Oh, the joy of seeing Liz McDonald come through the Rovers’ door! A real landlady back. And just in time, before Michelle and her ego have a chance to completely destroy the business. I agree with Michelle: being the barmaid is a less taxing job than being the landlady. Having no real responsibility or authority better suits her skills.
However, now having her feet planted behind the bar as landlady and being able to lord it over the likes of Tracy, Michelle will not go gently. The next fight, I predict, will be between her and Liz about the sign over the door. It will be more evenly matched than fights Michelle has with Steve. He proudly put up a new sign proclaiming Steve McDonald and Michelle Connor as proprietors.
If Liz put money into the Rovers’ purchase this time, she will want her name back up there. And incidentally, have the rules changed? Last time Steve bought the bar, his criminal record meant that he could not be the legal licensee.* That is why Liz was, despite having no financial investment in it at all.
Belittling as an art form
I don’t know if I have ever wished that a grown man would revert to living with his mother and being a perennial ‘mamma’s boy’ but, given the choice of Michelle or Liz as Steve’s partner in life, I think he’s better off with Liz. Although she is very good at belittling him, she’s not a patch on Michelle. Of all the bitchy women who have been part of Steve’s life, Michelle has raised it to an art form.
Consider her initial reaction on Thursday to his surprise gift of the Rovers to her. Despite knowing, as everyone on the street except Steve knew, that Michelle doesn’t like surprises, I was shocked by the nastiness that came out of her mouth. In front of the whole bar, she told him what a loser he was and that having to work all hours in a “backstreet boozer” was not what she had dreamed of for her life.
One’s mouth can run ahead of one’s brain, so maybe Michelle would quickly realize that what she said was hurtful and ungracious. She took herself off to the Bistro for a think or a sulk. Steve came in to make amends. Nope, she was not having any of it. It was a step back for her, she said, she had a career at the factory, she said, that she loved. Fair enough, but she made it sound as if he had been responsible for her no longer having it. Steve did not say, you got in a snit and walked out. He’s a bigger man than I am.
Round three of negotiations: Michelle returns to the Rovers ostensibly to apologize. But she still makes it Steve’s fault. The words she said about “we“ need to communicate like adults, with inflection and pointed glance, came across clearly as you. Steve really should have told her, when she asked if there was anything else, that there was another partner. But after her earlier explosions, who would willingly cause another one? How he thought he was going to hide the presence, and involvement, of Liz, I don’t know but I can’t blame him for wanting to.
* The answer is here. Thanks.