Saturday 31 October 2015

Pics: Coronation Street - Horrible Halloween

It's Hallowe'en, and time to give these fabulous archive pictures another airing for our Coronation Street horrible Hallowe'en blog post.  All the pictures below are from the Hallowe'en episode in 2003 when Fred Elliot threw a Hallowe'en party in the Rovers Return.

How many of the characters featured in the party can you remember?

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Christmas comes to Coronation Street

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Copyright Brooke Vincent / Reveal
Brooke Vincent, who plays Sophie Webster on Coronation Street, writes a regular column for Reveal magazine.  You can read them here.

In the latest one, Brooke writes that at work on the Corrie set they have just started filming Christmas.  And she shares the picture (above) of some of the crew putting up our Christmas tree on the street.

Jennie McAlpine, who plays Fiz Stape, also teased a little bit of Christmas via twitter last week with a picture of her rehearsal script for the Christmas Day episode. It's written by Julie Jones.

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Celebrating 40 years of Bohemian Rhapsody, Corrie-style

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody celebrates its 40th birthday tomorrow, Saturday 31 October, 2015.

A sprawling, six-minute rock opera, it has been Christmas number one twice, soundtracked a pivotal scene in Wayne's World, and sold 2.44 million copies in the UK alone.

Written by Queen frontman Freddie Mercury, Bohemian Rhapsody was painstakingly pieced together in six studios, pushing 1970s recording technology to its limits. The song's multi-tracked 'bismillahs' and 'scaramouches' were overdubbed so often that the tapes became virtually transparent, says the BBC.

But never mind all that.  We want to see the Corrie version of it again!  And here it is in all its glory...

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Friday 30 October 2015

Is Aidan Connor the next Mike Baldwin?

(This post was originally posted by Michael Adams on the Coronation Street Blog in October 2015.)

I sincerely hope not. Shayne Ward's arrival back in August came with a rocky start; not only was he sporting that awful wallpaper-esque shirt, but he also joined the show when several controversial stunt castings were made.

From his bitterness with Fiz's absences to his demanding proposals with Carla, Aidan is certainly taking hold of Underworld, though I can't help but feel that Corrie are trying to fill an empty demographic, once held by the infamous Mike Baldwin.

Mike, portrayed by the legendary Johnny Briggs, ruled the roost at the factory under its multiple guises for best part of his 30 years on the cobbles, and undoubtedly he cannot be replaced.

They've previously attempted to fill Mike's boots with Rob Donovan, though unlike Baldwin, he had failed to have a healthy balance between being a harsh businessman and cheeky lothario, and writers swiftly converted him into the devious murderer with plans to stir up trouble wherever he goes, even whilst in prison, as we will learn in the winter. This balance is currently being forced towards Aidan, though sadly it isn't working.

However, I can see potential in actor Richard Hawley, who plays Aidan's ruthless father Johnny Connor. Although stern, it is evident that Johnny likes a laugh, and has a softer side to him.

I'm sure we'll have lots to see from the new Connor clan in the coming months, as Kate's girlfriend Caz arrives in Weatherfield, and Aidan makes his move on Eva.

Follow me on Twitter: @MichaelAdamsUk

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Conversation Street Podcast 171

Gemma and Michael's podcast for the episodes in Canada that aired (up to last night's Canadian Corrie) can be heard here.

Another Podcast this week, because in the UK, there were only three episodes broadcast. Most of the episode revolved around the Platt crisis over Callum's concrete grave. Sarah is having a tough time but Billy managed to get her to open up to an extent and maybe what he had to say to her will help her rationalize the whole sorry situation. Amy takes up the violin and Luke races behind Maria's back, landing him in an ultimatum. There might be hope for Hope. A classic character profile covers John Stape.

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Most iconic Coronation Street pictures of all time

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog September 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Yesterday, we blogged a story to say that Coronation Street had been voted the ultimate ITV programme of all time.  And in that blog post, we used the picture of Deirdre behind bars. It's surely one of Coronation Street's most iconic images, ever.  This has started me wondering which other pictures are the most iconic images of Corrie throughout its history?

We've had blog posts in the past asking for fans' favourite and most iconic Corrie accessories - Hilda Ogden's curlers won that one!

