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

Tuesday 20 September 2022

Five Things We Learned In Corrie This Week

Murder is easy.  Perhaps I've lead a charmed life, but I don't know anyone who was murdered.  I don't know anyone who knows someone who was murdered.  And I certainly have no acquaintances who've been accused of murder.  Perhaps this means that I am the luckiest man in Britain.  Certainly if Weatherfield is anything to go by I'm in a minority, as literally everyone there seems to be caught up in murder plots right now.  There were three separate murder-related storylines in this week's episodes, and even weirder, they all had nothing to do with one another - there were three separate victims of three separate crimes.  The only crossover between a couple of them was Kelly, but Kelly is the centre of the universe right now, so that's no real surprise.

In fairness, the producers seem to have realised that three murder plots may be a slight (ahem) overkill, which is why the Trial of Toyah Battersby lasted half of one episode, with the jury coming to a decision before the first ad break on Sunday.  Adam's evidence was "I overheard something" and Kelly's seemed to be nothing more than an excuse to make Millie Gibson look like she's about to cry again.  No forensics, no psychologists, nothing.  After all that she was pronounced Not Guilty and wandered out of the court and that's the end of that.

Except... that's not it, is it?  Because lovely, empathetic Toyah Battersby is now a self-confessed murderer.  You can argue whether there was forethought or intent, but the point is, Toyah heard what Imran said, decided she really hated him, and drove the car into a brick wall so he would die.  And he did die.  That seems pretty guilty to me, and I'm not sure why her getting off with it is some kind of victory.  (Incidentally, it's interesting that when she went on that mad run of pronouncing herself a murderer to Spider and Leanne and burbling to her barrister, Toyah still held back from changing her plea to Guilty or declaring any of this in court.  Apparently her conscience only affects her when it's not really important).  Now Toyah's back on the Street, and I guess we're meant to be happy about it, and not saddened and annoyed that a great character is a killer for no real reason at all.

Is this cool?  Is this cool?  Is this cool?  Little Sam continued to pine hopelessly after Jalena (personally I'm still pining after Jalena's Hot Dad, but never mind) and he decided he needed a radical new look to catch her interest.  He decided that Liam was his new style icon, asking him "are you cool?"  Yes, this kid:

Liam dressed as Jean-Luc Picard for his birthday - I think he might be the only kid on the Street who's actually less cool than Sam.  Still, he inspired a trip round the Trafford Centre for Sam, and he turned up at Jamela's party dressed as his new best mate.  Jamela immediately rejected him because she thought he was some sort of jock even though, and I cannot emphasise this enough, it was still Sam in the Wethy County top.  (By the way, didn't Sam become a massive football nerd after he was kidnapped that one time, boring everyone with facts about County?)  Still, at least he still has his pen pal.

Ah, my mistake, that's four murder related plotlines in the show at the moment.

Oi oi, it's the filth!  So it turns out Spider is (a) married and (b) an undercover detective infiltrating the protest movement.  You know, Spider Nugent, left-wing agitator and moral centre of many decades' standing; an absolutely ideal candidate to become a turncoat.  He's really whizzed up the ranks, too.  Back in 2016, he was teaching in Peru with Emily.  After that he presumably came back to Britain, discovered "the dark side of protesting", signed up to be a policeman, went through the training, became a bobby, advanced up to detective level, then said to his bosses "hey, I used to be a hippy, why don't we infiltrate them?"  And all without any of his old mates learning that he was now part of the establishment.  Handy that.

Spider now spends all his time loitering in the Alleyway of Doom - instead of literally any other ginnel in Greater Manchester that wasn't round the corner from Toyah - hissing about his assignment.  Are we meant to be happy about this?  Pleased that the idealistic young Spider has transmogrified into a copper?  Pleased that he's abandoned all his ideals and beliefs?  I find it quite depressing, to be honest, (not to mention it's yet another returning character with an awful secret) and the show's discussion of the protestors all seems a bit tabloid.  They're environmentalists, committed to changing the planet for the better, not terrorists.  The worst thing they might do is superglue themselves to the tarmac on the A332.

