Monday 1 December 1997
The police were round to Coronation Street and they were keen to have a word with Les of the Battersby household. Following the brick through a window incident at Des's last night it would seem Barnes and his girlfriend Sam had made up their mind just who the culprit was and although the evidence seemed to be clear let's not be too hasty.
Les of course was jumping up and down with rage at such a suggestion that he could be responsible for such a dastardly act. He screamed victimisation and was all set to go and see Des and have a friendly chat with him but Janice stopped him in his tracks. She was scared and not just of Des but of the fact that if they caused trouble they would be moved out of the house on Coronation Street and into somewhere new. She explained how she was happy there and didn't want to have any more problems with the neighbours. It was clear she didn't believe her husband's version of events after all he was too unreliable and untrustworthy of old.
There were other untrustworthy sorts about tonight as well and they were namely along the lines of Jack Duckworth. He was strutting about trying to convince Alec Gilroy he was the man for the job at the Golden Years Dating Agency. Alec was not in the slightest bit interested in Jack though he had the smoothest guy in Weatherfield on his books in the shape of Ken Barlow and that was enough for his cultured clientele.
In fact speaking of Ken we discovered Alec had a bit of work lined up for him that night in the shape of taking a lady by the name of Mrs Turnbull to a concert in Manchester. Alec told Ken if he nipped into the Rovers that night he would give him an envelope detailing where he should meet her and at what time. However that envelope is where the problem would begin.
Alec received some shock news on the phone about a friend of his dying and how the funeral was actually that day. Without further ado he left for the funeral but not before leaving the envelope in the capable hands of Sam. However as he left Sam tried to explain she would not be able to give the envelope to Ken as it was her night off. Enter stage left the wily Jack Duckworth who told Sam he would do the honours and make sure Ken got the letter in time.
Jack was like the cat who had got the cream and no sooner had gone out to the back of the pub then he had ripped the envelope open like a child with a present on Christmas morning. However this gift as we would soon find out was going to be more than he bargained for.
Janice Battersby went to pay Des and Sam a visit early that evening. She had come to say her piece and hopefully make peace with the neighbours she had previously got on with pretty well. She didn't know the real reason why Des and Les had fallen out. However both members of the not so currently happy couple were falling over themselves to tell her. Sam and Des both explained how Les had been coming on to Sam in the pub with some pretty crude forms of innuendo and suggestive behaviour. Janice heard this and was shell shocked and immediately shot off home to lay into her "randy old sod" of a husband.
Jack meanwhile had scrubbed up nicely enough and was ready for his night out on the tiles in his new Ken Barlow alter ego. Vera thought he was going to some sort of publican do and decided to let him have a night of freedom from his duties behind the bar.
Jack quickly made his way to the meeting place while Ken stood in the Rovers scratching his head and wondering where his mystery envelope was. So while the real Ken sloped off home to hopefully await a phone call Jack stood in the foyer of a posh hotel oozing his own particular brand of confidence. Ever the rough diamond, he still had many rough edges that needed some attention. After all putting a cigarette out and slipping it behind one's ear is hardly etiquette is it ?
Meanwhile at the Battersby's Les was fast talking his way out of an other situation with his wife. He was trying to switch Sam's story to his advantage by saying she had been trying to get her claws into him. In essence he painted her as something of scarlet woman with an unhealthy attraction towards him and lo and behold Janice took the story in hook line and sinker. As a result of this the Battersby's went to the Rovers where Janice started a slanging match with Sam branding her and all barmaids (including *gasp* Betty) tarts and husband stealers. At this point Natalie said nothing...
Jack finally got to meet his dream date Mrs Turnbull and when he did his eyes nearly dropped out in shock. She was a fiery looking buxom redhead (Nurse Gladys Emmanuel from Open All Hours) who was more than a match for the suddenly meek and mild Jack Duckworth. It was soon clear she had no intention of going to any concert with Jack. Instead she wanted to go upstairs with him to her honeymoon suite where they could effectively make out like honeymooners.
Jack was trying as hard as possible to avoid this scenario and every suggestive remark Mrs Turnbull made him quiver with fright as his once rampaging libido was suddenly reduced to nothing. Before the poor man knew what was happening he was in the sumptuous room alone with Mrs Turnbull and the jacuzzi awaited their attention. By this time Jack was trying to physically escape by creeping quietly out from the bathroom while Mrs Turnbull lay on the bed awaiting her bit of rough.
Jack did escape sneaking down the stairs in his dressing gown with his clothes in his arms however this would be romeo dropped a shoe rather like a modern day Cinderella. It would seem the amorous Mrs Turnbull had plans to find her Prince Charming.....
Wednesday 3 December 1997
Jack kicked off the morning after the eventful night before in something of a reserved mood as he explained to Vera that his "night out with the boys" had been an uneventful occasion. Nobody was going to question him yet because Mrs. Turnbull hadn't rang to complain of her somewhat odd night of companionship with Jack's Ken Barlow-esque alter ego.
That was soon to change though as Alec took a call on his mobile and the truth was out leaving him ready to face the real Ken with daggers in his eyes. Poor Ken was no help though as Alec quizzed him about his misconduct the night before leaving Alec ready to blame Sam for not passing on the important envelope containing the "date" details.
Elsewhere Tracey had returned with her graceless and wooden acting ability fully intact ready for a house warming at Dreary's new swanky house. She came up with Dreary's mother and all three generations of the family buzzed with excitement as the night ahead loomed closer.
By this time Alec had put two and two together and made a perfect four as he realised Jack had done the dirty on him and ruined the Turnbull assignment. Jack realising he was backed into a corner and explained he had only wanted to prove his manly prowess however when the moment came he couldn't cope with the raging if aging tigress he had been faced with in the form of Mrs. Turnbull. It would be daggers drawn for the rest of the day as Jack kept a low profile while Alec counted the cost of what the night had done to his profit margins.
Chris was becoming something of a pain as far as Sally was concerned. He was all relationship full steam ahead while she was still wanting to discover a little bit more about herself in the role of a single woman. Chris the impetuous youth however had different ideas and was dying to go public and even be taking as Sally's guest to the impending housewarming party that night.
Speaking of the housewarming Ken was intending to stay away from the event which Tracy put down to a touch of jealousy. Ken was hardly going to explain his real reason for disliking John the not so high flying tie salesman so he kept a discreet silence and made small talk with his visiting daughter.
Steve completed his exit from chez McDonald to his new flat. It seemed to be cementing his split with his father as he refused to give an inch on his negative feelings towards his father. Jim was left speechless as Steve confirmed how he felt about him and blamed him for shattering the family for the sake of his "love" for Fiona.
The party loomed and all the regulars were there and in jaw dropping awe as they looked round Dreary's small scale Dynasty mansion. The women were flabbergasted at the decor while the men munched and drank their way gratefully through the nibbles especially Alf who seemed keen to slap the weight back on that he had lost. I had to know his character remained a shadow of it's former self and whatever problems he has had in real life seemed to have robbed his Alf Roberts persona of it's spark and left it dare I say painted as a somewhat absent minded old man.
Liz propped up the fireplace draining glass after glass of champers with the little green eyed monster of jealousy doing a fine job of eating her alive. Mike commented gleefully on Ken's absence claiming he couldn't carry the weight of his sour grapes with him. Sally was keen to slip away early because regardless of Chris's persistence she did want to spend some time with as my Mum calls him Mr Sex on a stick.
