The Big Bang this month was the seige of the knicker factory and the demise of villain Tony Gordon who escaped prison to take his revenge. Odd, because when he turned himself in he was quite contrite. I guess prison makes you hard! Gives you lots of time to stew and really, a vengeful Tony makes far more sense than a docile one, doesn't it? He was helped by the deceptively docile Robbie who was a bit hapless in the end, trusting Tony who then not only stabbed him in the back, figuratively, but shot him in the chest! Yes, Tony, who always got other people to do his dirty work for him. It's not without precedent, he nearly strangled Jed Stone though that wasn't premeditated. It does prove Tony's capable of snapping and he sure went over the edge this time! Clearly, he'd lost his mind. Grey O'Brien really made me believe in Tony's insanity, though, I have to say. Excellent stuff.
Plot holes? Oh yes. Tony set fire to the factory. All that polyester and silk should have had the whole factory ablaze in minutes but it took a lot longer than you'd think! And the factory exploded. Now I'm no chemical expert, but I didn't think silk was *that* flammable! Tony did have some petrol in cans but it looked as if he'd used it all when he soaked the place. Maybe he had more behind the door that we didn't see. After all, he did ask Robbie to help him unload and if it was just a couple of jerry cans, Tony could have done that easily. Ah, so what? Plot holes? We gotta million of em but it didn't really matter to me. I really enjoyed it. The aftermath, Nick scrambling to keep the business open, and then clearly he was planning to undercut Carla out of the factory. She's going to be pissed! Tender TooTall Trevor looking after Carla? Awww! He's not supposed to be staying on the show and that's too bad. Not only is he really good to her, but he's cute!
The other major storyline was Gail's trial. More plot holes, of course, but it's television and you have to allow for that. There was never any doubt that Gail would get off. I don't care that they filmed two endings to keep the media guessing. A character like Gail, a long term, long suffering but popular character would never be sent down for something she did not do. If we knew that the actress was leaving the show, then perhaps but she'd have to get sent down for something she *did* do. It's soap law. The innocent are not convicted and the guilty always get their just desserts. Which makes it harder to swallow the spoiler that says Tracy Barlow is eventually going to be back on the Street. She killed Charlie in cold blood and got 15 years. Then she lied on the stand to try to get Gail convicted in return for a transfer to a posh open prison. I don't think she was nicked for perjury but she did pay for it. Prisoners' justice. In real life, had she been beaten up by her fellow inmates, you probably wouldn't have recognized her bruised and battered face for all the injuries.
So Gail's out of jail and trying to get her life back on track. Meanwhile David's life is spinning off the rails again. He was a great support to his mother, we all thought maybe he'd changed or grown up a bit. But he's just found out that his best friend and the ex-girlfriend that he never could forget have just got together. This is going to fester and boil inside him. Spoilers have him sexually assaulting her but if they do that, they can never redeem the character and the actor will have no future. You can't have a long time character do that and be forgiven. I hope the spoilers are exaggerated or skewed as is often the case.
The up side of this is that we've seen lots more of Graeme, one of the best characters to come on the scene in years! He's quirky, he's honest, he's had a dodgey past but is making a better life for himself. He's a bit of a backward, awkward geek, with an air of innocence and a tiny frisson of street smarts too. The downside of this is Tina.
Putting that awful spoiler/rumour aside, I think they've ruined the character. She was sparky and bright when she arrived and she was just what David needed at the time. I do think it was right that they broke up the couple because she couldn't live with David's lies and jealousy. I also think she and Jason were a good couple but it was not all that bright of her to hook up with David's ex-brother-in-law knowing what David can be like. She snogged Nick too but she didn't know who he was and now she's in bed with Graeme. All of her relationships seem very rushed and very slapper-ish, don't you think? I have a feeling we won't have Tina around for the long term because there's only so much you can do with her besides throwing her at every available man on the Street. They won't get rid of her until she's had a stint behind the bar of the Rovers, though. All pretty females seem to end up there eventually, even if just for a short spell.
I did like how they put her in the Kabin as a foil for Nozzer and a faux-daughter for Rita. Rita's had history taking troubled young women under her wing. You may recall Sharon and later Leanne as well.
Then there's Mad Mary Taylor who didn't exactly tie up Norris and bundle him off to the moody moors for a cottage holiday but she did her best to keep him there, deep into a stack of magazine competitions until he ran for his little life, dragging his wheelie case behind him. He accused her of kidnapping, fearing for his life at one point but the next thing you know, they're sharing sherbet lemons at the trial and making friendly bets on the outcome. We also saw her helping out in the Kabin (but Rita's back, so why was Mary there glaring daggers at Tina when Rita re-hired her?) It makes no sense at all. Norris is not one to let go of a grudge. Meanwhile, Mary is clearly bonkers, and getting moreso as time goes on. We can see that. I mean, a Princess Leia hairdo at her age? As the month ends, she's latched on to Hayley to live out her wedding fantasies. Hayley is too nice to say no and she's going to regret this, mark my words.