But if you had to choose one image, just one, from the whole range of publicity pics that Corrie have ever produced, which one would you say is the most iconic?  Which one picture, for you, sums up everything you love about Coronation Street?

I'll keep an eye on your comments to see if I can produce a blog post in a few days time with the pictures you feel are the most iconic.

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Fab Photo Friday - Halloween special - October 30 2015

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

It's Halloween tomorrow so let's have a horrible fab photo Friday from Coronation Street today.

Download our free App | Follow on Twitter @CoroStreetBlog | Like on Facebook | Visit

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Top five Coronation Street TV crossovers

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog September 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Here's another  great guest blog post from Tommy Cowell.
Follow Tommy on twitter and have a look at his website.

Would you like to write a guest blog post? Details here.

Coronation Street, on its own, is an iconic show. There’s no argument there. From the damp cobbles, the corner shop and that lovely pub. We all know the theme tune, and we all recognise the cat. However, there have been times when our favourite soap has teamed itself up with another show. The term, “shared universe” is bandied around a lot these days, mostly with big budget superhero movies. However, Corrie has been doing the “shared universe” thing for ages.

Here are five of the best examples.

Corrie meets Eastenders (2010)
Perhaps the most famous crossover of the lot – “East Street” was part of the 2010 Children in Need line up. We had Sean flirting with Christian, Gail and Denise comparing husbands, Eileen and Zainab talking about their gay sons and the earth-shattering realisation that Liz is in fact Kat’s mother! (Funnily enough, a fact that was never brought up again!).

Broadcast the month before Corrie's 50th Birthday, viewers began to worry for Eileen, who said a line that fuelled much speculation over her potential fate. Luckily, when she said, “those trams will be the death of me”, it wasn’t was premonition, just a cheeky red herring.

Corrie meets Dallas (and Smith & Jones)
The Russell T. Davies penned direct to video special “Viva Las Vegas” opened with two heavily referential moments. We had Jack and Vera debating over the meaning of the word ‘vet’ in a Smith and Jones style discussion, followed by a glamorous opening title sequence that was inspired by Dallas. A very guilty pleasure!

I also enjoyed the fact that Liz Dawn and Bill Tarmey were called by their full names, Elizabeth Dawn and William Tarmey. It really added to the classiness.

Corrie meets Doctor Who (and the minions) (2015)
One afternoon, earlier this year, Twitter was teased by a photo of the TARDIS on Coronation Street. “What could this mean?!” both fandoms probably thought. In my head, I’d imagined a story of the TARDIS getting taken away by the council, or the Twelfth Doctor getting annoyed by Ken Barlow because he’s smarter than him. Sadly, it was revealed to be a still for a Greg James skit. Don’t get me wrong, it was a charming video, but an actual crossover would have been far more exciting. It also featured the Minions – characters who are even more annoying than the Corrie Meerkats. (Sorry, readers.)

Corrie meets Red Dwarf (2009)
Lister, Rimmer and Kryten landed on the famous cobbles for a special Red Dwarf episode in 2009. They were on the search for actor Craig Charles. Simon Gregson and Michelle Keegan also made cameos. In these scenes, the Corrie actors are playing themselves, but the comedy show implies that the Rovers set is inside the Rovers exterior. WHICH. JUST. ISN’T. TRUE. It just made the story of fictional TV aliens coming to earth, searching for the actors who played them, less realistic.

Corrie meets Jeremy Kyle
Tina vs David vs Nick on Jeremy Kyle, guest-starring Graeme as an audience member. It was all part of JK’s 1000th show, and the actors were in character throughout. Considering the two shows were both filmed at Granada Studios at the time (they’ve both since moved to Media City) it’s not a surprise the two shows had such good relationships. Jeremy and Graham even filmed a goodbye tribute video for Michelle Keegan’s leaving party when she left the show in 2014.   Perhaps the Platts could have done with a reappearance on the show alongside Callum more recently? Rather than, you know, the whole murder thing. I don’t think Jezza would approve.

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Thursday 29 October 2015

Hello, Coronation Street Women!

I came across this on the news stand in a local grocery story a couple of weeks ago. It's out on the stands everywhere and it's a great magazine for Corrie lovers. It's $9.95 and will make a great stocking stuffer, if you can bear to give it away! What's even better, there are no ads in it.

