Wednesday 1 May 1996
Tonight's episode kicked off with Ashley sneaking furtively out of the Barlow household first thing in the morning. He had something of a "pleased with himself" smile which suggested he had something of an active night the night before (nudge, nudge etc .....).
Kevin started the day with something of a gripe with Gail at the cafe. The topic of his moaning was Don and his constant presence in the garage the day before. This situation would be the cause of problems and friction before the day was out.
We also saw Dreary making the rounds tonight and as usual she was on the lookout for a permanent job. She ended up in the travel agent shop talking to Alec about getting a break and going to London to see Tracy. During the course of the conversation the subject of a job came up and Dreary found herself in full time employment as a result of the conversation.
Steve meanwhile was wandering around like a spare part in a much more deflated manner than usual and was finding family members not as supportive as they could be. Jim wasn't constructive really and Andy and his girlfriend Ann attempted to be supportive although despite meaning well he didn't come across to sincerely.
In fact this was where things took an unexpected turn, Des returned home in a somewhat bad temper. He began taking verbal pot shots at the McDonald family which immediately angered Andy leading to a conflict which left Andy moving out. Des it would seem bore a severe grudge against the entire McDonald clan for the problems they had caused him.
Ashley meanwhile was back round at Ken's for second helpings of something or other :-). He was very much unstoppable in Kelly's presence and was constantly enquiring when baby Daniel would be asleep. He even went and helped himself to the use of Ken's shower and dressing gown. This was all going fine until Ken turned up. He had returned early from his conference and the situation he found was rather embarrassing. However Kelly's job with Ken and Daniel looked safe-ish, I would say.
Kevin and Don finally got to clear the air tonight and for a moment it looked like Kevin might walk out and leave the garage in the lurch. Kevin expressed his views that he didn't like being spied on by his new boss all the time. Whereas Don put across his point that he was new to the trade and was just learning what to do. Either way we got to see Don unleash his anger somewhat.
Steve ended the night going to see Fiona for what seemed to be a heart to heart. He was trying to say how his time with her was the best time of his life although for my money he was coming over most insincerely. It looked like he was trying to woo Fiona all over again as he kept trying to talk her into going upstairs although she was having none of it. They talked for a while, had a hug (which went no further) and Steve left looking a tad miffed.
Friday 3 May 1996
Focal point tonight was the beginnings of the trial of Steve and Vicky McDonald as the two of them went to court for an initial hearing. It was something of an opportunity for reconciliations tonight as we saw Jim and Liz make their way to the courthouse to at least offer some support for their errant son. Alec turned up to root for Vicky's corner as Uncle Nick prepared to guide her through the preliminaries.
Meanwhile in the street Kelly and Ashley had become the subject of gossip in the Street. This was made doubly unfortunate by the fact that Ken had returned early from his course. Now Kelly had to face something of a dressing down from Ken. She went to his house fully expecting to lose her job. However Ken took something of a fairly liberal attitude towards her and Ashley's behaviour although at the same time he wasn't condoning their behaviour.
We also saw Derek having a spot of car trouble and trying to get booked in at Don's garage. Kevin informed him he might be in for a wait as they were pushed out with work already. Nonetheless Derek put his car in Kevin's hands and used the excuse of a broken down car as the opportunity to do a bit of skiving. This only lasted a while anyway as Kevin located the parts for his car rather quickly. What didn't bode well was the fact that Don recommended his garage to Derek and I could possibly see Derek's employers taking up the offer as well.
Back at the court house Vicky was pleading guilty to the charges brought against her under the advice of Nick. Unlike her estranged husband Steve who stood there bare faced trying to plead innocent to the entire matter. It was deemed unwise that they have any contact with each other. After the initial hearing they did have a brief and very strained conversation with Steve looking as cool as ice over the entire matter. He cockily apologised to Vicky and she declared that she never wanted to see him again.
Away from the courthouse and back at home with Alec, Vicky confessed her fears over what would become of her if things went wrong in the case. Alec didn't try and dress the situation up and make things look pretty he was as honest as he could be about the situation. Meanwhile at the McDonald household there was little but bad feeling towards Steve for the stroke he had pulled in court against his wife. Liz was showing her vehement feelings towards Steve the most and she even went as far as to bar him from the family house. Jim came around to check Liz was O.K and they spoke of their errant sons behaviour.
