Looking back at Tina’s dramatic departure, I find myself still pondering a small but shocking detail – the revelation that Peter Barlow is a “bad dresser”. At least that’s what Rob reckons.
That fateful night round at Tina’s flat, Rob just couldn’t fathom why countless beautiful women have been so quick to fall at the feet of Pete:
“He’s a raging alcoholic… a liar… a bad dresser - I mean he wears waistcoats for crying out loud. He should be at the Crucible playing Ronnie O’Sullivan”.
It was a powerful character assassination which proved Rob to be as deadly with words as he soon would be with a piece of lead pipe.
To be fair, Rob does dress well. It’s just that I’ve always considered Peter to be of equal sartorial sharpness (his wardrobe of waistcoats included). When he’s not on the booze, Peter dresses to impress in immaculate suits, shirts and shoes. He’s got a super smart black pea coat and I’m also a fan of his more casual denim jacket.
Not forgetting the classic black shirt, of course. Peter Barlow’s staple garment has started a trend on The Street. In recent weeks, Steve McDonald, David Platt, Gary Windass and, somewhat hypocritically, Rob himself have all worn a button-down black number.
Peter Barlow is many things – former bigamist, perennial philanderer, hopeless alcoholic, absent father, accidental arsonist – but to my mind there is no way he’s a bad dresser. He even managed to put the vodka down a minute and drag himself into his trusty black shirt for Tina’s funeral. I don’t know where that purple tonic suit came from but it was quite something.
Maybe it was jealousy that drove Rob to have a go at Peter’s dress sense. After all, Rob shared a kiss with Tina in the smoking shelter of The Rovers but that was as far as she wanted it to go. In another case of pot calling the kettle black, did you notice what Rob wore underneath his suit at the funeral? That’s right – a waistcoat!Reverting to Rob’s snooker analogy, his grappling at the graveside with Peter has now put him in the frame for Tina’s murder. A cool customer up to now, it will be interesting to see how Rob copes as the pressure builds.
Rob is doing a remarkable job of keeping his opponent at bay with a delicate mix of defensive and attacking play. But he can’t keep it up forever. One wrong move by Rob and he’ll leave himself snookered. And he won’t be able to choose what he wears in HMP Weatherfield.
By Martin Leay
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