Tag Archives: Robert Preston

Corrie Street 17 June 2018

Three Reasons

Three reasons on Monday to leave Coronation Street. Three scenes that too quickly reminded me too much of other types of television shows. So I made a decision that I’ve been thinking about for several months. I stopped watching. I did not watch the rest of the week’s episodes. It feels ok so far, so that’s it. I’m done. You can read more about my overall reasons here.

Crime Drama

reasons to leave - pat-looms-behind-gary-and-sarahA villain returns from the presumed dead. He’s caught, but people underestimate him. They dawdle and don’t pay attention. And surprise, he’s got himself loose and has a gun. Oh no, however will we get out of this alive! It can work – in a crime thriller. If if goes too far, with too many miraculous escapes and close calls, it becomes melodrama. That’s where this has gone.

Soap Opera

robert-leaving-in-vanSomeone sees something and misconstrues it. But that person doesn’t stay to listen to what else is said and therefore get the whole story. Neither does he (Robert) confront, or just ask, anyone about what he overheard. Instead, he goes off in a huff. At a critical juncture. All avoidable if you’d just ask what’s going on. Overused device even in American soaps.

Sitcom

rosie-gemma-and-modelPretty but ditzy women decide to be supersleuths. If they put their heads together, they decide, they can outsmart the bad guy. Hilarity ensues. Because, if they put their heads together, what they got is one big head of good hair. In romance and some mystery novels, this kind of heroine is described as “perky” and/or “sassy.” I don’t read books that use either of those adjectives.

So I’m sorry to say, dear readers, this is the final Scene of the Week. Please feel free to talk amongst yourselves here. I’d love to know what you think. Maybe you can tell me when it’s safe to return.

Corrie Street 10 June 2018

Stag

Robert’s stag do in Wednesday’s episode. Less than a handful of guys who don’t know Robert all that well gathered in the Rovers in mid-afternoon. On its own, a bit lame, even seeming a bit shoehorned in. But in costume? That was the straw that broke the camel’s back.five stag guys

There was a warning signal just before. Ryan told Steve – there’s a theme, come as a pop star. A heads up for the audience too. It might be good, some of them have been, I told myself. But events involving themed fancy dress have become somewhat of a Corrie trope.

The highlight, I suppose, was Michelle’s warring sons each coming as an Oasis Gallagher brother, in identical costumes. Totally coincidentally, according to Ali and Ryan when they saw the other. Oh sure, makes sense to independently choose to dress up as one of an always-linked warring duo.connor-brothers-as-gallagher

I restrained myself from turning off the television. Watch the rest of the episode, I told myself, can’t be too hasty.

Next episode, the hen party arrived. They too were in themed costumes. I’m not sure what the theme was, or what the costumes were for that matter. Michelle or Carla said, but I missed it. I was too busy trying to figure out their costumes. And I couldn’t muster the enthusiasm to rewind and watch again. Maybe it was Robert?

jenny-dressed-as-robertI did catch Jenny telling Robert that his suit looked better on her. His suit? It fit her perfectly, and she’s half the size of him. What’d she do, stop at Underworld and recut and resew it?

Another need to restrain myself. Watch to the end of the episode. Watch to the end of the week. See how you feel. So I did, and felt the same way. Coronation Street has become too crazy. Watching is too much work.

Where’s Aiden?

Meanwhile, poor Aiden still isn’t buried! His funeral hasn’t even been discussed. I’ve lost track of how many episodes now equal one steve-as-boy-georgeWeatherfield day but it has to have been long enough to have him cleared for burial. He was mentioned a few times. Good thing too because I’d actually forgotten all about him. It feels like ages ago that he killed himself. It’s only been two weeks.

Corrie Street 27 Aug. 2017

Car Trunk

michelle locked in car trunkTry as I might, nothing the rest of the week dislodged the sight of Michelle locked in the trunk of a car. Not that I liked seeing her held captive. You would be horrified for anyone bound and gagged and locked in a car trunk. It was more my thoughts about story and screen time while watching those scenes that stuck with me .

