Saturday, 3 December 2016
State of the Street - November 2016
I just realized it's December so this is a tad late. Let's get straight on with things with a wrap up of November's storylines.
So Maria got arrested for Caz's murder, when they don't even have a body. How is that even possible? A bit of blood in the flat and on a pair of scissors and a rug. Caz is looney enough to have stabbed herself enough to get the blood to smear around, I suppose and it's in Maria's flat so there's going to be Maria's DNA everywhere. But how can you charge someone if there's no body? And when everyone already knows that Caz is a liar and manipulator, why would they instantly assume Maria would do it no matter that Caz put on a winning performance, pretending to be scared of Maria. I suppose we haven't had a "wrongly jailed" character in, oh, maybe 2 or 3 years so it's time for another one. (The last one was Peter on trial for killing Tina, wasn't it?). The plot holes in this storyline are threatening to topple over and crush the set and every episode this continues, they mount up more and more and they continued straight to the end of the storyline.
I'll add in a bit here from the first December episode so that I don't have to keep moaning about this one next month. Kate took one look at one of Maria's credit card statements, those that the police looked at and dismissed and immediately connected a charge for a camera with something Caz had done in the past for a friend. She next immediately assumed said camera was in the flat and that Caz was watching so she pretended to Aidan like she still loved Caz, knowing Caz would come back to the flat which she did using a key that shouldn't have fit anymore but did. Aidan came running at the last second bringing the police seconds after him even though they're attitude towards the amateur detective club was less than respectful. The snotting detective dragged Caz out in cuffs without the least semblence of a thank you or "we're sorry we didn't believe you". Tossers.
Looks like Rita is taking yet another waif under her wing, this time it's Gemma. I rather like that she can see the good in some of these young women who really need a strong positive influence in their lives. Hayley was good at that as well but Rita was at it a long time before Hayley. You may recall she gave Leanne a job when she was a tearaway teen in the late 90s. She was Jenny's foster mother but also a mentor there, and with Tina as well. These young actresses must be thanking all the acting gods there are to be working with a classy veteran like Barbara Knox.
It didn't take Ken long to be sent home from the hospital to recuperate, much as I suspected. He still has to take it easy and needs some rehab but he's obviously well enough to take care of his own personal needs and climb the stairs to his bedroom. Now his house is full of Barlows and sundry relatives. I wondered where they were putting them all. Now that Sonia's been run out of town on the tails of Sharif who showed his true colours (yellow!) by the avenging Yasmeen, some of them could be lodged in there, I guess. I wonder why yellow is the colour we assign to cowards?
Adam has grown into the arrogant son you always knew Mike Baldwin would sire even if he never brought Adam up and there weren't many years that he was around. I remember Adam at the last time around as a stubborn, not to bright kid that wanted nothing to do with the factory and then took tantrums after he sold it off to the Connors. Now, he's on the street for about a minute and a half and strolling into Underworld like he owns the place, helping himself to whiskey when that office has changed many hands and has been rebuilt once or twice since Mike sat in it. How would he possibly know where the bottle was kept? And when he was in Canada, he was very ill for quite awhile. There's been no mention of it, not every someone to ask how he's been feeling.
Adam is proving to be as much of a "Jack the Lad" as his father and he's already shown that he's on the dodgey side. Is he really a solicitor/lawyer? because he's not acting like one, having the rental car stolen as an insurance scam. He's also taking great pleasure in winding up Daniel who is very opposite in personality and pushing back against Robert who is closer in personality, ostensibly in defence of Tracy.
And Daniel was apparently abandoned by his flighty mother at the age of 15 which would have been a number of years ago now but yet has never said anything to Ken in all this time? We know he's been in touch, not a lot but Daniel has been mentioned from time to time. Personality wise, he seems the most like Ken at this point, bookish and priggish and secretive. He's got something going on but we don't know what it is yet.
Luke and Tracy had a one night stand. I was very afraid it was going to be another actual relationship, cougar that she can be (remember Ryan?) but apparently not. He offered to call her and she said no thanks. But they both very clearly enjoyed the encounter. I can live with a one night stand. Luke is only in his 20s and most single young men will take anything offered on a plate like that and let's face it. Tracy's been lonely since Robert isn't warming her bed.
