Monday 30 September 2013

Corrie Canada weekly awards: Sept, 23 - 27

Bully award: Karl is really terrifying poor Craig, even threatening his mother's life!

Blinders award: Does Sally not really see that Tim isn't that into her past a bit of hows-your-father?

Evidence award: You can tell what time the photos were taken if you put them on the computer and maybe even a "properties" setting right on the phone.

Pants on fire: Beth telling the school that Craig has had a tummy bug while he's shoving a bacon butty in his face.

Time Warp award: Dev got to the registry office in record time, before the vows were even finished.

Judas Kiss award: Dev didn't blow the whistle, he congratulated and hugged Karl instead.

Confession is good for the soul: Unless you're Karl.

The Scene of the Crime award: Karl dragged Stella back to the cellar.

Omen award: Broken caketop, And they hope it's not a bad omen. Duh.

Doorstop award: That was a huge sandwich Fiz made for Tyrone!

Defender of the Faith award: Eva was quite vocally defensive of her mother and quite right, too. Beth had a go at Stella for trying to see Craig.

Lines of the week:

Bully "He's a nutter. He wants locking up" (in more ways than one!)
Sean "Maybe the dry cleaner shrunk his suit and he just can't take it anymore"
Tyrone re women "At the end of the day, we're all in the dark"
Gloria to Karl "You can't speak to her, it's bad luck" (bad luck for you, mate, regardless)
Dev "You both look so happy" (enjoy it, it won't last!)
Dev "What does a guy have to do to get a drink around here?"
Karl about Craig "That's out of order. That kid is vulnerable" (which is why you terrorized him, right?)
Karl "I don't believe in fairy tales" and "Liar, liar, pants on fire"
Grace "You got to learn how to play them, Faye"
Tim to Eva "I heard what happened. Bummer" (understatement!)
Eileen "D'you know Norris, some day someone is going to take that sticky beak of yours and stick it where the sun don't shine. It's probably going to be me!" Norris "Is that what you get for showing neighbourly concern?" (no, but then that's not what you were showing)

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Vote for Corrie! TV Times Awards 2013

Voting is now open in the TV Times Awards 2013.  There are two Coronation Street actors nominated in Favourite Soap Star category. These are Michelle Keegan, who plays Tina McIntyre, and Chris Gascoyne, who plays Peter Barlow.

Cast your vote here.

You can still also vote for Coronation Street in these awards too:

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Dissing the Devster

(This post was originally posted by Graeme N on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

I was maybe a little harsh when I blogged yesterday on the aftermath of the Karl Munro saga. Having thought about it, maybe Dev isn't so bad after all...

I mean the Devster has been a fixture of Coronation Street for fourteen years now so Jimmi Harkishin must be doing something right. I've never really been a massive fan of the character though I admit. I liked him with Sunita the first time around - she humanised him in the same kind of way that Alma brought out the best in Mike Baldwin. However, Dev and Sunita the second time was just one big boring mistake.

I also quite liked his partnership with Vikram back in the day. Mainly because I thought Vik was a good character. And when daughter Amber first appeared, she gave her dad a good run for his money and that was fun to watch.

On the negative side, we had that dreadful long running storyline where Dev got involved with both mother and daughter. Where on earth did the writing team get that one from? I still shudder at the thought of that big naked portrait of the Devster being unveiled. And while I'm shuddering there's always the Dev/Deirdre pairing haunting us all like a very unwanted party guest.

So I guess it's all swings and roundabouts with Dev. The Mad Maya saga was preposterous but good fun, however that was mainly down to the magnificently bonkers Maya. I keep hoping they'll bring her back to finish the job.

My main issue with Dev is that he just doesn't really fit into Weatherfield life. Sure he's got the kids and a local business, but I just don't think he suits the Corner Shop anymore. I agree with David that a middle aged woman should be running that place, making it more of a neighbourhood hub once again. He also does not come across as the kind of character to be living in the middle of that terrace either. I thought it was weird when the Alahan's bought that house, and I still can't fathom it.

So am I harsh about Dev? Is he a character worth nurturing for the years to come? 

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Sunday 29 September 2013

Sunday Comments September 29

Beth is determined to keep Craig away from the questioning adults.  Nobody can figure out why Karl went ballistic over the kids.  It's giving Stella second thoughts and it's convincing Dev. Jason's determined to prove it but they can't figure out where Craig comes into it without talking to him. Jason made a mistake telling Tommy and Tyrone about wondering where Karl was the night of the fire and now Karl knows. More pressure. You can tell what time the photos were taken if you put them on the computer and maybe even a "properties" setting right on the phone.

Dev finally got a little face time with Craig, but not enough and Karl saw. The wedding day dawns and Karl is in a panic, packing for Spain and his getaway. He's on edge, nervy and snapping at everyone.  Karl raked Craig over the coals but Craig seemed to satisfy him and his questions and Karl is getting really scary, threatening his mother's life. He probably wouldn't but Craig doesn't know that. Thing is, his mother has had enough and dragged him to Dev's and finally, it all spilled out. He confessed to the fire. Dev looked like he was punched in the gut but they unraveled it all and the timing was right for his sighting of Karl as well, and he saw Karl with the keys.

I can't imagine how we're going to get to "tomorrow" when the wedding isn't for a couple of episodes yet. Sad little hen night, your mother and your daughters. But then Stella really never made proper friends. All the hens are hungover, too but they'll be ok. Jason tried a last ditch effort to talk Stella out of it. Stella looked kinda nice, but she had a lot more hair on her head than she really has. A piece, i expect. And having a ride to the reception in a convertible, well I hope she's got a helmet's worth of hairspray and an armoury of hairpins of that's going to be off her head and floating in the canal.

The race is on, can Dev stop the wedding? Jason's on the way to the police with Craig, Dev is zooming to the registry office. It obviously isn't very far away because Dev got there in record time. The registrar declared them husband and wife and presumably, they signed the papers. It's a done deal.  So why didn't Dev say anything?! Was that a Judas "kiss" when he hugged Karl?

