Thursday, 18 August 2016

Nick Tilsley, Master of Passive Aggression

Watching Nick lay a shedload of guilt on Leanne this week and then proceed to flirt with the hen party, keeping a close eye on how Leanne was reacting had my blood boiling. I've often seen Nick use passive aggressive methods over the years to manipulate Leanne and it is really a nasty side of his personality.

Leanne kept pushing him away because she's pregnant with someone else's baby so he made his speech, forlorn face, resigned to her never loving him back as much as he loves and always has loved her. Never mind, I'll get over it. It'll take time but if that's what you want, I'll go along with it. *sigh*  All the while, Leanne's tearing up and feeling more and more guilty because she does love him and wants to be back with him but can't deal with telling him about the baby.

And that's another thing. I do believe that Leanne is the love of Nick's life. He has loved others, and I believe he did love Carla. She was even more hard work than Leanne could be! But for him, it always comes back to Leanne. But while I do believe she was over the moon about him when she was 16, caught up in the excitement of it all, running away to get married, I also don't believe he was the love of her life. He was just her first love and I always felt that when he insisted on her having an abortion when they were first married back in the 90s, he broke something in her. Add on to that, he put her in harm's way when he set her up to be the one that met the man that killed his father. That hurt and betrayal never really left her and he never truly apologized for it, either.

Every time Leanne went back to Nick after they'd both grown up, it felt like she was either running from commitment (the affair when she was about to marry Peter) or rebounding (after her divorce from Peter). I felt like she settled for Nick. She does care for him, he's familiar and safe in her mind, and she probably does love him after a fashion but Nick pushes and manipulates and uses passive aggressive methods to do that.

Now it seems she's planning to leave town, likely the best move considering she needs that distance from Steve and Michelle and it's not really a spoiler to guess that Nick will come running to persuade her to stay. Then when he finds out about Steve being the father of the baby, it'll all start up again. Snarky remarks, testosterone pushing him to lock horns with Steve on the mountain top, metaphorically, because it's all about him, always has been.

I'm sure there are Nick and Leanne fans out there, but I'm not one of them. If Robert hadn't turned out to be a bit of an arse, I'd have said they would have made a much better couple and I'd certainly bet Leanne could stand up to Tracy better than Carla did. You don't mess with a Battersby. Alas, I think Nick and Leanne are probably Corrie's Ken and Deirdre for the new era, the couple that will go around and around, on and off many times over the years and end up settling for each other in their old age if both characters stick around.

Tvor (Twitter @tvordlj)

Thursday, 4 August 2016

The Achilles Heel

With the latest rumours suggesting that Charlie Lawson may bring Big Jim McDonald back to Coronation Street, there are fans jumping for joy and other fans cringing. I'm one of the former. People accuse the character of Jim as being a "one trick pony", coming in to do the same things over and over. He'll try to get Liz back, she'll be tempted, he'll mess up, argue with Steve, probably do something stupid and leave. Lather, rinse, repeat.

And maybe it will go down like that, with lots of Jim's sayings to pepper the pot. "The Big House", "So it is", "I'll tell ye this and I'll tell ye no more", "Ach to be sure" and calling Liz "Elizabeth". It ought to be a drinking game! Fans of Jim squeal when one of his familiar sayings slips out. You feel let down if one's missing, in fact.

As far as being a one trick pony, when I look back, there are many, many characters that are just the same. Stan Ogden, anyone? (Drink, cower under Hilda's wrath, cook up schemes, evade work where possible. Repeat. And the same could be said about Jack Duckworth)

But the main reason I would love to see Jim back for a visit is the chemistry that has always been there between Lawson and Bev Callard as Jim and Liz McDonald. It's there with Simon Gregson as his son, as well. They all three just leap off the screen when they're in scenes together. It's not just familiarity that comes with acting together for a long time, either because it was evident even in the early days of the McDonald clan.

Jim and Liz were always a fiery couple. Jim had a quick temper but Liz had a volatile one as well. She was never cowed by him and stood up to him frequently, especially if she was defending one of her lads against their father's rages. It became too much, Liz started to look elsewhere, and they divorced but Jim is the love of Liz's life. He's edgy and a bit dangerous and she likes that in her men. I think that's why she seemed so suited to Tony Stewart. They are exciting and she knows they're probably going to let her down in the long run but she just can't resist.

Jim swept her off her feet as a teenager and they married when she got pregnant. She may have regretted that she was more or less a single parent because of his duties in the army but they had that passion that never really left and that's the passion she remembers when he comes around, even after years away. They fit together like two halves of a pair of scissors. 

Will we see Jim return? There's always a possibility as long as Jim is alive and the producer and writers cook up a story. As much as Steve and Liz keep washing their hands of Jim and his monumental mistakes, Jim is still Steve's dad and Liz will always be in Jim's heart. She'll always be tempted even though she knows he's not good for her. Jim is Amy's granddad and they love each other. I think conversations between Jim and Amy as she is these days would be a joy to behold.

I'm definitely in the Yay camp. I'll tell you this and I'll tell you no more, Bring Back Big Jim!

Tvor (Twitter @tvordlj)

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