Tag Archives: Liz McDonald

Corrie Street 15 Oct. 2017

Conflict Management

You could see it coming a mile away. Still it was good. Conflict between the bar staff, and Toyah asserting her credentials: I’ve got a diploma in conflict management. Liz, present customer and former bar manager, rolling her eyes.sean-snipes-about-eva.

Tuesday, Eva and Sean are in a snit with each other. It’s about a lot more than who’s going to replace the empty keg. It’s Eva feeling guilty about Sean and her other mates being out of a job at the factory due to her revenge plot. Although he doesn’t know for sure, Sean suspects that Eva had something to do with the factory break-in and the subsequent loss of jobs. At least she should clear the air, he seems to think, say for sure one way or the other what she knew and when she knew it.

sean-flicks-towel-at-evaSo they’re sniping at each other about bartending minutiae – clearing tables, washing glasses, replacing kegs. Their sniping is not subtle. Both are too much the prima donna to do any performance low-key.

Their spat is embarrassing for Toyah and Peter, still finding their way as pub owners and staff managers. Especially with Liz there. They, you know, can see an invisible clipboard in her hand, checking off what they are doing wrong and how the whole place is going to pot.

conflict management with toyahLiz offers to sort things out with Sean and Eva. No, Toyah says, I can do it. I’m a trained therapist, trained in conflict management. Liz snickers. Come on, Sean, come on Eva, let’s sit down and talk this through.

Toyah put her therapist voice on and tried to initiate discussion. To little avail, Sean and Eva sat sullen and silent. Maybe Toyah would have had better luck if she’d used a talking stick, as Sally has done with her cat pepper mill. This method of facilitating discussion also worked surprisingly well for Sophie in mediation efforts.eva-and-sean-make-up

But instead of Sally and her cat stick swooping in, Liz did. Look you two, leave your differences the other side of the bar, slap a smile on and get on with your job. Now! And Eva and Sean apologized, said they hated liz-with-arm-around-toyahfalling out with each other, babe, and got back to work. Toyah seethed.

Book-learning versus old-school common sense, in the traditional Corrie mode. An easy jab, maybe, but still a funny moment.

Corrie Street Sept. 11/16

Soap Cliché

liz-fumes-michelle-looks-at-picsIf something makes you think soap cliché, that’s good reason to not do it. Wife and girlfriend pregnant at the same time screams soap cliché. It is one thing having Leanne get pregnant by Steve. And another thing for Michelle to want a last chance saloon baby. But both happening at the same time? Soap cliché.soap cliché with mcdonald and platt womenFrom the glass half full perspective, the Corrie writers are having fun with it. Secretive meaningful looks shoot across rooms. Conversations lapse awkwardly when the wrong person or topic is introduced. Steve and Liz doing Laurel and Hardy as they try to hide their whispered arguments and strategy sessions.

They huddle together, gobsmacked, as Leanne and Nick announce that they are having a baby. Steve trapped in a room with his momma and baby mommas all together. A horrified Liz stands apart from the gail-smiles-at-nick-and-leannebonding taking place on Thursday  between Gail, Leanne, Michelle and, theoretically, her. You can almost see the steam coming from her ears while Gail goes on and on about Platt babies and the special joy of her firstborn’s firstborn.

But it’s not all slapstick and grimaces. Liz cannot believe that Steve can live across the street from his own child and watch it be raised as a Platt. And, perhaps more accurately, that she cannot. He, however, furious liz chagrined stevethinks the arrangement works well for all. He will have a baby with his wife. Leanne will have the baby she has long wanted. Nick will be a daddy. There will be a grandchild for Liz and a grandchild for Gail. Glass half full.

Liz warns Steve that the truth will out. You cannot keep a secret like this forever. And secrets like this should not be kept. It’s not fair to anyone. So, glass half empty.

When the truth is revealed, it will be a big story. A story that could liz-with-happy-face-steve-withoutstand on its own, in terms of what happens with Michelle and Steve, with Nick and Leanne and with Steve and Leanne. It doesn’t need another half, a second baby. Adding a pregnancy for Michelle as well just makes it a soap cliché.

Corrie Street Dec. 27/15

liz, anna and erica decorate treeMonday, girlfriends hanging out. Liz, Erica and Anna. Nice to see. At the beginning of the episode, they discuss the theme of Liz’s Christmas tree. At the end, they discuss going man-hunting at a singles’ night.

Over the years we’ve often seen Liz with friends. She seems like someone to whom girlfriends are very important. Scenes with her and liz puts angel on treeDeirdre over the years were some of the best ever. She is friends with other women on the Street, of course, but none of them gel with her character quite as well as Deirdre. Until Erica arrived.