It took far too long at the police station to get someone to take statements while Dev stalked around the edges of the party observing and waiting. Poor Beth feels terrible and her hackles are up now. I don't think Dev should have warned Karl but he did.  Why didn't Jason text Dev to get the name of the detective right from the start? Come to that, Dev should have told them when they left the shop. Loved Dev creeping up silently behind Karl and cornering him in the pub.

Jimmi Harkishin played it spot on. He laid it all out, Karl knew he couldn't hide and he confessed. There were no excuses that made any difference. Trash talking about Sunita was a big mistake. Why did he think Dev would take that lying down?  Dev was going to out Karl to Stella so he can feel what it's like to lose what he loves but Dev ended up bleeding on the pub floor instead. Oh i loved it that Stella caught Karl trying to leg it with the cash.He lost his rag when she tried to help Dev while we waited on tenterhooks for the police to untangle all the infernal red tape. She threw his ring away, annullment in the offing while he fought with her.

Couldn't you tell how creeped out she was when she tried to placate him, stalling, and keeping him calm while he was holding her and stroking her. Making him think she was on his side, biding time until help comes. She went a bit too far and he could see through her. Dev came to and dialed his phone... to Jason, who saved the day, just before Karl had a chance to flame up the pub again. Karl dragged Stella back into the cellar, back to the scene of the crime. If i was her, i'd be chucking bottles at him like a mad thing.

Come out! you're surrounded! For heaven's sake, he's not armed! Just go get him! Exciting stuff!
Frantic to remove all trace of Karl and his fingerprints, Stella is blaming herself as you do. Dev is going through all the grief all over again. Craig is a gibbering wreck. Everyone else is feeling steeped in guilt and as usual, someone always thinks Stella must have known what Karl was up to. Fiz knows how men can fool you, that's for sure.

Jason is kind to Eva who is worried. He was also a good friend to Dev, bringing the whiskey to him to cheer him up. Dev acknowledged Jason's responsibility in catching Karl. Karl's actions really shocked Jason to the core, too.

Hayley's home and back in her nest and nobody really knows how to talk to her, walking on eggshells. She is determined to go-go-go but her body is going to tell her otherwise, I think, at least at times. Roy is waiting on Hayley hand and foot. Roy behind the wheel of a car. Frightening thought isn't it? He'd certainly have the road rules memorized, that won't be a problem.

Oh Sally, can't you tell he's not that into you? Committment isn't his middle name. The lads all added to Tim's reluctance, warning him that Sally's out to tie him down. Nice to see Tyrone standing up for her so he said he'd go to the reception after all except he blew her off anyway, bottled it. Jenna was sympathetic. Sally can't face the girls in the factory because Tim stood her up. Sophie pointed out that Tim's a loser. He does seem to be inclined that way but then Sally just made more of the relationship than he was in it for and she couldn't see it.

Audrey is in residence. I think the busy house, kid and dog are going to wear on her quickly. Audrey didn't like the dog licking her in the night. Close the door! I wondered what Marcus was going to make "special" for Audrey's tea after that remark about the dog and it's owners.

Faye has a new mate called Grace. She is on the phone with her constantly. Don't blame Anna for putting the kibosh on a sleepover on a schoolnight. Except she wasn't the sweet little thing she pretended to be.

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Autumnal changes in the Street?

(This post was originally posted by Clinkers (David) (and edited slightly to remove spoilers) on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

It feels like it has been a good week for us, the viewer, as far as Corrie is concerned. Emotions have been all over the place as, to begin with, we got used to the ill but determined Hayley. The reactions to her news rang true. People either didn't know what to say or engulfed the poor woman in a fog of irrelevant waffle. Human nature to the fore! The edgy discomfort surrounding these scenes was spot on.

The grand finale of the Karl storyline opens up new possibilities for the rest of the year. We know that ultimately, St Ella will turn her back on the back room. She and the ever-awful Gloria will need to live somewhere. I've heard Belgium's nice . . . No, seriously, are they going to pitch up in Kevin's house again? Tteaming Eva up with Jason seems a good idea. Jason needs to settle down. Like many of the other Corrie blokes of his age, he has the vitality and spark of someone older than Rita. Where's the fun? Lighten up and let's see him and Eva have a few laughs!

How do you solve a problem like Dev? You don't. Dev is Dev is Dev. Nothing is ever going to change that. While ever he is on the Street he is also the face of the Corner Shop, a venue which is now only used for set pieces and showdowns. There is always that nagging feeling that the shop should be run by a middle-aged woman with a penchant for gossip and good service. People are not going to pop in and have a bitching session with a wild-eyed booming fog-horn.

One of the real joys of the week has been the blossoming of Beth Tinker. As I've probably droned on before, there was always the worry that Beth would be a 'Cilla-lite', a one-dimensional gob-on-a-stick character. The last few episodes have shown us the turmoil she faced as Craig's slough of despond deepened. Lisa George and Colson Smith are a convincing mother and son act.

Will Sally rid herself of the feckless Tim? The woman's radar for unsuitable men is quite incredible. Murderous Frank, fey Greg, creepy Ian and even back in the mists of time, the horribly serious Joe (remember that grim holiday in the Lake District?) Even more creepy though is Jenna's sudden interest in Sally. A bottle of wine, a DVD, an afternoon on the sofa. I really hope this isn't going in a certain direction. Brookside did this years ago and it wasn't a popular departure for two leading characters. Don't go there Mr Blackburn.

Maybe Kevin will be back before Christmas. Comments posted during the week would suggest that if he does, he needs to return revitalised and not the same angry, downbeat character who left in the Spring. Here's a great opportunity to hit the re-set button and push Kevin in a new direction. He needs a new woman and preferably not another return to Sally. She will probably have moved on to Chesney or Marcus by then anyway.

Do we feel that the future is looking bright (or orange in the case of Tina)? I feel that it is. With Deirdre in the ascendant and Hayley's bucket list to be ticked off, there's plenty to keep us watching as the winter nights approach.

