly set to meet with scriptwriters this week to discuss plans for Betty's exit from the soap.

Any other legends that you'd like to see back for Betty's send-off?

Corrie weekly awards: Oct. 24 - 28

The face of Guilt!

Knitting under the guillotine award: Wooly star: I see Mary has taken up Blanche's morbid enthusiasm for trials, hoping for the worst.

Miscarraige of Justice award: Gold Star: Fiz was convicted! Still, John confessed on his deathbed.
Silver Star: Sylvia won a cruise in a contest on Mary's discarded slogan. Well she *did* throw it away!

Big Sister award: Sunita has always been really good to Sophie.

Delusional award: Ropey Star: Rosie is tied and gagged. John is saying this isn't a kidnap. No?

Once a teacher, always a teacher: Gold star: John Stape Quizzing and marking Rosie on his confession details.

Irony award: Stape calling himself Mr. Chips to book the viewing and so we could say Goodbye Mr. Chips at the end of the week.

Fashion accessory of the week: Orange bra worn over the shoulder.

Ghosts in the machine award: Why on earth is there furniture in Jason's flat? After it was rebuilt, he nor Tina ever moved back in.

Medical Miracle award: The tumour is reduced and stable, but it's still there, right? leading to...

Pants on Fire award: Gold Star: Chris lied and let Cheryl think things look grim.

Overcompensation award: Squidgy Star: Amber kissed Sophie, Sophie liked it. Sophie proposes to Sian

Trial cliche award: Gold Star: There's always someone that springs up, enraged that someone lies on the stand or other similar. And the accused also usually has reason to scream their innocence at the jury or person testifying.
Silver Star: The best intended testimony is always twisted against the accused including that *of* the accused.

Deirdre Barlow Award (handed down from Gail McIntyre): "I Didn't Do it!!!"

Lines of the Week:
Julie to Brian "You might as well have said 'Here's Johnny!!!'" (Indeed)
Sophie "Sian can be such hard work sometimes" (Pot? Kettle?)
Prosecutor "23 minutes to search a 2 up and 2 down house?" Kirk "Sounds about right to me"
Rosie to Jason "You have no vision! I see the world in wide screen, HD, on Demand!" Jason "You're on Cloud Cuckooland!"
John "Hello Rosie. We need to talk" and "I'd rather die than go back to jail" (you got your wish)
John "Fiz needs me and I'm not going to let her down again" (got a funny way of supporting her)
Cheryl to Lloyd "I don't deserve you" (Too right you don't)
Norris "I fear HMS Retribution has sailed"
John about himself "Selfish to the end"

Saturday 29 October 2011

Coronation Street 2011 Christmas Spoilers

Christmas is a huge time for all soaps, and I always love this time of year when we're getting some spoilers and snippets in the press about what might, or might not, be happening on Coronation Street this Christmas.

This blog post will be linked from the right hand side of the blog from now until Christmas and we'll keep it updated with as many Christmas Corrie spoilers as we possibly can. If you spot any we miss, let us know, write it and email or twitter us.

In the run up to Christmas we're having a very special daily blog event happening all the way through December from 1st to the big day on the 25th.  And we've got some wonderful and EXCLUSIVE Christmas competitions coming up on the blog where you can win some great Corrie prizes for yourself or the Corrie fan in your life. Keep checking the blog for all the Chrimbo goodies coming soon!

And so, here we go with the start of the seasonal spoilers. If you don't want to know, don't look - and we can't promise these will come true, they're just what we've picked up in the press, which as you know, is often wrong!

Chesney Battersby-Brown and Gary Windass dress up as elves

Sophie and Sian's Christmas wedding - on or off?

More on Sophie and Sian's wedding and a kiss under the mistletoe for Sally and Frank

Chesney and Katy's Christmas baby

More news on the Christmas baby

Peter Barlow sleeps with Carla Connor
Emily and Rita in Christmas dinner cook-off and Gary Windass sells dodgy Christmas trees

See also: Corrie Christmas Spoilers from Inside Soap Yearbook

See also: It's beginning to look a lot like a Corrie Christmas

John Stape: In loving memory?

