Sunday, 28 February 2010

State of the Street: February 2010

So Becky was officially pregnant (but spoilers say she's going to lose it in early March). First of all, after everything she went through with Steve, I can understand how she wants to be cautious. Second of all, she made a remark about what she dared to want. See, she wants a baby but she's scared. She knows things might fall apart like they usually do in her life. At least she has enough respect for Steve, no matter how bad things got with him, she didn't take any action before she told him about the baby. Rumours say that eventually it'll be known that she can't carry a baby. More fodder for her low self esteem, poor kid. If that's the way it goes, i'm glad. I can't see Becky as a settled down mother figure on the show. She's better off as a step mum, I think. I thought, oh maybe they can adopt a child that has had a similar rough upbringing as Becky, someone who's life she can help turn around like Roy and Hayley did for her. I think that would work. Then after i thought that, spoilers came out with the exact same thing. Psychic, me.

Jesse and Eileen are all but finished i think. He didn't like it when Jason and Tina moved back in and he had to shift his stuff outside. Why didn't he put it in the van or at his mother's house where he kept it before he moved in? A bit petulant really. He always was a mama's boy but they're making him very dislikeable which is the entrance to his exit. Too bad they wasted John Thompson, he can be so good and there was loads of potential. If you ask me, i kind of think that Trev, Janice's lodger, might make a good bloke for Eileen, but it's early days yet. He could have no spine just like Jesse though he does seem to have a bit more about him. Time will tell.

Ciaran is back and wasted no time chatting up both Michelle and Carla straight away with all the Irish patter. But Peter, who had found staying dry not too much trouble, wasted no time dipping into the booze minutes after hanging out with his old mucker, missing the cameraderie no doubt. You didn't think Peter wouldn't have at least one backslide? And it's going to lead to worse things. I'm glad they went this route. It's realistic and very much in line with Peter's personality and character that he would start hanging out with his old drinking buddy and fool himself into thinking he could handle a few drinks. It's heartbreaking to see the effect on poor little Simon especially but that's realistic too.

I really thought George was going to be the bad guy, someone with ulterior motives but it seems he really is just trying to be a good granddad and look out for Simon after all. Maybe. Someone has to, for Peter's sake. Ken questioned whether George cares about Peter. Good point.

Joe's dead! While i'm not happy to see anyone die, when it's on a tv program, that's different. And don't get me wrong, i'm not happy Gail has to go through losing a spouse YET AGAIN, and have reason to be miserable YET AGAIN, i am glad to see the back of Joe "Mr. Miserable" McIntyre. It's so wearying to have to watch his face whinging and whining and crying and self pitying. He could have been a better character but they made him a loser. That's 3 out of four husbands of Gail's that are dead. Martin should count himself a very lucky man. And i know, in real life, people get into desperate situations but this isn't real life, it's a soap so i am allowed to belittle the late Joe. I never liked him.

I don't know why Gail thought lying was such a good idea. You'd think she'd have learned that protecting people just digs you in deeper and you get found out in the end. By that time, it goes harder for you for covering it all up! Now she's changed her story to the police and it made her look more guilty. Including lying about the text and flowers.... to protect David. Well she's made her bed now. It's going to be lie upon lie. First mistake was bringing that boat back home. It's all going to fall apart from there. Poor Tina, though, she's the victim of all of this. Where's her mother? I wonder if we'll see Tina's mother come to the funeral?

Molly continues to make desperate puppy dog eyes at Kevin, hoping to lure him away but she can't be blatant about it. Kevin remains loyal to his wife and family. But the secret has to come out, it always does on soaps sooner or later. In the meantime, Jackie's back! She was the one bright pink spot in the sadness and misery of Gail and Tina finding out Joe was dead. Gail and Tina sobbing and miserable and cut over to Jackie and Molly chucking flowerpots at each other on the cobbles! Brilliant! I know people really detest Jackie Dobbs and she really is awful, Gobzilla we used to call her, but she's fun to watch because she's just so out there and audacious! More nerve than Dick Tracy, me dad used to say! With Jackie, short doses are best and this was a great one!

Monday, 15 February 2010

Joe, we hardly knew ye

I can't say I'm unhappy to see the demise of Joe McIntyre. He wasn't in Coronation Street long enough to really form any attachement to as a character and he was rarely a sympathetic one. He leaped from weakness to weakness, dragging Gail down with him. She even moaned to her mother at one point that she was too old to be looking after a man, and wanted someone to look after her for a change. It's a lot of stress and baggage to take on but she stood by her man, even after his addiction drove him to break into her workplace to try to steal painkillers from the drugs cabinet.

He first seemed to be a great guy. Lots of humour and zest, he persued Gail with zeal but not in a stalking kind of way. He liked her, she liked him. She had reservations because their children were a couple and quite rightly too, because when it did come out, neither was too happy with the revelation. He thought they'd be good together and didn't let her put him off. It seemed like a very long time since someone really put such a smile on her face and although his temper seemed a bit quick to boil, he could be the right man for Gail.

Couldn't he?

Well, no. That's never going to happen, is it? Gail seems to be a loser magnet, I'm sorry to say. And very bad luck for husbands. She's had four of them and three of them have died, two by drowning and one stabbed to death. Mind you, she was about to divorce both Brian and Richard (who she found out was a murderer). Fate has funny ways of taking care of your problems for you, doesn't it? Even this time around, Joe was mired under debt to a nasty loan shark who might have come after Joe's family so very likely his death will mean that she's off the hook as far as the debt goes. As to the insurance fraud? Hmmmm... maybe not so off that hook.