Monday 6 May 1996
A few small storylines moved the story along in tonight's episode. Namely Jack and Fred were getting stressed for a start off. Betty's Hot Shot was sick and as a result was rapidly becoming something of a money pit for the people investing in it. This was made worse by the news being revealed that the horse would need to wait until next season before being able to race as it needed time to convalesce.
Jack had a brainwave to help out with this situation financially. Using a charity collecting tin Jack set up a "sick animal welfare" collection. This looked like it might be profitable until his little plot was nipped in the bud by Maud and Maureen who warned him what he was doing might just be a little more than illegal.
Young Jamie was doing the usual trick of driving his mother up the wall. Thus Trish managed to talk Bill Webster into taking him to a local football match. All well and good but Bill had planned to go for a few drinks with Kevin before the match so that was his plans scotched. However in the long run despite Jamie's complaints that they weren't going to see a top class game which involved the likes of Eric Cantona a good day was had by all.
Fred meanwhile paid Rita Sullivan a visit regarding the funeral of a mutual friend. Rita was taking the opportunity of a quiet day to do a stock-take. Fred interrupted her day to buy a condolences card.
Vicky meanwhile had shut herself away in Alec's shop in something of a depressed state. Already she was resigned to a fate of spending time in prison for her part in the conspiracy to pervert justice. Alec called in Uncle Nick to offer her some reassurance. However even he couldn't offer any cast iron guarantees to her remaining free when she went to trial.
Des apologised to Andy over his recent somewhat abrupt behaviour with him and his out of order comments regarding his family. The two of them parted on good terms it would seem as Des prepared for a day out on a picnic.
Steve at this point turned up at the McDonald household and faced his distrusting family. He pulled some good storytelling out of the bag and continued to plead his innocence over the impending court case. Liz's reception was as cold as ice as she didn't take in a word he said as truth. However despite the way his life was collapsing around his ears as a result of his actions she still took him in and gave him a roof over his head.
Wednesday 8 May 1996
The Duckworths were seriously looking at holidays tonight, with Jack's main concern being getting the cheapest deal he possibly could and looking at Alec Gilroy's Sunliners shop. However Alec was away in Manchester for the day so there was no opportunity for bartering. This left Jack with no holiday booked which meant Vera was complaining again. Whilst Jack was out holiday hunting she was supposed to be finding a relief manager for the pub in their absence. Her attempts to get Bill to look after the Rovers was a failure as he wouldn't take time away from his business.
Fred and Rita attended the funeral of their friend, along with the likes of Alf who was also representing the Square Dealer fraternity. Surprisingly the day passed well with Fred taking Rita for tea after the service. There we found out a little more about Fred's life as he spoke briefly about his wife. For a moment the humour was cast aside as he explained how he had an enjoyable marriage before his wife's death. He only let his guard drop for a moment before the usual brand of wit was returned to it's place.
Steve was trying to play the role of the good son to the limit with very limited success. Andy was very cool towards his brother whilst the only emotion shown from Liz was a short straw away from intense dislike. He continued to maintain his innocence over the impending court case. Steve made matters worse later in the day when he attempted to see Vicky in the travel agency shop. Vicky was most distressed and if not for Dreary getting rid of him then the police would have been called. Vicky insisted on Alec not being told but Jack inadvertently dropped it into the conversation later in the Rovers.
This sparked a confrontation when Alec went to the McDonald household and informed Steve that the police were going to be involved because of his breach of a court order. Liz's temper was not helped by finding out this little bit of information either.
As for Andy he was reconciled somewhat with Des tonight as he enjoyed a little comedic banter while Des tried to entertain his new girlfriend.
Friday 10 May 1996
The Duckworths were still in strife over their proposed holidays. They were still looking for somebody to look after the Rovers in their absence whilst they took a holiday in the sun. Of course while Jack was busy trying to arrange relief for the pub Vera was taking every opportunity to moan and whinge. However Jack's bacon was saved by Betty and Billy who after some deliberation announce they would look after the pub.