And so the Grim Reaper once again pays a visit to Weatherfield and this time collects "Mr Chips" himself. John Stape is no more. Weep for him. Or maybe not. Given that the character had only been around for a few years, he certainly packed a fair bit in. Sometime teacher, sometime café assistant, sometime murderer. It would be fair to say that he didn't particularly excel at any of these. He was a useless kidnapper too as dozy Rosie discovered on two occasions. John was like one of those shambolic supply teachers you used to get in schools years ago. Eyes like Bambi caught in the forest fire, paper trailing from an hastily locked briefcase, gravy stains down his tie.

For all of this though, John retained some sense of humanity and, even to the bitter end, a sense of humour. The character craved normality and a family yet was thwarted in all attempts to secure this - usually thanks to his own stupidity. Will he be remembered as a classic Corrie character or will we forget him? John has certainly been unique - deranged schoolteacher with misguided principles. Will his death be the making of Fiz who can now bloom, free of a disfunctional marriage?

John Stape - Hero or Zero?

Kate Ford's inner bad girl

There is a nice long interview with Kate Ford in the Mirror. It's always interesting to get some insight into the actor who plays such a nightmare as is Tracy Barlow. You know they must be as different as night and day and from all I've heard, Kate is a very lovely woman. They call her "supersweet", in fact.

Kate explains that it can be difficult sometimes to play the part, considering how nasty Tracy is and the awful things she says. As a mother, Kate found it challenging to be so hurtful to Becky about her infertility. “There’s a real sense of danger with her – she did kill someone after all and you wouldn’t want to p*** her off. You get to say the most ridiculous, vicious things which can be fun. But it can be horrible too."

She also admits that though Tracy has finally bagged Steve, Steve doesn't love Tracy and probably never will. He wants the family life and is willing to do the right thing (since he can't have Becky). Will it last? My bet is no.

In her every day life, Kate says she always goes for what she wants when she wants it and that's reflected in the relative speed of her dating-to-wedding day with husband Jon Connerty. They also bought a house in hours and she was pregnant on her wedding day as well, for little Otis. She loves being a mother and misses him when she's away.

She also mentions helping Helen Flanagan work through her panic attacks as she's suffered them for years. Kate also says those attacks are absolutely not the reason for Helen's imminent departure from the cobbles.

Kate sounds as nice as everyone says she is. I know she gets a lot of stick for her acting but she must have some talent if she can make Tracy as horrible as all that.

Corrie Christmas storyline - what the elf's going on?

There's a wonderful picture in today's Mirror of Chesney Battersby-Brown and Gary Windass dressed as elves, riding a bike.

And that's not a sight I think we've seen in Corrie before, not elves on a bike anyway!

Coronation Street are now filming their Christmas episodes so I guess this pictures's been taken from one of the festive storylines.  Looks like it might be fun!

Goodbye Mr. Chips

Thus endeth the saga of Stape, the man whose life had more twists and turns than the Monaco F1 track. I'm sure the writers had a lot of fun writing this storyline over the past couple of years, topped off with the irony of John calling himself Mr. Chips. Why? Find out here.

Kudos to Graeme Hawley and Jennie McAlpine! As often as I was frustrated with Fiz being such a doormat at John's selfish manipulations, they kept me interested, kept me watching and that's testimony to two talented actors.

Friday 28 October 2011

Seven years of Schmeichel on Coronation Street

Next month Coronation Street will say farewell to Schmeichel the Great Dane. For seven years, the huge dog has been a constant companion to Chesney and has become a favourite with fans.  His on-screen death will mean a change in routine for the dog which has played the role and his owner, Anne Lunt. 

Anne, who runs Animal Capers who also supply Eccles and Ozzy to Corrie, is interviewed on the BBC news website and pays a fond farewell to working on Corrie with the huge dog.

It's a nice little interview and you can read it here.

Spot the Corrie prop - October 28th 2011

Last week's wedding based puzzle gave some of you a few problems but congratulations to Corriepedia who was the first to correctly identify Elsie and Steve Tanner. I thought the fact that the picture was in colour but the wedding was in black and white might have tricked you all. I was wrong (I guess I'll have to get used to saying that now I'm married).

For this week's prop poser, whereabouts on the Coronation Street set have we seen this picture recently?