It didn't take long for Joe's finances to crash and burn. The economy took a downturn and Joe's business as a kitchen fitter suffered. He took odd jobs with Bill Webster and even worked part time in a DIY shop. He humiliated himself and worked for a contractor through the despicable Len Windass who, thankfully, seems to have disappeared off the screen. The problem with that contract is that he had to borrow money for supplies (though why the developer building the properties didn't pay for it is a gaping plot hole never addressed. Nor was the fact that the building to be converted was little more than a shell yet Joe was putting in kitchens straight away? Maybe Len just met him in an out of the way location and that wasn't the building site, but that, too, was never clear.) Did Joe go to the bank with the signed contract to prove he had a way to pay back a loan for supplies? Of course not, that would be too easy. He borrowed from a loan shark.

And promptly threw his back out, meaning he couldn't work. He got coerced into paying Gary Windass and Jason to do some of the work which probably stretched his finances even thinner while he struggled to stay on his feet with the help of painkillers. And things went downhill into addiction from there.

Poor Gail, it was one thing after another. David and Audrey both tried to make her see that Joe was a loser. Yes, i know, people in real life have financial trouble and you should stick by your man but this is a soap, not real life. We can be hard on Joe if we want to. Especially when he kept making one bad decision after the next, ending with a fatal plan to fake his own death for the insurance, which wasn't going to pay out for 7 years anyway. Desperation makes strange bedfellows.

How was that plan really going to help Gail? wouldn't anyone notice her taking regular weekend jaunts to Ireland where Joe said he'd go and hide under a new identity? Did he really think she would be able to maintain the pretence for all those years? And then what? He's declared dead, she gets the cash and leaves town, home and the family she's so tied to? Well, she wouldn't have to find out. Joe couldn't even do this right. He got knocked overboard when the boom caught a gust of wind (on a glass-clear lake, another plot hole, but I digress.) Because he'd had a sprained wrist, he couldn't haul himself back on board (why didn't he swim to the dingy he was chasing instead?) and finally just gave up and slipped beneath the surface.

Gail is frantic, thinking he really did go through with his plan but she didn't hold up her end of things. She was supposed to report him missing but because she thought he'd change his mind, she refused to go to the police in spite of David's urging. That's going to be her undoing. Spoilers say Gail will go to jail for his murder in the insurance scam because he forged her signature on the application for the life insurance. No health checkups, and i think it would look suspicious that someone would drop out of sight two weeks after signing a new policy even if it wasn't to pay out for 7 years? The insurance company and the police agree. So Joe is dragging Gail even further down from the grave. Naturally it looks suspicious and Joe's daughter Tina will think the worst of Gail even though she knows her father's situation with the loan shark. Why on earth would she think Gail would kill Joe? Wouldn't it make more sense to assume he killed himself on purpose if you didn't know about the fake-death plan?

Ah well. It doesn't matter. Joe's death and the aftermath will to have repercussions that will last all year long and to tell you the truth, now that he's off the canvas, I'm going to be looking forward to the ride! Gail is one of my favourite characters even if she can be headstrong, bossy, blind to her children's faults and miserable. Even if she's turned into Mini-Ivy Tilsley, she's still a lot nicer than Ivy and hasn't turned into a bitter middle aged harpy in spite of having a lot of good reason to be that way. Not yet anyway. But it could be on the cards after this year is over!

Sunday, 7 February 2010

No baby for Becky

Today, the Daily Star says that Becky will have two back to back miscarraiges due to an abnormality in her womb and will never be able to carry a baby full term. You know that will send Becky into a tailspin of insecurity and low self esteem, blaming her rough past habits of drink and drugs as the reason. I heard she may even leave Steve again so he can find a "proper" wife so we'll have a few heart to heart talks between them where he again shows his love and support. And he does love her and he will stick by her. She still has such a hard time believing she's left her old life behind. It will all be very dramatic and sad. But you know what? I'm glad that Steve and Becky aren't going to have a baby in their life.

Why? Well, obviously I'm not pleased poor Becky has to go through two miscarraiges. That's tragic for anyone including her. But I think for the dynamics of the show, it wouldn't work if Becky were to become a settled down yummy mummy. We already have Claire for that role, thank you very much. As much as I'm sure Becky would make a good mother and that it would be amusing to see her trying to cope with sleepless nights and hormones, I also think Becky is best as a stepmother to Amy. With Tracy returning to the canvas, there will sure to be conflicts there over parenting Amy. Becky is a far better mother to Amy than Tracy was but is not the biological mother so I imagine spineless Steve will be bending to Tracy's will and leaving Becky in the middle. I can see it all in my mind. Becky fuming both literally (smoking fags like a steam engine) and figuratively while Steve doesn't back her up with parenting decisions because Tracy decides to stir the pot, gurning maniacally.

What might really work well, instead of a baby, is if Becky and Steve adopt an older child, one with troubles and that comes from a rough background, similar to Becky's herself. I would like to see her take on a waif, and instill in her the faith that Roy and Hayley showed in her. Paying it forward and all that. Yes, it would mean yet another tearaway kid on the street but it would end up eventually with the child blossoming after being horribly misunderstood or falsely blamed for some awful incident. I think it would have to be a girl because we've had way too many tearaway boys. What do you think?

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