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Saturday 21 January 2012

Corrie remembered from 1979: episode 1947

By crikey, we're off to the dim and distant past as we remember an episode first broadcast on 28 November 1979.

It's the day of Gail Potter's wedding to Brian Tilsley. Gail is looking pensive, probably trying to fathom out why she is wearing a grim blue towelling robe. Our Brian, meanwhile, is shovelling fried pork products down his throat at number 5, bouffant hairdo casting a shadow over the breakfast table. Ivy clatters around, possibly trying to distract any attention from her chunky brown crockery.

At the Rovers, Annie is preparing the Select for the wedding reception. Bet stands around sporting a long scarf tied to her beehive. As Annie remembers her own reception, Hilda screeches into view and ruins the moment. Annie orders her not to touch a thing.

Back at number 11, Audrey shuffles into view and lights a fag, or breakfast as she probably calls it. She utters a few motherly words of wisdom. No one remarks that she appears to be only a couple of years older than Gail but some things are better left unsaid.

Style-wise, the clothes are definitely of their time and are therefore hideous. The men are a sea of washed-out beige and grey. Maid of honour Suzie wafts by in a chiffon tent and even Gail looks like some medieval nun in her high-necked wedding frock. The guests are non-too glamorous either. Ena's sporting a black tea-cosy and armour-plated great coat, Albert's got his flasher-mac on and Deirdre looks as though she's popped out to the shops.

Sadly, wedding guests are in short supply. There's no Elsie, Len, Rita, Betty, Emily, Alf or Renee. Instead we get our first glimpse of Jack Duckworth, looking shifty on a church pew. Ivy's parents, Jim and Alice Nelson are also present. Again, the producers seem to have cast actors not much older than Lynn Perrie.

Gail sets off for the church, accompanied by Mike Baldwin and waved off by two extras and Fred Gee. The glamour of it all. Needless to say, the church is virtually empty save for the rent-a-crowd actors at the back. A man wearing a bow tie is playing the organ or possibly auditioning for something else as the miserable bride makes her way down the aisle. The guests are obviously bored. Ken and Deirdre have a chat, Stan tries to remember the name of his best man and Ena bellows the kind of 'shush' that could have doused the altar candles.

Gail delivers her responses like a minor member of the Royal Family, accompanied by some bizarre shots, one of which appears to place Brian about twenty feet from her. Anyway, the deed is done and Brian gives his lovely new wife a tiny peck on the cheek. Romance is obviously as dead as a cobblestone in Weatherfield.

Lines of the episode:
"I've got a tongue like a corduroy cap" (Suzie)
"It's hardly going to be a society wedding is it?" (Annie)
"By 'eck Hilda, you've lived life to the dregs" (Bet)
"He'll not make me cry, not Brian . . ." (Gail) . . .  oh dear

Let's end with Gail and Brian as we never got to see them - together in middle age!


Frosty the Snowman said...

A wedding that went ahead without some kind of interuption coupled with shouting and screaming then? Makes a change from today. I actually think the wedding picture quite nice, Gail and Ivy are giving a rare smile and our Aud doesnt seem to have changed much at all!

Adam Rekitt said...

Oh for the days when characters worried that something would go wrong on the big day, like the wedding car breaking down or the bride fluffing her lines, rather than knowing the wedding is just a showcase for the dramatic revelation about the groom's passionate affair with the bride's sister despite the fact that he is truly in love with the bride's brother.

It's also so nice to be reminded that once the Street's wedding guests dressed like people from a city backstreet, rather than being decked out in designer gear. And I often wonder at such events nowadays who all the strangers are meant to be and why other characters got an invite. Norris and Mary at Steve and Tracy's wedding? Why exactly? Because it's modern ettiquette to invite your local newsagents?

Elsie was an omission at Gail's wedding but why would any of the others mentioned be invited?

Anonymous said...

I think you missed out a line which I liked from this episode which I think you should of included, was when Vera introduces Jack to Bet and Ena
and Ena comments to Bet about the Duckworth's relationship 'I didn't think she liked to be seen out with him!'

Anonymous said...

You think those clothes are bad?

Wait till you get a look at today's fashions in 30 years' time.

As Crawfie taught the Queen: the height of fashion is always vulgar.....

Anonymous said...

Elsie was living in Torquay at the time of the wedding - hence the reason she wasn't there. She came back to Weatherfield just over a month later on Xmas Eve.

Tvor said...

And just an aside. That wedding was supposed to take place months earlier but there was a strike and Corrie was not aired for several months.. It picked up in November where it left off, right about the wedding time.

Anonymous said...

Please sir, I'd like some more Corrie Remembered.


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