Friday 3 June 2011

Corrie's "big" week - Yay or Nay?

There's been a lot of negative comments about the Street lately but for the most part, I don't agree with them. This week has seen the culmination of two major storylines with the inevitable slide down the slope to the end of another one. In all cases, the acting has been excellent and I have nothing but praise for the performers. In most cases, the writing has been good, too, even with a few plot holes but nothing really that I can't overlook.

Let's get the one negative out of the way first. Graeme and Xin have been limping along this week. They've been filler in between the other two major storylines and it's been dull, dull, dull. Torn between two lovers has been Graeme's theme this week and I just don't care. No criticisms to the actors but they're so much better than this drivel but the whole storyline has been an epic fail all along, all in the name of an exit storyine for the wonderful Craig Gazey who was wonderful as the quirky Graeme, double act to first, David and then, Ashley.

There. That's that done and dusted.

On to Fiz and John. I've enjoyed this storyline and all it's twists and turns from the start even if I've loathed and detested the character of John and hated what he's done to Fiz. All the emotional blackmail, the manipulating, the selfish obsessive single mindedness he laid on her infuriated me, as it was supposed to. The story and the actors kept me rivetted to the screen. This week has been a fantastic denouement. The digging up of the body was horrific. The van accident looked a bit lame but didn't you think John reading Paradise Lost in the loft was a touch of genius?

Stape babbling on about them being able to run away, insisting he had a plan but never really explaining it because, of course, he didn't really have one. He was just in the throes of madness and desperation, completely out of control. Oh, Sally Webster is never going to let anyone forget she was right about him all along! I hope she's a bit more sensitive to Fiz, though.

The kidnapping of the Hoyles and Chesney might have seemed hokey and people have pointed out that though he did seem to manage to visit once a day to feed them and let them have "comfort breaks" that wouldn't be nearly enough. Point taken but I'm willing to overlook that. You would have thought that Chesney would have been able to break through the door eventually or, even though the room was soundproofed, one of the neighbours would have heard the banging on the basement door at least. Surely it wouldn't have been a steel door?

That aside, of course we knew Chesney would get out in time to stop Katy from terminating the pregnancy, that's just a soap standard plot. Having that bubbling in the background the first few days added to the urgency. I can understand Owen's horror finding out his 16 year old daughter was pregnant and, Owen being Owen, isn't going to be the most sensitive Dad about it all. Emotional and sick, Katy would be likely to lose a bit of faith in Chesney with her father insisting that Ches ran off on her. Young love won out in the end. Is that a good thing? Time will tell.

Then we come to the final confrontation at the hospital. I wondered why Fiz took so long to ring the nurse's buzzer! But then Fiz wouldn't have heard the full confession. She did ring it, finally, but it took her long enough! The stupid thing was there should have been police all over that hospital and some stationed out front of her door. John never should have got in the room much less get out of it!

That aside, didn't Graeme Hawley play a blinder! That last scene on the roof was spellbinding! It was already obvious that he wouldn't die. There was a point to mentioning earlier in the week that he had his passport with him but the thing is, there would be no use. If he tried to run and leave the country, the minute he tried to use it, he'd be caught. I still wish John had died. It feels like unfinished business that he is out there somewhere. Fiz can never really move on with her life and she'll be looking over her shoulder always.

Lastly, we've got the crisis in McDonald Mansions. The truth burst out of the closet about Kylie selling Max to Steve and Becky and the Social Services investigation was put into motion by Steve himself, not the usual suspects, David or Tracy though Becky doesn't know that. Steve had had enough of it all, he'd reached the end of his rope, financially and emotionally and called up the Social after night of drinking. David has been obsessed with getting Max back for Kylie for weeks and she's been trying to cover the fact that A. she isn't being bullied by Steve and Becky B. she blackmailed them for the money and C. She doesn't really want Max back. She says he's better where he is and though she says she wants him back, it feels more like she's saying it because that's what David wants to hear. It doesn't seem to me that her heart's really in it.

I don't think Kylie ever really bonded with Max. The circumstances of her childhood, with abuse and neglect, didn't really give her any idea of what a parent should be like and though it didn't sound like she was pregnant from her abuser, she certainly was a wild child and probably got pregnant after a drunken night out with someone she probably barely knew. It doesn't seem to make a lot of sense why David is suddenly all fired up about being a step-dad but you may remember how gutted he was when Tina aborted his baby. Maybe it goes back to that, and maybe David really does want to be a dad.

He didn't even blink, hardly, when he found out Kylie got money for Max but he still doesn't *really* know the truth about his grasping wife. Will he? Will it bother him? Maybe not, considering what he's been like in the past. He would probably understand where she was coming from and she could probably convince him well enough that she was in no fit state to be logical anyway.