Sneak preview of tonight's double Corrie - Friday 28 October at 7.30 & 8.30

Coronation Street, Friday 28 October @ 7:30pm
Fiz’s fate rests in dying John’s hands. As John lies unconscious in hospital Fiz hears the news and sees a glimmer of hope. The police interview Rosie about her kidnap ordeal. She reveals how John schooled her in the details of Colin, Charlotte and Joy’s deaths. But it’s merely hearsay and Chesney warns Fiz they need John to pull through and make his confession. As Chesney waits at the hospital John starts to arrest and the crash team rush to his side. Will John survive to tell the tale?
Chris declares his feelings for Cheryl. Feeling guilty Cheryl apologises to Lloyd for their row. But when Chris corners Cheryl, telling her she doesn’t really love Lloyd she loves him and kissing her passionately, how will Cheryl respond?
The cracks begin to show at Underworld. Carla tries in vain to drum up more business for the factory leaving the staff debating jumping from the sinking ship.
Elsewhere Mary’s furious when Sylvia wins 1st prize in a competition after stealing her answer.

Friday 28 October @ 8:30pm
John makes a bedside confession. As the crash team manage to get John’s heart going again, Fiz visits her dying husband. At the hospital John regains consciousness as Fiz arrives with Hope. Though clearly in a lot of pain, he makes a statement to the police, telling them how Fiz had nothing to do with the murders. As John explains he was hiding out in Anglesey and had no idea she’d been arrested Fiz forgives him, admitting that despite everything she’ll always love him. Choked with emotion John holds Hope closely as Fiz sobs for what could have been. Is it curtains for John?
Lloyd’s efforts come too late for guilty Cheryl. Chris puts pressure on Cheryl to dump Lloyd but she’s torn, not wanting to hurt Lloyd. Seizing the initiative Chris tells Russ that he and Cheryl are getting back together and they’re going to be a family again soon. But is this what Cheryl wants?
Elsewhere Mary can’t let Sylvia’s cheating go. Karl plans a poker night

Thursday 27 October 2011

COMPETITION! Win tickets to see Soap Star Secrets live on stage

With thanks to the wonderful people at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage, we have 2 pairs of tickets to give away to two lucky Coronation Street fans.  The tickets will get you in to see the Soap Star Secrets show on Saturday 5 November at the Gordon Craig Theatre. 

The show features actors Charlie Lawson (Jim McDonald) and Nick Cochrane (Andy McDonald) who will talk candidly about their lives on and off the small screen. Packed with true life stories and behind the scenes anecdotes, question & answer section, guaranteed laughs and unexpected shocks, this one off evening will leave no soap stone un-turned.

Before you enter the competition, you must be free to attend and pick up your tickets from the box office at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage before the show begins at 7.45pm on Saturday November 5. Over 18s only, please. The two winners will each win a pair of tickets to the show and winners will be drawn at random from all correct entries received before the deadline.  Good luck!

Feeling lucky?  Ok, all you have to do is answer this question and email the answer to me at before 6pm on Monday 31st October, 2011. 

Q: What year did the McDonald family first join Coronation Street?

Find out more about the show here.

And if you do win the tickets, and you would like to do a review of the show afterwards, please do let us know.

Ex-Corrie actors spill Street secrets


Coronation Street’s Charlie Lawson (Jim McDonald) and Nick Cochrane (Andy McDonald) will be appearing at a special theatre event called Soap Star Secrets.

The ex-Corrie actors will talk candidly about their lives on and off the small screen. Packed with true life stories and behind the scenes anecdotes, question & answer section, guaranteed laughs and unexpected shocks, this one off evening will leave no soap stone un-turned.

The revelations will start in the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage at 7.45pm on Saturday November 5.

Book your tickets and find out more here.

And if you go along, and you would like to do a review of the show afterwards, please do let us know.

Canadian CBC renews Corrie

According to this little news tidbit, CBC in Canada has renewed its contract with ITV to be able to air Coronation Street in Canada with a multi-year contract. (That news site may require a login which showed when I first looked at it but then showed the whole article the next time so your mileage may vary).

They have a quote from Tony Warren who says: “I am delighted to hear of the new Canadian deal especially as the unsung hero of the show, Harry Elton, who was the original executive producer and a Canadian, had the foresight to commission the programme.”

They're also calling it Canada's "most popular drama serial" and indeed, Corrie is one of CBC's top rated shows. In spite of their purported "All Canadian" schedule, there are still a small number of non-Canuck items on the air which bring in the bucks and Corrie has always been one of their best-sellers.