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Saturday 28 September 2013

Fat Brenda's Cream Horn

(This post was originally posted by Fat Brenda on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013, reposted with permission.)

Oh loveys, another ex Streetcars driver has been arrested as an obsessive loon! What is it with this place? First John Stape and now flamin’ Karl!

Mind you, the wedding went smoothly for Weatherfield cos at least the food was actually served, normally it’s a crisis at the service or a last minute change of heart and the cling-film stays tightly wrapped around the butties!

I was flamin’ devastated the party was cut short though cos I’d been practicing me twerking and I was hoping to bust some of me moves on’t bistro dance floor after a couple of gins! I even put on a pair of support tights so I din’t twerk one of me backside cheeks free and take somebody out with an unfettered buttock - that happened to me friend Bernice at the Flying Horse when one of her bosoms wrestled free from the constraints of her brassiere when she were mid-twerk and killed a pensioner, it was a right to do that was!

Yes loveys, thanks to Jason and Dev’s investigations it transpired that Karl ignited Stella’s downstairs regions and killed two people! Now that if that in’t a crime of passion I don’t know what is!

Still at least it means we won’t be seeing any more of Karl’s annoying mate, Tez! Oh loveys, he din’t half get on me wick with his busy face. He had a different facial expression for every word he flamin’ uttered! That’s why the best-man’s speech took so long, he was so busy flamin’ gurning he could barely get his words out!
Tez at the wedding.
Stella’ll be walking round milking this for all it’s worth, inviting folk to come round’t back with her while she paps on about how she was taken in by him and how she was wrong to blame Sunita and all that palaver! Just what we need I don’t flamin’ think!

“Eee LeeeAnnnnnne, ‘ow cud ‘e do it to me? ‘Ow could ‘e blertently laah to mi. The whole thing’z bin a pack of lahzz!”

Thank Cliff Stella and Carla don’t flamin’ talk much, I’d have trouble following the conversations...

“This is maa pub and maa rules!”
“Well this is maa fak’treh and ahl ‘ave a glass of red wahn!”
“Well ah was threatened bah Kaaarl!”
“Well ah was threatened bah Tone-eh Gordon and ah've lost everyone ah've ever loved in't past!”
“Well ah once had a relationship with Les Battersbehh!”
“Ah can’t compete wi’ that! I’ll ‘ave another glass of red wahn please…”

Apparently Karl threatened Stella with a lighter and a bottle of flamin’ brandy! That dun’t sound like a threat to me, it sounds like a belting night in! If he’d really wanted to threaten her he’d have held a bit of colour next to her and watched her shrink away in case it interfered with her beigeness!
Get back or I'll slightly singe her hair with this small disposable lighter!
Audrey’s having a belting time with Marcus, Maria, Liam and Ozzy at the flat. Every night Audrey curls up with a hairy beast to remind herself of those precious days she spent with Lewis’s ample head of hair!

She’s staying there while Owen – who looks like he’s lost a bit of weight to me – destroys her house cos of damp and charges her to patch it all up again! Audrey's always suffered with damp but it was always resolved with her drinking less fluids and a TENA Lady!

I must say loveys, Sally‘s a lucky mare in’t she? She’s having afternoon tutti frutti sessions with that tasty Tim – good work if you can get it! I’ve seen her out in’t Rovers plying him with Newton and Ridley so he’ll be too leathered to make it back to his own house! You mark me words, that fandangling will end in tears and they won’t be Tim’s - unless she tells him one of her anecdotes and then he'll be weeping for mercy!
Leanne is beside herself what with her Nick being in’t hospital. She’s been told that due to the severity of his injuries he could have a different personality when he comes round! Add to that the fact that he’s changed his face umpteen flamin’ times and it’s no wonder she’s worried! It could be like being married to a completely different flamin’ fella!
Nick is recovering well in Weatherfield General!
I can’t go without saying how absolutely devastated I was when I found out about our Hayles and her illness. She’s been like a ray of light illuminating even the darkest of hearts and I'll miss her when she finally sheds that red coat of hers and joins our Elsie, Jack and Vera in that snug in the sky. She's one of them special people that's made Weatherfield the greatest place in’t world to live and work (unless yer in a relationship with Gail and then Weatherfield's a dark treacherous place full of knife crime and drowning!)

One careful owner...
Cliff bless Hayley and Cliff bless you too. And remember loveys, ‘tis better to live a moment as a Carla than a lifetime as an Eileen.

I'm on tweeter here.

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Corrie A-Z: P is for Pensioners

(This post was originally posted by Llifon on the Coronation Street Blog in August 2013.)

