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Friday 13 September 2019

Coronation Street Episode Review; Weds 11th Sept 8.30pm

'Rage rage against the dying of the light' was Dylan Thomas' most famous refrain when writing about his father's cancer battle. However, for Sinead and Daniel, Micheal Rosens 1989 children's classic 'Were going on a bear hunt' is a touching juxtaposition that highlights the tragedy of a child losing a parent so young. The story works almost as a motif to tonight's episode, and its quite the work of art.

As the two-hander episode begins, the TV announcer warns us of the worst possible news for Sinead and Daniel. Even though I've devoured the most recent press releases and TV mag articles, my heart still races as the couple take a seat in the cancer consultants office.

Meanwhile, over at Number one, Ken tells Peter how much he missed Dierdre at the Wedding and laments about how Dierdre and Sinead would have been great friends.  I've not thought of that before, but I think us viewers can certainly agree with Ken on that?

Missing Dierdre, Ken's sombre mood and emotive words set the tone for the episode perfectly. Peter's prophecy about the married couple's future together, is as ever poignant. Even Peter's most recent struggles with Carla, and the booze, (although unseen here obviously) somehow seem to weave into this catalyst of sadness that's about to rock the Barlow family.

Whilst Baby Bertie is being looked after by an upset Auntie Beth, Mr Merchant (the consultant) breaks the news that Sinead's 'lump' is cancer of the lymph nodes, she has a cancerous mass on her liver, and it's terminal. Daniel questions the lack of regular check-ups and talks uncontrollably about Peter's health battle, as Sinead sits silently, stunned with shock. Although Sinead was until recently 'dancing with n.e.d' (No Existing Disease) cancer has returned and aggressively. The consultant tells them that they can go home,  as neither radiotherapy nor chemo will offer her any resistance against the inevitable succumbing.

The prognosis is dreadful, 3 - 4 months to live, at the most. Sinead is 25 years old, just a year younger than my wife. We also have a baby (who's now 3 years old) so for me, this is incredibly frightening and at odds with this healthy reality (most of us) are lucky enough to take for granted. 

Still, it doesn't shy away from the fact this is incredibly real and happening right now. Cancer is never discouraged by class, wealth, race, nor age sadly. Tragic.

Back on Coronation Street, the newlyweds arrive at Number one, alongside the rest of the family, to break the awful news. The Barlows reel in shock at such a tragic outcome. Heading back to the flat, Daniel reaches for the booze, whilst Sinead's anger at having been dealt such a fate is completely forgivable. 

Instead of a blissful start to married life, Daniel and Sinead are left with the worst possible nightmare of never celebrating their first year of marriage. 
Did Baby Bertie's conception cause Sinead's terminal cancer?. It's unlikely, and never a predicament (fictional or otherwise) anybody as young as Sinead or Daniel should ever have to face. 

Katie McGlynn (Sinead Tinker) announced this week that she has already recorded her final scenes as Sinead. After tonight's performances, I'm sure she could easily follow in the successful post-corrie career paths of Sarah Lancashire, Katherine Kelly, and Suranne Jones.

Paradoxically, this was a fantastic episode. It's just so sad that it is heartbreakingly true to life.  And just like life's troublesomely tumultuous rich tapestry ... 

'We can't go over it.
We can't go under it.
We've got to go through it!' 

Tonight's two-hander was directed by Mikey Jones with great scripts from Carmel Morgan and Jan McVerry. 

With Aidan's suicide still fresh in memory, it also is worth noting that Corrie tackle issue-based storylines with real tenacity, sensitivity, and incredibly good writing. Its never about sensationalism, and for that, I admire them greatly. Agree?

If you need further advice or support please go to for more information.

What did you of tonight's Corrie?. Let us know in the comments section.

I shall be back same time next week. 

You can follow me @rybazoxo over on twitter, your self-styled 'Cobbles Connoisseur'.

All original work on Coronation Street Blog is covered by a Creative Commons License


Anonymous said...

I am tad confused - two hander means only two people appeared in the episode, or majority of it. But we have Sinead, Daniel, Ken, Peter, Beth, Bertie?

Anonymous said...

How sad was that? It was beautifully acted by Katie and Rob. Well done.

burnohbeard said...

Please spell Deirdre correctly. She deserves that.

MartesBC said...

Thank you for the update. Sometimes this show is just so sad :(.


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