Things were in full flow when John clinked his glasses to raise a toast and to make an announcement. He thanked everyone for coming and then told everyone to keep January 29th free in their diaries because he explained it was to be his and Dreary's wedding day. Dreary was shell shocked, Liz dropped her glass and everyone else applauded. John has fooled everyone but we the viewing public no better...he's a first rate cad and one with some inherent problems with truth and reality to boot.
Sally arranged to meet Chris at a little bistro for a night together and a chance to talk and try and calm his rush ahead plans for a relationship down No sooner had he began playing the old "let's rush in" record again there was a surprise in store for them both. Steve and his girlfriend were out for a meal and eager to introduce themselves to the somewhat stunned Sally and grinning broadly Chris. I don't think Steve will spill the beans though he didn't seem to take any salivacious delight in the obvious uncomfortable situation Sally was in.
The night ended with Dreary clearing away the pots while chewing John out for his impetuous behaviour. She seemed to be showing signs of being uncomfortable with the speed of their relationship. She likened it to a roller coaster ride which was constantly taking her by surprise. John smiled and asked her if she was unhappy to which she replied she was not. All the same could a gut feeling or some latent instinct be starting to kick in somewhere deep inside.....
Friday 5 December 1997
The episode began with Des once again on the warpath as he discovered his kitchen window daubed with graffiti. Instant suspect for the demeanour was none other than Les Battersby who at that moment was trying to make peace with his other neighbour Curly Watts due to the noise pollution caused by the Battersby girls and their loud music. Des went across for the obligatory face off but no solution was created to the problem.
Elsewhere Jim and Gary Mallett chatted about the recent McDonald misfortunes and how Jim himself was now a one man band thanks to Steve's departure. Gary himself faced imminent redundancy and there was an air of opportunity for the right man to step into Steve's shoes. The opportunity would be discussed further at the christening of Gary's child Katy later in the day.
Dreary had something of a guilt trip feeling tonight with regard to her friend Liz. As her fortunes spiralled higher and higher Liz seemed to be tumbling into worse and worse situations. Both Dreary and John discussed the luckless McDonald and Dreary came to the conclusion she would never attract the right sort of man while she was dressing like a tart. It's all true of course but there is nothing like being blunt about a friend and it's rich coming from someone with crap glasses and stupid haircut.
Sally was once again talking to Chris and trying to fend off his somewhat pushy intentions. It was all starting to look more than a little dodgy between them if you ask me because Sally's feet are definitely showing big signs of getting cold. However as they parted with a kiss who should come wandering up the back alley but none other than Natalie who was busy with the crates from the Rover's next door. She observed a parting kiss from the pair and smiled the smile of a cat that had truly got the cream.
The afternoon brought the christening party to the fore and everyone was shoe horned into Gary and Judy's front room for the celebration. Les and Des exchanged vicious glances across a crowded room while Rita discreetly chucked her money about like confetti with the offer of £50 to start a bank account for Katy. Vera was showing off her Las Vegas camera and was almost like an advert for Polaroid or Konica as she listed the intricate features of her latest toy.
There had to be a fly in the ointment though and as Judy sat down for a posing shot with Katy a face appeared at the back of the room and it was a face that spelled trouble.......... Zoe!
All in all : O.K to Good.
Sunday 7 December 1997
A little belter of an episode following on from where Friday left off at Katy's christening party at the Mallett household. Zoe's forlorn face appeared at the back of the room and Judy almost had kittens as did her husband Gary. He quickly manoeuvered Zoe on to the Street and told her to get lost and stay away from them but the stubborn teenager had better ideas.
Elsewhere Des was on his way for a take away when a la horror film a figure came up behind him and before you could say Boo! Des was on the floor and taking a royal beating from none other than Ritchie the man who was Sam's short lived betrothed. Luckily help was on hand from Les Battersby who proved he was a bit handy in the right circumstances and soon saw Ritchie off with a few swift kicks and punches.
Speaking of punches they were about to thrown as Mrs Turnbull landed on the Street looking for Ken Barlow. Thanks to Sam she was guided to Alec's pub where she dropped "Ken's" shoe on the bar and asked where he was. Jack was just coming out of the back when Mrs Turnbull saw him leaving the real Ken perplexed as to what was going on after all he knew nothing about this mystery shoe that had appeared in the hands of a woman he knew nothing of.
Jack ushered Mrs Turnbull into the back and out of harms way but it couldn't last Vera came home to find Jack in a state of sheer terror as this matronly woman tore at his clothes. Vera was enraged and explained that Jack was her husband shortly before kneeing him in the groin. Alec had cause to be worried as well as Mrs Turnbull threatened to sue while Jack had to face the wrath of his scorned wife.
Des was taking into the Battersby home where Janice and Des kindly fixed up his injuries which consisted of cuts and bruises. At the same time Leanne made Zoe welcome for the night as they planned their campaign against the Mallett family.
Meanwhile the obsessed Ritchie was by now pestering Sam and begging for her love. She took him off the street and told him there was no future for them but Ritchie was persistent. He kept promising her the love of a lifetime and that he could give more than Des ever could but Sam wasn't interested in Ritchie anymore as she loved nobody but Des.
Rita and Sally talked and Sally confessed to seeing Chris and that they were enjoying a fling of sorts. Sally explained that this was no life long romance and that there was no guarantee it would last but she concluded she needed a life of her own. Rita reckoned that might be waiting for her outside Weatherfield and definitely outside Coronation Street.
Des and Les were now a formidable team and all set to kick proverbial backside as they went to his house to sort out Ritchie who the had deduced was still there. Sam pleaded with Ritchie to see sense and he eventually conceded defeat and left the house hopefully for good.
At the Malletts the two of them decided the only way to escape Zoe was to move away from the area and away from Zoe herself. Gary had a relative in Newcastle and they could stay there away from the prying eyes of the world and make a new life for themselves free of Zoe's hassle.
All in all : Great Stuff
Monday 8 December 1997
"Let's run off to Newcastle" said the Malletts as the made full steam ahead plans to quit Weatherfield and move to Gary's brother's house. Their plan was set to evade the machinations of Zoe the natural mother of Their child Katy. The speed of Their plan was only increased when they discovered Zoe had attached herself to the Battersby household like a limpet in an effort to stay near her daughter.
Their was still no sign of a reconciliation between the Duckworths following the Golden Years fiasco of the other night. Jack blamed Alec while Vera blamed Jack and Alec tried to stay clear of it all for fear of the consequences. In the end they weren't talking and they were using poor old Sam as a go between for their necessary pub conversations.
Audrey had got the idea into her head that Fiona wasn't coming back to Weatherfield following her troubles and decided she might like to run a salon of her current employ's calibre. She began sounding out her thoughts of buying Fiona's to a disgruntled Alf who told her to discard such foolish thoughts once and for all.
Des was playing the battered soldier and being consoled by his loving girlfriend Sam tonight. His wounds were superficial but Sam was glad that the entire matter appeared to have been sorted out once and for all although I do think we will see at least one more dramatic gesture from Ritchie before too long (suicide perhaps ?).