Since its inception, Corrie has mostly made use of its senior-aged characters for comic purpose. From the comedy gold of the snug trio in the early 60s to the antics of Percy and Phyllis in the 80s and 90s to recent classics involving Norris, Blanche, Rita and Sylvia, the Corrie oldies have been an integral part of Corrie’s success.
In the early years cronies Ena Sharples, Minnie Caldwell and Martha Longhurst provided many humorous scenes in the Rovers snug, often gossiping about the goings-on of the street, mainly Elsie Tanner’s romances. Although they had their own little dramas, their scenes were usually in the snug. Martha’s death in 1964 ended the wonderful magic of the trio that defined the early years of Corrie. Ena and Minnie remained the senior residents of the street for many years, with Minnie leaving in 1976 and Ena in 1980.
Taking Martha’s place at the snug table was grumpy Albert Tatlock who bored both Ena and Minnie with his wartime stories. Albert’s other pastime was growing vegetables in his allotment and he took pride in his veg. He was also often seen complaining about his lack of money and complaining how dear things were in the Corner Shop or the Kabin. Minnie also suffered money problems from time to time and struggled to find ends meet. That’s one thing that differentiates the early OAPs to today – the likes of Rita, Audrey and Emily never complain of money problems.
By the 1980s, there was a need to fill the void left by Minnie, Ena and Albert (who died in 1984). Phyllis Pearce first appeared in 1982 before becoming a regular in 1984. She was intended to replace Ena Sharples, but soon softened and became more of an old dear. The man who soon became Phyllis’ object of affection was Community Centre caretaker Percy Sugden. They soon formed a wonderful double act, as Percy tried his best to put Phyllis off. But she did manage to make him jealous when she started courting Sam Tindall, Percy’s bowling sparring partner. For the next few years, the unlikely love triangle of Phyllis, Percy and Sam continued until Sam ceased to visit Jim Café’s in 1989.
In 1993, Percy and Phyllis were joined by wheelchair-bound Maud Grimes. Their scenes echoed those of the snug trio, when they commented about the trials and tribulations of their neighbours and tut-tutting. Percy and Maud did get engaged briefly but Percy broke it off when he learned that Maud had an affair with an American which resulted in her having daughter Maureen. But they remained good friends. Phyllis left to live in Mayfield Court in 1996 and was followed by Percy in 1997 and Maud in 1999. As for jobs, Phyllis did work at Jim’s Café during the 1980s and as Des Barnes’ char during the 1990s; Percy was briefly a lollypop man after retiring; while Maud worked at the Corner Shop during the 1990s.
Since the millennium, Corrie has had more pensioners in its cast than just the usual trio. As well as their financial situation, another thing that’s different about them to past pensioners is the fact that many are still working full time despite way passing retirement age. Both Rita and Norris still work full time at the Kabin – they’re 81 and 73 respectively. Rita did retire in 2009 and sold the Kabin to Norris, but soon returned behind the counter when she found retirement lonely and boring. Rita’s hubby Dennis also helps out and he’s 71 – plus he works as a lollypop man, a job Albert Tatlock, Percy Sugden and Jack Duckworth have done. It’s baffling that Dennis felt he needed to find a job when he was a pensioner!

Audrey, at 73, still owns the hair salon and although she’s contemplated retirement, she’s still shampooing and perming the residents of the cobbles. Another working pensioner is Sylvia Goodwin. At 78, she still works long hours at Roy’s Rolls, dishing out insults with egg and chips. Betty also worked as a Rovers barmaid until she was 92, although it had been part-time for a number of years. Vera Duckworth also worked until she was 70. The only exceptions in recent years who’ve actually retired when they should’ve are Emily Bishop (although still works voluntary at the hospital and has filled-in at the Kabin), Blanche Hunt, Jack Duckworth and Ken Barlow (although he’s also done fill-in jobs at the Kabin and Roy’s Rolls).
Who’s your favourite Corrie oldie?  

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Karl's Nicked

It was a long week, taking place over a day and a bit and it culminated in the finish of a storyline that started back in March when Karl Munro made a last ditch effort to get Stella back by torching the pub, hoping Jason would be blamed. He ducked and dived, played it cool, but all the while walking on eggshells, hoping it would just all go away. Well it didn't. It never does in soapland and the house of cards came down this week when Craig confessed that he thought *he* had caused the fire. He was the last piece of the puzzle that Jason and Dev had begun to solve, putting Karl in the right place at the right time.

And so it goes. More about the story and how I felt about it here.

The next big storyline to move to the next level will have to be the Platt/Tilsley story. Almost everyone knows about the possibility that Lily Platt may be Nick's child except Leanne who is completely in the dark aside from a suspicion that Nick was with someone on Christmas night. Not everyone knows that everyone else knows. Nick will survive. Nick will emerge from the coma. Will he remember?  I have enjoyed this storyline but it's time for it to wind down, or at least change direction. The truth is out there and once everyone knows, we'll move forward into a new direction.

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Friday 27 September 2013

Corrie's Karl caught: What did you think?

(This post was originally posted by Graeme N on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

So what did we all think of the climax to Karl's story? The build up to last night's denouement seems to have been going on for months, but finally Karl Munro has been banged to rights for torching the Rovers.

Well for starters, John Michie has played a blinder as Karl. To be honest I think he has really carried this and put in some sterling performances. I'm quite sad to see him go - he's a terrific actor and his character could have been one to stay around and grow in Weatherfield long term. A bit of a shame he had to go down the liar murderer route, but that's modern soap for you.

Kudos also to Ryan Thomas as Jason. This character has really come on leaps and bounds in recent years and it was good to see him play a major part in the climax of this storyline. However, as usual, the Weatherfield Constabulary were made to look both thick and slow. In fact, the whole pace of the two episodes really dragged for me. I was really wishing old Dev would just get on with it. 

Jimmi Harkishin was given plenty of opportunity to show what he was made of during the showdown scenes with Karl as he avenged Sunita's death. The writing and directing were pretty good, however poor Dev spent most of the time looking severely constipated bless him. I wonder what's next for Dev? I guess Ken is still away in Canada...

I hope old Gloria is forced to shove a large slice of humble pie down her annoying gob. She pushed Karl and Stella together for months, thinking she knew best. Even at the climax of last night's episodes she was still berating poor Jason. She needs to smarten up her act, that one. 

Michelle Collins put in a decent performance as Stella. I just struggle to believe that it would take this long for the truth to dawn on her. However, on past form, maybe it's not that surprising. Now Karl has gone, what will they do with Stella for the remainder of her time on the show?

The highlight for me was Gail's culinary efforts at the wedding reception - I'm sure if Lorraine Pascale was watching last night she'd have made a beeline for her freezer to make sure there were no frozen pizzas to be found.

So what did you think of Corrie last night as the net finally closed in on crazed Karl?

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Corrie Canada sneak preview Sept. 30 - Oct. 4

Without further ado here is a brief sneak preview of what you'll see on  next week's Corrie in Canada.

Stella blames herself and purges Karl from her life. Eva and Jason get it on. Tim's idea of a weekend away isn't exactly the same as Sally's idea of one. Hayley throws Roy a birthday party. She also wants to reach out to her son, Christian. Fiz moves in with Tyrone. David plans a christening. Nick opens his eyes.

For more details and photos, visit the Moosejaw Mercury at

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Conversation Street Podcast 59

Gemma and Michael's podcast for the episodes in Canada that aired up to last night can be heard here. Don't worry, they don't do spoilers so you won't hear anything you don't want to!