Trish was also on somewhat defensive form again as she listened in on a conversation between Maud and Alf and Maureen. The conversation revolved around money which upset Trish because she was still somewhat skint. When Jamie moaned about not getting sweets Trish got into her usual snappy mode.
Jamie meanwhile was showing some more of his usual free enterprise and getting some money out of Jack while he was at it. Jack was looking for somebody to look after his pigeons now he was going on holiday. His first and only option was young Jamie following his successful stint looking after the pigeons last time Jack was away. Jamie successfully bartered ten pounds from Jack and then went out and spent the lot on some shopping which pleased and appeased Trish no end.
Vicky was trying to stop Alec ringing the police over the visit from Steve the day previously. She seemed unsure of herself as Alec tried to convince her he could return and become a problem again. She was of the opinion that Steve had been intimidated into staying away.
By the way, Kelly was making noise about leaving the service of Ken Barlow because she was looking for a live in position as a nanny. Ken was caught on the hop somewhat and was basically sweet talked into the possibility of Kelly staying at his place as a live in nanny. When I say sweet talked, Ken said nothing whilst Kelly got all enthusiastic under her own steam.
Steve on the other hand was doing anything but thinking of staying away. In a performance which veered from *waaaay* over the top to pretty fair acting he showed his arrogant streak to it's full tonight. In the presence of Liz and Andy he made it clear he was going to see his wife and that in no uncertain terms he was unafraid of Alec. Liz pleaded with Steve to stay away because of the consequences of police action but Steve had never been so cocky and sure of himself as this.
In desperation Liz went to see her estranged husband Jim and they spoke about what they should do about Steve's activity. Liz wanted Jim to speak to Steve about the consequences of his behaviour and attitude.
Jim has become a very sorry shell of his previous self in recent times even his once confident and belligerent mannerisms were missing from his persona. He waited as Liz requested for Steve to return home and when he did Andy fled fearing an argument of old.
Jim and Steve spoke, although Jim's old fiery personality seemed to be dead and buried. He asked to Steve to ask him what he thought of him, and Steve honestly answered calling his father a loser. It was all hurtful stuff from there onwards with Jim trying to convince his errant son of the path he was taking. However Steve still blinded by his own over-confidence continued in his rabid self belief that he could win his wife back.
We saw next how Steve tried to achieve the winning of Vicky again. Steve turned up outside the travel shop and collared Vicky as she left. He instantly put on a most humble act. Claiming he wasn't asking for forgiveness or another chance just telling Vicky he deserved whatever was coming to him. Vicky was somewhat off guard in this situation expecting his more obvious arsenal of sly tactics but when Steve didn't push for a reconciliation or forgiveness she was left wondering what sort of game he was playing.
Monday 13 May 1996
There was some happenings in the street tonight. Starting with some of the more duller aspects, Derek intended to use his day off to do a spot of allotment work. Even though Mavis was attempting to coax him into doing some household chores he was still adamant on getting his gardening in order.
Over at the Rovers, Betty and Billy were settling in now Jack and Vera had finally made their way off to their holiday destination for a break. Betty as ever was the model of discipline who was fully intending to run a tight ship. However the only weak link in her plan was the errant Billy. Of course he meant well but his best laid plans never stuck true to form around a glass of beer. Thus Betty sent him off for the day to avoid any drunken behaviour from him later on.
Kelly was still pushing for an answer off of Ken over whether she could become his live in nanny. Ken was still somewhat flustered over the question and declined to answer at that time.
Alec caught up with Rita in the Kabin and had a proposition for her. He explained how disenchanted he was with his current job at Sunliners and he was determined to find something more suitable for himself. Thus he intended to go back into the theatrical agency game and he wanted Rita to go with him to check out a singer who he could have on his books. Rita accepted his offer more out of curiosity than anything else I think.
Whilst Alec was busy arranging a night out for them, Fred Elliot was arranging the weekend break for him and Rita he had been promising. He of course was using Sunliners to book a luxury coach trip to York. This allowed for some comic interaction between these two characters as they sniped at each other with veiled comments about each other's jobs.