Sally spent the entire episode with a worried expression on her face as Chris poured on lashings of pressure with regard to relationships and all that involvement stuff. It seemed every other breath he took was made so that he could ask Sally to settle down/move in together/spend time with the kids. It all seemed very odd after all they have only been dating for a short while. Sally I feel is right to be concerned and at times I thought she was going to call Their relationship off.
Vera decided to get her revenge on Alec by looking through his filofax and arranging a night out on the tiles for herself with one of Alec's escort agency men. She looked through the book and found a description of a man who appeared to be right up her Street. A 6ft 1 inch Italian looking stud of a man with dark brown eyes, the thought of this made Vera quiver so she decided to ring Alec on his mobile.
It was in simple hindsight foolish of her to ring from the Rovers because Alec soon twigged it was Vera and decided he would double cross her with a trick of his own. It wasn't made crystal clear but I reckon Jack will be Vera's mystery date for the evening.
Liz became the focus of some attention from some young men in the bar she was working. They were essentially eyeing her up and looking at her short skirts and somewhat tarty appearance and basically taking the mickey out of this sad old slapper. Fred happened to come by though and overheard Their laughter while Liz was changing a barrel and he stormed at them for Their rudeness. Liz however had overheard them and while she put on a brave face for Fred it was clear the words had hit home for her. (One of the lads in the green shirt had a lengthy spell in Eastenders as the bricklayer Paul from Leeds)
Gary told Jim he couldn't go ahead with Their planned partnership. He lied claiming his contract had been expanded and he would have steady work after all. He didn't explain that he and Judy were planning on doing a moonlight flit from Their house. Jim was disappointed but took the news well with understanding.
Des made peace with Les Battersby and the two would apparently cement Their friendship the following night over a few drinks in the pub. Knowing Les a few drinks could turn into a lot especially when Des is paying the tab for the night's extravagance.
Sally and Chris ended the night by going upstairs right after Chris had been ranting on in one of his commitment speeches. The two went upstairs for a spot of horizontal jogging (allegedly) because Natalie walked past the house only to see Chris getting his kit off upstairs. Her suspicions were indeed confirmed.....
All in all : Good
Lively stuff putting the Street streets ahead IMO at the moment.
Wednesday 10 December 1997
When the Street pulls out the stops and delivers a top form episode the likes of tonight's offering is what we usually get. Starting with Alf seeing the wisdom in Audrey's idea to buy the shop. It was a clear way to invest and get Audrey earning instead of spending all his hard earned brass in the clothing sales. However the idea naturally filled Maxine with dread as she would be working under Weatherfield's favourite busy body.
We then got a slice of life with the Malletts as they tiptoed around the idea of moving away to Newcastle. Wheels were set in motion as Gary sneaked out through the back to avoid seeing Zoe as he went to the estate agent to put his house on the market for rent so they could pay the mortage when they were gone.
Speaking of Zoe everybody's favourite urchin was being bounced out of chez Battersby for fear of taking up residency on the sofa. She dragged her forlorn face down to the local shop where she begged for some food that might be out of date as she hadn't eaten that day. I would have thought the Battersbys would have at least fed the girl if nothing else.
Maud's acid tongue started wagging though and Zoe was soon out on her ear with no food in her belly. However there was a knight in shining armour to the rescue as good natured Ashley decided to help a soul in need and took her back to his and Maxine's house. Once there he fixed the girl some food and told her to stay put and get some rest for a while as he needed to be back at the shop. However before he left he listened to the whole sorry tale of Katy and how the Malletts had bought her for £2000 and how she hadn't really stolen their money.
Vera confided in Sam about her plans for a night out on the tiles at one of Weatherfield's top eating establishments. She delighted in telling Sam about the vengeance she would be exacting on Jack by dating some young handsome gent courtesy of Alec and his Golden Years agency. Little did she know Alec was a sly old fox and subterfuge should have been his middle name. It would end in tears said Sam and when the Duckworths are involved it usually does.
Natalie was carefully planting a little story behind the bar about seeing Chris and Sally about to get horizontal in her bedroom the night before. She wanted the news to spread but not come from her for fear of rousing Kevin's suspicious nature. I wouldn't have thought Sam was the gossip necessary to start these wildfire stories but i'm sure Natalie knows what she is doing.
Evening came and Vera was off out allegedly to the bingo. With the guard off duty for the night this left Alec free to persuade Jack to try his hand at the escort business one more time. He would be escorting one Roxy Lamour for an evening of wining and dining and extras at his own discretion. Jack ever a fool to himself jumped at the chance like the proverbial rat up a drain pipe. He preened to Alec about his prowess with the ladies and explained how felt sorry for men who could not pleasure their wives and "do the duty".
In the bar Fred recounted his tales of valour in rescuing Liz from the "slapper baiters" that had plagued her the night before in the bar. Jim was on hand to listen while Liz slowly went a shade of red with embarrassment. Perhaps the days of short skirts and plunging necklines are going to vanish. I certainly hope so.
A short while later Vera was settled at her table at her restaurant and awaiting her dreamboat. She was pushing out the boat with a bottle of champagne and a smile broader Greater Manchester as she sat and prepared for her man to walk in the door. The smile was dropped like a hot coal however when Jack ambled into the place looking as suave as he possibly could. Vera lunged under the table in a bid to hide but it was no good as the waiter showed Jack to the table of Roxy Lamour.
With the game up the inevitable slanging match started. Both sides lobbed insults but Vera worked the final ticket by dropping a bucket of ice down Jack's trousers. Although with all the stories we keep hearing from Vera about their lack of bedroom activity it's doubtful the climate in Jack's underwear had changed anyway. He certainly looked calm enough as he took his punishment.
There was more sombre moments meanwhile for Sally as she wept in front of Chris the human limpet about her Christmas plans for the girls. With no Daddy there on Christmas morning the day would lose some of it's childlike sparkle. Although Kevin was coming round for Christmas lunch Sally was sure the girls could see it was all a sham. Chris meanwhile still didn't seem to be reading the signs that he looked like he was on the way out.
Back at the Rovers Vera was in the midst of directing a verbal volley at Alec who was employing his best butter wouldn't melt in the mouth posture. He claimed innocence when Vera accused him of setting her up with her own husband. Jack arrived back minutes later looking like a man caught with a sudden bout of incontinence due to all the melting ice to join in the arguing. Neither party could prove Alec had done anything wrong so cunning devil he is Gilroy sloped off and let the battle royal of the back room commence.
Maxine meanwhile was sat in her own home with Ashley nursing a face as long as a fiddle as she faced the prospect of Zoe staying overnight. Between pouts she informed Ashley that if Zoe wasn't out of the house by tomorrow night then she would be.
All in all : Very Good
Top notch episode in my view with all concerned giving Grade A performances.
Friday 12 December 1997
It was going to be a hard night for Des Barnes as Les Battersby decided it was time to call in the debt of saving Des's neck from the wrath of Ritchie only a few days before. However before we could witness this we saw poor Ashley facing the wrath of Maxine as she ranted on about the continued presence of Zoe in the house. She had till that evening to be out otherwise there would be hell to pay. Ashley however always the soft touch couldn't bring himself to throw her out and wanted to find some way of resolving the situation.