Erica and Liz became friends in Spain. But after Erica’s arrival on the girlfriends Liz, Erica and Anna discuss singles nightstreet, their friendship got sidelined for Erica’s involvement with Nick. Thankfully, that ended fairly quickly. When Erica returned, she rattled around like a spare part. She and Dev? I like the idea. Their characters suit each other, and I think the actors work well together.  But, aside from romance, it’s nice to see Erica’s return to her roots on the Street – hanging out with Liz.

erica-smiles-at-doubtful-annaAnna definitely needs friends, for her own sake and ours. Her storylines primarily involve her family. That’s ok but it’s nice to see her branch out a bit. Especially when, of late, her family-related stories mainly have involved her either shrieking at someone or wringing her hands in her apron.

anna-says-she-will-goLiz and Erica are well-matched, similar in age, style and chutzpah. Anna is not in their league really. She defines herself in terms of work and being a mother. She has had to. She has had major problems both with finances and with both her children. She’s been through a lot, and it’s little wonder she always seems frayed at the seams.

liz-is-pleased-anna-will-goIt’s time for her to have some fun, and Liz and Erica are just the women to help her do that. I hope they take her on as a project.

Corrie Street Sept. 14/14

Hello Elizabeth

“Never work with animals or children,” W. C. Fields said. They always steal the show. Tony-watches-Liz-do-make-upCorrie actors might add so too do the words ‘Hello Elizabeth’.

There were many good moments this week. Michelle with some laugh out loud funny lines. Jason’s distress over his unwitting part in Tyrone’s injuries. Tony’s brooding presence at the breakfast table. He worries about the worksite accident and about Liz going to see her volatile ex-husband. He’s also perplexed about the ways women craft a message through make-up and apparel.

Jim says hello ElizabethWar paint in place and a different top on, Liz waits in the prison visitors’ room. Jim files in with the other prisoners, expecting to see Steven. I didn’t even realize I was waiting for it – until he said it. “Hello, Elizabeth”. Delight and memories washed over me at hearing those words that are unique to Jim, and to Liz in relationship to him. (And, oh yes, he noticed the change in lipstick shade.)

Something as simple as that manifests what Jim says he hoped to see Stevecreator Tony Warren said about the appeal of Coronation Street for its audience. It is “something warm, something friendly and something familiar, and they return to it” (Other Worlds, pg. 128). Aye, Tony, so they do.

Following soon after that was Jim back in his cell, despondent. In comes Peter, whining for more booze please Jim, I did my part Jim, you owe me. Big Jim is so not in the mood for Peter says Jim how did it goit. It looks like Peter will end up in hospital, at the receiving end of Jim’s fists. But no, not yet.

Pairing up actors Charles Lawson and Chris Gascoyne is brilliant. I have had trouble with accepting Peter’s sudden and dramatic descent into the DTs. When he first was in prison, he showed no ill effects from alcohol withdrawal at all. Then all of a sudden, he looked he looked like he’d just crawled out of Jim says he wants to give someone a dig in the mouthReefer Madness. Was this written for him because he does drunk and disorderly and desperate so well? When he, and we, met The Landlord it all made sense. That’s why: it gives a reason for Peter and Jim to interact. It worked. The two are absolutely fabulous together.

photo on mantelIt’s a nice touch having photos of Jim on the mantel in the Rovers’ back room. If I were Tony, though, I’d add that to my list of things to brood about.

Corrie Street Oct. 27/13

high-heelOh, 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 surprise-gift-for-menot 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 sign-over-doorSteve 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.

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.  steve-plays-possumDespite 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 why-is-she-sayinga 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 liz-settles-fightshe 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.

pack-it-inAs soon as she walked in, Liz had to settle a catfight in the middle of the bar.  Her biggest fight is going to be with Michelle and my money is on Liz.

* The answer is here.  Thanks.

Coronation Street Scene of the Week (Dec. 26/10)

Loss

Becky leaving Rovers' bathroom stall after miscarriageThe biggie of the week was Monday’s three-scene telling of Becky’s miscarriage.  The look on her face when she leaves the bathroom, the surreptitious tippling of vodka, the screaming out “I had a miscarriage”.  Dramatic, suspenseful and, ultimately, heart-breaking.

Liz tells Becky about Katie's Christmas angelBut my pick comes on Thursday, when Liz sits down for a heart-to-heart with Becky.  She tells her she knows how she feels, and she tells her about Katie.

Katie was the baby girl that Liz lost.  She was a day old when she died.  Liz puts a spin on it that’s consoling for Becky and that is really nice of her.  She says, “at least I did get to hold her.” She doesn’t mention the emotional devastation of carrying a baby for that many more months, see it bornBecky sees Liz's pain about Katie and then lose it.  But the look on Becky’s face suggests that she sees that, sees the pain for Liz.

Then, a lovely gift of our delay in airtime, Liz mentions the tattered old angel she puts on her Christmas tree every year.  It’s her memorial to little Katie.  Watching this on the eve of Christmas Eve, I felt my eyes fill up.  Becky and Liz hug, and my tears spill over.

Liz mentions Katie from time to time, but not often.  And when she does, the pain is evident on her face.  It’s not surprising that Liz has never told Becky before.  And Steve?  Maybe he felt it wasn’t hisclose up of Becky & Liz hugging each other after miscarriageplace to mention Katie.  I don’t know.  She was his sister, and he and Andy would have been old enough to know what was going on.

So often we see only Liz’s exasperation with Becky.  Often it’s completely understandable but sometimes, well, she can be very hard on her I think.  But, with this pregnancy, there have been some lovely moments from Liz with Becky and with Steve.  It’s nice to see the compassionate and understanding side of Liz.