This week, Gemma and Michael have lots of chat about Karl's Komeuppance and the shortest marraige since Tracy and Steve's, Sally's hot and cold relationship with Tim and Audrey's problem with damp.  The character profile is Karl Munro.

You can also subscribe to them on iTunes, Like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter (@conversationstr).

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Thursday 26 September 2013

Corrie's Longest Day

When we left off at the end of Coronation Street on Tuesday night, Stella and Karl had just been pronounced husband and wife and Dev appeared at the doorway, just that little bit too late to be the objector. The 24 hours that started around mid day the day before the wedding to the ceremony itself has been spread over, including last night and tonight's episodes, 5 episodes. That's a long day in Weatherfield. Sometimes we start an episode and by the end of it or the end of a double episode, it's the next day, compressing two days into one air date. We don't often see one day or a day and a bit be spread out over multiple air days. In fact, I can only think of two or three other times this has happened though I'm sure there will be more that may come to mind later.

The first one I thought of was the Millennium night with the big street party that happened on one episode, and ended with Raquel knocking on Curly's door. The next episode that aired took them through the long night, discussing the revelation of Curly's daughter, Alice.

The most obvious one was the long night that spread over nearly a week of episodes, the night of the tram crash. The double episode on the Monday set things up with the crash in the second episode. The aftermath and rescue efforts took place over the subsequent week, 7 episodes, one of which was an hour long. That's a lonnnng night and if you'd gone through something like that, it probably would have felt a week long, too!

The other one that was a very long night for Dev was the night that Mad Maya blew up his shops and held he and Sunita hostage in the corner shop while setting it alight. They got rescued at the last minute!

So here we are, on the edge, wondering how long it will take Craig to make his statement to the police. Wondering if they'll believe him and stop Karl before he skips off to Spain. Will Stella believe what Dev has to say? Probably not at first, but the evidence will speak for itself and I think Karl will crack. Stella will see the truth.

Dev wasn't in time to stop the legal declaration from the Registrar and they signed the register so I guess it's a legal marraige. But if we're lucky, tonight's episode will not bring about the consummation but the conclusion of the marraige and Karl's reign of evil will be done.

I've enjoyed this storyline in spite of it featuring St. Ella. Karl (John Michie) has played a blinder, and the writing has been very good. Karl has slowly unraveled, getting more and more desperate once Craig's involvement was injected. Even Dev has been very good, from his obsessive digging to prove Sunita's innocence to his resigned grief and reluctant re-involvement at Jason's urging. Poor Craig, so much for a 14 year old to carry, thinking he caused a fatal fire and Karl adding to it by continuing the lie. I felt for Beth, who knew her beloved lad was troubled but couldn't persuade him to open up to her. If the police don't nick Karl and Beth gets hold of him, there will be nothing left but those shiny black and white trainers he's been sporting!

Stay tuned for tonight's double episode. I can't wait!

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Wednesday 25 September 2013

Will Tim and Sally go the distance? Sally Dynevor doesn't think so

(This post was originally posted by me on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

Sally and Tim are a fledgeling couple on the Street and it's been a rocky start so far. Tim is most definitely showing signs of commitment-phobia already and Sally just wants a man, any man. Will Tim change his ways and figure out that Sally is the love of his life?

Sally Dynevor doesn't think so. She's told the Mirror that she thinks they'll drive each other insane.

"With Tim, you know there's no way they're going to live happily ever after, they're going to drive each other insane. I like the drama that has to offer. He is a bit freaked by [the relationship] and is probably thinking he doesn't want the commitment or to be tied down."

Sally is delighted when Tim agrees to be her plus-one at Stella's wedding but then he stands her up. Is this the last straw? Has Tim let her down one too many times? Will Sally pull up her pride and chuck him for good? Will she heck as like! A few tatty carnations and she's anyone's!

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Tuesday 24 September 2013

Corrie A-Z: O is for Originals

(This post was originally posted by Llifon on the Coronation Street Blog in August 2013.)

There were twenty-one original characters in Coronation Street in 1960. These being Florrie Lindley, Harry Hewitt, Minnie Caldwell, Martha Longhurst, Ena Sharples, Linda Cheveski, Ida Barlow, Christine Hardman, Albert Tatlock, Concepta Riley, Jack Walker, Leonard Swindley, Dennis Tanner, Lucille Hewitt, Esther Hayes, Frank Barlow, Elsie Tanner, Ken Barlow, David Barlow, Annie Walker and Ivan Cheveski.

Ken Barlow is the only character to remain since its inception while Dennis Tanner has reappeared since 2011 after a 43 year hiatus. Of those originals actors still alive there is Anne Cunningham (Linda Cheveski), Doreen Keogh (Concepta Riley), Philip Lowrie (Dennis Tanner), William Roache (Ken Barlow) and Alan Rothwell (David Barlow). Out of these, only Rothwell’s character has been killed off in the show.

The first original character to leave was David Barlow in 1961 although he would return before his final appearance in 1968. The first original character to die was Ida Barlow in 1961 when Noel Dyson, who played, decided to leave. Six originals were axed between 1964 and 1965. The first member of the cast to die was Arthur Leslie, who played Jack Walker, in 1970. The latest original character to leave was Linda Cheveski back in 1984 although both Elsie Tanner and Albert Tatlock made their final appearances the same year. The latest original member of the cast to die is Daphne Oxenford, who died in 2012, 40 years after her last appearance as Esther Hayes.

To see a more detailed account of the original cast, take a look at the profiles I did here.

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Corrie's Kirsty heads for Strictly Come Dancing

(This post was originally posted by Graeme N on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

So Natalie Gumede, Coronation Street's Crazy Kirsty, will be waltzing into the ballroom for Strictly Come Dancing 2013. 

I'm really pleased to see Natalie back on our screens again and I'm sure she'll be terrific. It will be quite a change for Natalie to be so frivolous and glamorous after all those months being aggressive and down right horrid to our lovely Tyrone!

