Wednesday 30 November 2011
I really liked Leanne and Peter and Simon as a family. They've managed to overcome an awful lot and still stick together. They're a far better family than Peter and Carla and Simon would be even if Carla discovers her inner maternal gene. I don't think Simon will take to her easily if it goes so far as to have the three of them move in together. There's no word on the horizon yet what the outcome of this all will be but if and when Leanne finds out about an affair with Carla, will she be able to get past it? Or will she take it as Karma after her fling with Nick?
Carla always seems to me to be the epitome of "The Other Woman" with her dark, exotic and sultry looks. She's not the type you would expect to see in the kitchen with a pinny on, busy baking chocolate chip cookies is she? She always looks more like the glamour girlfriend of a footballer. Leanne, on the other hand, is pretty but less glamourous but does have that homemaker ability.
Both women are strong and both women came from a rough background. Both are flawed and have made some big mistakes in the past but have clawed their way past them to make better lives for themselves. They've loved, lost, loved and lost again. Leanne is softer, less brittle. Carla just might have the edge over Leanne in determination.
What of Peter? Certainly, he's not a strong man. He's definitely got parent issues. He lost his mother when he was a child and his father sent him away to be brought up by his grandparents. It felt like he was abandoned by both parents. He seems to have inherited his father's gene for the lack of ability to resist women and he's carrying a chip on his shoulder the size of the Blackpool tower. He's an alcoholic, one still prone to lapses. He means well, but he doesn't always manage it. He's a screw up and a bit of a nightmare but somehow, I always thought that he and Leanne really fit together.
Carla seems to have touched something inside him. Maybe it's two damaged people reaching out, trying to keep each other from going under. For her, it does seem like she's grown to love him. This is at least the second time she's fallen hard for a man that she shouldn't. The first time, she was with Paul Connor when she fell for his brother and this time, she's gone for Peter who's married. She runs to other men that she doesn't really love (Tony, Frank) when she can't have the ones she really wanted and look how that's turned out? Also, two of her lovers/husbands have died with rumours of a death in store for Frank as well. Should Peter be worried?
Each coupling has their fans. Some do think Peter and Carla are better together than Peter and Leanne but I don't. It makes me sad that the little Barlow family may be split up. I'm also not surprised that Peter will start drinking again, though it's unknown as to whether it will be a long stretch or just a short lapse. Peter being the type of person he is, is more likely to fall off the wagon numerous times. He's weak when it comes to resolve for anything and seems to be able to resist anything except temptation.
If Peter leaves Leanne for Carla, I suppose it will provide storyline ramifications to play out into the future, which is what they need. How will Carla cope with a very unruly Simon who will resent her for ousting Leanne from his life? We'll definitely see little Simon acting out, maybe running away, getting into trouble. Will Leanne fight for Peter? Will she even want to ? Or will the classic soap twist happen all over again, same as when Liam was going to leave Maria for Carla... Will Leanne get pregnant just as the marriage crumbles? Carla may see her nightmare happening all over again. This time, though, maybe Leanne will refuse to take Peter back and raise the baby on her own.
In soaps, it all goes around in circles. There are only so many storylines you can tell but you can tell them each in different ways. People complain about repetitive storylines. Why do they never complain about yet another love triangle? They are the stuff soaps are made of, with standard plots and plot devices. Marriages will always fall to the influence of another woman or man. Babies will be conceived via a fling with someone, usually ill-advised. Alcoholics usually fall off the wagon. Murderers die or go to jail. Long time "villains" (like Mike Baldwin) always have some redeeming qualities. Some people are perpetual losers in love.
Thus, Peter falls off the wagon and is going to have an affair. So it goes.
edited to add: On a very related note, Inside TV has a great interview with Jane Danson and Chris Gascoyne on just this very thing!