Now with the double episodes, we're catching up at a rate of a month per month, or a week per week if you want. Current episodes this week originally aired in late February 2011 which makes us 8 months behind. We were over 10 months behind at the start of September, so that's great progress!

(cross posted to the Bluenose Corrie Blog)

Who are your favourite Coronation Street writers?

When you sit down to watch Coronation Street do you ever take notice of who the episode writer is?  If you, like me, are the sort of person who does take notice, and indeed, it's important to know who the writer is, then you'll like this little blog post. 

I'm wondering who your favourite Coronation Street writers are, and if you have any comments on any of them that you'd like to share below. 

My current favourite writers are Jonathan Harvey because when his name is on an episode you know it'll be funny and camp but also move the action on a fair bit.  I also like Carmel Morgan a great deal because her episodes are full of drama and a bit gritty too.  And since he retired, I do miss John Stevenson's warmth and humour.

But never mind me, who are your favourite writers?  And what do you think it takes to be a very good writer on our favourite soap?

There's a list with details of all of the current writing team and some of the past ones here.

Steve McDonald gurn of the week - October 27 2011

It's Thursday and that means only one thing... time for the Steve McDonald gurn of the week. Thanks go Coronation Street fan Martin S. for this week's fab Stevie McGurn. If you've captured a good Corrie Steve gurn and want to share it via the blog, do email it in.

To see more gurnage from Stevie McGurn, have a look here, there's loads. Some good, some bad and some really very funny.

Sneak preview of tonight's Corrie - Thursday 27 October at 8.30

Coronation Street, Thursday 27 October @ 8:30pm
Kevin and Jason save Rosie – but condemn Fiz? Rosie begs John to let her go but her pleas fall on deaf ears as John makes her recite the evidence one more time. But his plan is derailed when Kevin and Jason break into the flat worried after Rosie never returned from the viewing. John makes a run for it as Kevin gives chase.

In court Fiz listens nervously as the barristers give their summing up then the jury retire to consider their verdict. Now in his car John speeds towards the court but when Kevin shunts him he loses control and crashes. With John trapped and unconscious Kevin calls an ambulance as the jury return to deliver their verdict. Will Fiz be found guilty of murder?
A row with Lloyd drives Cheryl to sleep with Chris. When Lloyd suggests Chris  should consider moving to a hospice Cheryl’s horrified and as the couple row Chris is secretly pleased. Alone with Cheryl he admits he wishes things were like they used to be. But when he moves in for a kiss how will Cheryl react?

Wednesday 26 October 2011

The Road to Coronation Street to be repeated on TV

The wonderful BBC drama The Road to Coronation Street will be repeated on TV next week.

So if you missed it first time around, you can catch it on Tuesday 1st Nov at 9pm on BBC 4 and again at 11pm on BBC HD.

Find out more about the show at the BBC website.

With thanks to Daran Little, the writer of The Road to Coronation Street for tweeting about this. 

Follow Daran Little on twitter.

Corrie writer blogs his Betty Driver memories

Coronation Street writer Damon Rochefort has written a blog post for the official Corrie website with his memories of the late Betty Driver.

It's a lovely piece and you can read it here.

Find out more about Damon Rochefort and the Corrie writing team here.

Corrie hunk to turn on Chorley Christmas lights

Ryan Thomas, who plays Jason Grimshaw in Coronation Street, will turn on Chorley’s Christmas lights.

The town’s switch-on event will take place on Thursday November 24 and a competition winner will be given the chance to appear alongside him at the event. Everyone who registers to take part in the community Christmas parade will be entered into a golden ticket draw to appear on stage.

And speaking of all things sparkly and Christmas, have you seen who's in a panto near you this year?  Click here for full panto list.

Book tickets to see Fat Brenda: My Flamin' Story, live on stage

If you haven't yet booked your tickets to see Fat Brenda live on stage in Harrogate next year, then you can book online right here.

The poster for the show has now gone live on the Harrogate Theatre website and I'm delighted for talented artist Pickled Jo who has designed the poster. 

Follow Fat Brenda on twitter
Follow Steve Huison on twitter
Follow Pickled Jo at her blog, on twitter, and join her facebook group.

Should Tina and Tommy get together in Corrie?