Now Max has been taken away while they investigate the problem. That's another apparent plot hole. It doesn't seem like they would do that normally if Max is in no danger but Becky trying to take Max back from the foster family certainly didn't help matters. Katherine Kelly has been playing a blinder this week. Up to tonight, she's been quiet, tense, anxious but has held it in. Finding out someone turned them in, with all the jealousy she's had over Tracy, flipped the switch. And let's face it, Tracy could easily have been the one that anonymously tipped off the Social even if, this time, she didn't do it. Becky thought she did, though, and that was all it took.

When Karen snapped over Tracy, she burned a car and Tracy thought she'd killed Amy. Becky took a sledgehammer to the Barlow house though not to Tracy herself. Are we spotting a pattern? Tracy likes to wind up her so-called rivals for Steve and it always lands her with a backlash far worse than she expected. Tracy didn't cause this outburst, mind you, but because she'd spent so much time blackmailing and emotionally throwing the red rag in front of the Becky Bull, it was Becky's natural conclusion and after a slow burn and a confrontation with Kylie, who rightly pointed out she would never have deliberately caused Max to go into care, she was off with a sledgehammer.

Ken should have called the police the minute that glass broke. David had a great time recording it for evidence. oh heck, Becky, don't break the Barlow table! That's original props, that is! But Steve was too late confessing to save the table.

I can understand Becky leaving him no matter what Steve tried to say to justify it.  I can  understand why he got to the end of his rope and really, it's better that it's all out in the open. Tracy can't hold it over their heads anymore which can't be a bad thing. But why did the Barlows NOT have Becky charged for the damage? (or maybe they will next week and if not, they better take it out of Steve's hide!)

Aside from the Graeme and Xin filler, and a few plot holes, It's a big Yay from me. I'm used to soaps and plot holes and you need to suspend disbelief to some extent for storylines like this. They kept me interested, they kept me coming back every night to see how it would all come out. I was most interested in the Stapegate story, with the McDonald's coming in as runner up.

Judging from a lot of comments this week that I've read on t'other blog, there will be a lot of negativity but surely there are a lot of kudos out there too?


Anonymous said...

It was certainly more riveting than lasts years big week, I was at the edge of my seat all week.

I actually buy social services removing Max for 1) they violated the court order 2) if Kylie does want him back they would have been removing him from the MacDonalds anyway since legally they don't have a leg to stand on. Kylie's is the one with the rights if she wants him and can take care of him, she will get him over Steve and Becky. 3) Generally the people who buy kids don't usually do so for altruistic reasons(they usually want a punching bag or worse) so that raises a major red flag. Plus the fact that Kylie is saying they bullied an intimidated her in to doing it in the first place would make it even more worrying. Max didn't seem very happy to me the constant tension seem to be affecting him badly and it would be easy to interpret that as a child who is being bullied into submission. Its generally better to be safe than sorry in these situations, its too high a price if things are really wrong in a house.

I just hope we see some of Peter's reaction to this by next week. He and Leanne have been oddly absent from this storyline for too long now. I half expected for him to be the one to come charging in and rip the sledgehammer out of Becky's hands.

Tvor said...

Yu make a good point about if Kylie wanted Max back. She's saying she does but I'm still not overly convinced she does. It could be that she's just scared and thinks she can't be a good mother if she does have him back. And there is a sort of case for Becky bullying Kylie and preventing her seeing Max. She hasn't tried very hard but Becky *is* very reluctant to let her see Max anyway.

I did wonder why Becky didn't accuse David or Gail of calling Social Services though. The way David had been going on, and the fact that he knew about the money, could have pointed the finger at him very easily even though, of course, the viewer knew it was Steve all along.

Anonymous said...

Steve and Becky did not violate the Court Order, Kylie did. Social Services are legally obliged to act in the best interests of the child and removing him from a stable caring home while they have "meetings" is clearly not in Max's best interest. Kylie's "rights", (whatever they are), are also totally irrelevant.

Max was on the brink of being taken into care when Kylie first turned up and it was Becky that helped to convince the Court to let him stay with his mother. Kylie's subsequent actions have hardly shown that the Court was right to give her one last chance.

The claim that people spend large sums of money to buy children to use as punchbags is complete nonsense.

Anonymous said...

Its not "nonsense" its a disturbing and depressingly common fact. Thousands of children are sold and then abused and exploited in he UK alone. The people who have the connections to buy children are usually crooks who wouldn't be allowed to adopt in the first place. Most of these kids fall through the crack of social services and many of them never escape their abusers.
You don't have to take my word for it here it is in black and white Although I warn its a depressing read

Anonymous said...

That report is about child trafficking, which is an entirely different issue and has been recently covered by EastEnders.

Anonymous said...

No its not a separate issue its still buying a human being which is unethical and illegal for all the reasons I have already given. You dismissed the idea of child buying altogether which is inaccurate. Again most people who find themselves in a position of having to buy a child cannot get one legally for a damn good reason. They were turned down for adoption because they were trying to replace what was lost rather than really wanting a child and it seems like that's what their continuing to do. Steve and Becky may have had good intentions but they have lied to social services repeatedly and that alone would have given them cause to remove Max. After all if they're willing to buy a child what else are they capable of and what else could they be hiding?

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