Digital Spy has a short interview with Natalie and a picture of her looking quite different from Kirsty Soames!

I'm sure all us Corrie fans will be tuning in over the Autumn to cheer Natalie on.

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Monday 23 September 2013

Coronation Street fan lays final cobble on new set

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog August 2013, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Manchester Evening News competition winner Denise Thomas joined Corrie cast members and Producer, Stuart Blackburn to lay the last official cobble on ITV's new Coronation Street set at MediaCityUK.

Whilst building continues across the site, the laying of the last cobble on the new street is an important milestone in the creation of the programme's new home.

Construction is expected to continue until the end of 2013. The programme continues to film at Quay Street until they move to MediaCityUK at a date to be agreed in due course.

(Pictured with Mrs Thomas are Georgia May Foote, Jennie McAlpine and Alan Halsall).

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Corrie Canada weekly awards: Sept 16 - 20

Green eyed monster: Clearly Max isn't happy with all the attention to Lily

Broken Hearts, Broken Crockery: Symbolism, anyone?

Hook Line and Tinker award: Everyone believes Karl's excuses and stories about Craig. He's good, isn't he?

Rip off merchant award: I don't trust Owen. I think Audrey needs a second opinion.

How can I miss you if you won't go away award: As much as she loves him, I think even Hayley can have too much of Roy's company.

Pants on Fire award: Karl convinced Craig to lie that he was being bullied. Sally pretended she had a dentist appointment to spend a few hours with Tim.

Lines of the week:
Eva about Tez "Last time he was here he was so in my face he might as well been behind me!" (eh?)
Carla to Hayley re wedding outfits "Don't think you're upstaging me!"
Kirk "You know, sometimes, Norris, You Suck!" (Truer words have never been spoken)
Roy "Life is just one sick practical joke and Hayley is its latest victim"
Audrey "I've got dry rot in me roof" Maria "Even I've heard of that"
Hayley "I want these last few months to be bursting with laughter. Isn't that how you want to remember me?" (aye. we do)
Maria "If all else fails, you can stay with us" (sold. But she didn't really mean it!)

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Sunday 22 September 2013

Sunday Comments September 22

Here's the way it is. A long operation means they can remove the tumour. A short one means they couldn't and that's bad news. We watch the clock. 1:05 she went to theatre. 5:20 Chesney was waiting for Sinead. A bit of a time gap, there, because stuff happens and then, at the hospital it's 5:25 and that is too soon for the surgeon to be out of theatre but there he is. It's the worst news ever. There wasn't a dry eye in the house along with Roy and Hayley breaking down together.

Now comes the hard part. Telling Hayley's friends and it came as the shock you would expect. I thought seeing Carla break down behind closed doors was quite touching. Hayley seems to be able to talk frankly with Carla like she can't with Roy, well, at least in a different way anyway. The broken tea cup was symbolic, wasn't it? I think a lot of hearts broke along with it.

Roy is not one to accept help. He's at a loss for words. He doesn't know the right thing to do or say. But that's probably how anyone in the same situation would feel. Hayley's insisting Roy learn to drive. Can you imagine Roy on the road? All her friends are rallying but it's still hard on them isn't it? Fiz's heart is breaking but Hayley is going to make the best of what time she has left.

Emily offered support and Roy tore a strip off her, thinking it was all about religion. It wasn't what she meant of course but he needs to lash out. Poor Roy really is at sixes and sevens. Thank heavens for Fiz who seems to be keeping him grounded. She even got a smile out of him! Hayley will have lots of support, professional and personal.

Michelle won't thank Steve for poking his nose in things with Carla on her behalf. Well at least her rage at Steve put a smile on Eileen's face. I thought Peter was going to try to learn to sew? I guess not. Michelle is still grumping and jealous and sniping at Peter. Owen is telling Audrey that her whole roof is dry rotted and a lot of money. I think she should have a second opinion. He's already got a reputation for overcharging. Just ask Stella. Maria didn't really want Audrey to move in, it's just something you say. But Audrey snapped up the offer! Sally exchanged rumpy pumpy for housework. Sounds like a good plan to me and nobody was fooled! She's assumed Tim will go to the wedding reception with her before she even asked him.

With Fiz interfering with a nudge, Chesney bounced back to Sinead. Do I care? I do not. Too bad, really, because I do like Sinead, much better than Katy. She's going to give him one last chance. Probably more fool her but if it means we get to keep the character, I guess that's ok. I think she does the right thing making him wait. I just wish she'd made him wait a little longer.

Max's birthday. They're trying to spoil him but he's still feeling left out. He spent half the party sulking upstairs. If he's jealous, i wouldn't leave him up there with the baby on their own. Max was thrilled about the adoption, though it wasn't much of a party with only three kids and a dog. Why didn't they invite Aadi and Asha? The wedding is nearly upon them and they haven't sorted the reception yet? A few ribbons? And the wedding is supposed to be "tomorrow" and all. A surprise reception might be more of a surprise than everyone thinks.

Luckily, Karl went to apologize on Stella's orders but Jason's cold attitude brought Karl's out too and Dev heard Karl's threats and that can't be unsaid either. On top of the earlier admission and Karl "treating" Craig, Dev has got to realize something's up. Dev is still reluctant to join Jason in his suspicions but the money for the game looks suspicious. If they speak to Craig, will he tell? The poor lad doesn't know which way to turn so he's run off and left a note mentioning an apology to Dev. All these little things are happening and Dev is at the centre of it now. I think he is getting closer to partnering up with Jason.

Karl is distracted. It's the last week before the wedding and plans are falling into place but the police come calling about Craig and Beth is frantic. He fancy-footed with the coppers who bought his story. Jason is convinced Karl is involved in all of it. Dev still isn't so sure. Oddly enough it's Karl that Craig contacts first but does he tell Beth? Does he heck. Poor Craig is just at his wits' end and couldn't face anyone, that's why he ran off.