There's a very mini-spoiler in today's Sun that suggests Tina and Tommy start to thaw towards each other. The Coronation Street spoiler doesn't say anything more than that but the tabloid suggets it could be the start of something between the two of them, again.

It also says that "fans have been waiting for these two to get back together".  Have we? Have you? I haven't.

I think Tommy Duckworth is a complete waste of space and if the writers don't do something with Tina's character soon, she's going to end up the same way.

So should Tommy and Tina get together in Corrie? What do you think?

Extra Corrie tonight , Wednesday 26 October - John Stape kidnaps Rosie

Coronation Street, Wednesday 26 October @ 7:30pm
Rosie’s horrified by a familiar face. Rosie tells the estate agent she’ll meet the prospective buyer at the flat. Meanwhile in court Rita testifies and Ches does his best for his sister but the prosecution are quick to find flaws in his testimony. At the flat Rosie’s horrified to find herself face to face with John Stape! He binds and gags Rosie explaining he needs her to attend Fiz’s trial and put forward his version of events so Fiz gets off. In court Fiz takes the stand, protesting her innocence and blaming John for the murders. Back at the flat John schools Rosie in the details of the deaths of Colin, Charlotte and Joy, telling a terrified Rosie that if she wants to leave the flat alive she’d better concentrate on doing her bit in court tomorrow.
News of Sophie’s engagement doesn’t go down well. The Websters are stunned as Sophie announces she and Sian are engaged, pointing out her age they refuse to give their permission. But are the girls prepared to wait till they’re 18 and how will Amber react to the news?
Chris gets carried away with his lie. Chris persuades Cheryl that he needs to attend his hospital appointment alone. His tumour has shrunk and he should make a full recovery. But will he share his good news with Cheryl and Lloyd?

Tuesday 25 October 2011

Carla, Frank and the Corrie rape storyline

I have to say that I think that the rape storyline with Frank and Carla is being superbly done. Over the summer I drifted off from Corrie - and this blog - but the autumn has seen me rapt once again, and it's partly because of this storyline. I think it's been handled superbly, and sensitively, by the writers, I think it's been acted wonderfully by Andrew Lancel and Alison King, and I think it's beaten other such high-profile storylines into submission.

Frank has been creepy ever since he first showed up on the cobbles, but he's really upped it recently, up to and including poaching Carla's staff and his defiant declaration that "I'm the victim!". Not only that, but his mother, played by the immense Gwen Taylor, is almost as creepy as he is.

When Frank raped Carla, it wasn't about sex, it was about power. Since the beginning, their relationship has been about power, ever since Frank played the knight in shining armour and saved the factory, through to how he commandeered their engagement, their wedding plans, where they would live, and even to how he made her be around his parents. Carla is a strong woman, but she was caught on the back foot, and she was gradually worn down, I think due to her difficulties with work, with her drinking problem, and with her feelings for Peter. Plus, let's not forget that this is a woman who has lost a lot in life - Paul, Liam, her family - so it makes sense that she craves stability.

When Carla finally called it off, she took the power back from Frank and he responded in the only way he knew to - by raping her. She did the right thing by calling the police, even though it would have been a believable and realistic plot for her to not go to the police. Frank cleverly admitted that they'd had sex, as he knew that his DNA would show up, but said that she "liked it rough". So it will end up being her word against his, if in fact it goes to court.

This is the face of rape. It's estimated that one in three women have suffered from sexual assault or rape. The most common perpetrators of rape are husbands or partners.* Even though in 2006/2007 0.5% of women reported rape or attempted rape in the British Crime Survey~ (equating to around 85,000 nationally), fewer than 800 persons were convicted of rape that year.

If this storyline was real life, I think Frank would get off with it. It may not go to court, Carla may decide not to testify, it would be her word against his, the CPS may decide not to proceed.

But this is soap, and in soaps the baddies rarely get away with it for long. At the very least Frank will lose his new factory. I hope it goes all the way and that he loses his freedom, too. That would send a very positive message to people like Carla who are raped - sometimes frequently - by people they know, trust, and maybe even love.

Corrie's John Michie in East Africa appeal

John Michie, who plays Karl Munro in Coronation Street, is showing his real-life softer side – backing a charity appeal to help drought-hit kids in East Africa.

John has sponsored kids in Kenya for 25 years through children’s charity Plan UK after growing up there. Now the actor is backing a call for nearly 500 new sponsors to help children and their families prepare for future crises.