Hello Magazine Canada has put it out and it's all about the Corrie women. Jane Danson, who plays Leanne, has written a foreward for it. There are articles about brides, barmaids, cat fights, mothers and a few articles about individual women such as Deirdre, Gail and more.

Here's some more information and there's a link on that site so you can also order them online if your local news stand hasn't got it.

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Corrie Canada sneak previews Nov. 2 - 6

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

David persuades Sarah to return to Italy but Kylie interferes. Aidan helps secure a new contract but Johnny's actions threaten to scupper it. Eva gets a job. Gary gets an offer. Alya and Jason's guilt threatens to leak the secret. Jamie blackmails Luke into racing after Maria leaves for Cyprus. Hope has a medical crisis. Where's Tyrone?

For more details and photos, visit the Moosejaw Mercury at

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Coronation Street Chit-Chat news catch-up, October 2015

Here we go with Coronation Street chit-chat, a catch-up of some of the shorter news stories that haven't made it into their own blog post. 

Current Corrie cast members
Alan Halsall (Tyrone Dobbs) and Ryan Thomas (Jason Grimshaw) are taking part in a charity football match this weekend.  Read it here.
Paula Lane (Kylie Platt) launches a new Zizzi restaurant. Read it here.
Brooke Vincent (Sophie Webster) launches a new cocktail bar. Read it here.
Jack P Shepherd (David Platt), Ryan Thomas (Jason Grimshaw) and Brooke Vincent (Sophie Webster) open a new hair and beauty salon. Read it here.
Paparazzi pics show Patti Claire (Mary Taylor) in a clinch with Corrie new character Brendan played by Ted Robbins. Read it here.
Katie McGlynn (Sinead Tinker) missed the Inside Soap Awards this year. Why? Read it here.
Charity sleep-out was held on the old Coronation Street set. Read it here.
Catherine Tyldesley (Eva Price) talks about being a working mum. Read it here.

Ex-Corrie cast members

Georgia May Foote (Katy Armstrong) gets a message of support for her stint in Strictly Come Dancing from her Corrie pals. Read it here.
Sean Ward (Callum Logan) auditions for Game of Thrones. Read it here.

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Wednesday 28 October 2015

Can you identify these 40 Coronation Street characters?

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Here's a fun quiz which our blogger Stevie Dawson has brought to my attention. To be honest, if you're a Corrie fan, you might just find it a little bit too easy.

But, it's good to be reminded of some of the wonderful characters we have loved and lost over the years.

Hope you enjoy playing!  It's here!

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Tina O'Brien in OK! Magazine

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

I'm loving having Sarah Platt back on the cobbles!  Actress Tina O'Brien is doing an amazing job and this week is featured on the front cover of OK! Magazine with her son Beau and partner Adam.

Tina tells the magazine about the Coronation Street live episode: "We were starting at 2pm and not finishing until 1am or 2am, so much so that I booked into a hotel near the studio for a couple of nights because it wasn’t feasible for me to come home so late, as Beau is up at 6am.

 "It was such a great opportunity and it was only that extreme for a couple of weeks.There’s no way I could have done the live show without Adam’s support."

Tina also has a daughter Scarlett, with Corrie actor Ryan Thomas, who plays Jason Grimshaw.

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Tuesday 27 October 2015

Conversation Street podcast 170

Gemma and Michael's podcast for the episodes in Canada that aired (up to last night's Canadian Corrie) can be heard here.

Sally and Tim get hitched, Sally remaining confident that Tim will forgive her. He did. Sarah nearly spills the beans to the police and freaks out when she finds out the truth about Callum's body while Kylie tries to prevent Tony from digging up the manhole when the damp starts to rise. Johnny and Kate Connor make a splash on the cobbles, much to Aidan's dismay. Roy extends the hand of friendship to Ken. Listener questions are answered and there's feedback as always.

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Ken Barlow couldn't get away with this in the Street

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

With thanks to Graeme Wood on twitter for sending us these great images of William Roache as Ken Barlow from 1970. 

The pictures are from a photoshoot accompanying a news article in the TV Times from 12 October 1970 and show Ken as a dashing man about town, a fashion icon even!

