Thursday, 31 July 2014

State of the Street - July 2014

At the end of each month, I generally ramble on about some of the storylines on Coronation Street from that month. It's not really a storyline summary, it's more about my reaction to things that happened.

I'm finding Todd is in danger of becoming too one-dimensional though he's fun to watch at the moment. Peter's in prison on very thin circumstantial evidence and Ken's absence, though we understand why it's been there, is difficult to swallow. Nick is doing my head in but at least he's not boring to watch, either. I'm starting a new drinking game every time Gary or Alya coincidentally run into one another.

We've lost Dennis and Marcus this month and both will be missed even if they were both criminally undervalued. Loving Yasmeen so far!

Read more here.

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Chris Gascoyne joins Jack and the Beanstalk panto

Chris Gascoyne, who plays Peter Barlow in Coronation Street, will be starring in panto this Christmas. Oh yes he will, etc.

Chris will be starring in Jack and the Benstalk at Birmingham Hippodrome for the festive season.

Find out more here.

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Put your questions to Coronation Street producer Stuart Blackburn

Coronation Street producer Stuart Blackburn will be chatting to Digital Spy next month, so here's your chance to submit some questions for the show's boss.

Whether its characters, sets or storylines, all questions are welcome. 

To submit your questions to Stuart Blackburn, use the form at Digital Spy.

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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

My disappointment in Dennis

Well, Dennis Tanner has gone! Will he be back? Who knows?

I have to say that since Dennis was re-introduced into Corrie over three years ago, I have been very disappointed at the way his character has been dealt with. And this is no fault of Philip Lowrie. It's in the hands of the powers that be. Here are some of my thoughts on the weaknesses of the charatcer.

His re-introduction

When I heard the news that Dennis Tanner was being re-introduced, I was a little apprehensive. Yes, I was thrilled they were thinking of bringing him back, but yet I questioned why? There were plenty of other characters to re-introduce, why Dennis Tanner? He hadn't appeared since 1968 and only two characters, three at a push would remember him.

Then we got more info on his comeback. He would return as a tramp which was an interesting angle. You would expect that maybe Emily would find him prowling around the charity shop. But oh no, it was Rita who found him while volunteering in a homeless shelter. The producers made a mountain out of a molehill, quite frankly, of their friendship. Yes, Rita was introduced as Dennis' friend in 1964, but that was about it. For me, it would have been better for Emily or Ken to come across him and then bring him home and for Rita to recognise him. What was also weird was that Dennis didn't comment on how the street had changed since he left. He didn't comment how the Rovers had changed - how the snug or select wasn't there any more.

Lack of historical references

As I said, I was apprehensive about his return. But what I was looking forward to were references to the past. Dennis was another link to the Corrie of the 1960s along with Ken and Emily. While we got told about Elsie's fate and a reference to Martha Longhurst, I have no recollection of Dennis making any references to past characters. He could've talked about Jack and Annie Walker, the snug trio, Albert Tatlock or Lucille Hewitt. Considering his links with Gamma Garments, he never talked about Swindley with Emily. He never discussed Emily having finally got married after years of being a spinster. 

His lack of scenes with Ken were a disappointment as well. Considering he was due to ruffle Ken's feathers, no such scenes were shown. There were two years before Ken left for Canada, so there were enough opportunities. Where were the scenes where Dennis and Ken reminisced about the past and about Elsie, Frank and Ida, David and Valerie? We never saw Dennis talk to Peter about his mum. A missed opportunity.

Why didn't Linda Cheveski re-appear? Or what about a reference to Dennis' first wife Jenny?

Confinement to Rita

This was the biggest mistake they did. Since 2011, his scenes have mainly been with Rita. But I don't know why the producers chose to confine him to just Rita. They could have always maintained Rita and Dennis' friendship, like her friendship with Alf, while Dennis could communicate with other characters. I was pleased when the producers recognised the ironic link that Eileen lived at Elsie's house and that Elsie's maiden name was also Grimshaw. And it was nice how Julie took Dennis in recently. 

I was also unhappy that they married Dennis and Rita. Rita mentioned time and again that she had always wanted to be Mrs Tanner. No reference was made before and it was odd considering Rita always said that her true love was Len. For years, she refused to remarry because she still loved Len. 