Jack and Vera were slowly calling a truce but Vera was the one doing making up as she waited on Jack hand and foot and allowed him the day to go and see his friend who had just took a pub in town. In truth however despite all the sniping it looked like their relationship was going to be steadily coming back on to an even keel or as much as one you could expect for the Duckworths.
The day passed at the salon with Audrey becoming more and more insufferable with her intention to buy the salon. She was treating the place as though it was already her own and after they locked up that night she couldn't resist trying to place a call to Fiona at her parents to state her wish to buy the business.
Ashley continued to be Zoe's white knight and went to see Judy in an effort to allow the young mother access to her child. Judy exploded with anger and told Ashley to get away from the house and to stay out of business that didn't concern him. A crestfallen Ashley returned home only to walk straight into another row with Maxine who this time walked out of the house and refused to come back until Zoe was gone. Ashley's conscience wouldn't allow him to throw Zoe on to the cold streets at night.
In the Rovers, Les was limbering up for a heavy night's drinking with Des his new best buddy. Des came in with the view of having a couple of drinks with Les and then going home to Sam who was waiting for his swift return. Alas things weren't going to turn out that way because Les had different ideas. It would seem that he thought that tonight would involve drinking and clubbing at a variety of venues even though Des clearly wanted to get away.
Les never saw these signs though and even if he had he would probably of ignored them. So the night ended with Des and Les back at his house eating curry. Sam of course had lost her night in with her bloke and was fuming and it didn't help that Les was ogling Sam at every opportunity. In the end to even things up Sam decided to invite Janice round to the house to complete the party.
Les however took this as an idea of Des's to engage in a bit of wife or in his case partner swapping. He actively encouraged Des to test drive Janice who he assured was in full working order. Even the broad minded Des had to pick his jaw up off the floor at this suggestion. Luckily he didn't have to find an answer for Les because he had downed one beer to many and rushed upstairs to Des's bathroom to separate himself from the vindaloo he had just eaten.
That was pretty much the evening ended though as Les was taken ill. Apparently though he had mopped up the mess he had left with some towels. Janice was mortified and quickly shoved Les out of the door where he proceeded to vomit all over the pavement (thankfully out of shot) while Des and Sam stood gob smacked unable to believe the evening they had just had.
There was a more sombre ending to tonight as Chris and Sally came back from some Christmas shopping. As Chris wrapped the presents in a most carefree manner you could see Sally winding up to some big announcement or other. She told Chris she feared that her children were getting too close to him and she feared that if things didn't work out then they would be hurt all over again as they had been when their father left months ago. In essence she was telling Chris it was all over. I couldn't help but notice the relief on her face when he silently got up and walked out of the house.
All in all : Very Good
Again a high quality episode although I must admit Sally is a bit of an annoyance of late. I'll conceded Chris has been jumping the gun of late but Sally did chase and give him plenty of come on in the first place. Now just because that sad spineless t*at of a husband of hers talks to her and she goes all gooey she dumps what seems like a genuinely caring bloke.
As for Des and Les this one will more than likely run for a while yet until something happens to spoil their friendship and the old animosity is resumed.
Sunday 14 December 1997
Fiona was back in the Street and the Mallett's had a date with destiny as they tried to prepare for their big move to Newcastle. Starting with the Malletts they were packing everything they could into a hire van so they could get away that day. However what with Katy and Scamper the dog to contend with things were being slowed down somewhat. Fiona meanwhile was determined not to sell to Audrey and Alf as far as the salon went. She knew how hard life was going to be when the baby arrived but she would cope with whatever trials were thrown her way.
The factory girls were throwing a party in the Rovers for Christmas. Angie was all set to join in but Mike was against fraternising with the workers. He saw drinking with the staff as a sign of weakness and didn't see it as something to be encouraged. However the likes of Ida and Janice were in good form and were buying him drinks so Mike was unavoidably dragged into the proceedings.
Les and Des had another falling out. This time it was over Les getting the wrong idea about Sam and her views on wife swapping. The deluded chap believed he was in with a chance with Des's missus and promptly tried it on in the Rovers at every opportunity. Sam was disgusted and told him where to get off leaving the friendship between him and Des up in the air.
Ashley and Maxine split up over the fact that Zoe was staying at the house. Maxine gave him a "her or me" ultimatum and Ashley let his conscience decide as he couldn't let Zoe sleep rough on the streets at Christmas. Maxine stormed out and despite trying to talk in the Rovers at lunch time nothing was resolved between them.
Natalie was taken ill with postural hypertension. I'm not sure what that is but it left her looking white as a sheet and ready to be taken home. The results of meant Kevin spent the afternoon looking after her when he should have been at the school nativity which Rosie was starring in. Sally of course was fuming that he had missed the event and told him as much when he finally came round to apologise later that day. I wonder if Sally was wondering if she had been too hasty in kicking Chris out of her life.... I bet he wouldn't have missed the nativity.
Zoe spied the Malletts moving party and while Judy was out of the picture she went round to find out more. Under duress from Gary she held the baby and had some time with her precious daughter but Gary wouldn't reveal where he was going and how long he would be gone for.
All in all : Good
Monday 15 December
A real stormer of an episode tonight with something to appeal to everyone and some real class acting all round. The Malletts were still intent on leaving for Newcastle but Judy was holding things up as she said her goodbyes to friends and relatives. While she was away Zoe was in the house with an edgy looking Gary cooing over her daughter. Gary however drew the line when Zoe asked if she could feed Katy and asked her to leave.
Elsewhere Baldwin's factory girls were partying the night away in the Rovers Return knocking back the booze like it was going out of fashion. Janice and Ida were leading the charge of the out like a light brigade as they slammed their money down on the counter in aid of research into the effects of booze on machinists. Les of course was hanging round the girls in the hope of sponging the odd drink from them as his funds were looking just a touch on the low side.
Kevin was all apologies about missing the girls and their nativity play. He was begging their forgiveness but with Sally in a bad mood to top things off it didn't make matters any easier. In the end to try and appease for his absence from the play Kevin asked the girls to put on a show for him there in the house. At first Sally wasn't into that idea but the girls insisted they entertain their Daddy so she relented.
Ashley meanwhile maintained his role as Zoe's defender as she fed him a sob story about how the Malletts were going to take away her baby and how she would never see it again. Thoughts began to turn towards ideas of abduction and although Ashley himself would never be party to such impulsive acts Zoe it would seem had already made her mind up.
In the Rovers, Alec was left alone as Natalie still not feeling one hundred percent decided she was too ill to continue behind the bar and a harassed Sam simply took her leave and went to the pictures with Des and Angie and Chris to boot.
Kevin meanwhile had watched his daughters perform and then had the chance to bath them and put them to bed. He then came downstairs and we saw him break into something of a wooden interpretation of an emotional performance. He told Sally how much he missed the girls and how being a part time father was tearing him apart.
As his little diatribe continued he revealed how he wasn't truly happy with Natalie and how he needed to come back to Sally and to his old life of stability. Sally was shocked to hear this after all what made him think she would want him back after his blatant infidelity. Kevin however rambled on about how he would prove his feelings towards her by upping and leaving Natalie that night.
While this was going on Zoe was sneaking round the back of the Mallett house and in through the back door. Gary was just checking the oil on the van and when he came back Zoe had vanished with Katy. As Gary ran to the front door he saw Zoe running into Ashley's house. He tried to gain entrance but it was too late a distraught Ashley along with Zoe had locked themselves in and no matter how much Gary screamed and shouted it was going to make no difference to the situation.