He almost looks a bit James Bond(ish) in the photograph at the bottom of this blog post.

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Monday 26 October 2015

Barbara Knox's 1973 album: On The Street Where I Live

(This post was originally posted by Llifon on the Coronation Street Blog in October 2015.)

While looking at some vintage Corrie episodes on YouTube, I came across these 11 audio clips of Barbara Knox (or Mullaney as she was called back then) singing from her record album, a year or so after she returned to Corrie in 1972. 

Back in 1964, Barbara Knox was playing Rita, who was portrayed as an exotic dancer but by 1972 in Corrie she was also a singer. Barbara Knox has often recalled that she was horrified when the Corrie producers asked her to sing on the show. In the soap, Rita's rehearsal went well and for many years, Rita was known as the Weatherfield Nightingale and she still gives us a song now and then.

In 1973, Barbara Knox was asked to record an album. It was called 'On the Street Where I Live'. I have to say that many of the songs are unknown to me, but it's great listening to them. Sadly, she was never allowed to promote the album, and so few were sold. So if you have got a copy at home, leave a comment below and tell us about it. 

You can listen to all the songs here.

The songs are:

You're Getting to be a Habit with Me - First heard in the film 42nd Street (1932), starring Warren Baxter and Ruby Keeler. It was later recorded by the likes of Petula Clark, Bing Crosby, Doris Day and Frank Sinatra.

The Very Thought of You - A 1934 song that was a popular recording by Bing Crosby. 

Embraceable You - A 1930 song that was recorded by the likes of Billie Holliday, Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra. Knox performed this song on the Corrie on the QE2 spin-off in 1995.

Who's Sorry Now? - A 1923 song that was a hit for Connie Francis in 1957.

I'll See You in my Dreams - A 1924 song that was recorded by Pat Boone, Doris Day, Ella Fitzgerald and Andy Williams.

I Can't Give You Anything But Love, Baby - A 1928 song that has been recorded by Louis Armstrong, Dean Martin, Doris Day and most recently Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga.

The Nearness of You - A 1940 song that was featured in Romance in the Dark. It was later recorded by Glenn Miller, Dinah Shore, Shirley Bassey and Nat King Cole amongst others.

Let's Do It, Let's Fall in Love - A 1928 song by Cole Porter for the musical Paris. It's been recorded by Eartha Kitt, Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald.

Are You Lonesome Tonight? - A 1927 song that was a hit for Elvis Presley in 1960. 

Paradise - A 1931 song that was recorded by Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby.

The Party's Over - A 1956 song that was recorded by Nat King Cole, Lonnie Donegan, Lesley Gore, Shirley Bassey and Doris Day.

It would be nice to know if Barbara Knox chose these songs herself, as they are 'Rita' classics. 

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Corrie Canada weekly awards Oct. 19 - 23

 Avant Garde award: I loved Craig's art and Sally's last ditch attempt at a proposal in the middle of the street!

Gift Horse in the Mouth award: Not only did Callum's mother wonder what was in the sandwich but wanted to ascertain what sort of ham it was. What the heck was that all about?

Fashion flair award: Roy's pocket square with the R on it. Awwww.

Waif award: Gemma might be a lot of things, but i didn't half feel for her when she said to Kylie that she didn't have anyone else.

Cucumber cool: David is very good at keeping his cool.

Miraculous metabolism award: Sally was a good way into the bottle of vodka and on a drunken crying jag. But when Rita started buying her drinks in the Rovers she seemed nearly sober.

Blast from the Past award: Rita reminded Sally of the time Danny Hargreaves jilted her (I love when they throw these things in!)

Not so silent partner award: Johnny's money, Johnny's business. Looks like Underworld has another new boss.

Fashion award: Much better than that other wedding dress she tried.

Road Test award: The new client went for a power walk on the cobbles to try out a new bra. Sounds right to me. If a bra can handle those puppies on a cobbled street and still be comfy, I'd buy it!

Sacking Offence award: How on earth does Sarah keep that job? She's forever leaving "on a break" and staying away hours.

Kind hearted award: Roy was going to ask Cathy to a concert but realized Ken needed the company more. It was the right thing to do, too.