Mike Baldwin was searching for Steve and Vicky as a source of back rent from the unit of his that they were using. Steve of course pleaded poverty and referred him to Vicky in an effort to pass the buck. Vicky also declined to be of any use to Mike on the monetary front. In a strangely uncharacteristic about turn Mike dropped the issue of back rent but wanted the unit cleared out be Wednesday. He seemed quite sympathetic towards Vicky during her current circumstances.
Derek meanwhile had decided to focus his gardening talents on growing prize vegetables. This was all on the mention from Billy Williams who had something of a history of winning gardening competitions. Derek took his usual over eager attitude and you could tell straight away this was going to become his next big obsession.
The big bombshell of the episode was a visitor to the corner shop who turned out to be none other than Reg's new lover. She entered the shop and began whipping up something of a verbal storm with a tirade against Maud and Maureen. She threw accusations of a loveless marriage and a battle-axe mother in law into the argument. This upset Maureen greatly but only fired her anger at the same time.
The two of them went over to Reg's flat and sat and talked. There it was discovered that Reg had delivered many half truths and lies about Maureen and her marriage to Reg. It was also discovered that Reg's new love was pregnant. Maureen took the news surprisingly calmly and they hammered out a divorce deal for her to take back to Reg. She would get his half of the shop in exchange for the flat and a divorce.
Wednesday 15 May 1996
The Street and it's residents ticked along at steady pace tonight with Billy taking the role of Mien Host a little bit too far in the Rovers. He meant well but alas as he was serving he found himself unable to resist the offers people were making to buy him drinks. With a friendly "I'll Just Have A Half" he soon began getting through copious amounts of beer. Alas Betty wasn't around to keep him in check either as she was in the back taking a well earned rest.
Billy's mood gradually became brighter and louder as the session and the beer wore on. Eventually he took it upon himself that it was time the Rovers was livened up and thus took to the piano to start a good old rousing knees up for the regulars. Betty soon came through to stop her husband's tomfoolery though and he was quickly relegated to the back.
Maureen was licking her wounds after the events of the last few days had taken their toll on her. It was made clear that the most hurtful thing about her current situation was that Reg was fathering someone else's child, which was something she could never give him. Maud was the voice of reassurance as always and slowly but surely this new "tough when necessary" Maureen seemed to be taking it in.
Rita was the subject of two people's attentions and those two people came in the shape of Fred and Alec. Fred joined Rita and Alec in the Rovers as they were discussing the previous night at the club where Rita had been helping Alec scout a potential singer he might sign for his new booking agency. Fred seemed somewhat put out by this, as at that point, he didn't know that Alec and Rita were purely platonic in their relationship. Of course he upset matters by quizzing Rita about her relationship with Alec and the proposed trip to York between the two of them was most definitely off.
Mike Baldwin's unit was in the throes of being cleared out with Trish waiting in the wings to begin cleaning it. Percy of course took it upon himself to be neighbourly and stick his nose in. Trish wound him up briefly claiming she was working the place over and selling whatever she got out of it.
Des was out on a date with his new girlfriend who it appeared from what was being said was a widow. She had an 11 year old daughter who she was telling Des about. Des seemed to be intent on rushing things in the relationship asking if he could meet the daughter and making assumptions that the relationship was going to be going somewhere. Definitely too pushy if you ask me.
Ken confided in Dreary about Kelly's wanting to move in as a live-in nanny for Daniel. Dreary voiced her opinion of what problems might arise and Ken seemed sure to turn Kelly down. However he was too late in the fact that Kelly had already invited her parents around to discuss the matter much to Ken's horror.
Friday 17 May 1996
A number of storylines were tackled tonight, and I'll kick off with Billy who was suffering the wrath of Betty. His previous night's antics had driven his wife to the point of considering a divorce. Poor Billy was in no shape to put up a fight either as he was nursing the mother of all hangovers. Try as he might throughout the day he was unable to calm his angry wife.
However help was at hand in the shape of Raquel who unwittingly came to Billy's rescue with the aid of her aromatherapy skills. Taking Betty into the back of the pub they sat in a darkened room and with the appropriate soft music playing in the background Raquel worked her magic with the oils. Thus Betty emerged in fine and forgiving form much to Billy's relief.