While all this chaos was going on Emily got a visit from a gawky looking stranger weighed down with what looked like a ton of camping gear. He introduced himself to a nervous Emily as Spider her long lost nephew or as she knew him from years before Geoffrey. It would seem Spider was something of a self styled eco warrior returning from another stint living in tunnels and up trees in a bid to protect the environment. Only now he was going to be around to pollute Emily's. It must be said though that at least he was a source of amusement to the Battersby girls.
Kevin arrived home looking very subdued after the trials and tribulations of the day. Natalie was already at home and cooking them some tea. Over a meal Kevin said virtually nothing and in the end Natalie could read the signs and tell that something was wrong between them. Kevin didn't beat around the bush and simply blurted out he was going to return to Sally and the girls and the life he truly wanted for himself.
Natalie was shocked but told Kevin to get a handle on what he was saying. After all he could be making a big decision which could wreck his future happiness. Kevin however was certain of his choice and with his bags packed got ready to walk out of the door. Natalie however wasn't going to go down without a parting shot and took delight in telling Kevin about his "virgin bride and Chris" and their little get togethers.
Judy by now knew of her daughter being kidnapped and was on the doorstep with Gary trying to get into the house where Ashley and Zoe were. By now Zoe was having thoughts of running away altogether although Ashley was unsure of what steps to take next. The first thing to do was ensure that Katy was fed and changed regularly so for now the Malletts ensured that Zoe had everything she needed for the well being of their daughter.
The Baldwin Girls had by now moved on from the Rovers and were now moving into town to decimate whatever licensed premises they could set foot in next. The pub they landed on however was the one where Liz worked and before you knew it there was dancing on the tables from the likes of Janice Battersby aided and abetted by her working compatriots.
There was even a band on with a singer who was a lot older than he was letting on. Ida claimed she remembered him from her youth and the times when they were going together. However the singer denied all knowledged of knowing Ida as he was more interested in getting to know Janice. This stopped looking promising though as Les Battersby came strolling in. He saw his wife this stranger and instantly waded into put a stop to any potential dalliances his wife might be considering.
In the scuffle much to the amusement of everyone present the singer managed to get his wig pulled off and the manager of the pub (A Bread Boswell no less) managed to get a punch in the face. As a result of this punch the manager handed Liz her cards mainly because she was supposed to be keeping the rabble in order as they were her friends and neighbours.
Ashley secreted Zoe away in his van to somewhere where she would be safe with Katy.....or so he believed. He dropped Katy off thinking she was going to a friends house when in fact she was going to a squat where she would be stopping with none other than Liam the real father of the baby.
Kevin meanwhile was back in the Street and looking for Chris. He managed to find him at Des's place and asked him outside to discuss a personal matter. He asked a stunned Chris if he had slept with Sally, for a moment Chris could say nothing but Kevin pressed the matter and Chris came clean about what had happened.
The reward for that information was a smack in the mouth at which point Des waded in and I thought war was about to break out. It seemed Kevin thought he could take everyone on tonight because he managed to get a second punch into Chris's mouth before telling him he was sacked.
Kevin then went across to Sally's where she was waiting all ready to restart their relationship just like before. However it wasn't going to work because Kevin told her he was disgusted in her for her behaviour especially after she had been laying the law down all these months about rights and wrongs. He then stormed out of the house into the night leaving Sally tearfully stood in the living room.
Zoe meanwhile was proving what a good mother she was with Katy by preparing to go to the pub leaving Katy all alone in the squat. It was a harrowing image as the picture cut away showing the innocent little child laying in her carry cot amongst all the dirt and grime lit only by candles (looking suspiciously like one could fall and start a fire).
All in all : Excellent.
First rate marks for acting go to in no particular order : Natalie, Ashley Zoe, Gary, Judy and even Emily amused me tonight.
Kevin meanwhile was his usual wooden self and the character annoyed me no end with his "one rule for me another for you" type scenarios.
Wednesday 17 December
Another excellent slice of Weatherfield life tonight picking up where the last episode ended. Chris was in the house nursing his wounded pride and a busted lip following his run in with Kevin. Things had become even more messy than they had been previously thanks to the machinations of Natalie and all parties concerned in this little triangle were kicking off as a result.
Meanwhile Katy was languishing with her biological parents in a dismal squat. Zoe was determined to keep her child but Liam with money on the agenda was putting across a convincing argument to let the Malletts have their child back. He explained how living with them would be no life at all and Katy would grow up in poverty. Zoe knew this was the truth but her somewhat warped maternal instinct wouldn't let the child go. Add to this she was in prime shape to be manipulated by her unpleasant boyfriend as well.
Liz in a state of distress came to see Jim looking for some company and a place to stay for the night. Her own company was unbearable and her self confidence had been blown apart by the loss of her job that night. She was at her lowest ebb feeling lonely and somewhat useless due to the lack of life she seemed to possess right now. Far from being a shoulder to cry on Jim looked completely disinterested in her ex-wife's plight and if anything seemed embarrassed to be in her company even behind closed doors.
The next day saw her leave the house amid a feeling of embarrassment with Jim concluding the matter by saying in a somewhat round the houses way that he didn't really want her around him anymore. He might have well just told her to get lost as it was really what he was saying.
Chris went to see Kevin wondering if his job truly was gone or whether it was something Kevin had said in the heat of the moment. The poor lad had been taking flak from all sides with Sally squealing at him the night before about her chances for happiness being ruined thanks to his big mouth. Nobody realised yet it was Natalie working something of an evil spell which had knocked the situation sideways.
Anyway Kevin was in no better mood that morning and it showed he became confrontational with Chris again and told him that he wanted the keys back for the garage. Chris however fired back by saying he would get them when he got his wages and holiday pay. Unfair dismissal bells began to ring here perhaps after all Sam had mentioned the subject the night before.
Kevin then went to see Sally still nursing that temper of his. He ranted on about her lies and deceit making himself look an even bigger prat than he was. It was unbelievable he could conceive that he was allowed to run off with another woman while Sally remained at home with the kids. Sally's temper finally went overboard and when Kevin goaded her about sleeping with Chris she told him where she had done it with her toy boy lover. A real knife twisting moment that one and a well deserved wound to be inflicted on the arsehole formerly known as Kevin.
The Mallett's appeared to be heading for self destruction as they rowed over the loss of Katy. Gary was almost too matter of fact about the matter while Judy was heartbroken. They were starting to row more and more and the signs for them as a couple over Christmas didn't look too good.
The unusual Spider was on the prowl with Emily as his guide around Weatherfield. Stopping off at the cafe for breakfast for wholemeal toast with beans and glass of tap water we discovered more about Emily's oddball relation. He was as we discovered something of a new age eco friendly sort of guy who had been deported from Australia recently for protesting against everything under the sun it would seem. Spider did however hold a certain fascination for impressionable young Toyah who was fascinated by the young man's piercingly and ornate weirdness.
The Battersby family got an early gift courtesy of Les in the form of a turkey....a live one. Going by the name of Theresa the job would befall Janice to plump this creature till it was ready for slaughter on the big day. Janice of course was horrified by the prospect and wanted the bird out of the house sharpish.