Lines of the week:
David "Gail's no Princess"
Rita "Sally Webster does NOT wallow" Sally "Well she's wallowing now!"
Kylie to Sarah "Are you thick as well as annoying?"
Sophie "What if what you want doesn't want you"
Sally "I am going to marry that man by hook or by crook" Sophie "Yeah, well you're gonna need a big hook"
Tim to Sally "You think monogamy's the Scottish New Year" (Harsh)
Sally "Personally, I think there's a fine line between optimal hydration and bloating"
Beth "If you break a biscuit into tiny pieces, all the calories fall out" (It might not be true, but you never know! ;)
Eva "I look like Beyonce caught in a wind tunnel"
Rita "It's a long time since I went to a shotgun wedding"
Carla "Aidan, I'm not a silly cow with cheap extensions that you can win around with a bit of sweet talk"
Sally "I love you just the way you are" Tim "Without you, my life would be so sad!"
Johnny "Here's Johnnnnyyyy"
Beth "Team Carla. You know where you are with her, give or take the odd hangover"
Johnny "From now on, we do things my way" Carla "Great! As long as it's the same way as my way" Aidan "And mine"

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Sunday 25 October 2015

Incoming Corrie producer talks to Inside Soap

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Kate Oates, the incoming Coronation Street producer, has been interviewed this week in Inside Soap magazine.  She talks, of course, about her current role as producer of ITV's other soap, Emmerdale.

At the end of the interview, Kate is asked how long she has got left at Emmerdale before she takes over at Coronation Street as the new producer.  This is her reply, which makes interesting reading and is worthy of a little mention.

"I'm with the Dales until Christmas, and then I'm taking a couple of months off.  I just want to get my head into the new job and start thinking about the characters and what I want to do.  But my main focus at the moment is making the most of my time here. I love Emmerdale and will be very emotional come December!"

Emmerdale actress Gemma Atkinson this week said that Kate Oates has breathed new life into the soap and will be missed when she moves to Coronation Street.

“I think she’s brought the show back to life. She’s given it a new lease of life and a kick up the bum, to be honest. She’s widened the audience and brought in new characters and new stories and new ideas and she’s very open to our ideas. She’s very caring to the cast and the scriptwriters, but I wish her well and I’m glad she’s still at ITV. She’s still in the family!”

Meanwhile Charley Webb, who plays Debbie Dingle in Emmerdale, added that Kate Oates had been “so amazing” and that Coronation Street were “really lucky to get her”.

I think, as Corrie fans, we have a lot to feel optimistic about, don't you?

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Sunday Comments October 25

These Sunday Comments includes the episode aired a week ago Friday.

The aftermath of the last few episodes sees David as cool as a cucumber, Kylie a bit haunted but poor Sarah a gibbering wreck. She ends up walking out of the pub yet again when Callum's mother comes looking for her and she brings her back to Number 8 for a ham sandwich. Her name's Marian and she tries to impress up on Kylie and Sarah as fellow mothers that she's just worried sick because Callum seems to have gone missing. When she tells them she's confident that Callum has turned his life around, David fills her in on many of the recent things Callum has done, including Max playing with a gun and seeing Callum beat up a neighbour. That's told her!

David ushers her out and slams the door on her but it isn't long until Gemma rocks up on the doorstep and she'll be harder to get rid of. She's not sure Callum's disappearance has something to do with the three Musketeers in Platt Towers but she thinks they can help her find him. Kylie apparently still has Callum's phone which she takes outside and uses to text Gemma. Not really a smart thing since the police can trace mobile phone activity fairly close to the location it was used and they're probably keeping an eye on that sort of thing. It puts Gemma off for the moment but it freaked Sarah out, not realizing initially the text came from Kylie.

Sarah is on edge, and anything sets her off. Tyrone and Billy's ghost stories were the latest thing. Sarah really has to find a way to bear up because she really seems like the weakest link in the chain at the moment which might actually mean she won't be the one to crack and let the secret out.

Sarah really is a nervous wreck. But doesn't she believe that David dumped Callum's body in the canal? Why would she be walking Bethany to the bus stop and back? There's no danger. The guilt, obviously, is wearing on her but aside from that. A body found in the canal really freaks Sarah out and you can well imagine it would. And... of Sarah goes again. Kylie's frantic trying to convince her that the canal body isn't Callum but then she finds out about the manhole which might have to be dug up again. Oh dear. Sarah mithers and mithers and threatens to go to the police. Has she done something fatal?

