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Thursday 23 September 2021

Coronation Street Episode Review; Wednesday 22nd September 7.30 & 8.30pm

As someone who always watches Corrie with the subtitles on, and wears hearing aids, I can tell you that tonight’s Corrie episodes spoke volumes to me. Some Corrie social commentators will denounce it as an issue-based shoo-in but believe me, this kind of understanding, and to a huge TV audience, makes all the difference. The use of BSL by Gemma is also highly commendable, and it certainly helped build up this cochlear implant story. Although obvious that Freda's worry over Aled’s future, grief, and funeral frustrations, would manifest themselves into her taking Aled - it most certainly drove the point home with some brilliant dialogue. 

Roy's briefly related hummingbird analogy was my favourite of those writing moments. It added a sweet poignancy, and aside from making me think about Norris as a resurrected bird, it was soon brushed aside by George and his constant funeral fluff-ups. Is he really a relative of the infallible Archie Shuttleworth? That guy knew your coffin size just by looking at you! No wonder Freda was pushed to the edge. This storyline was my highlight of the two episodes & it certainly put the old community centre set to some use. Are we going to see those smaller sets back on-screen as covid restrictions ease? 

Although showering the street in machismo with his fights, veiled threats, and back-alley beatings - I was glad to see Zeedan making amends with Ryan. It would be good to see him back with Alya. I like those two, they make a good duo and are a bit of light fluff in the fast-paced dramatics. Do we need Zeedan back on the street though? We seem to have an influx of new characters just lately, besides all of the new heads!

was glad to see Gail Platt return and in a comedic hat! Will she notice that Max has changed head in her absence? The recasting of Max is an interesting one, neatly bringing the character into Daniel's teaching orbit. His merge into a modern-day Ken Barlow gathers pace. It shan't be long before he moves into No.1, surely! Is Max the new Aidan Critchley? Will Summer’s extra-tuition lead to a teenage infatuation, maybe? 

Gail and Audrey maudlin over Norris and the old photos was also poignant. It was a little scene again, but they added up tonight - giving the overall episodes a good mix of drama, humour, and pathos. Corrie is on a roll recently, and I'm here for it!

Elsewhere in Wednesday's Corrie: the Bailey’s continue to deal with Grace and her high demands. Gary grapples with Sharon and Kelly, and Bernie sings a good tune! 


@rybazoxo your cobbles connoisseur 

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Anonymous said...

Agreeing with you about Freda's storyline, I feel whilst there has to be drama to keep the viewers entertained, it ring too close to home. I hope it will inspire a lot of families to continue to learn sign language for their deaf child.

Anonymous said...

Well, I don't !... If that had been my child, I would have phoned the police immediately and had her arrested, how dare she do that, a slap on the wrist just isn't good enough !!...

Humpty Dumpty said...

Wonderful scenes with the BSL interpreter as a kind of voice-over for Freda's feelings. I thought we might have heard more about Freda's early childhood but maybe that's to come. The snatched child element was a bit of a plot device in order to have that scene. Even in Freda's grief-stricken state, I found it hard to believe but that's also because we know so little about her. Then, of course, all was forgiven in true soap land style. But I didn't mind at all that it was an unlikely scenario. I have a foot in the deaf world and I'm delighted Corrie is highlighting the mixed views around cochlear implants.

C in Canada said...

I also think I'd lose it if someone dared to take my child, deaf or not.
Just because Freda is also deaf does not mean she has any say over how Gemma and Ches decide to raise their child. It has nothing to do with her.
There is nothing wrong with Aled having the surgery and also continuing to learn sign language...but again, that's their call, not Freda's.

Smiley said...

Yes you are right. But like many hearing parents, they are not aware of how cochlear implant can affect their child - it is a gamble whilst using sign language would fulfil their child’s basic human rights - education. Language deprivation is a form of abuse as the child need to be able to communicate, so from a hearing, ableism perspective, it is fine as long the child learn to fit in with their world. But from deaf people’s perspective, the world has always evolved, we have lifts because a wheelchair user would need to gain access to other level. We have braille on atm machine and easier to feel currency for the blind that people do not really feel the impact. So, learning sign language is not a big deal for hearing but it does a world of difference for a deaf person.

Imagine someone like Freda from 60’s is disgusted to see the history continues to repeat itself in today’s society. It was brought on when Aled’s family expressed their wishes to stop learning sign language. We all would step in if we felt that the child’s future was endangered.

The resistance against cochlear implant is kind of old but I understand the need to share and highlight this story. A lot of people are okay with cochlear implant as long they get to learn sign language.

Really pleased to see this highlighted

Anonymous said...

I'm also disappointed that Freda got away with kidnapping Aled.
If someone who was no handicapped did that he or she would have been arrested but Freda gets away with it?!
I think it also marred Norris' farewell making it all about Freda and her 'feelings' and using her grief as an excuse for kidnapping Aled.
Norris loved children and in no way would have tolerated what Freda did.

coconno196 said...

C in Canada: I completely agree.
As for the slap on the wrist, I can only assume that the soap police made allowances for Freda's grief. She wasn't behaving rationally.
On a lighter note, I wonder if Helen Worth has had a dramatic new haircut, and the scriptwriters decided to make a story of it?

coconno196 said...

C in Canada: I completely agree.
As for the slap on the wrist, I can only assume that the soap police made allowances for Freda's grief. She wasn't behaving rationally.
On a lighter note, I wonder if Helen Worth has had a dramatic new haircut, and the scriptwriters decided to make a story of it?

Anonymous said...

We only get Freda when there is need for her and now with Norris dead and Emily, who is some kind of relation to her, gone forever I hope this is the last we see of her. Whatever her hearing status she has always been a rude cow.

dhvinyl said...

It was all going so well with Freda and then Ryan started speaking to her from an angle where she couldn’t see him and she instantly replied ! If you’re going to tackle a serious subject, please do it properly.

Anonymous said...

Jeanie (anon): the whole story was preposterous and meant just to be enjoyed for the drama and the voice over where the deaf communicator conveyed the intensity and pain of Freda's feelings. But of course typical of Coronation Street. For as Jane Austen so wisely noted, "It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single woman [on Coronation St.], in a state of mental agitation, must be obsessed with snatching someone else's child."

maggie muggins said...

Thanks for you blog post, Ryan! I think what pushed Freda over the edge was when she overheard / lip-read the conversation between Gemma, Bernie and Ches. Bernie kept nudging Gemma to see the cochlear surgery as a miracle cure for deafness, where Aled would then hear perfectly, which cochlear implants can't do.

Gemma has been anxious about the surgery for several reasons, and it seemed realistic for her to want time to decide for the best (with 4 kids). Gemma & Ches portray folk who find signing a nuisance to learn and use, and are always pushing Gemma, making it harder for her to stay true to her own thoughts & feelings. Freda saw Gemma agreeing with them in this street conversation, and knew that none of them were open to the medical science part of things. The worst was when Bernie and Ches seemed so disdainful about taking signing classes, and would be happy to stop doing them, using Aled's new ability to "hear" (not really) as an excuse.

Already emotionally vulnerable, Freda reacted without thinking clearly. Since she actually walks in the world in the same community as Aled will (and she was brought in by the family to consult on this to begin with), I don't think the police were needed. This was a hard issue to portray since most viewers are hearing and may not know the daily issues the deaf experience over the years. I have no direct experience with deafness myself, other than observation / discussions. Sorry if I'm rambling on and not too clear.


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