The cocky young Liam appeared on the Malletts doorstep with a proposition in mind for the young couple. If £2000 changed hands they would get Katy back however if they didn't then they would never see her again. Gary told the lout to clear off fearing he and Judy would be forever looking over their shoulder if they got into dire straits with the young lout now.
Judy couldn't bear the prospect of life without Katy though and ran after Liam and agreed to his terms. It looked like the start of another lengthy drama was on the way.....
All in all : Excellent
Corrie maintains it's fine formula with another excellent episode. Kevin however is in need of a dire kicking if you ask me. Oh and why does Liam keep holding his chin in that thoughtful manner :)
Friday 19 December 1997
There was more intrigue in the Street tonight as plot lines picked up speed. Katy was still in the squat with her natural parents Liam and Zoe and he was still as keen as ever to milk the Malletts for some more money. It was clear however Zoe was having some second thoughts about her idyllic little life with her loser boyfriend a plan to leave was formulating in her head.
Sally was in desperate need of a shoulder to cry on and Rita happened by at just the right time. The estranged Mrs. Webster poured her heart out to old Moneybags Sullivan and explained how Kevin had lashed out in anger verbally when he had found out about Chris and her relationship. Rita was annoyed at Kevin's sense of double standards and decided the best thing for them both to do was go to the Rovers Return for stiff drink or three.
Theresa the Turkey was causing no end of trouble for the Battersbys. Spider was concerned about the bird's well being and brought round some scraps for it to eat only to be kicked off the doorstep by an irate Les who didn't want people interfering in his business. The ever present Toyah though remained fascinated in Spider and his viewpoints though and pretty soon she was thinking of the bird's welfare as well.
Kevin the man who had lost it all was nursing his wounds in the Rovers over a pint or several. He wasn't talking to anyone but Natalie who was serving behind the bar wanted to talk to him. She flirted openly with Jim in a bid to grasp Kevin's attention but it was all in vain. Besides it's dodgy even talking to Jim these days because if he gets within a a foot of a woman's bedroom he gets obsessional tendencies.
In the end Natalie asked Kevin into the back of the pub and asked him to reconsider his decision. A downcast Kevin explained how her world was so far removed from his and while he had enjoyed the visit to her side of life he wanted his old plot of domesticity back for good. Even though he had appeared to have wrecked his chances with Sally.
Chris was down in the dumps as well as he had just seen another relationship tumble headlong from the top floor window. Still he had a friend in Angie and if I didn't know better I could swear she was showing signs of interest in him again.
Judy took herself off in a bid to raise the cash to get back "her" child. She went to see her old boss at the arcade who had always valued her as an employer. She asked him candidly if she could have a lump sum of £2000 for the purpose of a debt up front if she came back to work for him. Her ex-boss Paul wanted her back on the payroll because she was a good worker but £2000 was out of the question....until Judy offered him "whatever extras he wanted" and then the money became a more trivial matter.
The next thing we saw Judy getting the money and Paul with a large smile on his face. It seemed pretty clear what had happened but whatever conscience should have manifested within Judy didn't because she was so blindly wanting the baby she cherished back.
Alec offered to buy Les's turkey for £15 but it was not a going concern because Vera put her foot down and told Les what he could do with the bird. Vera had just been having a quiet chat with Natalie who was crying in the back room over her loss. It was strange to see the usually so caustic Vera being somewhat sympathetic to her old sparring partner's plight.
Zoe had sneaked out of the house with Katy in a bid to escape Liam and she had returned to Ashley's house. It was bad timing because Maxine had just moved back in and at this rate she would be moving back out again double quick once she saw the local urchin in the vicinity.
All in all : Good
Wouldn't it be ironic if Judy fell pregnant now by the arcade boss Paul. Gary would still not realise his dream of fatherhood and Judy would get to burden yet another secret. I think personally Gary has been treat pretty poorly over these last few months and although he seem a bit carefree about Katy going walk about with Zoe he doesn't deserve this.
Sunday 21 December 1997
A terrible Christmas appeared to be looming for the Malletts as the divide between them over the issue of Katy appeared to widen in light of recent events. Now armed with £2000 to buy her child back Judy was insistent that she would cough up the money to make happy families again. Gary on the other hand took a directly opposing view and reckoned they should wash their hands of the matter and start all over again.
Meanwhile Zoe ever bereft of conscience was once again stopping at Ashley's house which prompted Maxine to quickly move out in a rage. Max seemed sure that Ashley was attracted to Zoe an idea for my money which seemed patently ridiculous. However matters weren't helped by Fiona who seemed to take an almost spiteful delight in encouraging her friend to believe that something dodgy was going on between the butcher boy and the local urchin with child.
Les Battersby decided it was time to take action against Theresa Turkey who was living in the back yard of their house. Ever the man's man Les decided he would nip outside and slaughter the bird and make preparations for a feast on the 25th December. There was however a slight problem with the situation and that came down to the fact that Les had no stomach for the situation and it was made worse by Janice filling his head with stories about headless birds running round the house when they were supposed to lying down dead.
Feeling he had to get something of an expert opinion on the matter he went for a pint and a chat with Fred Elliott who reckoned killing dumb animals was a piece of cake. He instructed a decidedly squeamish looking Les to hang the bird by it's feet and club it into submission before slitting it's throat. Les looked decidedly unhappy about the prospect but reckoned it was time to take the bull by the horns...or should that be the turkey by the neck and get on with the job at hand.
Kevin turned up all sheepish at Sally's to tell her he was living over at a local B & B. Sally already knew this because Natalie had come round to drop some of his clothing off at her house thinking he was now living back home. Foolish girl that she was Sally went all gooey on Kevin again despite his little outburst a few nights before and as she sat gassing with Rita you could fair see her thawing to the idea of Kevin being home for Christmas.
John the Liar was making his double life plans for Christmas by telling Dreary he would be in Aberdeen. It was something that couldn't be avoided apparently. We know better though don't we viewers as John will be eating with the wife and family and then coming back to Dreary in the evening. Needless to say Dreary was livid about the prospect of her husband being away over the festive period but she was just going to have to swallow hard and live with it.
Les after failing to enlist Ashley in his plans to slaughter the turkey went home and sat down with a bottle of Whisky feeling that if he got smashed enough then he wouldn't feel the emotional turmoil of killing another living creature. However it turned out that even a bellyful of whisky couldn't hold his conscience at bay and with the verbal encouragement from Spider and Toyah that he should "do the right thing" Les relented and it looked like the Battersbys had a new all year round pet.
It didn't stop Janice running after Spider with a baseball bat though...his crime, upsetting Les !
Judy and Gary continued to argue over Katy. It was looking very bad now as Gary was unwilling to co-operate in anything related to the child he was not truly the father to. In fact to cap it all Gary tried to give the money back to the arcade owner who had lent it (amongst other things) to Judy. A row ensued but luckily it was the end of her shift so she could go home anyway.
As they walked home though they encountered a very drunk Maxine who had spent the night in the Rovers getting hammered. In a drunken slur she called Zoe all the names under the sun whilst at the same time revealing her latest whereabouts at Ashley's place. Judy stormed across and tried to give Zoe the money in exchange for Katy but Zoe wasn't interested and told Judy to leave her alone.
Judy ran home crying after throwing the money at Gary for him to pick up out of the gutter.....
