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Friday 12 September 2014

Should a Corrie home keep its character?

A new poll by Opinion Matters (on behalf of homewares brand Heart of House) has ranked Ken and Deirdre's living room in third place as the most outdated home in soaps. Not far behind are Roy Cropper's living room (5th place), Fiz and Tyrone's living room (7th place), the Rovers' back room (9th place) and Emily's living room (10th place).

As for the most updated and modern abodes, there is Carla's flat (which I think is also Peter's?) at 2nd place, Nick Tilsley's flat (6th place) and the Websters (not sure if it's No. 4 or No. 13!).

To see the full results, check them out on Digital Spy

This got me thinking about the homes of Coronation Street, and I asked myself a question: what's most important - fashion or character?

For many years, the interior sets of the street, bar the Rovers, lacked a lot of imagination. The floors were carpet-less and grey and the walls were brown or grey. Since the 1980s, they've been spruced up and a little colour and character has been introduced. Some of the props have been there for decades. The Barlows still have Albert Tatlock's sideboard and table and chairs while Emily's cabinet and table and chairs have been there since the 1970s. Although in real life, they probably would've faced the skip, in Corrie nostalgia is important and so they are kept. 

Following the studies of Darwin and Freud about people's links with their environment, playwrights began to include subtle hints about the personalities of characters through the pictures on the walls,the wallpaper, or the furniture. And Corrie is no different.

Hilda Ogden's 'muriel' and flying ducks symbolized both her quirkiness and her social aspirations; the Duckies' living room symbolized their lives - all over the place; while Mike Baldwin's flat represented his suaveness. It wasn't until 1982 when No. 7 was rebuilt that modern houses were seen and portrayed on screen and it wasn't until the new houses were built that Corrie began modernising.

So, should a Corrie home keep its character? Or should they go with the flow where fashion is concerned?

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Tvor said...

Well, the back room of the Rovers seems to get a makeover with every new landlord/lady. I agree that the Barlow room is horribly old fashioned and tatty looking but much of that furniture has been there since the beginning so it's kind of tradition. Emily's looks old fashioned but it's more tasteful. I like the combination of character and fashion or fashionless i suppose. It's about familiarity really. You want that continuity in a soap where it wouldn't be like that in real life as often.

Zagg said...

Personally, I'd like too see them updated a bit. Could Tyrone and Fiz's place look more horrible? It drives me crazy seeing all the mish mosh in their place.I find it distracting actually. At least get rid of the awful wallpaper. In fact most of the wallpaper is dreadful, no matter who's place it is.

And the Barlow's? C'mon, it kills me when they all settle in to watch a movie on the tiny settee and dining room chairs. It could not look more uncomfortable.
And Roy and Hayley's bedroom? Yikes!

I get the tradition thing, but a bit of updating really is in order.To see these characters living in time warp spaces seems a bit silly.

Anonymous said...

I would be surprised if many of the households could afford frequent renovation or refurnishing. They mostly work in low paying jobs and spend their cash drinking in the Rovers, eating breakfast at Roy's or dining at the Bistro. Personally the Bistro would be my last choice for a romantic meal - far too much chance of violence! Bring back Delphines!

Anonymous said...

Fizz and Tyrone's place is a tip! Surely they have more than one room downstairs! It is always so messy. What gets me is almost every house has horrid wallpaper and the ironing board is on full display and their dishracks are always full of dishes don't they ever put them away!

Frosty the Snowman said...

Well those two up two down Victorian properties are much in demand these days - "character properties" they are referred to. With their original sash windows and as many original features as possible but modernised with nice kitchens and bathrooms. Dahn sarf they would fetch a cool £500k. With all the British obsession with property renovation these days I am surprised more of the properties are not better looked after. The Barlows house always makes me smile as they still have the old MFI kitchen units that Frosty himself had in the 1980s.

Anonymous said...

This is an ongoing gripe of mine! The sets nowadays are far too flashy at times. Stephs flat? Leannes flat? I think theyre far too swish. Realisticaly young characters like this would be decking their pads in QD. - Micky

Anonymous said...

Barlows living room is just like Ken..old and boring but change it? No..too many changes on Corrie so I think it should stay the way it is. IMO.

Defrost Indoors said...

Too much ugly jangly wallpaper! Fiz and Tyrone's place is a little nicer than it was when the Duckies had it, but it's still far too busy and messy looking. I've also noticed a lot of the homes have similar flower pictures (i.e. a huge photo of a flower/flowers on canvas) -- it's like they all went to the same sale, or the set designers did. It's distracting seeing similar things across different homes like that.

The tiny backsplash tiles in Gail's kitchen are uneven; this has always bothered me. :) I think Joe McIntyre put them in.

Beth said...

I always wondered why Fiz and Tyrone sit in their mish mash messy kitchenette to watch tv when they have a more comfortable front room with a sofa? Seems strange to me.

Anonymous said...

I watched Christmas episodes of Coronation Street from the 70s, 80s and 90s and noticed that the furniture in the Barlows living room and in Emily's living room has in fact changed periodically although I suspect the viewer is not supposed to notice as it's all very much in the same style.


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