Anna is slowly recovering and decided not to live with Kevin for the time being. It kind of feels like this storyline is starting to meander a bit. I'm quite surprised that Anna is home so soon, to tell you the truth. I envisioned months of hospitalization with multiple skin graft operations. Did they do the whole thing all in one go? Is that even possible? Will we see Anna go through more operations like it would be in reality? I suppose being in her own flat means she can use the chair lift instead of navigating the steps up into the flat. We saw her with a wheelchair in the flat so that's probably what she's using to come and go.
I like that they've got her fearful of going outside, very self conscious of people staring and of being on the receiving end of pity and well meaning platitudes that only end up feeling shallow to her. She felt safe in the hospital and feels very exposed to the scary world outside. It's something that I think they should explore a bit further, this post traumatic fear she's got.
David seems to have settled right down now. That accident and near miss with Lily was the reality check he needed. It has knocked the rage and anger out of him and he can now get on with his grief in a more natural way. He can be there to help his kids through theirs as well. I hope he gets his backside in gear to adopt Max, though, or Callum's mother could come a-calling, trying to get custody. I keep expecting it but surely a judge would look at the circumstances and not take Max from his family. It would still cause upset and stress but ultimately, it would probably come out in David's favour with perhaps some visitation for Marian. Then it will be completely forgotten as per usual.
He as much as killed Michael but since nobody knew the two men saw each other, he's got an "out" for now. I worry about Todd, though, because Todd knew about the scam and participated in it. I think he was hoping to bring Phelan down from the inside but now that he's part of it, he can't do that without implicating himself and Phelan knows it. I expect Phelan will be brought down eventually but I'm really enjoying the character and the actor so I hope he's around for awhile longer.
It was inevitable that Michael die. From spoilers, we knew the actor was leaving the show but even if we didn't, let's face it. Almost all of Gail's husbands are dead. It's becoming a very dark joke. And they were also planning to renew their vows, happy ever after. That cannot be allowed on soaps, with the essence of Doom shadowing all happy couples. Michael's fate was sealed when he and Gail re-proposed and they hugged for joy under the fireworks of Bonfire night.
Sharif's affair with Sonia came out in a very realistic manner. Yasmeen overheard her best friend and husband talking about it and though she tried to keep it in, at the engagement party she lost control and threw it at them in front of all their friends. The anger and pain, the post-mortem discussion she had with her husband, then hiding her humiliation away from her friends, it all felt so real. I hope we keep Yasmeen in the show and she becomes a pillar of the community, a strong and independent single woman.
Zeedan asked Rana to marry him, almost as a way of making himself feel better. I never bought this couple. He had a crush on her and I always thought she was just toying with him, enjoying the attention but not investing any real emotion in him. They are very different people and her attitude about their shared religion is far less serious than his and that can be a make or break thing. But after Sharif's affair came out, it really affected Zeedan badly which you can very well understand. He's still young enough to worry that all relationships never last if one that he thought was stable could. He split with Rana who was furious and then he couldn't talk her around when his grandmother talked sense to him. It was up to Leanne to persuade her to marry him.
Mind you, the day after the wedding they didn't seem all loved up like you would think they would be. I suppose that might have something to do with spending your wedding night in the same house as your grandmother. Rana's got experience, maybe it was a bit off putting for Zeedan who likely had never had sex before, since he was quite strict with his religious practices. Immediately, he's making noises about babies and she's in panic mode, stealing birth control pills from the clinic when she's probably already taking them, or one would assume she is. Perhaps not, though, since she's been with Zeedan and knew he wouldn't take that step before marrying her.
Anyway, it was a pretty good month over all, the Maria and Caz bits aside. Events in December should be good with Christmas in the offing, much better than last year when we thought it would be little Hope's last one. There are Barlows to argue over the turkey, Platts to get on with things while grieving Michael and Kylie, Roy and Cathy's wedding to look forward to, and lots of secrets to be uncovered.
Tvor (Twitter @tvordlj)