(This post was originally posted by Graeme N on the Coronation Street Blog in August 2015, reposted with permission.)
Watching Corrie these days is a roller-coaster in quality control. Most of the time one scene featuring Eileen Derbyshire being majestic in The Kabin or the Community Centre is enough to wipe out the glaring holes created during the Jenny Bradley kidnap drama. I don't know why, but it's just very up and down these days. It's been a joy to see Beverley Callard take centre stage as Liz, the best Rovers Landlady we've had in eons. It's been much less pleasurable to see forty odd years of Helen Worth's hard work dribble away as Gail becomes a permanent twittery waste of space.
Alison King can do no wrong as Carla, but her recent storyline seeing Mrs Connor's descent into self pity and gambling addiction just hasn't worked. Neither has her newfound lust for Gail's oldest off-spring and the fruit of Brian's loins, the whimpering Nicholas T. These two briefly worked together when the Nick with this face joined five or so years ago. At the time people wondered if they'd stick them together and thankfully they didn't. So why now? Have the storyliners run out of options? As the only two residents of the posh flats, can they only mix with fellow characters with balcony and fancy window shutters?
Also added to the mix is the arrival of yet another Connor nobody has ever mentioned before but everyone knows so well it's as if they only saw him last week. I was prepared to hate Aidan on sight. This was partly down to the casting, following as it did hot on the heels of Sarah Harding's brief stint. More importantly it just felt like the latest in a long line of flashy businessmen in nasty suits, driving shiny motors and ramming their male selves into the back office at Underworld. We've had Paul Connor, Liam Connor, Luke Strong, Tony Gordon...blah, blah, blah. Nobody has come close to equal the sublime Baldwin years as far as I'm concerned.
Anyway, despite my worries, I've actually taken to Aidan Connor. I know it's early days but I rather like the character, I like his dynamic with Carla and I'm quite impressed with Shayne Ward's acting. It also helps that he's fairly easy on the eye. I guess time will tell but it's showing promise.
Sadly, I'm still struggling with another newcomer to the cobbles. I know our wonderful editor Flaming Nora is loving the Roy and Cathy story but it's just not clicking for me. I don't even think it's anything to do with Hayley or the memory of Roy and Hayley together. I just don't think the characters work. Melanie Hill is an excellent actress with a strong career but somehow Cathy Matthews is just leaving me cold. I don't care enough.
Unfortunately the Platt family are going to dominate the September live episode. Well, it makes sense given that they've dominated the entire year. I don't mind the individual members of the Platt family, it's just when they move as a pack I get concerned. We've had so many family meetings, threats from Callum and dewey moments when Gail has said the worst is over. You'd think the woman would learn by now. It's become so tedious I just wish Callum, Gemma and Max would be spirited away somewhere t'other side of the Pennines.
I've also found myself sighing a lot whenever Fiz and Tyrone appear on screen together. Ok, they will never be as beige as Sinead and Chesney (a traditional old before their time Corrie couple), but since they settled into domestic bliss they've become irritating and smug. Tyrone I'll always love but Fiz has morphed into a character I love to hate. She's become domineering, self-righteous and over-bearing. Vera Duckworth could be all of these things but we always forgave her. I struggle with the forgiveness when it comes to Fiz.
I live in hope that Audrey and Rita may emerge from the Corrie Cupboard soon, all Deansgate frocks and scarves, freshly coiffed and ready to camp. Whatever the writers do, please DO NOT put Aud with Kenneth Barlow. The return of the glorious Jenny Bradley must surely mean more screen time for Barbara Knox as Rita. She's been noticeably absent this year and there is so much they could do with these two wonderful Weatherfield women.
Apart from that I hope Lloyd leaves Andrea-free, Craig's lovely girlfriend pays him a visit, Anna takes Faye on a long trip...somewhere else, Kevin shaves off his scraggly beard, Gary finds someone better than that Alya (me), Steph and Luke get a proper storyline as siblings and Zeedan finds himself in an episode where all his shirts are in the wash (hint).
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