Is Karl going to chuck Craig in the canal? It looked like it for a minute but Karl hasn't hit the wall yet. He's trying to get Craig to keep steady and keep schtum but the lad is only 14, it's hard for him to handle all the stress. Karl really doesn't have a plan, though, he's winging it and Craig came home, pretending he'd been bullied at school. But you know, he's not even been to school since it started, from what I could tell. I think Dev has been won over to Jason's point of view.

Craig is caught in his web of Karl's lies about bullies with his mother on the warpath. He's pretending he stole chocolate from Dev. Things are getting harder and harder for him to get out of. Meanwhile, Jason and Dev are on a mission. Jason has busted Karl's alibi for the night of the fire. Dev is badgering Beth who's baffled why everyone wants to talk to Craig. Karl is feeling the pressure and it looks like he's going to make a run for it to Spain under the guise of a honeymoon. Naturally the kids Craig accused of bullying are now doing it for real, being falsley accused. Didn't Karl go wayyyy over the top breaking it up?

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Hold The Front Page!

(This post was originally posted by Scott Willison on the Coronation Street Blog in August 2013.)

British tabloid journalism has had a very hard time of it in recent years.  There's been entire Parliamentary committees devoted to finding out if they're dodgy or not.  They've been called venal, cruel, vindictive, liars, and sometimes, just plain stupid.

It's pleasing to report that the Daily Star has bucked this trend with today's truly revelatory front page headline.

Thank you Daily Star.  It's absolutely new information that Charlie Condou (Marcus Dent) has two children.  I mean, one was born four years ago and one was born two years ago, but I understand you've probably been busy following the antics of "Big Bro": after all, no-one else in the UK is watching it.  You also probably missed his column about his family in the Guardian, which ran until 2012 and can be read in its entirety here, because, you know, it was in the Guardian, and you tend to avoid that paper.  They use some very big words.

You probably also missed tweets like this from Mr Condou himself:

Or this:


Or even failed to read his Twitter bio:


but I know this "journalism" lark is difficult.  You have to use a keyboard and stuff.  You have hundreds of words to bash out, pages to fill, captions to write under pictures of girls in bikinis bending over and upskirt pics of barely out of their teens starlets.   Research takes time and you can't possibly use something like, I don't know, Google, where autocomplete offers up:

This kind of in-depth investigative work is just too difficult for you.  You can't let it get in the way of informing us, the Great British Public, the absolutely vital information that "ACTOR HAS FUNCTIONING TESTICLES".  Now THAT'S front page stuff.

Kudos to you, Daily Star.  Kudos.

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Saturday 21 September 2013

Corrie A-Z: O is for the Odd side of the street (No. 11 and No. 13)

With thanks to Daran Little’s Coronation Street: Around the Houses for all the info on the history of the odd side of the street prior to 1960 and thanks to Corriepedia for the info after 1960.

Continued from ‘The odd side of the street’ (Part 3)
(This post was originally posted by Llifon on the Coronation Street Blog in August 2013.)


Nº11’s occupants between 1902 and 1939 were the Makepieces (Alfred, Ivy, Vi, Frank, Ralph, Mary, Lil, Will, Susie and Iris), Hetty Harris, Jack Jinks and Henry Robottom. Newlyweds Arnold and Elsie Tanner moved in in 1939 and they were soon joined by children Linda (b. 1940) and Dennis (b. 1942). In 1946 left Elsie and they were estranged until their divorce in 1962. In 1956 was sent to Borstal because he took part in an office raid. In 1958 Linda married Ivan Cheveski and moved to Warrington. Alone, Elsie suffered depression and she took a long holiday and Nº11 was let to Ethel Myers for six months. Ethel left the area and both Elsie and Dennis returned in 1958. During the 1960s, they took in many lodgers that included Christine Appleby, Walter Potts and Sheila Birtles. In 1965, Florence Briggs, who’d owned Nº11 after the Hardcastles, died and she had the left to Elsie’s bitter enemy Ena Sharples. Ena gave Elsie notice to leave Nº11 so she could move in as the future of the Mission was in doubt. They sparred but Ena was informed that the Mission was to stay open. Ena sold Nº11 to Edward Wormold who owned the house until 1976. In 1967, Elsie married Steve Tanner and immigrated to the USA but returned in 1968, her marriage over. Dennis married Jenny Sutton in 1968 and they moved to Bristol. Elsie’s niece and nephew Sandra and Bernard Butler moved in in 1969 but left in 1970. Elsie married Alan Howard in 1970. Although they planned to move from the street, Alan’s bankruptcy led them to stay at Nº11 which they did until the left for Newcastle in 1973. Lucille Hewitt had been lodging with the Howards since 1973 and she stayed until 1974 before moving to Ireland.

