Tag Archives: Eileen Grimshaw

Corrie Street 15 Apr. 2018

Watery Grave

Pat Phelan went to a watery grave Thursday. He fell off the pier, then pat-hanging-off-pierclung desperately to a rope pleading with Eileen to pull him up. She didn’t. He almost made it on his own, then she stomped on his knuckles. And that was that. He plunged into the icy cold water. He couldn’t survive. Could he?

Beautiful scenes, at night on the pier, looking out over the expanse of sea. Also tension. Was Pat planning to kill Eileen? Would she realize the danger she was in? Would the people in Weatherfield figure out where she and Pat were? Would either she or Pat get enough bars on their phones to make or receive a call? Yes to all, although it does seem Pat really didn’t want to kill Eileen. But needs must.pat-pleads-for-help

I am glad Eileen is safe. I’m glad that Pat has paid for his sins. But. I like Pat and will miss him. Not the truly evil, moustache-twirling schemer, but the funny and conflicted family- and businessman. The man who cares for others but will do whatever he believes he needs to do.

No body means options

pat-pulls-himself-upWe haven’t seen his body. Therefore he may have survived. In soaps law, if you don’t actually see someone die, they can still be alive no matter how unlikely the recovery. It’s mainly an American soap thing, but we recently saw it on Coronation Street with Billy surviving that horrendous fall off a cliff.

eileen-stares-at-pat-strugglingSo, in my future storyline, Pat survives his would-be watery grave and makes landfall somewhere. He is so thankful for his life being spared that he dedicates himself to the Lord. Truly repentant, he seeks to right the wrongs he has done. He becomes an evangelist, gathering a large flock of sinners and downtrodden around him.pat falls to watery grave

His personality is the sort that would be equally successful as secular conman or big-time preacher. So we wouldn’t have to suspend disbelief too much for that part.

The problem is how could he be visibly present in England and avoid prosecution? He did kill three men and watched another die. There is no statute of limitation on murder.

eileen-snarls-at-falling-patMaybe he could rescue someone so heroically that his sentence would be shortened or commuted. That might take some serious suspension of disbelief to successfully pull off. But I’d be willing to do it.

This location reminded me of Joe McIntyre and his accidental suicide. He is another Corrie character who met his end in beautiful Lake District waters.

Corrie Street 25 Mar. 2018

Fool for Love

Phelan in two scenes. Monday, his ‘so whaddya gonna do about it?’ admission of fraud to Tim. On Tuesday, his ‘I’m a fool for love, I did it all for you’ confession to Eileen.phelan-admits-fraud-to-tim-in-cab

In these confessions, Phelan only admitted to the Calcutta Street flats development, though. Not about the multiple murders. Nothing more to tell, nothing else had to do with him, he assured her.

tim-releases-taxi-radio-buttonInch by tiny inch we are nearing his downfall – I think. But just when you think he’s caught in the net, he slithers out again. Just this past week, he got out of a great big hole filling rapidly with water and concrete. That was thanks to Tim and Eileen. Then he escaped possible police custody, again thanks to Tim and Eileen.

He tells Tim that, yes, the Calcutta Street project was a scam that ripped off many of the nice neighbours on this street. So what, he says. Vinny ripped him off too, he says. A bid for pity? Or absolution? Maybe laying down a false trail for when Vinny’s body is found. Or just having fun. Who knows?

eileen-listens-in-cab-officeTim doesn’t use the material he’s been given – a confession that he had the good sense to share through the taxi radio. He leaves it to Eileen, who heard it all, to do the right thing. And she tries. Sort of.

