Tuesday, 27 July 2010

State of the Street: July 2010

Carla's back and Nick didn't want her involved. Surely there's some legal issues there and then they were stealing each other's business. Sean was the first one to back Carla but then he's also got another job. You just knew Carla would come out on top! Nick is so sleazy and he's sucking up to the workers and he's sucking up to Leanne and Natasha is trying very hard to get her hooks into him deeper and deeper. She even rumbled Leanne's past to Nick but you know, wouldn't Gail have already gossiped that little fact to Nick years ago? Or Audrey. And how DARE he ask her what it would have been like if they'd stayed together and had a baby when he was the one that insisted she terminate their child!!!

Sean is so anxious to connect with Violet and his little boy, Dylan, and made up a pretend Facebook page (yes i know, it's Facescene and the colour scheme is green instead of blue but you know what it really is!) as Liz McDonald. That should have been the first suspicious clue to Vi! As if Liz would! Sean said he didn't know if any of Violet's mates were on the site but he and Violet go back a long way, surely he'd know if her mates were on Facebook or could at least look them up and then see if Violet was on their contact lists. Of course Sean is going to get caught out, and soon!

Tina and Graeme are all loved up. A lot of people, including me, think that the character of Tina has been ruined. I really don't think this pairing is going to last. Between David's interference and the fact that i'm sure Graeme was a rebound thing for Tina, latching on to him after her dad died. Well, Tina is lodging with Rita and Emily's house seems to have grown another room as well, the same one Ramsay stayed in but those houses on that side of the street only have two bedrooms upstairs and the third that used to be the "box" room, everyone had turned into bathrooms. Number 7 has the loft conversion but let's face it, most of those houses always did have elastic walls, especially the Rovers! After their initial coming together, they've disappeared. Just as well. I really don't like the way Tina seems to go out of her way to rub David's face in it.

Lloyd has got himself involved in a very messy domestic scene. It gives me chills seeing a woman in a situation like that, and accepting it and excusing it. I think it's being portrayed very realistically, actually. This happens. And Craig Charles is a very underrated actor, he's doing a really good job with this. It'll all end badly, but i think it's a good storyline and one that needs telling.

July-19-2010-Audrey-LewisAnd Lewis is still around... out of the escort business but he just can't seem to help himself flirting and it's with Deirdre this time. Do you not think this has given Deirdre quite a lift as a character? She's flirty and fun and thoroughly enjoying herself. We know she loves Ken but he's never been very exciting and Lewis is there for the asking if you can make the payment. Or he was. Will he be able to break the habit? Audrey's nemesis, Claudia let all the cats out of the bag and very publically! Lewis talks about retiring to Greece...and running a hotel. That's not much of a retirement but it's probably all talk until Audrey starts to think it's a good idea. She'll just sell up and high tail it away to paradise. Suddenly Lewis looks a bit green around the gills.

But now that Gail knows his past, we get to see her disapproving face hovering in the corner all over the place. It's too funny! But i do wonder, why does Lewis need to defraud the bookies? Surely he made a good bit of money being a gigalo? He's *supposedly* got a job in a casino now. What has he spent all that cash on?

Then of course, there's Natasha continuing on her quest to trap Nick into a life of domesticity. She's determined to buy the salon and Maria comes back and slips in with first refusal, right under her nose. Natasha is jealous of Leanne and now finds out her rival in the Salon Wars is a Nick-ex too. I'm actually glad to see Maria. I wonder what they have in store for her?

Stape's lies are now back to haunt him big time. I'm really loving that Chesney found out and really, really loving that he keeps digging the sarcastic knife in. I could rant on and on about how much i hate Stape and all his selfish lies and manipulations but you're all probably pretty bored of that by now. Gotta say though, as much as i hate the character and what he's done to Fiz, the whole storyline with Colin returning and that nutter Charlotte getting *her* claws into Stape further and further is a good laugh. She makes the whole storyline! There's a big hole in this storyline though. How on earth would the husband of the woman that the real Colin was shagging know that John is Colin and how would he know where "Colin" lives to come around shouting the odds and thumping him? Poor Fiz is going to have no nerves left at this rate.

Mary is being a wedding Nazi, she's really being forceful and aggressive and obviously living her fantasies out in Hayley's life. Hayley needs to stand up to her. That might be tricky. But in the meantime, fun to watch Mary steam ahead, get her face in a knot when Hayley stands up to her and see what she does when that eventually happens?

Sunita is not juggling job and children and house well. What did she do when she had a house three times the size? And why would she want to do it all? She didn't worry about having a job when she was single. It makes no sense. Typical misongynistic Dev, wants the little woman at home raising the kiddies. Is it too much for her to ask for a little help from him now they're supposed to be raising the children together?

Sian and Sophie are an item but Sophie is jealous of Sian's friendship with her former boyfriend, Ryan. It seems pretty clear to me that, for Sian, this really is just an experiment, confusion for her, but it isn't for Sophie. It'll all end in tears! Nice to see Sally back though. Molly is pushing Tyrone to sell Kevin his share and move away before that baby shows it's little face. She's obviously afraid it's going to be Kevin's. I'd love for it to be Tyrone's. So it looks like Eileen might buy their house. We'll see.

Such was the State of the Street in July!

