Cosy crimes and gritty sagas by Corrie Blog editor Glenda, published by Headline. Click pic below!

Wednesday 22 December 2021

Sally Carman interview: Abi's Christmas gift from beyond the grave

How is Abi feeling about Kelly as she and Kevin get back from their honeymoon? 

She is on cloud nine, the honeymoon was just what she needed to enjoy being with Kevin and she is feeling so loved up. So when she gets back and realises that Kelly has actually moved onto the street it absolutely blows her mind, of all the streets in all the towns she has decided to live on this same one as the mother of the person she was involved in the death of.

Is there any part of her at this stage that has any sympathy for Kelly?

No, she feels very strongly that Kelly started the ball rolling and if she hadn't done what she did then none of it would have happened so she absolutely can not see the wood for the trees, she can;t bear to think about her never mind see her so she is in no position to feel anything other than hatred. She is relieved when Kelly says she is going to move away, she wants her out of sight and mind.

How is she feeling about her first Christmas without Seb?

She has a choice and this is when Abi really gets it together, despite everything else that happens to her in her life she manages to always pull herself up from her boots when she really really needs to. She thinks that she can either wallow in the loss of Seb and not having her other children, or she can really make this Christmas special for the child she has got, which is Jack, and make it special for her husband and new family. So that is what she does, she throws herself into it completely. Typically this is Abi do it doesn’t go quite to plan and there is a bit of a disaster with the turkey. She is going hell for leather and Kevin is trying to help but she is determined to make everything perfect and she has a bit of a mini breakdown about the turkey.

Do you like that she has these two extremes?

Yes! She is all or nothing, one extreme to the other. She doesn't really have the grey areas in her heart; she is either all love or all hate. She lacks that emotional maturity and because she has literally had to fight for everything in her life whether it be a positive or a negative situation she just throws 100% at it. She hasn’t figured out how to negotiate emotionally. She never stops for 20 seconds to think things through but I love that about her, her impulsive nature. I get to play the unhinged off the rails part of her but she then gets to redeem herself because she is mortified and disgusted by what she has done. That is why the audience forgive her, they are frustrated with her, they feel her frustration with herself. They see that she doesn't learn but that her actions always come from the right place, she is not malicious or nasty and she is hard to love, but I think the audience get invested in her because they want her to come good and turn things around, and then she is also does something funny. There is no intentional harm in her. The people she is truly nasty to are people who are not nice, or herself. 

Tell us about the surprise Christmas present she gets.

Christmas day is tricky for her. She is not allowing herself to think about anything other than Jack. She doesn't have the emotional space to think about what might have been. She pushes all of those thoughts out of her head and concentrates on making new memories with Jack and Kevin. She has the meltdown over the turkey and she is starting to feel useless again, Kevin is being gorgeous and says they can have beans on toast, non of it matters and then there is a knock at the door. She doesn’t want to see anyone but Kevin goes to the door and returns with a present for her. And what is more it is a present that Seb arranged before he died, and that Kevin has seen through and organised. For once Abi is lost for words and can’t believe that Seb has sent this present from the grave. She is crying and it is a really gorgeous moment after the year she has had.

Her happiness doesn't last long though does it? What happens?

She was in such a lovely place after Christmas Day and she goes to the memorial garden and she sees some gorgeous flowers and when she sees they are from Kelly it is too much for her to deal with. She still feels much too raw and Kelly is getting the brunt of her grief and anger. If Kelly had gone away and lived somewhere else for six months and then come back it might have been better and Abi may have been able to move on. She goes to the Alahans where Kelly is staying  and throws the flowers at her and tells her she doesn't want her around. She can't deal with the fact she is on the street but also the fact that Kelly has been given the chance to live the life that Seb had taken away from him. She has been given the apprenticeship and she has a real chance of a good future and it is a reminder every time she sees her it is punch in the stomach reminder that her son will never have that because of her.

Abi really starts to get nasty doesn't she?

Yes this has completely blindsided her and she has lost reason. She is bullying this kid, it is quite nasty. She is going to make Kelly’s life miserable until she leaves.

What happens at the NA group? 

Abi is finding it difficult and she is really struggling with the whole situation so she realises she needs to get some support in place to stop her going off the rails completely. She goes to the NA meeting and she trunks round and sees that Kelly is there and she is furious! She sits down and Kelly starts speaking and everything that Kelly says just mirrors Abi’s life. Abandoned by her parents, made to feel unlovable, feeling like she has always done everything wrong, taking drugs to block out the reality and it is impossible for Abi to ignore that. It really tugs on her heart because she has been there and she recognises it and she knows the pain and the mistakes you can make from being in pain. At the end of the meeting she says a little about how she is feeling and she talks about the fact that no one should be in that position not any child and she looks at Kelly to let her know she understands as she has been through it too. It is a moment of understanding and a truce of sorts.

Glenda Young
Twitter: @Flaming_Nora

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Anonymous said...

‘She is not malicious or nasty’ says Sally but I beg to differ. I have no sympathy for her despite what she’s been through because she has no redeeming features as far as I can see.

Anonymous said...

I also find it hard to have sympathy for Abi due to her constant harassement of Kelly who is a teenager and has shown genuine remorse for her actions.
I also find Abi to be hyporcritical going on about how hard it will be without Seb this Christmas when Sam will be missing his mother indirectly because of Abi's actions when she bought a gun to kill Corey ,that Harvey used to kill Natasha and yet Abi has show no remorse for Natasha's death or the fact that Roy felt he had to leave after lying for her.


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