There is Griff, of course, a character who seems to have been invented by the Daily Mail, intent on changing the planet through violence if necessary.  He wanted to set fire to a car, for heaven's sake!  And just in case more left-wing viewers may sympathise with him, he was also racist (telling Saira they didn't want "her sort" round here) and sexist ("why are women always changing their minds?" he moaned).  Just to really underline he's a wrong 'un.  I'm not sure what his side hustle will be, but judging by his relentlessly unpleasant portrayal, I presume he's Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

Zombies can't play football.  James has got a plotline, and it's not about being GEH!  Miracles can happen!  Admittedly it is about him suffering a health crisis that puts his footballing career in jeopardy, which happened a while back when he fell off a kerb while being a victim of racism, but small steps.  Perhaps at some point he'll acquire a friend he's not related to, you never know.  Anyway, his new storyline is that he's a zombie, having died and then been brought back to life.  This is a first for a British soap opera; not even Hollyoaks has dabbled with the undead.  It's important that television handle issues in this way and I hope we see the full extent of the everyday problems zombies face in society - limbs falling off at inconvenient times, the insatiable lust for brains, the difficulty of dating when your flesh is peeling away from your face.  Zombies are people too!  (Actually they're not).  James said "a life without football is a living death"; you're about to find out what a living death really is, mate.

You have to take the rough with the smooth.  Glenda achieved what we all knew she was created for and became a barmaid at the Rovers.  Have you ever seen a character more obviously destined to pull pints?  She wasn't very good at it, admittedly, but when you have a barnstorming charm machine behind the bar hoiking her cleavage like Les Dawson and upselling hotpots you can't really resist her.  Unbelievably, Jodie has been in the show for a month and we haven't yet had a showtune out of her; she suggested she could perform if the jukebox broke, so I'm off to Weatherfield with a sledgehammer to make sure this happens.

Unfortunately, it seems we can't have nice things without a little bit of pain, and so while Glenda is nine parts amazing, there is a tenth part that has developed an unaccountable fondness for Sean which means he's in the programme a lot more.  He was flouncing around in a frankly hideous kimono for his birthday (age deliberately not mentioned) and then held a birthday lunch in Speed Daal.  Once again I'm asking why nobody can go out for a meal in the evening any more.  Is there a curfew we haven't been told about?

Look!  Poor Dylan is on his lunch break, having managed to get into Wethy High without any problem at all, apparently.  He'd have barely tucked into his starters before he had to go back for double Maths.  And the factory girls didn't even turn up, an unfortunate incident with some cockroaches having put paid to the event.  (At least that was the excuse they gave Sean).  Hopefully Glenda will realise - much like most of Sean's boyfriends - that he's awful, and she'll go off and hang out with Mary.  The builder's flat is going begging now, put those two dames in there to do musical theatre together while wearing elaborate chiffon.

There wasn't a single mention of the death of the Queen at all, which was a real pity, as I was hoping there'd be a very hastily filmed insert of Tim going "shame about Her Majesty, eh?" whacked at the start of the rescheduled episodes.  Contact me on Twitter @merseytart if you want to put in a joint complaint to King Charles about the disrespect.

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Fluttershy said...

Some years ago a friend remarked that she really liked the way Corrie will do a big storyline and have the same issue addressed in a different way with other characters in the same episode's B story. Once you notice Corrie does this, it's really rather brilliant. Anyway, I guess they were trying to mirror the Toyah murder story with the Gary murder story, focusing on the differences between the two. I don't think it worked too well, but it's what they were aiming for.

And dressing up as Captain Picard for you birthday IS cool, goddammit!

Charles said...

I get the impression that somebody behind the scenes at Corrie really doesn't like environmental protesters. Turning Spider into a cop and the ludicrous character of Griff really hammers this home. Mind you, if more people took a leaf out of Griff's book and started throwing things at Craig, it would undoubtedly improve the show.

Anonymous said...

I'm certainly not happy that Toyah got away with murder and my sympathies are with Saira and Alfie who thanks to Toyah will never know his father.
What I find disturbing is Leanne's and Spider's attitude,they both know that Toyah intended to kill Imram and yet they both celebrated the not guilty verdict forgetting that an innocent man died for no reason at all.

Anonymous said...

Spider been a copper is plain daft and something does not seem right, spider must be 45 easily which seems a bit old to be a copper and from eco warrior to detective in 3 year, haway

popcorn said...

Agree about Spider. I watched him for years back in the day, and there is NO WAY he would turn into a copper.

C in Canada said...

Hey, Star Trek IS cool! If it wasn't it wouldn't still be around.
I also may be in the minority, but I do like Sean, he makes me laugh.
I was glad to see he attended the Queen's funeral!

Anonymous said...

I can't believe I've only _just_ remembered, but didn't James have a hot boyfriend who chose to pass up a good job in London to stay in Weatherfield (cooking at the bistro)? Did he vanish?


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