Watch John's video on the
Plan UK website here.

“Having grown up in Kenya, I feel a strong connection with the country,” says John, 54. "Sponsoring 17-year-old Mbinya through Plan helps me develop the connection and gives me more of an understanding of life for people in her community.”
Money donated to Plan through sponsorship funds projects for the benefit of entire communities, like school feeding and health clinics, rather than individual children. The charity is also working on innovative self-help groups for women farmers to grow more fruit for sale.
For more information on sponsoring a child with Plan call 0300 777 9777 or visit

Bev Callard swaps Rovers Return for Hormonal Housewives

Bev Callard, who played Coronation Street's Liz McDonald, will be starring in the stage play comedy Hormonal Housewives in 2012. 

You can find out more about the play and view the tour dates here.

With thanks to Corrie4Ever for this information. Follow the wonderful Corrie4Ever on facebook

Jonathan Harvey interview on Corrie and Beautiful Thing

Coronation Street writer Jonathan Harvey has been interviewed by Pink News about his play Beautiful Thing which is showing at  Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre from November 9th to December 3rd. 

The interview's well worth a read and it's online here but here's what he has to say about writing for Coronation Street:

From Pink News: "One of Harvey’s unquestionable successes has been writing for Coronation Street, the long-running ITV soap first broadcast in 1960. Its then executive producer, who had separately produced three one-off TV dramas written by Harvey, persuaded him to join the programme’s writing team.

“She said I’d love it and she was absolutely right,” says Harvey. “It’s a brilliant opportunity to reach a massive audience. The very first episode I wrote in 2004 centred on a character called Todd, who was in the process of getting married to his girlfriend Sarah, but was having a relationship behind her back with another guy. In the episode I wrote he told Sarah he couldn’t go ahead with the wedding because he thought he was gay. That episode got 13m viewers! When Beautiful Thing first opened the theatre could only hold 80!

“As a writer you spend a lot of time writing stuff that never gets made. With Coronation Street every time I write something I know it’s going to be on television in eight weeks time. There’s also a huge amount of mutual support among the show’s writers, which is great.”

Having written for many of Britain’s most famous actors and actresses, including Catherine Tate and Dawn French, I ask him if there’s anyone left he’d like to write for.

“I’d love to work with Julie Walters,” he answers. “I’ve sent her a few things in the past, but she’s always turned me down. I imagine she’s probably sick of me asking her by now, but I’d still love to work with her.”

Ooh, let's hope that Julie Walters will give in soon and turn up on Coronation Street one of these days. We already know Corrie producer Phil Collinson is keen to have on the show too.

Find out more about Jonathan Harvey

Reminder - extra Corrie episode on Wednesday 26 October

A reminder that there's an extra episode of Coronation Street this week, on Wednesday 26 October at 7.30pm on ITV1.

Don't forget to tune in and have your tea and biscuits ready.

Sneak preview of next week's Corrie, Oct 31 - Nov 4

Without any piffle, here's the storyline for the week ahead on Coronation Street, all wrapped up nicely in 50 words or less.

Week of Monday October 31 - Friday 4 November

Fiz awaits sentencing, Chris tests Cheryl’s feelings, Carla’s furious when Frank poaches a client, Julie & Brian move into the butcher’s flat, Sophie & Sian buy engagement rings and Michelle takes over Underworld.
The full weekly preview, with loads of pictures is right here on

Missed last week's Corrie? Catch up with the Coronation Street weekly updates

Bet Lynch to return for Betty's funeral?

The Sun has reported that Julie Goodyear who played Bet Lynch, wants to return for Betty's funeral when it takes place. It will most likely be for one or two episodes only, but it'd be fitting as the pair served behind the bar together for many, many years.

I think it'd be great to have as many people as Betty knew to be back for her in-show funeral, not only would it feel more realistic to have so many of Betty's good friends back on the show, it'd be a great dedication to Betty Driver to have so many people return to the show to wish her character farewell.

Coronation Street Weekly Update, October 24

This week's weekly update has been written by K Richard Whitbread who's in the hotseat while Flaming Nora and Sunny Jim are tying the knot!