There was a lot of potential for Dennis to be linked with other characters. Yes he had a friendship with Sylvia and he ran off with Gloria, but what about Audrey? They could've talked about hairdressing - Dennis was interested at one time! And  despite Gail being Elsie's lodger, no scenes were done between the characters. He became a lollipop man which gave him a story with Steve, but all was forgotten.

While Rita had always had a fun-loving and humorous nature, her marriage to Dennis made her a miserable and boring shrew. When married to Len she could be a nag which was justified, but it was a change of personality for her to be so horrible to Dennis. It was no surprise that they finally separated but it was a shame that no effort was made to portray an old aged married couple. Not many have been portrayed in soaps so it would've been a change but alas the producers didn't have time. 

Ruination of a classic Corrie character

Maybe it was a mistake bringing him back. Too much time had passed. Although when they re-introduced Jed Stone, they didn't make a mess of things but he wasn't there long! Dennis could've brought some humour back to the OAP section of the show after the deaths of Blanche and Betty and would've been a brilliant double act with Sylvia. 

They made him totally dependant on Rita which was an error as he was a pensioner so received a pension. When he courted Rita, she was sweet but when they married, she turned into a harridan. He became henpecked like Jack Duckworth and Stan Ogden.

If not making him henpecked was enough, they made him an adulterer as well - running off with Gloria. He returned a desperate man but by the end he even retorted to even stealing money from The Kabin. 

It was a shame that he was axed - a real shame. What will Rita do now? Get a divorce and revert back to Sullivan? Who knows? Rita's not having the best luck with her old friends is she? She's fallen out with Bet Lynch, Alec Gilroy and Sharon Gaskell and now Dennis! Thank goodness she's still got Mavis!

You rarely disappoint me Corrie, but this time you have.

What about you? Were you disappointed with how Dennis was dealt with? Did you have hopes for him? Leave your comments!

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Which Corrie baddie should return to Coronation Street?

I haven't watched EastEnders in years, but news this week that Nick Cotton is returning to the show (even though he's dead) made me smile.  I remember him being a thoroughly nasty piece of work - and great fun to watch.

It got me thinking about the Corrie bad lads and villains, murderers and scum bags that have walked the cobbles over the years.

Which one, if you had to choose just one, would you like to return (even from the dead)?

My vote would go to the wonderful Jez Quigley. "Steve McDonald... come on down!"

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Preview of tonight's Coronation Street - Weds 30 July

WEDNESDAY 30TH JULY 2014
AUDREY TRIES TO HEAL THE RIFT IN THE PLATTS. Gail confronts Nick about vandalising
Michael’s van,will he admit to seeing red after spotting them kissing? And how will Nick
react when Audrey summons him to a family meeting to iron out their differences? Will Nick accept Michael or will Gail be made to choose between her family and the new man in her life?
THE SCALES FALL FROM RITA’S EYES AS DENNIS LEAVES.Julie begs Rita to give Dennis one
more chance. It looks like she’s wavering until she witnesses a nasty altercation between
Dennis and Norris, hasDennis sealed his fate?
THE RESIDENTS PULL TOGETHER FOR THE LIBRARY SIT-IN. Yasmeen, Roy, Emily, Mary and
Craig arrive at the library to stage their protest at its closure. But who will stay after hours
and get locked in for the night?
ELSEWHERE Maddie and Simon get on well as she and Sophie look after him.

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Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Kirk and Beth set for a Street summer wedding?

With thanks to the fab Inside Soap magazine (check their website out, they've changed it and it's great), we can reveal details of a possible proposal for Beth, from Kirkeh!

In next week's Coronation Street, Beth comes out in a rash after she tries a new soap product which Sinead's made.  It's a serious rash that worries Beth something rotten. She rushes to see the doctor and Krik's beside himself with worry.

Beth turns out to be ok, but the incident makes Kirkeh think on.  He confides in Chesney that he's going to propose to Beth as he wants to marry her.

Let's hope Beth says yes - and we have the biggest, tackiest wedding that Coronation Stret's ever had. With Craig as best man, of course.