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Character Study: Sally Seddon Webster

In honour of Sally's birthday this week, I'm reproducing an updated character study i wrote about Sally and what makes her tick. Sally's always been a favourite character of mine even when Sally Webster has been at her most obnoxious.

Let's examine the evolution of the Coronation Street character, Sally Webster who arrived on our screens in January 1986. She was a young firecracker, gobby and brash, some might say "common". She came from a struggling family with a violent father and her family were no better than they should be, according to Hilda Ogden. She debuted with a splash, literally! She was on the street waiting for a bus when Kevin John Webster drove by and through a puddle and splashed muddy water all over her. She was furious as she was on her way to a job interview. Thus began Love's Young Dream of the 1980s.

Sally was full of spirit, tended to the bossy side and always wanted Kevin to better himself which would elevate her own status as well. Several times, she tried to get him to buy the garage, urging her lackluster husband to become his own boss. Kevin was never that keen on running the place which frustrated Sally to no end. Even then, she had aspirations above her station. Motherhood in the 1990s made the character of Sally a bit boring, immersed in motherhood and sweetness, but when Kevin was seduced by the predatory Natalie Horrocks, her claws came back out with a vengeance. Kevin was out on his ear and Natalie felt the force of Sally's wrath on the side of her face (not to mention the repairs that were necessary when Sally flooded Natalie's bathroom and printed "SLUT" in the mist on the bathroom mirror).

Sally found being a single mum was very difficult. She took Kevin back temporarily, for the sake of the girls and for security which had always been lacking in her own childhood but that didn't last long when she was drawn to the devilish and violent Greg Kelly. That affair blew up her marriage again. It took Sally awhile, and several men, to find her way inevitably back to Kevin. In my opinion, she didn't really love Kevin and I always thought she was settling for security for the children's sake though she did care about Kevin. I think the love has grown back over the years again.

So there she was, back in a marriage that really didn't mean that much to her at the time but which kept her family together. She sees herself stuck in a back street, working in a factory, husband running a small business which could have been so much more, with her own ambitions well and truly thwarted. Her fling with rich Ian Davenport was little more than prostitution to gain financial security for her family and help pay for Rosie's private school fees. Ian uses her as one in a long succession of women. When he's done with her, she's bitter and resentful, she comes crashing back to earth, having risked her family for a callous fling and it stings even more because Kevin knows down deep his wife was unfaithful but was willing to overlook it anyway.

Sally turns her ambitions to her oldest daughter, Rosie. When Rosie expressed a passing interest in being a pop star, Sally pushed her onto the stage where she was miserable. She then pushed Rosie into a posh private school and railed against Rosie dating a neighbourhood lad from a family with a somewhat shady and violent past (too much like her own). The final straw was discovering that Rosie and Craig were having sex even though they were approaching it sensibly. Sally's emotions and nerves crumbled and she took Rosie on a wild drive across the M62 en route to a boarding school. Kevin caught up and cradled his broken wife, who *still* moaned about *her* broken dreams and life in a back street, wanting more for her children than she had.

In the last few years, Sally has been working in the factory and watching her daughter make bad choice after bad choice and *still* making excuses for her! She was proud when Rosie became part owner of the factory because it meant she was making something of her life, but was crushed to find out Rosie was taken for a mug and lost all her cash. But it's not that Rosie has not given her other worries. Because of Rosie's affair with Stape, Kevin went to jail and I think that Sally became just a little more realistic where her oldest daughter's failings are concerned. Still, she'll defend her chicks to the death, even stooping to childishly paint over Fiz and John's windows when John got out of prison and moved in with Fiz.

Sally has just survived a struggle with breast cancer, cut short on screen by the real-life all too similar crisis for the actress herself! Sally Dyvenor (she's taken her husband's name professionally) is doing well and it seems Sally Webster has made a recovery as well.

She didn't know that Kevin had an affair with his best friend's wife, someone that Sally seems to take great relish in looking down on. Molly seemed to be encroaching on Sally's territory (more than she knows!) with the business and bookkeeping. Molly was pregnant and couldn't know if the baby was Tyrone's or Kevin's. Kevin finally stole the baby's dummy and had an instant DNA test that proved baby Jack was his son but he still didn't want to be with Molly and the baby.

Molly decided to leave Tyrone and on the day she was going, the tram crashed into the corner shop, trapping Molly under the rubble. Sally, who had bonded with Molly because she'd delivered baby Jack in the Dobbs' living room, crawled into the rubble and sat with Molly while the rescue workers tried to get her out. Molly's dying words to Sally revealed the affair and paternity and, believing it, Sally confronted Kevin. He admited it and she threw him out on his ear.

In spite of initial shock and objections, Sally was also able to accept her daugher Sophie's declaration that she is gay. It's still a bit of a struggle but Sally supports Sophie. Will she still do when things finally get physical between Sophie and Sian?

I've heard a lot over the years about how Sally has changed but I don't think she really has. I think her personality has progressed very logically considering where she came from and what's happened to her over her life to this point. I think Sally has always been a great character to watch evolve, even if she hasn't been a likeable person at times. Everything they have created with both Sally and Kevin has really been in line and consistent with their history. That's Coronation Street at it's best.

What's been your favourite Sally moment? Was it when she drove Rosie across the moors? Was it when she walloped Natalie on the cobbles (one of my personal favourite moments)?

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