Meanwhile, Max is still having nightmares, poor kid. David is trying to convince him that Callum won't be back and now Max wants David to adopt him. What I don't understand is that before Callum came back into their lives, David was going to adopt and Callum's permission never came into it. Now it does?

Roy decides to ask Cathy on a date to the Bistro but she's late because she got sidetracked by Sharif in the community centre. It was sweet to see Roy getting his hair cut in Audrey's and then fixing his suit and pocket square, which has an R embroidered on it. Awwww. They're a bit of an odd couple but because she's a bit of an outsider, I think that's one of the reasons Roy feels more comfortable with her. It was like that with Hayley, too. Not quite mainstream.

Roy reckons he was stood up and leaves but Tyrone talked him into going back. Just in time, because she came in just then. Neither of them was all that comfortable in a nice restaurant and coffee back at the cafe was much more comfortable for them both.

A violin concerto is far more Roy and Cathy's speed rather than fancy restaurants. But when Roy realizes Ken needs a bit of cheering up, he asks him to go to the concert instead of Cathy and that was a very nice thing to do. Anna was a bit bitchy, hoping Cathy never found out she nearly got asked out and then got stood up. First of all, there's no reason for her to find out and second of all, so what? Roy did the right thing and it's not as if he asked Cathy and then reneged.

Sally's wallowing and Sally doesn't do things by halves. She makes a big dent in a big bottle of vodka and scarfs down not one but several large bars of chocolate, sobbing over a sad movie. Rita is determined to sort her out and if anyone can bully Sally back into fighting mode, it's Rita. She is right, too. Hold your head up high, Sally.

Tim didn't want to talk to her at all, though. He's upset Sally never told him about the kiss. But how do you tell someone something like that? But Sally has a plan. She's going to hold the wedding and she's counting on Tim showing up anyway. I'm not so sure about that. Sally's in full on mode, though so anything could happen. She even managed to talk Kevin into defending her to Tim. He did a good job but Sally should have stayed away. Once Tim realized she put Kevin up to her defence, it only steeled him further against her and he publically humiliated her even though he does still love her and she knows it. Will he turn up on Monday?

Sally seems to be going through her wedding day with a massive case of false hope and optimism. She went through all the motions, beautifying, getting dressed. It didnt' matter what anyone said to her, not Sophie, Rita or even Kevin. She was confident, at least on the surface, that Tim would show up. There she stood at the Bistro, which, by the way, looks way nicer than it normally does!! No other guests are there aside from the immediate family and Rita. Meanwhile, Craig is trying to be supportive and Kevin is telling Tim he's being a prat, and does he really want to live his life without Sally?

It didn't look good. Sally finally admitted to herself he wasn't coming. But guess what? Just before the registrar was going to leave and Sally was going to pack up, Kevin, Craig and Tim showed up. The wedding music is playing and Tim and Sally got hitched! I don't mind admitting I had a tear in my eye.

Fiz and Tyrone finally get the news they were hoping they wouldn't get. It's definitely cancer and Hope will have to have chemotherapy. And Hope wants to go to Lapland to see Santa there. Tyrone wants her to have that and booked it but with Fiz not working, and not being paid, it's going to be tight, financially. Fiz wants Tyrone to cancel it.

Yasmeen is at that angry stage of grief, especially now that she knows Tracy is responsible for Kal's death and the police don't have enough evidence to charge her with it. She might as well holler at her in the street instead. Zeedan isn't finding running the gym on his own very easy and it's starting to make him feel bad about himself. All he needs to do is ask for some help and by the way, doesn't Sharif own half? Why wouldn't he be helping on a regular basis? Yasmeen is now intent on private prosecution even if it breaks the bank but she has realized how it's affecting her family.

Aidan is getting a lot of calls and texts from his father and looking more and more worried. All the while, Carla is wooing a new client who even power walks up and down the cobbles to try out one of the bras. That's practical, I'd say. Anyway. It turns out that Aidan used his father's money to buy into Underworld. It was cash that his dad, Johnny, put in his bank account as a tax dodge, not expecting Aidan to actually spend it. Aidan's trying to defend it as an investment. Carla's pissed and so his his father and sister but he's determined to make it work.

