Friday, 24 May 2013

Keeping the Corrie regulars regular

I wonder if anyone else feels the same way as I do? Coronation Street seems to be following a strange pattern at the moment. Certain characters and stories seem to dominate to the extent that we often don't see half the cast for months on end. I don't remember it ever being like this before.

Back in the day Corrie truly did feel like a repertory company. Everyone had their moment and all the regulars were erm regular! Occasionally actors took time off so characters took holidays, however this was always explained in the plot. However these days characters disappear into that Corrie Cupboard with little or no explanation.

Yes, I know the Corrie cast is more than double what it used to be in the 1970s and 1980s but it really does feel sometimes that some of the cast are little more than well paid extras. I find it frustrating when we only catch glimpses of terrific, longstanding characters like Sally or Audrey while both the Price and the Windass families seem to appear in nearly every episode at the moment. When Jenna and Sophie appeared the other night I had almost forgotten they were in my favourite soap, and as for Emily, that's been an awful long shift volunteering at Weatherfield General!

I know some big stories do dominate from time to time and rightly so. However the key to Corrie's success has always been its sense of community spirit. These days most of the characters seem to be travelling on their own separate tracks and they rarely collide.

Also, what we do see are the same characters interacting with each other all the time. It's always the Price family in the Bistro, Carla and Michelle with Rob and Tracy or the extended Windasses. I'd love to see a scene between Carla and Emily Bishop just for the random quirkiness of it all. There must be characters in the show that have never shared scenes together which to me is just bizarre.

Stuart Blackburn has mentioned several times that Corrie needs to remember its roots. I hope this includes re-introducing a sense of community and ensuring more characters get some regular interaction.

Do you agree? As always, I'm interested to hear what you think.

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20 comments:

Hilda's Murial said...

Could storylines that included Ken or Kev have been edited out or cut in a way that affected other characters' screen times?

Anonymous said...

They have lives outside of the show. They aren't paid to be on every episode to satisfy YOUR needs.

Scott P said...

Great post. I would like to think that Stuart Blackburn does plan on making sure the street interacts with the street, rather continuing with Phil Collinson's set-up - where characters only interact with certain characters (almost like no one else lives there).

Carla had a scene with Norris recently, which I was pleasantly surprised at. She was walking out of the Bookies and Norris was on his way in. They had a brief conversation but I can't remember them ever bumping into each other before. More of this please. :)

Scott P said...

I meant "rather *THAN* continuing with Phil Collinson's set-up"

Anonymous said...

I have been complaining about this for quite a while. It seems like months go by without seeing so many of the so called regulars. Emily, Steve and Lloyd for months have appeared in bit parts. Where is Sean. What happened to the Dev and Mary story, I was enjoying that. I remember the days when everyone would meet in the streets or in the Cabin. Everyone new each other and had their say. It seems like the producers are trying to make Corrie into an American soap. I simply do not relate to the Bistro, the clothes, where are they getting the money to dress like that, eat like that and drink like that. Where is Audrey, Kirk and his girl friend whose name I cannot recall at the moment and on and on. Maybe I will start watching East Enders, see what its like.

ChiaGwen said...

Agree Graeme. Love the scene with Roy and the long missing Craig...and wonder if there is a storyline coming up about Craig as there is something bothering him, suspected by Beth. Remember the Kirk and Audrey scene in the Rovers ages ago - two people who hardly ever interact and it was brilliant. Gets pretty boring seeing the same people together all the time.

Zagg said...

I agree. There has been way too much time spent on the Price family. This Karl thing has been stretched out beyond reason. The longer it goes on, the less people care about it. Their back story around this fire seems so contrived...just keep them in front of the cameras no matter what or how stupid and silly the plot.

Why are the producers not getting this? All over the web I read how everyone hates Stella and Karl and the lot of them. Is this actress related to someone who is pulling strings to keep her in the storyline? I seriously, do not understand. When there are droves of viewers who really can't stand her or her story lines, why are they not listening?

Humpty Dumpty said...

They need to use their imagination about where people might meet so we can have these random exchanges. The bus stop is one place which is being overlooked. It's crazy to portray people on a low-income getting taxis into town when there's a bus stop round the corner. Definitely the 60+ people would use the bus because it's free and Carla could nip into town when her car's having its MOT. If SB wants Corrie to get back to its roots, banish the idea that there's loads of dosh to throw around. People are on their uppers in this country and using the Bistro as a convenient 'bumping into' place is simply not realistic.

Billy Niblick said...

I dare say thatu actors having to take time off to stand trial on sexual assault charges every other month doesn't exactly help.

Anonymous said...

Agree with Humpty. I lived on a street like this in France in the 90s and people crossed paths at the subway, the post office, bank, and public walls with flyers. (No one ever stops to read or respond to the flyers posted at Roy's Rolls!) Another thing that was popular was live theater or music performed by the locals on the weekend in the Algerian-run bistro. Because many students drank coffee there during the week, the proprietor threw a free couscous dinner on Sunday for students living on a tight budget :) [There was also the nightly visit from the gendarme to make sure establishments closed on time - ]

Chatty Kathy said...