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Meet Alison King at Southport Flower Show

Alison King, Coronation Street's Carla Connor, will be appearing at this year's Southport Flower Show.

She will appear at Southport on Saturday August 16th and is the latest celebrity guest confirmed in the line-up at this year’s show.

Alison said: “It will be my first visit to the Southport Flower Show but I have heard so much about it from friends and colleagues. I’m sure it will be a wonderful day out and I’m looking forward to meeting everyone at the show.”

For more up to date information on the show, celebrity appearances, details and ticket bookings visit www.southportflowershow.co.uk


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Coronation Street event at Manchester Pride 2014

There's a Coronation Street event at Manchester Pride this year. 

Join creator of Coronation Street, Tony Warren, actress Brooke Vincent (Sophie Webster) and writers Jonathan Harvey, Damon Rochefort and Debbie Oates as they discuss the concept of characters in soaps coming out and how the story moves from script to screen.

The event will take place on Tuesday 19 Aug 2014 7pm - 10pm.  It costs £5 and takes place at The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, M50 3AZ


For tickets, book online here.

If you go to this event and would like to write about it for us here at the Coronation Street Blog, do please let me know.  We'd love to hear all about it from a fan.

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He's back, so he is, Jim McDonald returns

What a joy to interview Charlie Lawson and how fantastic that he will soon be back on our screens, albeit in jail.  His first appearance is scheduled for August 8th.

I met with ‘Jim’ so I did, at a press event earlier this month at Media City in Salford.  My impression of actor Charlie Lawson was of an easy-going man, who didn’t allow the vagaries of life to trouble him too much and who was very much enjoying himself. He also looked remarkably well and a good bit younger than his 54 years.  As he spoke, I caught myself wondering whether there was a more easily identifiable accent in the whole of UK soap opera than the Northern Irish of Jim. I would welcome your thoughts.  There was no doubt that Charlie was very willing to talk about his return to our favourite soap and was delighted to be doing so.

He did express a little nostalgia for times gone by – Jim joined in 1989 - when there were only 2 episodes a week  -on a Monday and a Friday. (How did we bear it?)   Back then, Charlie told us, there was time to socialise, because the pace of filming was much slower. There was even a Coronation Street cricket team. As with life, so with soaps – the pace has increased dramatically and now that there are five episodes a week, with some of the cast filming as many as 16 scenes a week, the social side of Coronation Street has dwindled as the episode production has increased involving intensive work, so that people now do their work, then go home. Nothing stays the same. Charlie referred to himself as ‘an old dinosaur’ as he much enjoyed what once was.

Charlie has close friends on the cast, past and present. He mentioned the extremely talented Sarah Lancashire, who once played Raquel and Simon Gregson, Steve, to whom he is very close.

Since leaving Coronation Street Charlie has been involved in theatre. One part he particularly enjoyed was the part of Frank, the university lecturer, which was played by Michael Caine in the film of Educating Rita. He was also in a run of Rain Man with Neil Morrissey, probably best known for Men Behaving Badly.  He’s also been to Canada, filming a BBC documentary about The Titanic.  

Charlie also runs a farm shop in Prestbury, Cheshire, with his wife, Debbie, but doesn’t serve customers as he cannot work the till, he volunteered to tell us. He does engage with customers though, doing front of house and talking about his produce. Asked if he feels tempted to give up acting and just work in the shop, he simply replied, ‘Once an actor, always an actor.’ Good news for us then. Jim will be on screen until September and will play about thirty episodes.

Charlie very much enjoys playing the role of Jim. Initially the writers had no idea exactly who they were writing for, so when Jim got the part he added in his Northern Irish dialect, at times telling the writers that Jim wouldn’t say various Mancunian phrases. Charlie told the writers what he would say hence the phrases we know so well from Jim’s repertoire, including ‘Catch yourself on, so you are, so it is, and what about you.’

As we all know, Jim is in prison for his attempt to rob a bank. He is though making the best of his time there and is known as The Landlord - the Mr. Big of the prison. From Jim, prisoners can get virtually anything as no one seems incorruptible. He is well-respected by both prisoners and prison officers, as an ex-soldier.  Peter of course is in prison and is seeking alcohol. Inevitably Peter meets Jim. These two characters have never previously done a scene together.  