All in all : Very Good
Monday 22 December
A new day in the Mallett household saw their relationship being stretched to breaking point as Gary decided he could take no more of the life he had been leading for the last few months during the Katy debacle. While Judy ranted on about how destroyed she was at her loss we finally got to hear poor old downtrodden Gary's point of view.
Gary explained how he had faced months of having his self esteem hammered in to the ground while Judy continued with her obsession for the child she longed to call her own. Gary decided he had lied and broke the law enough and needed to get away from Judy to claw back something he could call a life of his own.
Judy panicked at the thought of losing Gary and begged him to stay promising she would put Katy behind her once and for all no matter how hard it would be for her. To prove she was making a step in the right direction Gary decided they should pack up all Katy's things into a box and give them to Zoe to help her start again.
Meanwhile a few doors away Les Battersby was ready and willing to bring death to the turkey that had taken up residence in his back yard. Toyah's new sense of fowl friendly conscience made her enlist Spider to get the bird out of Les's clutches and somewhere where it might be safe from harm. With Spider's assistance they got the bird to a local children's farm where it would be safe from the murderous intentions of Les. Little did they know the story of Theresa the Turkey wouldn't end at this point.
John the liar set off for his "business trip" to Aberdeen. He had to do some quick talking to stop Dreary coming with him claiming that the trip including the travel time was going to be entirely business and she would only get in the way somewhat if she decided to come along. Luckily for John, Dreary backed down and elected to stay at home although she was undoubtedly upset at the prospect.
Liam turned up wanting to do some business with Gary regarding the baby. Gary however was burning on a very short fuse and dispatched Liam after threatening to cave his head in if he didn't leave immediately. Not one to give up easily Liam went to see Zoe and decided he would use her as a bargaining tool to get some cash from the Malletts. Zoe wasn't interested though and Liam was soon dispatched by the homecoming Ashley who as ever was playing her knight in shining armour.
Kevin finally apologised to Chris for what he had done but all the same didn't offer him his job back. He acknowledged that he had made a terrible mistake by going to live with Natalie and one that could possibly ruin the rest of his life. Captured by a sense of Christmas spirit.......or something Chris went to see Sally to put in a good reconciliatory word for Kevin. He told Sally that Kevin still loved her but felt too awful about what had happened between them to come and see her. A regular good fairy and no mistake.
Les meanwhile had discovered what Toyah had done with the turkey and promptly hit the roof. He rang the farm to explain that some kind of error had been made and they wanted the bird back. That was going to be tough though because Theresa had escaped from the farm. However all was not lost because turkeys apparently have some kind of homing instinct similar to pigeons which meant there was a good chance she was heading for Coronation Street.
She was closer than anybody could have guessed though because as Les and Toyah got into the car to go looking for the bird the bird was coming to them. Les not realising the turkey was walking on the road started the car and pulled out and the next thing we saw was plume of feathers puthering up in front of the car and both Les and Toyah looking horrified....
All in all : Very Good
Thursday 25 December 1997
The first piece of part one was blanked for me by transmission problems at ITV's end sorry....
However I will pick up from where I saw the episode start. As I joined everyone was getting stuck into lunch with Kevin firmly entrenched back in his old house with Sally and Rita and the girls. He seemed keen to get in Sally's good books and was doing the washing up after eating the meal itself. Sally sneaked into the kitchen and asked him if he would be staying on after Rita had gone as she wanted a word with him.
The Rovers seemed to be a place of somewhat subdued atmosphere with Jack and Vera doing their annual Christmas banter over the lack of imagination inspired into the presents that they gave each other. They had the opportunity to moan about Terry not showing his face as well although in truth Jack was relieved at this prospect.
Other diners around this festive table were the likes of Natalie who was subdued at her Christmas plans being blown apart by Kevin as well as Alec and Betty both alone at what can be the loneliest time of the year. They ate lunch and then planned to open up for the evening. Of course Alec and Jack had dozed off in the chair by this time leaving the work to the women....
John the pilot appeared to be splitting his time between his two lives tonight and I caught up with him as he sat down to lunch with his second intended Dreary and Liz. It would appear his "breakneck schedule" allowed him a window to eat Christmas lunch with Dreary however the peace couldn't last because after he finished the food he announced he was being called away on something of an emergency.
The Malletts appeared to be having something of a more peaceful time than of late but Judy was once again showing signs of her strong feelings for Katy coming to the fore. She was asking Gary his opinion on seeing Katy once in a while just so they could see how the little girl was getting on. Gary was clearly unimpressed with the idea but kept the feelings to himself for Judy's sake.
John's emergency was it seemed going home to his original wife and family. She was a lot more understanding than Dreary and didn't chide him about having to work on Christmas day. Instead she fixed him a feast because he had missed finishing his Christmas dinner.
The Rovers was quiet and it seemed there was more bar staff than punters. Alec gave some rare words of advice to Natalie about how the pain of losing Kevin would eventually pass and compared her loss to his separation with Bet (Strange how you don't miss her anymore isn't it, I'd not thought of her in months).
Rita left the Webster household leaving the couple alone and free to reconcile if they wanted to. The couple went for a walk and then put the girls to bed while Sally fixed them a drink. The inevitable happened and Sally told Kevin she didn't want him to spend his life apologising for what had happened. What she did want was for them to resume their relationship as a married couple and if that's what he wanted as well there was no reason for them to start straight away. The couple put aside their wars and kissed.
It all irked me a bit because Kevin has come out of this winning on all sides. Maybe Natalie was a man eater but Kevin was prepared to go along with her and now while she faces the prospect of being dumped and alone for New Years Eve, Kevin swans back home with his wife. Blimey!, Sally was even apologising for her behaviour with Chris which I found bloody awful. I don't see it as she did anything to apologise for.
All in all : O.K
Friday 26 December 1997
The aftermath of Christmas Day left piles of uneaten turkey in the Battersby household and a few loose ends in need of tieing up elsewhere in Coronation Street. Starting with Kevin he seemed keen to purge himself by telling Natalie about his fresh start with Sally. Her reaction was one of shock, she couldn't believe how Kevin wanted Natalie to know about their business almost like she was someone special.
Judy was still facing something of a painful time as she wanted to see Katy very badly. In the end she and Gary went across to try and see the little baby they had once called their own. However rather than a warm greeting they were faced with the fact that Zoe wanted them nowhere near Katy for fear of her being snatched back by her adoptive parents.
Gary went to drown his sorrows in the Rovers and finally unburdened the truth about what had happened with Katy and Zoe on Martin Platt. This was of course supposed to be in strictest confidence but Martin told Gail and Nicky2 overheard the entire conversation and told Leanne she was proven to be truthful in front of the Battersby family....Uh Oh!
Toyah spent her time trying to get near to Spider but it was all proving to be futile as he just didn't have time for her and after all she was a bit on the young. Upset at her rejection Toyah decided to drop her new found eco friendly beliefs and launched into a turkey sandwich when she got home.
Dreary was regretting going so hard on John the other day but took her mind off things by going shopping in the sales with Liz for some wedding clothes. The big day was only four weeks away and Dreary was anticipating spending the rest of her life with her new man. However who knows what surprises will occur before then.....?