Instead of going to the police, she goes to Phelan. Confronts him with what he said. Yes, he admits his wrongdoing to her. But he wanted to make life better for her. He wanted to build Jason’s phalen says he is a fool for loveinheritance up – for Jason. On Todd’s involvement, he isn’t so pure of heart. He uses Todd’s history for dodgy dealing, and the fact that Eileen knows that about her son. Just a chuckle and “it didn’t take much dragging, love” is enough to include Todd in any blame that’s going around. So, Eileen, turn in Phelan and you implicate your son as well.

eileen-looks-longingly-at-patFinally, after canvassing nearly the entire neighbourhood, she does go to the police. She’s given Phelan time to think up his next move. He too goes to the police station and intercepts her. It all goes his way. The police have left Eileen and Liz waiting in the hallway, too busy to take their statement. Then Liz does the gracious thing and leaves Eileen and Phelan to talk in private.

But Liz should have stayed on them like a vulture on roadkill. Because Eileen walks out with Phelan. No talking to the police, no confession phelan-looks-downof fraud. Eileen is going to stand by her man. Because he’s just a fool for love and he did it all for her. Yep, someone is a fool for love. Just not Phelan.

Corrie Street June 21/15

Trickster

Monday, the unveiling of Todd’s manipulations was scarily brilliant. it-was-so-easyLike others, I’ve wondered what happened to turn Todd so mean. But on Monday, that didn’t matter. What was more interesting was how he exposed the underbelly of others. As he explained, it was so very easy for him to bring out the veniality and weakness of his mother and brother.

Adrian watched as Eileen’s willingness to deceive in order to get a taste of more, and better, came out. Todd explained that todd-grins-as-adrian-leaves-eileenEileen was dreaming of a 5 star hotel kind of guy, not the guy-next-door whose idea of splashing out was a B&B. But Adrian doesn’t deserve this, Eileen protested. You’re right, said Todd, he’s a nice guy who deserves better. He neatly turned Eileen’s outrage on Adrian’s behalf back on her. It wasn’t Todd who lied to Adrian and sneaked out behind his back to meet the imaginary Jeff from Dubai. Todd gave her the rope, she hung herself.

all-that-money-spent-on-flightsJason leapt to their mother’s defence, giving Todd the chance to tell him he had done the same thing to him with Eva. Dropping a word of doubt here and there about what she was really doing with Tony, and Jason filled in the rest himself.

Jason didn’t trust Eva, didn’t ask her pointblank about his suspicions. Quickly he let himself be talked out of trying to threw-it-out-of-the-prampersuade her to stay. You did all that, said Jason. Todd said, no, you listened and then did it yourself.

Neither Jason nor Eileen could convincingly justify themselves or blame Todd. He set the stage, yes, but they were the actors. Todd explained he did it as payback.

Payback

Months ago they didn’t come to his reconciliation dinner, the night he was beaten up and left scarred. That is perhaps the  reason on the surface. The more darwin-sleeps-easy interesting motivation, to me, is deeper. It’s the ability of the trickster, to find a flaw and use it to cause a person to act in ways that go against their self-perception and even harm their own best interests.

If Eileen had truly cared for Adrian and been satisfied with the bird in hand, she wouldn’t have continued pursuing those in the bushes of Dubai. If Jason had completely trusted Eva and had more faith in his own self-worth, he wouldn’t have so readily believed she was enough-of-a-floor-showcheating on him. He would have fought harder to keep her.

Hard lessons, and maybe not fair, for both of them. Todd plays a wonderful Iago and, like Othello, Jason and Eileen are left knowing they had listened to poison.

Corrie Street May 12/13

Friends

oh Eileen says DeirdreFriday episode, Eileen in despair.  Paul is leaving for Yorkshire.  There’s nothing she can or will do about it.  Jason asks Deirdre to see her, maybe cheer her up.

Afternoon, a scene of long-time friends commiserating.  Deirdre sized up the situation on entry:  Eileen feeling sorry for herself, still lying on the couch.  Deirdre opens a bottle, pushes Eileen over so she has room to sit beside her and pours two glasses of red.

deirdre-and-eileenThey talk about Eileen’s bad luck with men.  Eileen gives a synopsis of her relationship history.  That is useful for newer viewers who may not know the story of the fathers of her sons or remember the wonderful Dennis.  For viewers like me who do remember, it was nice to hear about them again. But it was especially nice to see a simple quiet scene of two friends just being with each other.

second-bottleWe haven’t seen Deirdre and Eileen together much recently and it was a reminder that they are good friends and have shared a lot over the years.  We haven’t seen many quiet scenes of any two people lately so this one was a pleasant interlude between the strife and action that love-of-my-lifefollows most of the characters.