Derek had set about his plans to grow his prize turnip and was readily preparing his garden. Much to the amusement of Des and Martin he was talking to his seedlings. In fact speaking of Des he was beginning what looked like the latest in a long line of wind ups. Peering into Derek's garden he announced he was going to start growing turnips himself. He announced that because of his north east background he comes from prime growing territory and he had with a bag of his father's "magic" growing formula.
This of course sent Derek into something of a blind panic and to soothe his worries he hurried into the Rovers. There he met Fred Elliot who began questioning him about Rita and any potential male friends she had in the offing. Derek passed on his opinion of Rita as something of a "man-eater" type. After all she had been widowed more than once.
Once Mavis found about this conversation she was horrified and was determined to undo any potential damage done by Derek. However Derek's words had inspired only a positive response in Fred. He renewed his invite to York for Rita and she accepted, much to Mavis's relief. In fact what Fred revealed was that he liked something of a "cruel streak" in his women. Something which Derek had led him to believe Rita possessed.
Trish was heading for troubled waters as she spent the day cleaning out Baldwin's unit. She was spanning out the job as much as possible so she could afford to give Jamie a treat. Unfortunately she was unaware that she was being spied upon by the DSS who were looking for evidence to stop any claimant working. At the end of the day Trish did get paid - but at what cost as the DSS men had all the evidence they needed.
Kelly prepared for her mother's visit to the Barlow household in something akin to a state of panic. Her attitude towards Ken left something to be desired as she shouted at him for his mode of dress being a tad to casual for the presence of her mother. When Kelly's mother arrived she wasted no time in allowing us to see she was nothing but a total snob. Making comparisons between Kelly's post as a nanny and that of her relative's who was a nanny for a posh family with a job that contained all the trimmings including skiing and the like.
Ken however soon had his fill of Kelly's mother reading comparisons between him and this other family and began to tell her how proud she should be of Kelly looking after Daniel the way she had done. This had something of a disarming effect on her mother and the situation ended quite well with Kelly now looking like a permanent fixture.
By the way Des was also showing off his new girl friend in the Rovers tonight. Raquel began dropping remarks about her still having a wedding ring on. However Des put her right and shut her up when he revealed her husband was dead.
Monday 20 May 1996
Amongst the better storylines tonight was the one with involving Fred and his errant nephew Ashley. It was Kelly's day to move into Ken's house and she had recruited Ashley to help with the moving duties. He had hired a van for the job and had craftily lied to his uncle by phoning into work sick.
Fred had believed the ruse and as a result Ashley had hired a van and they were now in the process of moving some of Kelly's belongings into the house. However things were not to progress as smoothly as the two young lovebirds had anticipated. Without Ashley as a delivery boy he was having to do the pie rounds himself and one port of call for him was the Rovers.
As Fred left the Rover's he bumped into Ashley just in the process of taking another load from the van. A volley of excuses was immediately forthcoming from Kelly but Ashley seemed determined to stand his ground and tell the truth. As the two began to argue Ashley began to dig deep for verbal ammunition against his uncle. Mentioning Fred's misdemeanours in the shop with such accusations as "wandering hands" and "wandering eyes" being the order of the day. Basically Fred was being painted as a lecherous old man of the first order. This did rattle Fred somewhat as Ashley mentioned how he might tell Rita.
Elsewhere in the street Des was preparing for the evening ahead as he was going to meet his new girlfriend's 13 year old daughter for the first time. He was asking none other than Martin Platt for his thoughts on how to impress a teenager. The jaded Martin told him his best bet was to lavish money on them and take them to a burger bar. Des took all this on board for later as he finished his drink in the Rovers.
In the McDonald household Steve was in somewhat buoyant mood despite the threat of the court case hanging over him. He was also trying to tap a loan out of his mother for petrol for the car. Despite everyone trying to get him to face the gravity of the situation he still seemed relatively sure of himself. Meanwhile on the flip-side of the equation Vicky gradually seemed to be falling apart as the case loomed closer.
She was wandering round Weatherfield in something of a depressed daze and accidentally hearing Jim bad mouthing her didn't help matters either. What Jim was actually saying was that Vicky had to an extent orchestrated her own downfall in being too weak and giving in to his demands and desires for her wealth. Basically Jim's credo was that Steve should have stuck with Fiona because Fiona was capable of keeping him on a tight leash.