Aww, but it's about time Hayley and Roy tied the knot legally! I'm dead chuffed, I am and I can't wait to see the rest of the wedding planner storyline and ceremony. I may even buy a hat!
I don't know about any of you but the duo adoption storyline is dragging and is starting to be boring. I believe Tracy Barlow has a bit more input into that and perhaps we'll get her back again to stir things up, otherwise this is going to be a dead duck of a story. I'd like to see Becky find a troubled kid, maybe breaking into the pub or cafe or something and having that child, a girl like Becky used to be, find a place in the McDonald family eventually.
A few words about Nick (Slap me) Tilsley. The recast with Ben Price is great! It's great to have a Nick finally portrayed by an actor. Who can act. He's very good at making Nick a smug, arrogant, pr....att. ;) Nick is enjoying winding people up, Peter Barlow over Leanne, and anyone else he can get a rise out of. He's making an attempt at stealing Carla's business but he'll find her a formidable enemy, I think. He gave in to Natasha's relentless pursuit, for lack of anyone else around that he fancied but it's clear he's not that into her. Clear to us, but not to her and she's continuing to push him into more and more of a committment while he continues to treat her with a very offhand manner. It's going to end badly but will he take any responsibility? Will he heck!
In many ways he's exactly like his late father, Brian. Self centered and pig headed (well he gets that bit from his mother, too!) We have needed this sort of character since we lost Mike Baldwin. Nick is neither as ruthless nor quite as charming as Mike, though he'd like to be. Mike's cocky, cheeky attitude and shit-eating grin were born out of the east end of London and he was a tough survivor. Pampered Nick just doesn't quite have the cojones or the desperation born out of a deprived background to carry that off but he'll give it all he's got, anyway. With this actor, I think Nick could be a good long term character that we'll see change and evolve over the years if the actor sticks with it.
I don't understand why they've given Dev and Sunita Number 7. They had a huge lovely house with a garden for the twins though I can see that a flat isn't as convenient. And where will Maria live when she comes back? Oh, I know, from the storyline point of view, she's staying in Ireland but the actress is on maternity leave and as far as I know, she's going to be back. I can't see her and Kirk and the baby sharing the little flat over the salon for an extended period. I also wonder what excuse they'll make up to have her come back and stay. I guess we'll find out.
John Stape's schemes and plans are about to come crashing down around his and Fiz's ears. There just aren't enough words to describe how much I dislike this character! He's manipulative, dishonest, passive aggressive, selfish and probably severely narcissistic. It seems like he believes it's one law for him and one for everyone else. Is he a danger junkie? Maybe. He's stolen the identity of a former coworker and didn't think he would get found out but little by little, it's all going to be chipped away. The first strings are being frayed by the presence of Charlotte Hoyle, a former co-worker who has uncovered his secret and is joyfully holding the lever to the guillotine over Stape's head. What is she going to make him do to keep her sweet? She's another one that's completely bonkers and I'm going to totally enjoy watching him get his comeuppance.
The only downside is Fiz, whom they've ruined by making her spineless and at the mercy of Stape's emotional blackmail over and over. I have to say, kudos to the actor, Graeme Hawley, however, he's very good in the part! Any of the criticisms I usually have about characters I dislike are character-oriented only, for the most part. It's usually due to excellent performances by the actors that make the characters come alive. Good writing, too, even if I don't always like the storylines. They usually are appropriate to the characters.
Molly seems to have gone walkabout. I guess we'll have to wait for Sally's return (in a few weeks' time) for more googly eyed thousand yard stares she shoots to Kevin across the road when she's fluffling the floral displays. More moping and grumbling from Kevin as he frets about the baby that might be his and all his fancy footwork to keep Sally from finding out. By God, I hope she does and throws Kevin out on his ear! First, though, she's going to have to deal with the fact that her younger daughter is gay! Stayed tuned for that later this summer.
Anyway, June was good, July is going to be fun with Hayley's wedding plans having Mary as the Wedding Planner. Liz is going to find a new fella in Izzy's dad and he already seems like he might be just the right sort for her. I like Izzy so far though there's more romantic chemistry with Gary than there is with Kirk. The Platt fallout to Graeme and Tina's romance is going to be bubbling. Nick is bringing the factory back to life and having to deal with Carla. Stay tuned!