The wine, the talk, the reliving of past experiences prompts Eileen to action.  So the last we saw this week was her running down the station platform looking for Paul onboard the Yorkshire-bound train. Depending on how that turns out, she may need Deirdre’s shoulder to cry on once again.  Like the song says, that’s what get-to-the-stationfriends are for.

And the line of the week came from Deirdre when Jason stopped her on the street.  “Just the woman I’m looking for,” he said. She replied, “Can I have that on film and play it back on a daily basis?”

Coronation Street Scene of the Week (Apr. 29/12)

The Long Goodbye

Paul’s relationship with Eileen and Lesley.  A story interspersed with the arrival of Robert Vaughn as Milton, the drama of Carla and Peter sneaking around, Frank’s trial Paul kisses Eileen goodbye in the morningand the fallout of Tracy’s trickery.  But it was there, in bits and pieces, growing all the time.  Just like Alzheimer’s does.

Paul has put Lesley in a nursing home for two weeks’ respite care.  He is free to stay with Eileen, and she has decided to not worry about his marital status for now.  Through the week it developed with Eileen’s family and community putting their oar in.  Jason accepted his mother’s friendship with Paul and apologized to them both.  But it was a different story when he realized Paul had spent the night with her.  Eileen decided to go public and that didn’t sit well with Norris or Julie.  Eileen had crossed the line, Julie said.

The story they are telling is so very important, one Paul has explained well.  With Lesley in a nursing home, he feels guilt about leaving her to others, relief at not having to worry about her every second of every day, and guilt at feeling relief.

Eileen has said the right things:  that he needs a break and he’s not abandoning Lesley.  It’s easier for her to say that, especially without Jason accepts that Eileen wants to help Paulthe reality of Lesley’s presence, than it is for him to accept it.  What will it be like when Lesley returns home from the nursing home and Eileen’s pretend world goes back to Paul’s ‘normal’?

Perspective of caregivers

When this story started a few months, I was impressed that Corrie would tackle the issue.  It was one, I thought, that needed telling.  People in the real world, caring for those with Alzheimer’s and dementia, need to know that they are not invisible, that someone sees how hard what they’re doing is on them.

We saw Alzheimer’s with Mike Baldwin, but that was told more from his point of view.  Well-done and powerful it was, about a character we had known for many years.  This one is different:  Paul and Lesley are new with this storyline being their entry to the show.  We haven’t shared their backstory as we had with Mike.  The emphasis here is on the caregiver more than the disease.  That’s what I like about it, showing the ravages of Alzheimer’s for the person who has it but also showing how it can ravage his or her loved ones.

Norris indicates disapproval of Eileen and PaulAt the beginning, Eileen pushed Paul away.  Alzheimer’s or no, she’s your wife, begone and shame on you.  The honourable response, yes.  But one that doesn’t take him into account.  She came to see that, that he is more than Lesley’s caregiver and that he needs something in his life outside that role.  And that having another life doesn’t detract from his love of Lesley.

Watching while living with Alzheimer’s

But there is another aspect of it.  At the time it aired in the UK, there was a call to stop or change the story.  A petition was started by a daughter of a woman just starting on the road of Alzheimer’s.  Seeing what was happening on screen greatly upset the woman with Alzheimer’s – the fear that it might happen to her too, that those she loved might find other lives and loves while she was still alive.

Hayley, Julie and Dennis in Rovers discuss Paul and EileenTurning the tv to a different show isn’t an option, the petitioner explained.  Routine and familiarity is extremely important for people with Alzheimer’s.  If the routine includes Coronation Street, well, what are you going to do when the story hits too close to home?  A difficult situation for Coronation Street:  an important topic with two very painful sides to it.

