Friday, 7 September 2018

Why we're looking forward to the return of Big Jim


Guest blog post from Elizabeth Allison
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I started watching Coronation Street in 1997. I was living in Italy and my best mate Julie’s lovely Welsh mother sent us VHS tapes, which thankfully did not get eaten like Tyrone’s. The first scene I ever saw was Jack Duckworth lying to Vera about pigeons. 

Millennium New Year’s Eve, I was working in a pub in Hayfield, where one of the locals swore that his mother Elsie was the inspiration for Elsie Tanner. The Street has been part of the normal of my life for years. I often find myself absently wondering, “Is there Corrie tonight?” Every few years, I sense it in the air - Jim McDonald might be coming back. It starts with Liz mentioning him in passing, and having another love interest on the go. A few pictures of Stevie and Andy with Jim and Liz in the background. Then the tabloids start teasing, and before you know it, Jim himself, larger than life in the Rovers.

What are we likely to see this time around from Jim? Charlie Lawson hinted this week on This Morning that Jim would be on screen for about two months. He also reported that the producers asked him to come back full time, an offer Lawson declined because he was already committed to perform in Rebus with the Birmingham Rep Theatre. I myself contemplated a surprise trip to see my uncles in Nottingham so I could attend a showing. Various sources have Jim coming back more permanently after the run of Rebus. They were right before…

I would love to see Jim and Liz back together in a Wetherfield ‘Love Conquers All’ affair. I don’t think it’s likely in the short term. Liz has a new male suitor, as she often does when Jim comes sniffing round the Rovers. Mike, her secondary school teacher beau looks a little too much like her old flame Tony for my liking. I think it’s probable that there will be a good old-fashioned Liz and Jim jealousy plot as Liz keeps a lover. What I’d love to see is a bit of quid pro quo – what if Jim had his own woman friend? I wouldn’t put it past our Jim to spend time with another woman just to make his Elizabeth jealous. Ideally he would need a slightly younger, less interesting version of Liz. 

Then there is the matter of the long-lost daughter. Is discovering Katie enough to bring Jim and Liz back together? It’s probably enough to get them into the same room. To get them back together I think we’ll need a bit more passion, and owning the Rovers wouldn’t hurt either.

I look forward watching my favourite character for the next few weeks and months. Charlie Lawson is sublime as Jim. The actor can often be heard to say that the role is ‘easy’ for him to play. He doesn’t readily take the credit that is due him for portraying such an equally flawed and loveable character. We love to see Jim McDonald return to the cobbles, and he is instantly familiar no matter how much time has passed. 

My heart does a little flip each time he says, “Elizabeth.” I really must send my friend Julie’s mum a little note to thank her for sending those VHS tapes.

Elizabeth is on twitter - https://twitter.com/tantebeth1
She lives in London, Canada with her husband and their four children. 

She loves cupcakes, planning vacations, hand-battered fish and chips, diet Dr. Pepper, and her dogs Mortimer and Mickey. 



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2 comments:

Linda Shockley said...

I agree that Mike looks too much like Tony.

Anonymous said...

Jeanie (anon): Can't stand the character myself--bully boy and wife-abuser. Then he sank to a new low with his poor son. Why his and Liz's relationship is seen by some as the true love that conquers all is beyond me. Liz deserves better. Hope Jim's stay is short!

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