Vicky tried to defend herself against Jim's accusations but when she got on her high horse somewhat he stepped his argument up a gear which caused her to flee in tears. Her attempts to seek solace with various residents of the Street (Raquel and Trish mainly) had failed.
Des's big night dawned and he was faced with his girlfriend's daughter. She was something of a non committal petulant brat. Des was trying to bend over backwards to make an impression and took them bowling and then brought them back to his place for a meal afterwards. Just when he thought he was getting somewhere the daughter confided in her mother that she thought Des was something of a 'plonker'.
Kelly and Ashley's day had been going from bad to worse as well. After his argument with Fred Ashley had quit his job and had now taken to getting under Kelly's feet at Ken's house. Kelly threatened to end their relationship if he didn't get his job back with Fred. Ashley dug his feet in and was resolute he wasn't going back to the butchers. This of course led to tears from Kelly who thought she had blown her relationship with Ashley. However by the end of the day they were back together when they ended up apologising to each other on the phone.
Wednesday 22 May 1996
A return to the Steve and Vicky storyline tonight with Vicky gradually becoming more and more embittered with her lot in life. She seemed to think the world was against her and that everybody in Weatherfield was working against her interests. She also sprung the news on Alec and Nick that she didn't intend to testify against Steve as the predicament she was currently in was partially her own fault.
Trish was back to her old barn-storming ways as she entered Baldwin's factory unit on the warpath. Her benefits had been stopped and she was now facing even deeper financial ruin as she couldn't afford to pay the rent on her flat. She let fly with a tirade against Baldwin, whose initial response was that she should find gainful employment quickly otherwise she would be out of the flat.
This response annoyed Josie to the point where she looked like she might walk out on her own job to make a point, however faced with losing a star employee he mellowed somewhat and thought about doing something.
Kelly was settling into the Baldwin residence and things looked like they might be settling into an every day routine for them. Kelly made it her business that day to try and win Ashley his job back. She went to see Rita and intended to use her influence to get Ashley back in employment. However even Rita could not alter things, and was told in no uncertain terms to mind her own shop before minding others.
Trish was in the Rover's enjoying a drink at the expense of Bill who had taken the role of a shoulder to cry on when Mike entered. The usual scene ensued with Trish spoiling for a fight yet again. However after some of his usual mock deliberation Mike told her to report to his office the next day for a job interview.
Raquel tried to talk to Vicky and add some badly needed reassurance to her life. However it would seem her efforts were heading nowhere as Vicky seemed more and more determined to be miserable which I suppose is quite understandable.
Friday 24 May 1996
The court case was the focal point of the episode as Steve and Vicky went to trial over the Malcolm Fox affair. It was played out in much the usual way soaps attempt the old courtroom drama scenario. There was the usual assortment of stern faced barrister types adorning the courtroom.
Malcolm Fox was questioned initially and he didn't spare Steve any mercies with his version of events. He recounted an accurate rendition of the events leading up to and encompassing the bribery.
Back in the Street, Trish was waiting nervously for the interview with Mike Baldwin. He entered the cafe where she was picking Alma's brain for tips on impressing Mike when Mike himself entered. Much to Trish's surprise he decided on holding the interview there and then in the cafe. As they conversed over the possibility of a job at Baldwin's factory Trish was hanging mouth agape on his every word. Eventually after what seemed like some mock deliberation and some sussing out the pro's and con's of the situation Mike set about giving her a job where she would be trained as a machinist.
Of course Trish was over the moon about getting a job, and later in the pub was telling Raquel of her good fortune in getting work. She commented on how Mike was now her employer and her landlord. She jokingly added that if he weren't married he could have her body as well. This was much to Mike's embarrassment as he had just joined them at the bar.
There was something of a termination to all the Ashley and Fred feuding over his loss of job. Ashley was still playing the proverbial hard to get role by avoiding Fred when he rang up Ken's house. He eventually got to see Ashley and convinced him to take back his old job in his usual blustery manner. Ashley insisted that there be no jokes made about his relationship with Kelly either. Thus terms agreed it looked like Ashley was employed again.
Des was drinking in the Rovers when he got a surprise visit from his girlfriend who seemed very keen to point out that just because her evenings were often tied up with taking care of her daughter it didn't mean that her days were not free. Thus there was some suggestive looks and it would seem that they might slip back to Des's for an hour or so.
