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Friday 22 March 2013

Corrie's oldies but goodies

Watching the lovely little scene between Norris and Rita the other evening was one of the highlights of the recent Rovers fire drama. It was terrific to see these two older characters expressing just how much they care about each other. This really did highlight to me how much we value the older generation on Coronation Street.

I think it's about time some of Corrie's mature characters featured in a storyline of their own, rather than just appearing in the background in those of younger characters. I really do think we have to use them before we lose them.

We haven't seen much of Ken and Deirdre recently and although Ken had the story with the wonderful Wendy flamin' Crozier, we haven't seen a proper storyline for Deirdre in ages, unless you count Tracy's never-ending dramas. 

Emily has a much-reduced role these days but Eileen Derbyshire is still always effective when given an opportunity. Probably the most prolific of the old guard are Rita, Gail and Audrey. Gail and Audrey are pretty much guaranteed storylines as part of the turbulent Platt household, but Rita tends to pop up in Tina's stories these days rather than her own.

I'm all for bringing in Dennis Tanner more often. He has a long history with Ken and a spikey relationship with Norris (but then who doesn't!) I'd love to see the writers explore Dennis and Rita's marriage a little more and also have Dennis interact with Gail - she did lodge with his mother for a good few years back in the 1970s.

I adore Sylvia Goodwin and would like to see her brought more into the group, perhaps also involving Roy more once Hayley departs. Sylvia is a great fit with the likes of Rita and Emily I think, but so far she has mainly been seen with the Croppers in the cafe. Perhaps even Gloria can become more involved with the pensioners as she surely must be one herself. Incidentally, I softened to Gloria during her scene at Stella's bedside the other evening. If she is to stay and develop, we need to see more of her softer side. Sue Johnston was terrific.

I loved the stories involving the infamous book group when we were blessed with the wonderful Mel Hutchwright and his Hard Grindings! It was Corrie at its best - comedy, sharp writing and a bit of poignancy. I would love to see another story like this. I know we have sadly lost Jack, Vera, Blanche and Betty but we are really lucky to still have many links to the Coronation Street of the past.

Do you agree we should have more stories focussing on the older Coronation Street residents? If so, what would you like to see them get up to?

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Ryan Eastwpod said...

I completely agree! The older characters make Corrie for me!

Llifon said...

I agree with you Graeme! Corrie needs to invest more in its older characters. Going a day trip somewhere or even attending classes - be it computers, painting, book club would be a good story. Or what about Ken Barlow writing a book about the last 50 years on the street?

It is a highlight for me if one of the seniors make an appearance.

Anonymous said...

What about having Emily,Gloria, Sylvia start a hobby club Scrapping and Card making . Have it take off so well they start selling at the market for Chesney. Then get bigger then they knew and open a shop ,say in the old meat shop! Bring in the younger ones like Tracey in a florist angle to use the refrigeration for flowers and tada the beat goes on. Not to mention the real fun story lines those gals could have guiding Miss Tracey.
Charbar 2008 London Ont Canada

Janice. said...

Well if they ripped off The Full Monty why not a Corrie version of The Calendar Girls. Rita, Audrey, Emily, Sylvia, Gail and Diedre strip for a charity calender. All tasteful behind potted plants and cream cakes. On second thoughts scratch that. Seriously, as the boomers age they will attract more viewers if they put in some effort into this growing demographic.

Tvor said...

I definitely agree with stories focusing on the "oldies" and we're getting one coming up with the space cakes. Some commenters have moaned about it but even if it's a rerun of Vera's "brownies" it's still something that focusses on the older generation and i'll be loving it!

Anonymous said...

Some of my favourite moments on CS have been when the older generation resist the temptation to pass judgment on the moral tangles of the younger generation - for ex, Jack Duckworth giving Molly moral latitude or Roy and Hayley accepting Becky. Rita's meddling in Tina and Tommy's surrogacy conundrum didn't work because she took a side and tried to steer the outcome.

I would personally like to see the older generation engage the youngsters in less hackneyed, overbearing ways. Having lived on a small working-class immigrant street in Paris, I think it's one of the benefits of that kind of community, that people connect across cultures and generations.

One of the oldsters in Paris once told me over conversation in a bar: No one on this street's a saint.

The character who is most morally tortured at the moment might be Kylie. And/or Karl. Make Audrey or Sylvia into Kylie's confessor. Norris into Karl's. (Which would demonstrate that Norris actually can keep a secret.)

Humpty Dumpty said...

There's a risk of the oldies having jolly japes and turning into characters from the Last of the Summer Wine. It's really important that they don't just reminisce when they're together or have episodes with hilarious consequences. A computer class for silver surfers could give Emily an internet date; Sylvia an opportunity to gamble on-line; Norris becomes a family/Weatherfield history freak; Rita finds the websites of her old cronies etc. Give them a modern touch and widen their horizons.

Carry On Blogging! said...

I think you are right Humpty! I'm not sure we're ready to see Emily and Norris going down a hillside in an old bath tub!

Carry On Blogging! said...

Janice - re Calendar Girls - yes but who would need "considerably bigger buns?" ;)

ChiaGwen said...

I'd like to see some sort of storyline with Norris and Craig, perhaps Craig working a few hrs in the shop and confiding his troubles to Norris, who perhaps has a soft, level-headed person inside? I've said this before but why don't the writers explore the art talent of the actress who portrays Diedre (can't remember her name). Perhaps a book store could open with Ken at the cash and some of Diedre's paintings for sale. Dennis could help out as well.

Anonymous said...

I agree ChiaGwen: Craig could be a paperboy at the corner shop, and grow a bond with Norris. We've already seen that he is a intelligent lad.

As for the much older characters like Emily and Rita ,perhaps the actors don't want more exposure than they are already getting? It would mean longer work hours and more lines to memorize. I would like to see more of Dennis and Rita's marriage, as suggested above. Dennis has been a wonderful addition to the cast, as has Sylvia.

Anonymous said...

I love the idea of scrapbook making! A chance for the oldies to go through their history and revisit and explore past fortunes or failures.
Lots of potential there and could bring younger generational characters into the mix!


Anonymous said...

Definitely want more of Rita, Dennis, Emily, Norris storylines and interacting with Ken and D and Audrey. Sylvia coming into that fold could work, but, please, please, don't bring Gloria into it. I must say I strongly dislike the character as much as I dislike St Ella. I thought the bedside scene was just dreadful. Just mho.


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