And it turns out that Johnny's broke, himself because a woman got the better of him. That's why he's after this bit of cash, not just for Kate's wedding, either. But Carla has a contract and as a result, Johnny's barging in as another partner. Carla's still got majority but he wants to be part of the day to day running. Oh dear. Awfully convenient, Johnny Connor being a veteran of the rag trade. He's already networking on behalf of Underworld. And then getting his feet under the table in the factory, he's showing a few shades of Mike Baldwin.

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Saturday 24 October 2015

Celebrating 32 years of Kevin Webster on Coronation Street

(This post was originally posted by Flaming Nora on the Coronation Street Blog October 2015, reposted to this blog with permission.)

Today, October 19th 2015 is the 32nd anniversary of the first appearance of Kevin Webster on Coronation Street. 

After completing his course in 1983 aged 18, Kevin looked for work but couldn't find anything until he had a lucky encounter with Alf Roberts while hitchhiking back to Weatherfield in October that year.

Alf's car broke down while passing him by, and Alf offered to give Kevin a lift home if he could get it going.

When Kevin carried out the repairs with no trouble, the grateful shopkeeper recommended him to Brian Tilsley, owner of Tilsley's Garage in Albert Street, as Brian was looking for a mechanic to work alongside him. After a successful interview, Kevin was taken on.

Read Kevin's profile on Corriepedia and

Here is Michael le Vell in that first episode as Kevin. He first appears at 19 minutes into the

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What now for Leanne?

(This post was originally posted by Ruth Owen on the Coronation Street Blog in October 2015.)

Leanne, played by the brilliant Jane Danson, has had a very rough time of late. The Nazirs had just begun to accept her into their family, when Kal died a horrific death in the fire at Carla’s flat. Grieving for the man she loved and the life they might have had together, before fate jumped out at them and prevented it, Simon decides to add to her troubles and behaves extremely badly, resulting in a stay in hospital.

In addition to all that, let’s not forget Dastardly Dan and his threats to tell Simon that his mum had been a prostitute, which, the despicable man actually  carried out. Viewers will remember that Dan had become violent towards Leanne during their ‘encounter’ in her previous life and he was terrified that Leanne would warn Liz about his propensity towards violence. Dan seemed keen on Liz and did not want Leanne to wreck what Dan had going with her.  But Leanne had to tell Liz - she had no choice. It would have been a dereliction of duty if Leanne had not warned her that she was potentially putting herself in danger, by carrying on seeing Dan. Liz might be tough, but she would be no match, physically, for Dan. It wasn’t long before Liz saw for herself exactly what an unsavoury individual Dan was.

 Alya and Leanne were  friendly before Kal’s untimely death and even Zeedan, who had been dead set against their relationship, was beginning to thaw. I feel confident in claiming that the thaw would have continued, even if Kal had not died. Zeedan could see Leanne’s worth. Now of course, Zeedan has been very good to Leanne. In particular he has supported her in her difficulties with Simon. What a heartwarming moment and excellent script idea it was to have Zeedan turn up at Leanne’s with his sleeping bag, to ensure Leanne’s safety and to send a warning shot to Simon.

What I really hope the writers don’t do, is bring on a new man for Leanne in the next few months. There is nothing wrong with being single, even if,  like Leanne, you are an attractive, woman in her mid-thirties.  After such a tragedy, it would be best to give her a break from men, let her concentrate on her work, her friends and on Simon of course, once he returns from his dad’s.

 As for Peter, he really does need to step up. He has a child. It is not acceptable to abdicate responsibility of the day to day bringing up of a boy, who has seen far too much trouble and trauma in his young life. Sadly, Peter has always put Peter first. It may well be the case that if Peter had done right by Simon, in sticking around, the abuse inflicted by Simon on Leanne, would never have happened. Of course, this is speculation.  Zeedan has been more of a support to Leanne, young as he is, than Peter has.