Back in the courtroom Vicky was recounting her tale of woe in being married to Steve. Whilst she managed to maintain her composure her nerves were clearly a little shaky. Still she survived the questioning well enough even though there were a few hard hitting questions about how she undermined Steve's relationship with Fiona.
The best (or should we say worse) was about to come in the shape of Steve getting up to the stand. He stuttered and stammered after every question and yet still tried to come across as though butter wouldn't melt in his mouth. His eyes seemed to be darting every where at once and for me he was simply painting the picture of a guilty man all over himself.
The verdict came through relatively quickly and Steve, Vicky and Malcolm Fox awaited sentencing. Fox received an extra 12 months to run following the completion of his current sentence. Whilst Vicky was looked upon in a most lenient light and got a suspended prison sentence. Steve however got two years in jail and the worried eyeballs from hell type look was with him to the very last words of "Take them Down" were uttered.
Monday 27 May 1996
The episode was kicked off with Liz and the rest of the McDonalds licking their wounds in the family home. Liz was somewhat indignant about the length of Steve's sentence. She didn't waste any time having a good whinge about it either. Andy and Jim were somewhat more accepting of the situation and they could see the truth in that Steve had done wrong and was now about to pay the price.
Vicky meanwhile despite being let off the hook so to speak was definitely in the depths of depression. Convinced that nobody in Weatherfield was her friend any more she was content to lock herself away from the prying eyes of the world despite all Alec's efforts to coax her out.
A sunburnt Jack and Vera returned from their holiday abroad to take the Rovers off Betty and Billy's hands. Vera was more than a little curious to see how they had fared in their absence. She was also keen to see if their had been any fiddling of the takings while they had been living it up in Spain. Thus they drafted in Andy McDonald to give the books the once over much to the annoyance of Betty. What Andy discovered however was that the pub profits were £200 up for the fortnight that Jack and Vera had been away.
Kelly meanwhile was still niggling on at Ken about her lack of driving license, and she maintained she was still looking for an able tutor to get her started. Ashley was hardly a candidate (I presume he's been driving less than two years) so after some heavy handed hinting Ken volunteered his services. By the way I'm sure that young Daniel looked like a different baby tonight.
Judy's mother was chasing after a job at the British Legion working behind the bar. She decided she would get her chances upped by spending the afternoon swapping stories of her fathers involvement in the war with Percy Sugden. It would seem that Percy is on the board of the Legion's committee and Judy's mother thought she might have some clout in that direction.
Norris was in the doghouse as he cowered somewhat timidly in the presence of Derek and Mavis. He was avoiding the presence of his wife Angela as he had blundered somewhat earlier in the day whilst he was playing golf with his wife. It would seem down to his mistakes he and Angela had lost the match and as a result she was very much on the war-path. Derek and Mavis tried as hard as they could to shift him from their presence but he remained at their house for the best part of the evening drinking their beer and sipping their coffee.
Vicky came to a decision about her future as she spoke to Alec and her decision was her future didn't lie in Weatherfield.
Wednesday 29 May 1996
The episode started with Raquel putting in an appearance with Curly and from the tone of the conversation it looked like their plans for trying for a baby were in top gear. They appeared to be using a variety of method s in an effort to choose the sex of whatever children they had.
Jack and Vera were still perusing the books, and between them were still unable to fathom why the takings at the Rovers were on the up for the weeks they were away. Betty was steadily getting more annoyed about the matter as she watched Jack, Vera and Andy scrutinise the figures time and time again. She was convinced they were thinking their was foul play afoot on her and Billy's part.
Other residents of the Street were seen looking over the local paper which featured Steve and Vicky in the headlines. There were mixed reactions to the scenario which veered from Vicky's shame across to Fiona's embarrassment when she was caught reading the article when Jim walked in.
Trish was enduring the work at Baldwin's Sportswear, she was pretty much thrown in at the deep end with Ida Clough showing her the ropes in a most unfriendly manner. It seemed that Mike was keen for her to fail and thus get herself shown the door for her efforts. Even Ida wasn't keen on the idea of teaching a non-machinist the ropes until Trish explained she wasn't Baldwin's "fancy piece" but instead someone who was struggling on her own.