It is a mutually beneficial encounter, as through Peter, Jim can have Peter ask Deirdre to ask Liz to visit him. In return Peter can have whatever he wants. Jim is feeling very cut off from his family. Liz promised him she would wait for him, but that promise seems as if it was more for appeasement purposes than anything else.

In fact as the story develops, it is Jim who saves Peter’s life. Peter has found out where the ‘drop zone’ is for all manner of illicit goods and as miserable as it is possible to be, Peter knocks back a huge amount of alcohol. Jim comes to his rescue and Peter is saved. Redemption for Jim? Maybe…

Follow Ruth on twitter @ruth1722


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40 years of Corrie's Gail

Another Corrie star reaches a significant milestone today.

Yes, Gail Potter-Tilsley-Tilsley-Platt-Hillman-McIntyre made her first appearance in Coronation Street exactly 40 years ago today! 


Have a look at her five husbands here.

Gail's life has been one long misery, although Helen Worth always seems so chirpy and cheerful. I don't know how she does it! I love Gail, a true Corrie stalwart. I hope she is around for many more years to come. 

So while many of us think of the catastrophes that litter Gail's life in Weatherfield, whether it Brian Tilsley and his mother Ivy, Richard Hillman trying to bump off half the street or Joe McIntyre accidentally bumping off himself, I'd rather capture Gail in lighter mood with this tribute. 

First of all, the wonderful onscreen relationship between Gail and her mam, Audrey: 




And now, one of my favourite Corrie funny moments of recent years. Oh yes, I give you Gail, Deirdre and a Manchester Tart....



"Oh Ken, do something!"

And if that wasn't enough, possibly the best of all. Gail and Eileen scrapping on the cobbles!




However long Gail stays in Weatherfield, we know one thing for sure: it will always be eventful! 

Happy anniversary to both Gail and Helen! 

Follow me on Twitter: @GraemeN82 



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Inside Soap Awards 2014 - vote for Coronation Street


Hey Corrie fans, from ITV.com, the annual Inside Soap Awards nominations are out and here for your consideration are the categories and the Corrie actors up for gongs:

Best Actor

Marc Baylis (Rob Donovan)
Chris Gascoyne (Peter Barlow)
David Neilson (Roy Cropper)

Best Actress

Julie Hesmondhalgh (Hayley Cropper)
Alison King (Carla Connor)
Paula Lane (Kylie Platt)

Best Bad Boy

Marc Baylis (Rob Donovan)
Bruno Langley (Todd Grimshaw)

Best Bitch

Kate Ford (Tracy Barlow)
Samia Ghadie (Maria Connor)

Funniest Male

Simon Gregson (Steve McDonald)
Malcom Hebden (Norris Cole)

Funniest Female

Patti Clare (Mary Taylor)
Anne Kirkbride (Deirdre Barlow)

Best Newcomer

Dean Fagan (Luke Britton)
Tisha Merry (Steph Britton)

Best Young Actor

Alex Bain (Simon Barlow)
Ellie Leach (Faye Windass)

Sexiest Male

Marc Baylis (Rob Donovan)
Ryan Thomas (Jason Grimshaw)

Sexiest Female

Georgia May Foote (Katy Armstrong)
Samia Ghadie (Maria Connor)

Best Family

The Platts
The Windass-Armstrongs

Best Storyline

Goodbye Hayley
Tina’s murder and Rob’s killer cover-up

I'm tickled that a few of my favourites are nominated. Not sure I'd put Samia Ghadie as Maria in the Best Bitch category since her bad girl spell was a one off due to a breakdown so that's a bit odd. I'm also really pleased to see Anne Kirkbride get a nomination for comedy since she's been absolutely brilliant!

Get over there and Vote Now!

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Spoilers for next week's Coronation Street, two familiar faces return

Without any piffle, here's the storyline for the week ahead on Coronation Street, all wrapped up nicely in 50 words or less.

