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victoria foxton

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  1. Coronation Street: Discussion Thread

    Coronation Street: Is the much loved soap going down the drain? These days Coronation Street is completely unbelievable and long-winded, full of murderers and people with issues, complains JAN ETHERINGTON I know Coronation Street is a soap but I think it's going down the drain and I would like them to pull the plug on their obsession with violent, extreme and overlong storylines. Once upon a time, Coronation Street was a wry, gritty, humorous look at life in a cobbled back-to-back street. Now, we have more psychos, murderers, fraudsters, ex-jailbirds and utterly stupid people than you'd ever meet in an entire city, never mind one road. Has Quentin Tarantino taken over as director? Take the character of Pat Phelan. Please, please take him. We've all had enough. Phelan's thousand-yard stare locks on to anyone he passes. He's either lurking on street corners, or issuing threats, in classic, pantomime bully mode. He's a murderer and the violence is often explicit. After he killed for the third time 662 viewers complained. Bruno Vincent/Getty Coronation Street launched the career of Suranne Jones (Karen McDonald) I say all this more in sorrow than in anger because I love Coronation Street and want to enjoy it but I'm turning into Victor Meldrew as I shout at the screen "I don't believe it!" at least three times an episode. It's the world's longest-running TV soap. Over the years, leading writers such as Jack Rosenthal, Jimmy McGovern and Russell T Davies (Doctor Who) have contributed episodes and storylines and acting knights Ian McKellen and Ben Kingsley have been among the stampede of big names proud to be part of it. It's launched the careers of many current stars including Sarah Lancashire, Michelle Keegan and Suranne Jones. Yes, it's a drama and not real life but the first rule of drama is that you have to believe in the characters. Otherwise it's fantasy – and currently Corrie is not so much a bubbly soap as a bucket of cold water – shocking and annoying. It has a wonderful writing team but they are guided by the storyliners, who decide what happens months ahead, to keep us hooked. Evening Standard/Getty The Rovers regulars raise a toast to Jack Howarth (Albert Tatlock) When Coronation Street started, "boxed sets" meant presentation packs of Old Spice aftershave with soap, or matching gloves and a scarf. Now, in many ways, the programme is a victim of boxed set syndrome. The multiple-series dramas, such as Homeland and Game Of Thrones, have become huge hits and their makers know that once a drama becomes popular, the commercial pressure is on to keep the plots dragging on for whole series. Film-makers, however, know you can wrap up a good story in a couple of hours. The writers on Coronation Street have scripted truly magnificent stories over the years – most memorably for Roy Cropper (David Neilson) and the first transsexual character Hayley né Harold Patterson (Julie Hesmondhalgh, whose love for each other endured until, suffering from cancer, she killed herself in 2014. That was a golden period for Coronation Street. It proved you can have gripping storylines about good people, where nobody gets punched, or sets fire to the factory. Popperfoto/Getty The real golden age of Coronation Street was in the 70s with characters like Alan and Elsie Howard Yet there is a view – a strong one – that soaps, with their huge viewership, are perfectly placed to bring up storylines which address serious, real-life crises. But they don't have to do it all the time, do they? We've had an endless and very harrowing tale of Bethany Platt's teenage grooming abuse. Admirable. Keith Hewitt/GC Images Shayne Ward and Alison King at an event in London But no sooner has she been rescued from that than she's working in a lap-dancing club. Currently, there's bipolar Gina Seddon, Robert Preston's gambling, Toyah Battersby's desperation to have a baby – poor Toyah, what a one-note role for her – Eva Price's unwanted pregnancy, Billy Mayhew's guilt at killing Susan Baldwin, Ken Barlow's daughter, in a car crash in 2001. And at the end of most episodes a call-centre voice instructs us: "If you've been affected by any of the issues, go to the website." I struggled but I couldn't remember being chained up by a psychotic builder in a basement and force-fed Pot Noodles. Tim Graham/Getty Traditionally, soaps have feckless male characters and strong females but I'm appalled that the work-shy laziness of Jack Duckworth, Eddie Windass and Stan Ogden has been replaced by secretive malevolence. And where are the strong women? The balcony-chested, brassy barmaids, such as those once portrayed by Julie Goodyear, Sarah Lancashire and Beverley Callard have become fey and troubled Eva, Sarah and Toyah. Thank goodness there's still a Cruella de Vil in the Street. Tracy Barlow (a convicted murderer), has the best lines. She marched up to age-gap lovers Carla and Daniel in the Rovers last week: "I hear you've cougared my brother." More of that please. Popperfoto/Getty Hilda and her work-shy husband Stan Ogden muse on life That's Coronation Street at its best. Snappy, funny exchanges instead of fear and loathing. But when did Pat Phelan's wife Eileen – originally, one of the Street's shrewdest, smartest characters – take a stupid pill? If my husband said, in the middle of the evening, he had to go out for a “bit of business”, I'd jolly well want to know where and with whom. Can't she see that she's married to a mass murderer? All the signs are there – the doomy house with a basement he won’t let her see; the number of people who hate him (the entire street); the missing (dead) people connected to him – Michael, Andy, Luke, Vinny? As Dexys Midnight Runners memorably sang: “Come On, Eileen!” Even Sue Cleaver, who plays Eileen Phelan, recently admitted that the heavy plotlines are taking their toll. “It's all getting very dark. It's just too complicated at the moment.” Dave Benett/Getty Sue Cleaver (Eileen Grimshaw) and Jane Danson (Leanne Battersby) on a night on the town Amazingly, the programme makers seem to have reacted to the criticism by viewers and actors of the depressing storylines (which recently included everything from child grooming to kidnap and murder). They're encouraging the stars to share ideas and participate in shaping their character's fate. Jane Danson (Leanne Battersby), said: "We can put our creative points of view across now. So, rather than be miserable, we get a little bit of the old characters back." Hallelujah! But it's also a ploy to stop their stars walking out. Catherine Tyldesley (Eva Price) is off this summer, while Shayne Ward (Aidan Connor) is also expected to go soon. Debbie Rush has "left", as her character Anna Windass is in prison for five years. Malcolm Hebden (the pernickety Norris Cole) is on a health-related "extended break", while Helen Flanagan (who plays Rosie Webster) is leaving to have a baby. But back to Pat Phelan. Andy Carver and Vinny Ashford were both killed off by Pat Phelan Spoiler alert! Photos seem to show he and Eileen setting out in a boat in Cumbria. Will he drown? Not very original. Didn't Joe McIntyre, one of Gail's many deranged husbands, try to fake his own death in a boating accident there? The Cumbrian Tourist Board should start a "This is where soap actors come to die" tour. Popperfoto/Getty Roys Rolls is the scene of many confrontations in Weatherfield Some choose exits and some have exits thrust upon them. Lately there has been a rash of departures linked to accusations of "inappropriate behaviour". There are three ways to leave the Street: be murdered, leave in a taxi gazing back out of a rain-lashed window like Mrs Thatcher quitting number 10, or "go to Portugal". For my money, aggressively quiffed males Adam Barlow and Zeedan Nazir who let their hair do the talking, restricting their own contribution to heaving sighs and moody dissent, should be the next to get the first plane out. Maybe the writers could go to Portugal too? A bit of sunshine might cheer them up and inspire some more light-hearted stories. Because, for heaven's sake, it's a soap, not an acid bath
  2. DAYS: February 2018 Discussion Thread