Kevin decided to break the news to Natalie about his reconciliation with Sally. Natalie took the news well at the time but was upset when she was led through to the back by a strangely sympathetic Vera. Even Alec offered his own stilted form of sympathy while Jack looked on believing Alec was in fact "sniffing round" Natalie.
Ashley was gob smacked when Zoe tried to seduce him. She decided it was time the hapless lad was rewarded for his kindness and patience. Naturally Ashley declined the offer which seemed to offend Zoe somewhat however Ashley is a man of decent moral fibre and not one to take advantage.
Emily held something of a little impromptu party for her, Ken and Spider. It was hell on Earth for Spider as he felt trapped in the company of a couple of "relics". As a result he lit a "herbal" cigarette which Ken rightly identified as cannabis. Although Spider wasn't aware she knew Emily was more clued up about what he was smoking than she let on and only allowed it so Spider wouldn't be caught using drugs in public.
Sally and Kevin ended their day reflecting on their year apart and how it had changed them. They concluded that although they were trying again it was clear they were different people and needed to accept that they had in some ways changed.
Judy returned to the arcade to return the money she had borrowed. There she faced the lecherous looks of Paul the man she had slept with. He was eager for their little "relationship" to continue but Judy insisted it stopped there. Looking at Paul though I am sure he will try and upset the already rocky path of the Mallett marriage.
All in all : O.K
Sunday 28 December 1997
Sally seemed keen to spell out the rules for the new revitalised marriage that she was restarting with Kevin tonight. The most important rule was that Kevin should speak to Natalie and get her to sell her share of the business so that she would be severing the ties altogether. Kevin agreed this might be a good idea altogether and agreed to broach the subject.
The Malletts were trying to get on with their lives although it was not proving to be easy. Judy was once again wanting to move away from Weatherfield so she could start again much to Gary's dismay. It was made more difficult by the truth about Judy and Gary and their buying of Katy now spreading through the community like wildfire.
Speaking of Katy, she and Zoe appeared to be heading towards the last days in the house of Ashley. Thanks to Emily he had found a possible single mothers shelter run by the Catholic Church in the nearby vicinity. Zoe was hesitant about giving up her plush surroundings but it looked like she was going to have to go eventually.
Alf was involved in a secret voting session tomorrow with regard to a new venue being planned by the Millennium Commission of Weatherfield. It would mean destroying an area of woodland and as soon as this news got back to the eco friendly ears of Toyah who was eavesdropping on a conversation between Gail and Audrey she went and told Spider.
His immediate response was to start up his own campaign of action to stop this monstrous behaviour however first he would find out more information about the proposed plans just in case Toyah or Audrey might be mistaken.
Leanne got mouthy in the Rovers with Judy that dinner time. It looked like a punch up might be approaching but thanks to Alec and Vera trouble was averted and an upset Judy was led into the back. She confessed what had happened with the £2000 to Vera who reckoned she had done nothing to be ashamed of. However there was still the matter about her and Gary's actions being illegal.
Natalie refused to sell her stake in the garage as it was one of her remaining assets and she had nothing else to fall back on. Kevin thought she was being awkward but Natalie claimed she was trying to be as grown up about the matter as possible. However how grown up was her idea of setting Chris back on going to be :)
In the end when Sally discovered her plans not to sell she as good as ordered Kevin to sell his share in the business....for the sake of their marriage.
All in all : O.K to Good
Nice to see Natalie fighting back a touch. Stop Kevin getting everything his own way :)
Monday 29 December 1997
The rapid fire tongue of Audrey caused something of a backlash for Alf tonight as he faced the resident eco warrior Spider over the proposed plans for a Millennium style venue in Weatherfield. Aided and abetted by Toyah he opposed the council's plan of action which would mean the destruction of some innocent trees sited at the Red Wreck.
John meanwhile was facing a backlash of a different kind from Dreary over his apparent lack of backbone when it came to telling his bosses at work where to get off regarding his supposedly torturous working hours. We all know the truth though and that truth is that John is living a double life with his wife at the same time when he is building a sham life with Dreary.
Of course John being John he managed to lie his way out of the situation by claiming he was working all the hours God sends for the purpose of angling a cushy promotion job which would relieve all the pressure he was constantly facing in the work place. Dreary took this all on board and when faced with John's glib tongue was more than placated by the end of the episode.
Zoe was supposed to be imminently moving into the refuge for single mothers but when faced with the prospect of being alone Ashley asked her to stay with him instead. The two enjoyed something of a cosy meal together and it looked to me like the sparks of attraction were forming and these three could end up being a cosy family unit before too long.
Kevin tried to extricate himself from the business deal with Natalie but failed miserably. She wasn't about to fall over and play dead and lose everything she had worked for and told him as much. Sally meanwhile told him that he would have to do something about the situation as the pain of seeing him with his ex lover was too much for her to bear and even if meant working out a deal where they lost out Kevin would have to sell up.
If you ask me the relationship of Kevin and Sally looks to be on severely rocky ground and although they both claim it is based on their mutual love of each other it looks more like the children are the basis rather than anything else....
All in all : O.K
Wednesday 31 December 1997
Weatherfield prepared to say goodbye to 1997 and bring in 1998 tonight starting during the day with Spider making positive plans to stage something of a showdown at the Red Wreck to prevent the land being converted for the Millennium. He had the firm backing from the likes of Roy and Emily as well as young Toyah, he even discovered there was a species of endangered plant living on the proposed site.
It looked as if Ashley and Maxine were finished as a couple because of Zoe staying in the house. Many especially the likes of Maud and Fred thought he was soft in the head for giving mother and daughter time of day but Ashley as ever wanted to do the right thing. However what would the right thing be, it seemed the slowly building attraction between these two was coming to a head because Ashley started snogging with Zoe tonight.
The day rolled on and Nicky2 had plans to bring in the new year with someone special. He would sacrifice his night out on the tiles (especially on his birthday) for the chance to secretly spend the evening with his lady love Leanne. By the end of the night they would be planning a trip to Scotland for the new year to get away from their oppressive families.
There was however some major unpleasantness in store though for Dreary as her delicate little house of cards was about to be blown to pieces in one fell swoop. Apparently John was working tonight so Liz suggested that Dreary take a bottle of champagne to the shop and see him for the New Year there.
Off she toddled to the airport to see the love of her life only to be told that John was on holiday and looking forward to spending time with his wife and family. Dreary paled at the prospect of having her life torn apart yet again but curiosity wouldn't keep her from finding out the truth so after finding out the address of where John lived she set off by taxi......
In the Rovers it was just striking twelve and the Rovers crowd celebrated with the usual round of hugs and kisses to send out the old and bring in the new. At that moment there was something of a poignant moment as we saw all the couples together smiling and laughing and then cutting to the likes of Curly and Natalie and the other single types putting brave faces on what could be a lonely time of year.
Dreary meanwhile looked in through the window of the house where John lived and slowly and tearfully knocked on the door. She confronted John's non plussed wife and asked her if she knew who she was. John then came the door and as ever throughout this whole facade kept a distinctly cool demeanour (alright he flinched but only slightly). Dreary then announced herself to his wife as "the woman who doesn't exist" before walking back to her cab and driving into the night. Her dream totally shattered.
All in all : Good (bit of a disappointment with the ending though but I suppose we have more to come)
Happy New Year Everybody!!!!