Week of Monday 4 August to Friday 8 August

Ken's back on Monday 4 August
Jim's back on Friday 8 August

Ken's back (oh! Ken!), Jim's back (so he is), Tony’s impressed by Todd’s underhand tactics, Tracy and Rob set a wedding date, Sinead’s bath bomb almost kills Kirk

The full weekly preview, with loads of pictures is right here on Corrie.net

Missed last week's Corrie?
Catch up with the Coronation Street Weekly Updates  

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Pics: Ken Barlow's return to Coronation Street

Bill Roache is back on Coronation Street next week when Ken Barlow returns from Canada. 

From Digital Spy

Bill says: "Ken is really happy to be back, he has had a great time in Canada, he's used the time to do things he loves doing, he has started writing poetry and become a vegetarian, things which he immediately gets stick about on his return from Deirdre and Tracy. But he wouldn't want it any other way."

Does he have any idea that something is wrong?
"Not at all, Deirdre is a bit evasive but there is no way he would have any idea what she has been hiding from him. He knows that Peter and Carla have split up but that's as much as he knows at first."

When does he first discover that Peter is in prison?
"He has been trying to go out but Deirdre has so far foiled him every step of the way as she builds up the courage to tell him about Peter's arrest. But when Deirdre goes out of the back of the house to get Eccles he decides to head to the shop where he bumps into Carla and she tells him the truth because he starts asking her if there is any hope for their marriage!"

What are his emotions about Peter? Does he blame him?
"As soon as he asks Peter outright and Peter tells him he didn't kill Tina Ken believes him. He looks him in the eye and totally believes what he says. It isn't just the blind faith of a father's love, he genuinely knows Peter is not the murderer."

How does Deirdre's decision not to tell him affect their marriage?
"Ken is furious but they have been round the block a few times and once they have had it out he forgives her. What he finds harder to deal with is that he is the only one who seems to believe Peter. He soon realises that everyone else, Deirdre included, think that there is a chance that Peter did it, even if they don't want to believe it."

What happens when Ken visits Peter in prison?
"What shocks Ken is that even Peter seems prepared to throw in the towel - for a time Ken is the only person who seems to want to put up a fight. He realises that Peter does blame himself, even though he didn't actually kill Tina he can see that he feels responsible which is one of the reasons that Ken genuinely does believe he didn't kill her."

Is he shocked by Peter's condition?
"He is shocked that Peter has admitted defeat so quickly and just seems prepared for the worst."

How does Ken plan to help him?
"Ken has always been a man who loves a cause, a mission, now that it is his own son he will stop at nothing to try and prove his innocence."

Does Ken even suspect that Rob might have something to do with this?
"Nobody suspects Rob, and Ken has no reason to think he was the killer, that is why Rob is able to get away with it for so long. What motive would he have? He has also played a very clever game sticking to his guns about Peter being the killer."

How does he feel about Rob being under his roof and being engaged to Tracy?
"There is something about Rob that Ken doesn't like, he has had time to win Deirdre round, but Ken isn't sure about him, that doesn't mean to say he thinks he has anything to do with the murder. The fact that Rob is so certain Peter has done it is enough to wind Ken up."

What happens when Ken tries to get Simon to visit Peter?
"The last thing Rob wants is Peter getting visit from Simon and getting any ideas about fighting the charges, Rob wants Peter to continue accepting his fate so he 'accidentally' arranges for a day out with Simon, Amy and Tracy, so Simon is not available to go to the prison. Ken has no idea that it is deliberate."

What is Rob's reaction when Ken hires a new solicitor and vows to find the real killer?
"Ken is fast becoming the thorn in Rob's side, if Ken hadn't returned and started this crusade to prove Peter's innocence Rob would have had no worries about the truth ever being found out. Now he is constantly panicking that Ken is going to unearth something that incriminates him."

How do you feel about being part of this storyline?
"Yes I am thrilled to be at the heart of a story which has been so huge for the show. Ken is linked in some way to all the main players, which is what the street does so well, it is the ripple effect and Ken is at the heart of it. He has always loved a challenge and it is great to show that side of Ken. But I am equally pleased with the great comedy story running alongside it where Ken and Deirdre go on a caravan trip to North Wales, it was great fun to film. This is what the show does best, great drama alongside laugh out loud comedy."