    The only highlight was Julie and DA Trask giving Gabi a hard time. Jennifer's hair do made me laugh.
  3. DAYS: February 2018 Discussion Thread

    Good luck trying to watch all those dull episodes Eddie.
  4. TV Character's that got the worst(or no) exit from their series

    Poor sweet and goofy Scott didn't deserve the the tragic fate that befell him. Your right Scott Scanlon died so David could be one of the gang. I would've preferred him leaving too. Maybe coming back years later for a guest spot. Jenny O'Hara was amazing as Scott's grieving mom Pam.
  5. DAYS: February 2018 Discussion Thread

    I already FF through today's show. Who killed Andre is the dullest murder mystery in the history of soaps. Abby and Steffy Jr having the same damn scene for the billionth time. I used to love LR. But all the work she had done on her mug is so distracting. I love your idea of Will & Paulie enjoying each other on a tropical island paradise. I wonder where John & Billie stashed Horita?
  6. Classic GH Thread

    Episodes 7/1/85 thru 8/30/85. The Aztec Treasure goes on and on. But it's interesting seeing early Anna and Sean as a villain. It's strange seeing GL's Robert Newman in the nothing role of one of Sean's henchmen. ClassicGH has also upload 5/1/06 thru 5/31/06.
  7. GH February 2018 Discussion Thread

    Georgie appeared for one scene with Maxie at her home. Even though i don't care about Woodpile he got a nice send off. The writers did laid it on thick about what a great uncorrupted cop he was. Spinelli & Amy screeching out Danny Boy was awful. At the end of the episode Maxie watches as Georgie takes her beloved Woodpile to soap heaven.
  8. GH February 2018 Discussion Thread

  9. DAYS: February 2018 Discussion Thread

    John shooting Will and possibly Paul on Friday's cliffhanger was shocking. If only Days could sustain this. Before everything goes back to sheer boredom I hope Will doesn't regain his memory and goes back to dull Sonny. The writing for John's poisoning Steve has been awful.
  10. DAYS: February 2018 Discussion Thread

    Today's show was a snooze? but HoRita spying on John was cute.
  11. AMC Tribute Thread

  12. Another World

    Here's Donna Love's first appearance.
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