Ken and Janet Barlow moved in but the marriage broke down and Janet left Ken. He stayed at Nº11 until 1976 when Elsie returned alone and she bought the house from Wormold. Elsie took on Gail Potter as a lodger and she stayed until she married Brian Tilsley in 1979. Suzie Birchall moved in in 1977 and she also stayed until 1979 when she moved to London. Elsie’s grandson Martin Cheveski lived with her in 1980 but returned home. Elsie took on Dan Johnson and Wally Randle as lodgers, in 1980 and 1981 respectively. Marion Willis became her lodger in 1982 and left for Bury when she married Eddie Yeats. In 1984, Elsie left the street with old flame Bill Gregory for Portugal and left the sale of the house to Linda. Linda sold it to the Websters (Bill, Kevin and Debbie). Bill and Debbie left in 1985 while Kevin stayed and lodged with Emily and Hilda. The Claytons (Harry, Connie, Andrea and Sue) moved in and left in 1985.
Newlyweds Alf and Audrey Roberts moved in in 1986 and stayed until 1989 when they sold it to the McDonalds (Jim, Liz, Steve and Andy). Steve married Vicky in 1995, Andy left in 1997, Liz left in 1998 while Jim was jailed for manslaughter in 2000. Jim and Liz remained as owners until 2002 when Steve took over ownership. Eileen Grimshaw had moved in in 2000 as a tenant with children Jason and Todd. Other residents have also come and go like Dennis Stringer, Violet and Lauren Wilson, Marcus Dent and Paul Kershaw. Sean Tully has been a lodger since 2004. Steve sold the house to Beaumont Estates in 2004 and Eileen was allowed to stay on. She bought Nº11 in 2010 with her late father’s inheritance. On a trivial note, Nº11 was the first house seen on the show, making its debut in the first episode.
Nº13’s occupants between 1902 and 1955 were the Harrisons (Lizzie and Enid), the Piggotts (Fred, Emma, Victor and Robert), the Lingards (Tom, Nellie, Ada and Mary), the Hardmans (George, May and Christine), Madge Mason and Kezia North. May and Christine Hardman returned after George’s death in 1955 after they’d been living in Oakhill for two years. May died in 1960 and Christine stayed until 1962 when she married Colin Appleby. She returned to the street later in the year widowed but she lodged at Nº11. Edward Wormold sold Nº13 to newlyweds Jerry and Myra Booth but Jerry sold it back in 1964 when the Booths moved away. Wormold then sold it to Stan and Hilda Ogden in 1964. Hilda always boasted that they owned their home to those who were only tenants like Annie Walker and Elsie Tanner. Stan sold to Dave Smith as a repayment for paying for daughter Irma’s flight from Australia after her husband David and Darren had died. Stan bought the house back in 1971 and remained the owner until his death in 1984. Eddie Yeats lodged with the Ogdens between 1980 and 1983. They installed the famous mural in 1976 which you can read about here. When Stan died, Hilda inherited Nº13 and she took on Terry Duckworth, Henry Wakefield, Kevin Webster and Sally Seddon as lodgers. Hilda left the street in 1987 and sold the house to Kevin and Sally, who were now married.

Kevin and Sally were later joined by daughters Rosie (b. 1990) and Sophie (b. 1994). The Webster marriage broke down in 1999 and Kevin moved out with Sally and the girls staying on. Kevin returned in 2002 when he remarried Sally and they stayed until 2008 when they had a house swap with the Peacocks (Ashley, Claire, Joshua and Freddy) and moved to Nº4. The Peacocks remained at Nº13 until Ashley’s death in 2010 and then Claire and the boys moved to France. Lloyd Mullaney then bought the house and moved in with girlfriend Cheryl Gray and her son Russ. Russ’ dad Chris moved in as well when he suffered a brain tumour and rekindled his relationship with Cheryl and they all moved away and Lloyd sold up and left the area. He would return to the cab office flat six months later. Steve McDonald bought the house for third wife Tracy but when he learnt of his lies he wanted to kick her out. When she refused, he moved in his irritating ex-girlfriend Beth Tinker and her son Craig as lodgers. He then sold the house to Kevin Webster and gave Tracy, Beth and Craig a week’s notice to leave. Kevin moved back in Jack, his son with Molly Dobbs. While the Rovers was being refurbished, the Price family moved into No. 13 while Kevin moved in with Sally. Currently, Kevin is in Germany nursing his dad Bill so No. 13 is empty.

So there you go, a potted history of the house of the odd side of the street!

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A good week on the cobbles?

(This post was originally posted by Clinkers (David) on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

There has been the nagging feeling of late that there has been little to celebrate down Weatherfield way. As a bunch of 'avid-bordering-on-obsession' viewers, we have collectively vented forth on the likes of St Ella and Tracy McBarlow amongst others. It's all been a bit glum to be honest. A week can make quite a difference though.

It's taken one of the Street's saddest storylines in years to highlight the kind of joy exceptional performances can bring. Where to begin? Hayley. There - even the mention of that one name now has the power to cause something to be found in our eyes. Not sure what's making my eyes water - must be a very late burst of hayfever. Anyway we mourn the passing of Hayley while she is still amongst us. We share in the confusion and distress of Roy who attempts to deal with his own feelings whilst offering comfort to his wife. Julie Hesmondhalgh and David Nielson must have been through the wringer several times in playing out these scenes but what a treat they were. Are we ready to climb aboard their emotional roller coaster for the rest of the year? In the safe hands of these two players, we know that whatever comes next will be special.

Plaudits too for Jenny McAlpine and Alison King. The response of Fiz to Hayley's news was both tearful and yet pared back. There was no doubting her sadness but Fiz didn't wallow in her own misery. For Carla, a few private moments when the emotional armour was cast aside before the return of the more practical, pragmatic character we know. Clattering ear-rings and handbags let us know that normal service had been resumed.

Elsewhere, great performances from Lisa George and Colson Smith. Beth seemed angry, worried and confused by the sudden change in her son's behaviour. This adds an extra strand to her character and moves her away from the 'Cilla-lite' category.

Bizarre sight of the week was the ridiculous get-up foisted on Sinead. Is she being dressed by nuns? The poor girl seemed to have been fastened into something hideous from neck to ankles, buttons firmly fastened. When she dragged glum-faced Chesney off for a bit of afternoon delight, you were left with the impression that Sinead would still be unbuttoning her cardy when sun went down.

The week belonged to Roy and Hayley though with their selection of bedside books, Dutch tea mug and brittle jollity. It's going to be a long winter. Damn - I think my hayfever's playing up again!

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Friday 20 September 2013

Fab Photo Friday - Jez!

(This post was originally posted by Sunny Jim on the Coronation Street Blog in September 2013.)

It's Friday again so it's time for this week's fab Coronation Street photo. Whenever the subject of villains comes up on this blog, the likes of Richard Hillman and John Stape always seem to be rated highly. But I've never rated them as proper villains, now Jez Quigley, he was a proper nasty villain.

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Corrie Canada Sneak Previews Sept. 23 - 27

Without further ado here is a brief sneak preview of what you'll see on  next week's Corrie in Canada.

Karl meets his downfall. Stella's in bits. The police come calling. Tim disappoints Sally then apologizes. Audrey moves in. Faye's new friend Grace isn't as perfect as she pretends. Hayley catches up.

For more details and photos, visit the Moosejaw Mercury at

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