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Monday, 28 July 2014

Coronation Street Double Episode Review 28 July 2014

Can it possibly get any worse for Nick? He is not just a man on the edge he is a man on his way over the edge. Predictably, at mediation, things don't go well and as they have been doing in the street, yelling and sparring, so they do in mediation. In addition Nick is having his card loaded on to a tow truck as he emerges from the unsuccessful session of mediation.

Despite the fact that Nick has been very badly behaved in his last few episodes, he does have cause to  feel hurt, supplanted and humiliated as he is, though this is not to take away from some of the unforgivable things he has said to Yasmeen concerning Leanne's past.  In full view of friends and family, Leanne has left him and taken up with the man who was initially helping Nick recover.

Nick also has his mother to contend with and his genuine fears about her being involved with a thief. That said, might it be the case that he is a little jealous of his mother's relationship and also fears it will distract from him and his needs?

The wonderful Steph, who seems to be the backbone of Just Nick's, is threatened with the sack if she doesn't work on her day off - madness! Steph is a real asset to Nick and rather than threatening to fire her should be cherishing the skill and competency of this very attractive and kind young woman who has had her own upset in her flatmate Tina's death.

She does work, showing great loyalty and recognising the need for her to stay, but she could have walked out. 'You're entitled to do as I tell you,' says Nick who seems to be hanging on to his sanity by his fingernails.

Later he spots his mum and Michael sharing a kiss in the garden which sends him into a mad rage. He  breaks the wing mirror and he throws plants and a stone to break the ice cream van window. The look on Gail's face suggests she knows only too well who did it.

Now to Faye, who has had a deal to put up with recently. Because of all the turmoil, it might not have been obvious what Faye has been getting up to. She is a little withdrawn and not her usual self.  She seems a little lost and asks if she can spend her time with Anna at the cafe.  Gary comes in and asks if he can sit with her. 'Free country,' she says. Gary's next line is terrific. 'Don't get all gushy with me.' he says.

Craig hears a spiteful rumour about Faye and sits with her in the cafe. Anna hears Faye jump down Craig's throat and seems to think that Craig - how very dare she? - is somehow responsible. Anna gets hold of Faye's  mobile and discovers that there are tweets saying that Faye has apparently been sleeping around and that nasty comments are being made about her.

Beth defends her son, quite rightly and Anna apologises to her. Tim is impressive in his wisdom too, saying that he has learnt from his 'many many mistakes' and Beth also, and they feel that to make a stand might make things worse. Who knows what is right in this sort of a situation?

Earlier Craig had been in The Kabin buying magazines for his mum. The magazines include stories about people unable to control their light bulb eating habit and others who claim that Diana's ghost lives in their fridge. 'Funny lad, but nice,' says Rita.

Great scene with Norris and Rita - Rita attacking Norris for giving out the silent treatment. She adds 'I'm tired of your constant recriminations, tired of you acting  like a spoilt child about who I spend my time with. All I see is a spiteful, jealous, misguided man.' Brilliant stuff writers - this is where Coronation Street really shines and tops the other soaps.

But, it looks as though Norris has a point, because in the pub Julie lets it slip that Dennis had asked her to kick him out, when Norris accused her of having kicked Dennis out and thus causing problems.

Just as Rita gives Dennis another try, it looks like Dennis might have blown it  - again! Rita discovers from Norris that Julie revealed that Dennis made himself deliberately homeless in order to play on Rita's sympathy.  Will this be it - finally for Rita and Dennis? Dennis brings flowers and Rita plays it cool. 'Have you taken leave of your senses? asks Norris. 'I know what I'm doing,' replies Rita.  As Elton Jon sings, 'Sorry, so sorry,' even Elton cannot help Dennis now.

Mary has been helping Roy in the cafe and hears that Yasmeen is keen to continue to fight for the library. 'The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing,' states Mary. Roy rather disappoints her by saying it's only a library and not about evil, but then later finds his fervour. 'It's liberating to have a cause,' he says. Maybe he feels that Hayley is urging him on.