Meanwhile Jamie and Roy were in the cafe with Jamie attempting to get a meal out of Roy whilst Alma was away. Roy began a most amusing game of bartering which ended with Jamie getting a meal for the price of some stamps, a cigarette lighter and the loan of his baseball cap.
Betty finally snapped and walked out of the Rovers when she finally thought that Jack and Vera's examination of the books was too much. This forced the Duckworth's hand and they had to come clean about their real concerns. They explained how they couldn't fathom out how the books were up on the usual takings. Betty explained it was because she and Billy were not constantly dipping into the profits for beer and cigarettes.
Norris was still in trouble as he stormed into the Wilton household eager for some "human company". He was obviously going through a sticky patch with Angela and insisted that the Wilton's sit down and "get trashed" with him on a bottle of wine. Mavis was initially quite nervous of this very dynamic incarnation of Norris but Derek's presence soothed her somewhat.
The McDonalds went to see their errant son, Steve, in a prison visit. His initial attitude was very bitter towards his family and it looked like a row could erupt at any moment. Eventually though Jim turned up, a little later than everyone else, and they had a chance to talk properly. Jim admitted he had let Steve down on any number of occasions and how he wished he could make it up to him somehow. There was a definite thaw in relations at that point and when everybody left Steve quietly asked his mother if she could ask Fiona to visit.
Friday 31 May 1996
Fiona was approached by Liz tonight with regard to visiting Steve while he languishes at Her Majesty's Pleasure. Fiona was somewhat shocked at the proposal, after all her life has obviously moved on since her relationship with Steve ended. Despite obvious reservations she told Liz she would give the matter thought.
Percy was still entertaining Judy's mother with his continuing story of World War II in words and pictures. Judy's mother was keeping a brave face on the matter because she was enduring his storytelling in the hope of a good reference for a job behind the bar at The British Legion. She was more or less trapped in the Rovers with Percy, until a timely rescue was provided by Emily Bishop.
Norris thought his marital struggles were over as he confided in Derek that he and Angela had weathered the storm and all sweetness and light lay just round the corner. His illusions were shattered when Derek announced that Angela had put him in charge of a very important contract which had previously always been the responsibility of Norris. This of course set back any reconciliations that had been planned as an incensed Norris planned to fight fire with fire. This spilled over into the personal lives of the Wiltons as they had to suffer Norris's woes after working hours were over much to the sufferance of Mavis.
The Duckworths were spying on each other in the most eagle eyed of manners as they watched the till for any discrepancies. Both of them were trying to learn not to touch the takings for the sake of their financial futures at the Rovers. This of course was leading to tension, with both of the Duckies asking Betty to act as a combination of spy and go between.
Jim and Liz had words and finally Liz was knocked down a peg or two, she accused Jim of wanting their old relationship back and wanting to dredge up the past. In fact, according to Jim, nothing could be further from the truth and he told Liz to stop flattering herself as he had no wish to restart a dead and buried relationship.
Vicky's future was looking somewhat more defined tonight as Alec finally seemed to realise he couldn't hold on to his little granddaughter forever. Bearing this in mind he informed of a hotelier's course which took place in Amsterdam and as a result would give Vicky a fresh start in life.
Fiona meanwhile was confiding in Maxine (of all people) about how she had been asked to go an see Steve in prison. Maxine asked the obvious question about whether she should tell Tony or not. Meanwhile Trish was getting a little bit of a nagging off Baldwin as she drank in the Rovers. He was concerned that she was turning the rent money into little more than beer tokens. As a rebuttal against his remarks no end of people began buying Trish a round.
Des and his new girlfriend were planning an evening of passion but just as they were about to get down to any serious business his girlfriend's annoying daughter interrupted asking for money for a camping trip with the girl guides. This was indeed something of a passion killer .
Anne Malone was the bearer of bad tidings as she had to explain to Andy that her parents did not want to meet him on account of the bad press that the McDonald's had got recently, what with Steve getting locked up and Liz and Jim going through a very public separation. Anne expressed her shame but all Andy could suggest was for her to get out of the relationship before she was tarred with the same brush.