Coronation Street Scene of the Week (Apr. 22/12)

Sweet Revenge

Becky's revenge - Deirdre rushes to Tracy crying in street I’m sure everyone who has ever lost a love to a lying, two-faced schemer stood up and cheered when Becky got back at Tracy.  I sure did.  What a wonderful moment when Tracy’s treachery was revealed.  It was made sublime by Becky leaving it until the reception, after Steve had pledged Tracy his troth in their very beautiful wedding.

Becky watches as Steve and Tracy pronounced wedShe decided to keep quiet until after the marriage when Steve told her that he truly believed her capable of causing Tracy’s miscarriage.  When Steve’s delusions are shattered, he’s trapped, legally “chained to that cow” as Becky put it.

She still almost backed out, though, not wanting to hurt him Tracy enters bathroom with Becky and Kyliethat much.  Tracy’s smirking suggestion of ‘X’ as her new middle name made Becky see clearly again.  After dropping her bombshell, she walked away and, like a weeping Bet Lynch, Becky in her leopard skin jacket left in a taxi.  Steve chased her to the airport to beg her forgiveness, then watched her leave with her new man and son.

Steve watches Becky board planeThe whole week was great.  Three storylines struck me as having classic Corrie, and soap, elements.  First, the Tracy/Becky dénouement had evil deeds being eventually repaid, something that soaps do well because of their long story arc.

It also had a particularly Corrie aspect.  Despite having earlier involved the police in order to expose Tracy, Becky did not take the Becky writes down what Gail tells her about clinic computerincriminating medical record to them.  She relied on her neighbours.  That fits perfectly with Corrie’s tradition of people helping themselves instead of going to the authorities.  Don’t trust the rozzers, as Kylie says.

Fish Story

Second, the Owen/Faye/Anna/fish story giving an exposition of all sides of the issues. Continuing serials can do this better than other television forms. Especially explaining without giving a pat answer, which Corrie does very well.  Owen presented a good case Owen discusses Faye with daughters and Royagainst Faye:  that her revenge on him was calculated cruelty and violence directed elsewhere, to living creatures.  Where might this stop, with her wielding an AK-47 in the street?  Anna presented the other side. What Faye did was unconscionable. But it wasn’t Owen’s place to discipline her, especially with corporal punishment and especially doing so in anger.  I agree with her but I also thought – what about “it takes a village to raise a child”?  Surely, that doesn’t just mean comforting and cuddling, it also means everyone has the duty to correct wrongdoing.

And Owen asking his daughters’ opinion of him as a father and of childrearing methods in general – wonderful.  The Katie giving her childrearing beliefsdiscussion was thoughtful and presented all sides, from personal experience and general philosophy.  I particularly loved Katie, teenage mom of infant, saying “I’ll never…” and Owen saying “I’ll remind you of that when…”

Poor Leslie

Lesley cowering on floor and Eileen trying to comfort herThird, Eileen/Paul/Leslie exploring the trauma of Alzheimer’s and the strain put on caregivers.  This is an important story, fraught with pitfalls just in the telling.  Obviously taking Leslie to Eileen’s was a mistake.  Leslie should have stayed in the familiar surroundings of her home.

I can see a production reason for what Corrie did:  saves building a set of Paul and Leslie’s living room.  But, in the nice way that art (and its production) and life can reflect each other, it is also very easy in real life to make mistakes like this.  In caring for those with Alzheimer’s, you learn by trial and error.

Becky enjoying flight first classFabulous writing, acting and storyline development all week.  And if Becky never returns to the Street, I’ll always picture her in Barbados, having a wonderful life and watching her new son grow up.  Sweet revenge indeed.  And for now, I’m consoled by having Kylie as Becky Mach 2.Steve outside festooned Rovers watching plane leave