Roy finds a reminder of Hayley in a book and becomes very thoughtful.  Grief is like that. You seem to be coping and then one little reminder can fell you -and so it seems to be with Roy.


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Monday musings


I've just spent two and a half hours catching up with all the Corrie I've missed while I've been away. I don't often watch big blocks of it in one go and I must admit my eyes were going together by the end. Anyway, here are my musings on what I saw:

More Emily! I loved seeing more of Emily Bishop. Eileen Derbyshire is shamefully underused and as we saw last week, she is still more than capable of putting in terrific performances. It was a great reminder that there is a lot more to the character than meets the eye. One of the longest-serving and most loyal Corrie actors deserves many more moments like these.

Less Nick! As much as I admire Corrie for tackling the brain injury issue, I do think we've reached that point where things need to move on. "Angry Nick" isn't working for me, it's more than a little irritating and it became tired months ago. Nick seems to be fulfilling the nasty stunt quota previously carried by his brother David. Let's move on shall we?

A more spirited Gail. Although I'm yet to decide what I make of Michael, it has been refreshing to see Gail in a more positive storyline with an influence away from her family. I have enjoyed the scenes that show Gail realising there is a life away from meddling in the lives of her sons. I'd like to see this develop further - David and Nick really do need to bog off and let her live her life.

Annoying Andrea. I just can't take to this character. I feel so sorry for Lloyd, he has even less luck with the ladies than Steve. Andrea just hasn't gelled for me. Too much time is being spent on her when I would prefer to see Lloyd develop a relationship with his daughter Jenna (although the clock is now ticking on this one, sadly). Anyway, I'd ditch Andrea as soon as possible, she's trouble.

There's something about Mary. I like the calmer, less crazy Mary. She can be a very sweet, intuitive, sympathetic character when she wants to be. She just needs more of a grounding in Weatherfield. She still floats about, presumably living in that massive motorhome with no fixed employment. The writers need to invest in the character and create more interesting material for her.

Tracy Luv. How many times will Tracy sink lower than a really low thing and get away with it? Selling Uncle Albert's war medal was unforgivable. I know Deirdre let her have it, but as usual they will be empty promises. For a very moral programme like Corrie surely Tracy has had all her chances by now? She is morally bankrupt with no redeemable qualities and needs to get what's coming to her...and then leave.

And talking of bankruptcy...the Windass dramas continue. I think it is admirable for Corrie to take this storyline in this direction. It is about time food banks got a mention and Debbie Rush is wonderful whatever the script writers throw at her. I just feel enough is enough. The Windass family have dominated our screens all year now and we're nearly in August. I know there is a Faye storyline on the way now too so obviously there is not going to be any let up. Time to give someone else a chance?

What would Elsie say? Philip Lowrie leaving Corrie is just dreadful. A lovely link to the past and one of Corrie's most iconic characters, Elsie, very rarely even gets a mention. I still cannot fathom why you would go to the trouble to bring back a character like Dennis without a concrete plan of what to do with him. Marrying him off to Rita did neither characters any favours. I struggle to believe that the Corrie writing team couldn't come up with some interesting stories for a mature married couple finding love later in life. Such a waste. 

Ending on a positive note, I still love Kal's mum Yasmeen. She is spirited and tough and speaks her mind. Hopefully plenty to come from her. I also love Eva behind the Rovers bar. A very good character who could potentially be brilliant given the right material. I know this might be controversial, but I'm also really looking forward to seeing Jim McDonald back on our screens. I love this character so hopefully he'll be around for a good long time. 

Follow me on Twitter @GraemeN82 


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Preview of tonight's double Coronation Street, Mon 28 July

MONDAY 28TH JULY 2014
NICK HAS THE DAY FROM HELL. Nick and Leanne meet with the mediator but they’re soon trading insults and it’s clear they can’t agree on anything. Are they heading for court? Meanwhile Gail spends the day with Michael helping him clean up an old ice cream van. However Nick’s far from impressed with Gail’s hard work and as he tears a strip off his mum the two men square up to each other.
NORRIS DROPS A BOMBSHELL ON RITA. Rita agrees to give Dennis another chance but
makes him promise there’ll be no more lies. But when Julie lets slip to Norris that Dennis
insisted she made him homeless, in the hope Rita would take him back, are his days
numbered?
CRAIG HEARS A VICIOUS RUMOUR ABOUT FAYE. Anna’s worried about a withdrawn Faye. When she then overhears her snapping at Craig, Anna wonders what’s going on.
ELSEWHERE Gary’s drawn to Alya.

