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

Tuesday 21 December 2021

The Fortnight In Classic Corrie

MONDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 3rd and 4th October 1999

Gary accused Vera of helping Terry escape capture by stealing the dodgy car away.  She admitted she'd told him that the cut and shut was responsible for Judy's death.  The police, meanwhile, could do nothing without the car as evidence - and Terry had it crushed.  Gary returned home and struggled to cope with both his grief and caring for the twins.  His brother, Simon The Cult Leader From Brookside, persuaded him to come and stay with their parents.  Sally and Danny snuggled up in a booth at the Rovers, surprising Betty and Natalie who thought he was with Sharon.  Natalie wondered why she got a reputation for stealing other women's fellas when Sally was doing the same thing; it's because you're a KNOWN TROLLOP Natalie and nothing will ever change that.  Sharon, meanwhile, reconnected with her ex Ian over a sumptuous Chinese meal.  Curly kicked Toyah and Spider out of his house, and they ended up camping on the Red Rec.  Toyah was unimpressed - especially when she realised she'd have to pee in the bushes - while Audrey was outraged to hear one of "her" parks was being used as a camping ground.

TUESDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 6th and 8th October 1999

Gail was fretting: she thought she might be pregnant.  Fortunately the test came back negative, but it scared her, so she asked Martin to get a vasectomy.  He was unenthusiastic.  Toyah had enough of camping and moved back into the Battersby house.  Spider also decided to give up the al fresco life and moved into number 3 while Emily was in the Far East with Maud.  When Toyah discovered he had a house to himself, though, she was straight round.  Linda was playing full Lady Muck, turning up when she wanted and taking the afternoon off.   Mike warned her that if she wanted to keep her job she'd have to knuckle down, but she paid no attention and went through Deirdre's desk, finding her birthday card for Ken and laughing at the message.  Deirdre tried to walk out but Mike persuaded her to stay - and sacked Linda instead.

WEDNESDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 10th and 11th October 1999

Ken Barlow turned 60, and the whole Street made a fuss.  Blanche put a message on the radio and hung a banner outside the house.  She also organised a surprise party in the Rovers, but he wasn't keen - until Tracy and Robert turned up.  He said seeing Tracy was the best possible present, so I guess stuff Peter, Susan and Daniel, right?  This was the final appearance of Tracy v3, by the way, as the next time we'd see her she'd have regenerated into Kate Ford.  Dawn Acton went on to be a DJ with a club night called Tracy Barlow's Bedroom Tapes which is, of course, amazing.  Turning 60 meant Ken was entitled to his work's pension, including a lump sum.  When Mike heard about it, he asked for the £10,000 he put up for Deirdre's legal fees.  Deirdre begged him to change his mind, but his divorce was proving expensive, with Alma wanting money from the flat, so he couldn't afford to wait for her to pay him back.  Toyah seduced Spider with a houseful of candles and a sultry look.  They ended up in the bath together - and the candle set fire to the curtains.  They managed to tackle the blaze but Emily's back room was left blackened.  Martin suggested that Gail should get sterilised rather than him having his tubes cut; she rightly told  him to think again.  And Sharon got a visit from a young Andy Whyment, pre-Kirk, trying to buy fireworks.  The Kabin didn't sell them and Ian suggested she should rectify that.

THURSDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 13th and 15th October 1999

Tom had taken the hairdresser's flat from Audrey and he was soon receiving unexpected visitors.  The first was Melanie, Maxine's bridesmaid; it turned out she'd enjoyed their little dalliance at the wedding and was back for more.  The second visitor was his dad Duggie, who got drunk in the Rovers, belittled Tom for being a hairdresser, and ended up getting chucked out when he tried to belt his son.  Now I have residual affection for actor John Bowe, who plays Duggie, because he was Colonel Feyador in The Living Daylights, but he's turned out to be a right lunatic anti-vaxxer so I'm counting down the days until Richard Hillman offs him.  Rita was furious to discover Sharon was selling fireworks.  She'd sworn never to stock them after an incident in 1973 where a lad had been badly burned with one of her bangers (this actually happened in the show;  I love these deep references).  Sharon reminded her that the Kabin was her business and she could sell what she liked.  Spider and Toyah tried to find the exact wallpaper to repaper Emily's, but it had been discontinued.  They finally found some in an old store and persuaded Hayley to secretly repair the damaged curtains.  Elsewhere, Linda got a job with her old boyfriend's firm, Ken paid Mike off, and Maxine returned from honeymoon on her own - Ashley had been too scared to fly and was on a boat back.

FRIDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 17th and 18th October 1999

Toyah and Spider found a place to live in Linda's manky old bedsit.  It meant Spider would have to get a job to fund it - and the Job Centre offered him a prime role: canal dredging with Les Battersby.  On the plus side they managed to make Emily's house look like nothing had ever happened.  Maxine's mum Doreen announced that she wanted to leave her husband, wanting to reclaim her youth and experience a bit of life again.  She moved her stuff into number 4 and left a note on the fridge saying goodbye to Maxine's dad.  Natalie told Sharon she was mad for getting back with Ian, but she responded by telling her men only wanted her for one thing.  The next day Sharon brought Ian into the Rovers for a drink, but he realised she was doing it to score a point and walked out.  

MONDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 20th and 22nd October 1999

Maxine tried to get her mum and dad back together but they ended up arguing about their boring lives.  Derek told Doreen to act her age and left her to it, though Maxine urged him to do something romantic to win her back.  Spider looked around for a job and settled on one at the DSS.  He worried about how he could take the job, given his strong principles - only to find that the interviewer was a fellow eco-warrior mate, who urged him to help bring down the system from within.  Sharon apologised to Ian, though Rita warned her that he was trouble.  They met up and Ian asked her to be with him forever.  Mike was anxious about Linda getting close to her boss and ex-lover, so he insisted that she returned to Underworld.  You can imagine how that went down with Deirdre.  

TUESDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 24th and 25th October 1999

Emily and Maud returned from the Far East and, because she is a canny old bird, she immediately spotted that her back room had been redecorated.  Toyah confessed to the fire but soon became angry that all their work had gone unappreciated.  Maud urged Emily to be more forgiving, or she'd drive Spider away forever.  To make things up with him Emily gave them a cheque to cover their costs, then, because it wasn't about the money, Spider tore the cheque up.  Sharon realised she was in love with Ian again, but she concealed her affair from Rita.  Rita knew full well what was going on but let her continue the subterfuge.  And the garage staff took pity on a pair of old dogs wandering round the street.  In Tyrone's case, it was a lonely greyhound he shared his sandwiches with.  In Jim's case, it was Natalie Barnes, sobbing outside number 6 on her wedding anniversary.  He took her to the pub so she could drown her sorrows.

WEDNESDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 27th and 29th October 1999

Ashley finally returned from the honeymoon and was able to carry Maxine across the threshold.  He was horrified to discover Doreen living with them, and even more disgusted to learn that Maxine refused to consummate their marriage while her mum was in the house.  The greyhound continued to hang around Tyrone so he gave her a name: Monica, after "that skinny one in Friends."  He begged Vera to let her stay at the B&B and she reluctantly agreed to let him keep her in the shed.  Melanie continued to hurl herself at Tom despite him being not keen in the slightest.  However, her fiance turned up in the Street, and when he saw her with Tom, he confronted Melanie.  She claimed Tom was after her, but he denied it, so her fiance dumped her and walked away.  Les discovered that Toyah and Spider were sharing a bedsit and went for him in the Rovers.  What he hadn't realised was Spider had started work at the DSS, and now knew that Les was working while signing on.  He sent him a letter requesting an interview at the Benefits Office.  And Ian asked Sharon to marry him, again; she happily accepted.

THURSDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 31st October and 1st November 1999

Hallowe'en 1999 brought us a hello and a goodbye.  Making her debut as Sarah-Lou was Tina O'Brien, being stroppy in the Kabin with Martin.  Original Sarah, Lynsey King, had been bullied at school for her role in the show and so she decided to leave.  The producers took advantage of her departure to cast an older actress, sixteen year old Tina, to play the twelve year old character, as they had a significant storyline in mind for her in a few months time.  (Tina O'Brien, incidentally, looks exactly the same 22 years later, because she is an ageless fairy).  Making her final appearance, meanwhile, was Maud Grimes.  Like Phyllis before her, Maud didn't get an official send off, but simply returned to Mayfield Court and stopped visiting the Street.  (Also, Ravi was quietly written out of the show, as he went off to India for his brother's funeral, but he's not actually appeared for months).  

In actual plotlines, Ashley encouraged Derek to make a grand gesture to Doreen to try and win her back.  He drove his truck onto the Street with "I LOVE YOU DOREEN" painted on the side and blocked the traffic, refusing to move until Doreen came back to him.  The police arrived but Doreen was so taken by his gesture she went back to him.  Rita caught Sharon coming out of the flat with Ian and made her disapproval clear - which was unfortunate, because she was getting married.  Danny and Sally acted as witnesses as she became Mrs Bentley (with Ian quietly interrogating Danny about whether he'd ever slept with Sharon).  

FRIDAY - Episodes originally broadcast 3rd and 5th November 1999

Les went to the DSS for his interview and was shocked to find Spider behind the desk.  He gave Les the third degree, rather than being all matey, and threatened him with arrest for fraud: his condition for silence was getting his blessing for Spider and Toyah's relationship.  Les reluctantly agreed.  Vera told Tyrone he'd have to get rid of Monica but he begged for her to stay.  He said that he'd never been loved and Monica was the first person to give him any affection; Vera's heart cracked, and she said she'd give him a week to find her real owner.  Sharon confessed to Rita that she'd got married.  Rita, naturally, exploded, saying that Ian was a con man and a cheat and she'd regret it, then she went to Sally and laid into her for enabling the wedding and not telling her.  Sharon begged for her approval but it wasn't forthcoming.  And Sarah-Lou had a new friend, Candice, who tried to get her to try smoking.  That girl will be a bad influence, I can tell.

Steve and Vikram also planned to go off to Calais on a booze cruise.  In reality, they ended up in Brighton, involved in all sorts of shenanigans with a returning Vicky, Reg Holdsworth, and Dame Bet Gilroy in a nightly spin-off called Coronation Street: After Hours.  Unfortunately ITV are refusing to show this because they're spoilsports and also they have enough trouble just showing the episodes they're meant to show.  You can however watch the whole thing on YouTube; it's not great, to be honest, but completists may be interested.  Tell me what you thought on Twitter @merseytart.

Classic Corrie is on ITV3 weekdays, except for over the Christmas period when they're doing their usual trick of filling the airwaves with Carry On films.

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


Anonymous said...

Are ya kidding me? That Candice would grow up and move to Hollyoaks as Maxine!

C in Canada said...

I love these classic writeups!
This is about 4 years before I started watching, so it gives great insight into present characters and why they act as they do.
And you're right about Sarah-Lou not again one bit!


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