Greetings and welcome to the Coronation Street weekly updates. I had hoped that I might even get an invite to the wedding of the year, but it was not to be and I cannot therefore report how many Tunnocks were consumed or what the bride wore, but I am sure she looked stunning. I have crept into update Towers tonight and I have turned off the music and am enjoying a little piece and quiet before setting fingers to keyboard in earnest.

So what has been going on in the Street this week you might ask - actually it has been a bit quiet. Most of Monday has been spent in Weatherfield Crown Court where Fiz Stape stands accused of three murders, Colin Fishwick, Charlotte Hoyle and Joy Fishwick (just in case you had forgotten). As ever the prosecution team have first go at telling a story and Brian makes a complete hash of trying to support Fiz and Charlotte's mother, Dorothy Hoyle, almost completely forgets that it was Fiz who rescued her from imprisonment by John Stape. Mary and Brian have a good laugh about Detective "Anthea" Redfern's name when he is called into give evidence until the judge threatens to clear the gallery. Hayley is not much help either getting confused over the events at Ches's birthday party. However Fiz is represented by Nicola Taybarn QC (played by Jaye Griffiths) and after a slow start she manages to prove there is no forensic evidence linking Fiz to the deaths.

At the end of last week Amber decided to spice up Sophie's life. First they closed Dev's shop without his knowledge and then they headed into town to a club. Where, to get rid of a boy chatting up Sophie, Amber gives her a great big smacker to prove that they are lesbians. Amber has been spiking Sophie's drinks all evening, so she does not push Amber away. And subsequently Sophie spends much of the next day skiving off work due to a hangover and she tells her father that there was a kiss. Amber tells her to do and say nothing and Sian returns early from her holiday - her mother had picked up a man and she felt surplus to requirements. Anyway Sophie merely tells Sian that she has realised how much she loves her.

Rosie, who is getting very annoying, I can see that even Jason has almost had enough of her ways, is demanding that he sells the empty flat and buys them somewhere to live because she is no longer allowed into the former Webster residence given that her Mum and Jeff are getting jiggy jiggy and she decided to put a stop to it by making it appear that he had made a pass at her (Rosie). Initially it all went according to plan with Rosie wearing next to nothing and almost removing Jeff's trousers and Sally believed the clearly concocted story but Sophie gave the game away and let Sal know that it was a put up job. And Eileen is fed up with Rosie hanging around her house has well. So Rosie wants out. She may end up going further than expected.

Mary has taken up residence in court - but Norris and Rita briefly fall out over such ways, but not for long. There has been little sign of Dennis this week.

And who is that hanging around in a car with a beard? Well it appears to be one John Stape, who books a viewing of Jason's empty flat under the name of Mr Chips. He has been hanging around for several days and keeping an eye on the comings and goings in the Street and outside the court. And (spoiler) there is an extra episode this week - no doubt all will be revealed this time next week.

Eileen and Paul were getting on very well when Glenda wrapped up her report last week. However Marcus felt that he really ought to tell Eileen what he had seen in Freshco and she is distraught. She eventually decides to go round and tell Paul's wife of his low life behaviour, but when she does, his wife behaves oddly not even registering what she is being told about the lying scum with whom she shares a house and a marriage. A little later Paul turns up on the Street and tells Eileen the sad story of his wife and very early onset Alzheimer's disease. She no longer knows much about her life and the marriage died on the physical side a long time ago. This does not help Eileen who throws him out, saying that it is still adultery as far as she is concerned. I am not sure this is the last we shall see of Paul.

Sally, who is working for Frank now, attempts to recruit the other factory workers. Becky who cannot get another job accepts, pretty reluctantly, but the others remain loyal to Carla, although there is little enough work and no machines. They take turns sweeping the floor and cleaning the toilets to keep busy. Carla is trying to get business - but it is hard to find.

Writers were David Lane, Mark Wadlow, Simon Crowther, Peter Whalley and Chris Fewtrell, directors were Duncan Foster and Kay Patrick. Copyright belongs to ITV Productions.

