Houses of Cards
One house of cards balanced well; one collapsing. If we extend the construction metaphor, Emily might say that’s because one was built on a foundation of rock and the other on sand (Matt. 7:24-27). We saw them both on Wednesday in one of the best episodes ever in Coronation Street’s long history. Different stories, evoking different emotions, but linked with an underpinning of principle.
Hayley checked off a big item on her bucket list, thanks to a turn of the cards. The first cards the Blackpool fortuneteller turned up were the Hermit and the Empress. The former signifies solitude, the latter female fertility. She next drew the Fool, for beginnings, then the Death card, meaning change. But from her observations, she knew it best to turn that one down without showing them. She drew the Star card, hope and inspiration, and told Hayley to follow her dream and not let, say, a “closed for maintenance” sign stand in her way. So they went back to the closed Tower Ballroom and it opened for them. Fate or serendipity, and the practical action of the card reader in contacting her son, the ballroom manager.
Meanwhile, in the house of Platts, Kylie finds out right before the baby’s christening that a) David knew she had slept with Nick, b) David was responsible for the prolonged vendetta against Nick, and c) David caused the accident that nearly killed Nick. She is horrified. Nick tells her to forget it and have the happy life that she, and David and Nick and everyone else want. But she cannot.
At the christening, she snatches Lily from David’s arms, tells him he is a dangerous freak, and to stay away from her. Some of the story comes out in the church aisle, the rest in the vestry amongst only the family. Leanne storms out, before the part about the van accident. Gail turns on David, reminding him of Richard Hillman and the “love” he professed just before he tried to murder her and her children. David had one chance to say he had not deliberately caused the van crash. But instead he dug into his bag of standard excuses and accusations; you never loved me, I’ve always been second best, you tried to abort me, yada yada yada. David needs the same advice as Nick: use words wisely!
It is Kylie who will suffer the greatest loss, and it is she who will not practice the hypocrisy necessary to keep the life she has made for herself. Nick and Gail have known enough of the facts to be aware of the slippery moral basis of their “happy families” charade. But as long as everyone gets what he or she wants, just sweep the nasty part under the carpet, that’s their working philosophy. It’s Kylie, the trailer trash part of their respectable lace-curtain home, who says what David did is not right. That it must be hauled out of the cesspool that is Platt morality and be examined. She is willing to do that even if the cost is the happy ending that she had finally found.
After watching Kylie bring everyone’s lives down around their ears, including her own, I thought Becky would be proud of her. Then I realized that, if they weren’t occupied with their own problems, so would Roy and Hayley. The moral compass for Becky, perhaps indirectly they have also become that for Kylie.