MONDAY 28TH JULY 2014
NICK TAKES OUT HIS ANGER ON MICHAEL. Steph manages to drag Nick back to the bistro
before a fight breaks out but there he turns on her when she reminds him it’s her night off,
threatening to sack her if she doesn’t cancel her plans. Steph’s shocked, Nick’s a man on the
edge. Meanwhile Gail and Michaelshare a bottle of wine in the garden at No.8, their
attraction evident. When Nick arrives and spots them kissing he’s incensed and sees red.
DENNIS’ HOPES ARE SHATTERED AS RITA CONFRONTS HIM. Rita’s onto Dennis and
confronting him in the Rovers she reveals she knows all about his little scam. Will Dennis be
able to talk her round or has his chance of forgiveness gone?
ANNA FEARS FOR A TROUBLED FAYE.Anna snatches Faye’s mobile and is shocked to read nasty online gossip suggesting Faye has slept with lots of boys. At first she blames Craig but it soon becomes clear he’s not the perpetrator.
ELSEWHERE Roy’s tearful when he finds a reminder of Hayley in an old library book.

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Sunday, 27 July 2014

Pics: Jim McDonald's Coronation Street return


The tabloids today reveal details and picturse of Jim McDonald's return to Coronation Street.  With Peter in prison, he goes in search of some booze in the big house - and it turns out Jim McDonald is the one who supplies it.

The Mirror says that Peter doesn't have to look far, as his cellmate tells him about a inmate known as the Landlord who illegally sells alcohol to the prisoners.

Peter decides to pay him a visit, but imagine his surprise when the bloke he is looking for turns out to be none other than Jim McDonald, aka the estranged husband of Liz McDonald.


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Saturday, 26 July 2014

Corrie Weekly Awards for July 21 - 25

Specsavers: Were those a pair of Deirdre's old specs?

Educational Fail: Eva thought the Plantagenets was a band.

Said the librarian to Mrs. Bishop award: Yasmeen certainly underestimated our Emily!

She's Baaaaack! Emily has the stomach for a fight. She's been fighting her whole life! Go, Emily, Go!!!

Action Man award: Petitions just aren't cutting it. Roy is going to take action and save the library!

Mind Your Own Business award: Norris, get out of Rita's affairs.

Rock Bottom award: The Windasses.

We're Not Gonna Take it award: Leanne is fighting back against Nick's vindictiveness.

Continuity fail? Anna and Owen left the house together, yet she came down the road putting her coat on and he was sat on the bench. What did he do, zoom out ahead of her just to sit down 20 feet away? She thought he'd done a runner? What?

Slap Line forms to the Left: Doesn't Norris have a face that just invites being slapped? (In real life, slapping is not on. And to be fair, slapping Norris would only give him more reason to be self righteous)

Lines of the week:
Tracy (about nail varnish) "I can't decide between bone china and movie idol" Deidre "I reckon both, then you could call it Bone idol" (Ha!)
Deirdre about Uncle Albert "He saved the lives of two men" Tracy "Really? That means the family breaks even in my books!"
Eileen "I never trusted her" Lloyd "The phrase you're looking for is I Told You So"
Deidre about Ken "Your father's never lived it up in his life"
Tracy "Nana Blanche listened in to more private conversations than MI6"
Emily about Ramadan "Is it just food and drink you have to give up?" Yasmeen "Also sexual relations. But quite frankly, I'd rather have the bread pudding" (her mid morning snack)
Audrey re government cuts "They'd cut your feet off if you stood still too long"
Nick "Fair's got nothing to do with this"
Kal about Leanne's declaration of love "It's not quite how I imagined it" (nothing in this relationship is!)
Steve to Neil "You're like a flippin' boomerang"
Steve "It's like having the choice between a Chinese burn and a poke in the eye!"


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