This is one of the major reasons I've quit Corrie. I was interested in the Marcus/Maria drama about a gay man entering a straight romantic relationship. It hasn't been so much as touched on since mid November. That's 6 months ago! (More than enough time for Samia to go off and dance with the stars.) But we've been constantly "treated" to the silly and boring Katy/Ryan/Chesney love triangle, the surrogacy story that has gone off the rails, the extended Windasses in every other scene, and of course every time a Price sneezes they need to be front and center of the stage.

I would have been interested to see the recent Roy/Hayley/Sylvia story, but I would have had to endure so much other idiocy to see a few nuggets of gold that I decided against it.

I'm not a glutton for punishment. When something that is supposed to be entertaining no longer is, I won't suffer along with it.



Anonymous said...

It's a soap opera! It's not meant to be real otherwise it would be a reality show. Anyway Sally Webster and Audrey Roberts as been in your faces for the last 10 years in nearly every scene but that's different because you like them

Anonymous said...

Anon 16.02 I agree with all of your comments. I am so sick of Stella and now that she has a job in the bistro we'll see even more of her. There have been a number of long term characters missing - Sean, Maria, Craig, Emily. It was lovely to see Audrey back again! All we ever seem to get these days (in Canada) is Owen, Anna, Gary, Izzy, Stella and her gang. I have been a very long time fan and keep watching more out of loyalty than anything else. The new producer really needs to cull some of the cast. He certainly did it on Emmerdale when he was there and I think he needs to do it to Corrie.

Janice. said...

I am with you Chatty Cathy. I stopped watching because it was no longer entertaining. Ratings is the only thing the producers give attention to. And if we are wrong, if a whole new demographics likes this new direction, then it is time for us to move on. If however, viewers across the board are tuning out, they will get the message. Yes, Anon, 19.42, we didn't mind Sally or Gail or Audrey in our faces because they have charisma. That is point of a soap, you like the character as played a certain actor and so you care about the story. Get it?

Anonymous said...

How many stories can you tell at one time about one street? For one street they have already have had 4 murderers in the last 9 years!

Bruce said...

Perhaps it's more true to life when certain characters have never had scenes with certain others. I live in a Northern terraced street, albeit with slightly more houses than Coronation Street. Some of my neighbours I interact with on a daily basis, some I will share a "hello" and maybe a sentence or two with, and some I have never spoken to and probably never will.

Anonymous said...

I hate what they have done with Sally and Gail. They have made them joke characters.....and Steve is now a buffoon. At least when he was with Becky he could be the sensible one sometimes...and her knight in shining armour some of the time....with Michelle it is boring! She is such a know it all.
I agree that the senior cast are being squeezed out for the new...and I too am not happy with it. I am almost at the end of my run. I was excited about Dev and Mary - but that has fizzled it seems.

Anonymous said...

Where have all the great caracters gone? Long time passing as like the song it has been put on the back burner - shame would love to see more of the older actors more than the bland younger ones my goodness who hasn't had a drunken friend try to kiss one - you laugh it off and get over it but its being over blown and dragged on for no reason - if I was Tina i'd run to the hills to get away from that over powering family - and when was it the Stella and her boring beige family show? Sorry but I'd much rather see banter of Sylvia Roy Hayley and Rita Audrey Emily and norris we need a equal balance. The latest story of Rob chip on the shoulder and his daft girlfriend who spends money like no tomorrow Tracy is another story that one just cringes when on - wake up Corrie writers or more viewers will be leaving the telly off.

Beth said...

If you look at older episodes friends give lifts to others to places do each other favours. So you wouldn't have people ordering cabs you'd have a friend running a friend to a hospital appointment etc. Nothing like that anymore. This struck me when I was watching Alf giving Mrs Bishop a lift back in an old episode.

Also, why is everybody guzzling and eating at the Bistro like as if it's an up market caff now the Rovers is closed? It's bound to be more expensive and over inflated. Why aren't they down at the Weathy Arms or the White Horse or why isn't it slipped in to conversation at least? It would seem like a more obvious choice than a Bistro - a Bistro isn't a pub.

Anonymous said...

You've brought this up before, Graeme, and the consensus is still that it's not much of a community these days. It's really more like a school for teenagers where there are several cliques and they stick to their own territory and never mix into the whole community. I think that's what's happened to the stories; they are now "either / or" -- either all Prices, Barlows, Platts, Windasses, Connors, Websters, etc., or Tina and Tommy, Tyronne and Fiz, Rita and Dennis, Emily and Norris and Mary, Haley and Sylvia and Roy. Such a waste of great story possibilities, wish they'd blend the community more.

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