Ken isn't getting any younger, thats true, but perhaps he could do more with and for Simon. He could take an interest in what Simon is doing at school and work with him. He could perhaps try to inspire him with his love of literature, leaving alone for now the Russian greats and perhaps starting off with The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time

For Leanne, I would like to see her enjoying friendships, meeting up with other men and women her own age, taking up something outside of work that she finds enjoyable and doing what she wants to do, not always doing what she ought to do.

After a difficult start, Leanne and Eva have become close. As sisters, they work for me and they both need some fun. Just to repeat, it is possible to have fun without bringing new men into their lives. Let’s see more interaction between them.

Loud and long has been the cry to have Toyah return to the cobbles. Now what a treat that would be! Add in Janice?   Perhaps,  that’s just too much to hope for.

Ruth Owen

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Coronation Street voted ultimate ITV show of all time

Coronation Street has been voted the ultimate ITV show of all time.

The poll was conducted by editorial photo agency Rex Features who asked their contributors and clients to vote.

To celebrate ITV's 60th birthday last week Rex Features exclusively gathered together images from 60 of the most iconic shows ever shown on the channel and enabled people to vote for their favourite.

Coronation Street has been voted the ultimate ITV show of all time.

The poll was conducted by editorial photo agency Rex Features who asked their contributors and clients to vote.

To celebrate ITV's 60th birthday last week Rex Features exclusively gathered together images from 60 of the most iconic shows ever shown on the channel and enabled people to vote for their favourite.

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Friday 23 October 2015

Deirdre Barlow tribute book published

Deirdre: A Life on Coronation Street is published today and out in the shops.

The ITV official tribute book is an affectionate walk down the cobbles with one of Coronation Street’s best loved characters. From her first appearance in 1972, Deirdre Barlow (nee Hunt) went on to become one of the street’s most iconic stars and has been at the centre of some of its most explosive storylines; including her affair with Mike Baldwin, her imprisonment for fraud which prompted the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair, to raise her case in the Commons and her relationship with daughter Tracy, a woman who has literally gotten away with murder.

Deirdre: A Life on Coronation Street is a tribute to one of the most recognised and loved characters on television. Looking back at her three husbands, four weddings and countless pairs of specs, it features exclusive photographs as well as a look at Deirdre’s four decades on Britain’s most famous street.

It’s packed full of quotes including many from Deirdre’s acid tongued mother Blanche, reminisces and a look at some of Deirdre’s most memorable moments.

You can buy it now from and other places online.
Here in Canada, it will be available on on November 24 and you can preorder it here and save the shipping.

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Peter Baldwin (Corrie's Derek Wilton) dies age 82

Peter Baldwin, who played Derek Wilton on Coronation Street, has passed away today.  He was 82 years old.

Peter joined Coronation Street as salesman Derek in 1976. Derek was the on / off partner and later husband of Mavis Wilton from 1988 until his death in 1997.

After his character on Coronation Street was killed off in 1997, actor Peter Baldwin opened a toy shop in Covent Garden, London.

In 2013 Peter gave a good interview to the Express about playing Derek on Corrie and his life after he left the show.  You can read it here.

Derek and Mavis will always be fondly remembered. One of their major storylines was the stolen garden gnome and of course there was Derek's friendship with Norris (who always called him Dirk and was once wed to Derek's ex-wife Angela too).

Derek was killed off in Corrie after the appointment of new producer Brian Park in 1997, who sanctioned the removal of five main characters, including Derek Wilton. “Derek was probably past his sell-by date,” recalls Park. I had to see the poor actor, Peter Baldwin, at 9am on the day I started and he thought I was seeing the cast in alphabetical order. But it wasn’t B for Baldwin. It was B for b*****ed.”
Gnome So the friendship between the Wiltons and Norris became somewhat strained, to say the least. Norris got his own back though. When Derek took in two gnomes – Arthur and Guinevere, Arthur kept disappearing and sent postcards home from around the world (although strangely, not from here). Derek then received a severed gnome’s ear with a ransom note for fifty chocolate doubloons so he lay in wait for the criminal behind some bushes and was arrested on suspicion of being a peeping Tom. On the eve of Norris’ wedding to Angela, Norris got drunk and admitted to best man Derek that he was the one who’d stolen the gnome. In revenge, Derek took Norris to the wrong church, which made him late for the wedding – and Angela, well, she was not best pleased.
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