And that I think are the main bits this week. However I would also like to say just a few words more. Betty Driver, rest in peace. You almost managed to work until you dropped and I salute you and thank you for
your contribution and the hot pot. You provided entertainment for us for many years and we all thought you were going to go on forever. Thank you.
K Richard W

Monday 24 October 2011

Coronation Street storyline praised by Alzheimer's Society

Last week on Coronation Street, Eileen Grimshaw - who is currently dating fireman Paul - found out that his wife has Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer's Society hopes the storyline will get people talking more about dementia and the issues affecting families living with the condition.
Jeremy Hughes, Alzheimer's Society Chief Executive, said: 'It is good to see Coronation Street featuring a dementia storyline and one that tackles such a rarely spoken about subject. If a carer develops feelings for someone else they may feel very guilty. Having such a high profile soap covering the issue will hopefully enable more people to feel comfortable talking about it. We know from talking to people that everyone experiences dementia differently and relationships they have are very different too.'
In the coming months the storyline will explore Paul's guilt as he embarks on a relationship with Eileen and how in turn Eileen copes with being the 'other woman' in a very complex and unusual situation.;

Tony Hirst who plays Paul said: 'Since taking on this part, I have learnt so much more about dementia and how it affects not just the person with the condition but has an impact on the whole family. I am really enjoying the opportunity to help raise awareness about this devastating condition.'

There are currently 750,000 people with dementia in the UK. Of this, there are 16,000 people with dementia under the age of 65 yet it is estimated that the number is much higher.

Jeremy said: 'The fact that Tony's wife is in her 40s will hopefully help spread the message much further that dementia can affect younger people too. Many younger people with the condition fail to get an early diagnosis as they put off seeking help. We would encourage anyone who's worried about their memory to visit their GP.'

Visit the Alzheimer's Society website

Antony Cotton to join "I'm a Celebrity" jungle

Antony Cotton, who plays Sean Tully on Coronation Street, is joining the next series of 'I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here', or at least that's according to the Daily Star.

The Star says that Antony Cotton is taking a break from Coronation Street to appear in the Australian jungle show.  A Corrie insider told the Daily Star Sunday: “Antony loves I’m A Celebrity and he has wanted to do it for a long time. It is the first time an actor has been given time off to appear in I’m a Celebrity. He is very excited.”

Sneak preview of tonight's double Corrie - Monday 24 October at 7.30 & 8.30

Coronation Street, Monday 24 October @7:30pm
Fiz stands trial for John’s crimes. As a petrified Fiz is lead into court John watches from afar. The trial begins with Fiz taking the stand as the judge reads out the three murder charges. The first witness for the prosecution is Brian who confirms Fiz posed as Mrs Fishwick. Dorothy Hoyle and Joy’s solicitor then support this story. It’s not looking good for Fiz and as the prosecution put forward a strong case, suggesting she helped John kill Colin Fishwick, Fiz is forced to listen on helpless.
Guilty Sophie tells Kevin about her kiss. Sophie’s in turmoil after her kiss with Amber and confides in Kevin after calling in work sick.
Elsewhere Rosie takes some new pictures of Jason’s flat in her bid to get it sold.

Monday 24 October @8:30pm
Fiz is ready to give up. As Hayley takes the stand she does her best for Fiz but the prosecution have a damning case, supported by forensics. Visiting her in prison Chesney promises to everything he can for her in court tomorrow but despondent Fiz tells him she needs a miracle.
Sophie has a proposal for Sian . Sophie tells Kevin she regrets kissing Amber and is going to confess to Sian . But Kevin advises her that everyone makes mistakes and she should focus on showing Sian how much she loves her. Taking this on board Sophie makes Amber promise to keep quiet but when Sian surprises her by arriving home early Sophie has a surprise of her own for Sian !
Chris perpetuates his lie about his health. Chris continues to play the dying man in front of Cheryl and Lloyd. However when Cheryl insists on going with him for his latest test results Chris inwardly panics.
Elsewhere John watches Rosie. Learning that she’s taken responsibility of selling Jason’s flat he calls the estate agent and books a viewing. What’s he up to?

Graeme Hawley and Jeff Hordley to launch radio show

Corrie and Emmerdale's baddies, John Stape (Graeme Hawley) and Cain Dingle (Jeff Hordley) are set to team up, to do their own radio show, according to Digital Spy. The show will air on Radio Republic.

The pair used to work together on a radio show a few years ago. Hawley told PA that "We're both very much into our music, so we'll be playing everything from folk to soul and funk and a bit of rock 'n' roll and a bit of everything really."

Finally, the picture is from Emmerdale in 2005, when Graeme played a copper investigating Alice Dingle's death, which was a very good storyline. Who knew he'd go on to be Corrie's most bonker's villain?


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