First: Oh no, poor Michelle! Then: hmm, will this last a while? Will she be off screen during most of it? When a character goes to prison, either because the actor is leaving or taking a break, we see a few prison scenes with them. Then they’re gone. Maybe actor Kym Marsh is taking a break. So Michelle will stay in that trunk for awhile and we won’t see her. That could work.michelle's car in parking garage

Just as I thought that, a Helpful Hannah came along and popped the trunk. Close it, lady, and walk away! But no, Michelle is front and centre on the screen again, snivelling and wanting revenge. Rich will pay for this! Oh thank you, Robert for pounding him to a pulp. You are my hero after all!

But it seems someone else wants revenge – Will. He is her high school boyfriend with whom she sort of had an affair last year. Now he is back and dating Maria. He’s also acting as other male protector of Michelle. If he had a moustache, he’d be twirling the ends evilly. It’s all a bit contrived, I think. But I can’t even work up any real outrage about such contrivances, just that the storyline exists at all.woman-opens-trunk

I guess we’ll find out why Will is doing this. Maybe because she dumped him years ago or last year or didn’t rekindle things when she saw him a few months ago. Or maybe it’s revenge for that almost fling of theirs costing him his planned marriage to whatever the name of that awful fiancée was.

It’s a story of High Drama. Because we haven’t had any of that in, what, a month or so? But it involves characters with whom it’s difficult to empathize. Michelle – is Michelle. Crossed arms, superior attitude and constant carping. Robert – does anyone really care? Will – why? Maria – the interesting story involving her is the one with michelle-savedAiden. With that one, I’m waiting with bated breath to see them both brought down. Her involvement in this storyline just adds to the ‘oh lordy, please make it stop’ response.

Fingers crossed, Robert and Michelle will go to Brighton as he suggested Friday. It’s not a car trunk but could do the trick. Oh please, stay a while.

Corrie Street Mar. 13/16

Business Negotiations

Maybe I’m missing something in the negotiations over Nick’s sale of bistro-ken-tracy-robert listen to leannethe Bistro. I don’t see what the fuss is about with Leanne’s 11th hour offer. Actually, it is a 12th hour offer, as in too late. She made it after Nick had accepted Robert’s offer and they had made an appointment with a lawyer to draw up the sale papers. Therefore, too bad for her and too bad for Nick if he prefers her as a buyer. Robert’s offer was accepted without conditions, therefore it stands.

Even if Leanne’s offer was higher, for the full asking price, it shouldn’t invalidate the deal agreed upon by Nick and Robert. Nick had carla-nick-leanne talk to robertoriginally told Robert that he wanted to offer the Bistro first to Leanne. Robert asked for first refusal, presumably after Leanne. Nick agreed. Leanne did not make an offer, so Robert did. He offered 90% of Nick’s asking price. Nick asked for time to consider it and await other offers. None came, so Nick accepted Robert’s. He did not add any caveats, say, ‘unless Leanne makes an offer’, ‘unless I get the full asking price’. He simply said yes to Robert. That’s where we were when Leanne came in with her offer also of 90%.

So now Robert is throwing up his hands because he can’t raise the tracy-robert question leannemoney to up his bid. Tracy is scheming to get the extra 10% out of Carla. Nick is saying he needs time to consider the offers. Being identical, what is there to dither about? He would prefer to sell to Leanne, as he made clear at the beginning, but he already agreed to sell to Robert.

I have expected Robert to simply say ‘let’s see what the lawyer says’. Well, I didn’t expect it as such, because I know that the storyline needs the tension between Tracy and Carla. But I don’t like having to stretch my credulity in order to watch another aspect of a storyline – its principal motivation – play out. If Leanne’s offer had been for more carla-nick-leanne-smilemoney, if they got into a bidding war – it still wouldn’t seem legally credible but it might make it a bit easier to go along with. It makes me wonder how any of them have stayed in any business if they pay so much attention to personal feelings and so little to legalities.

Corrie Street Dec. 13/15

Barlow Childrearing

“Get out, you poisonous little bitch!” Robert to Tracy at the close of Robert tells Tracy you heard, get outTuesday’s episode. Words to put on a loop and play over and over again. Tracy was at the Bistro, needling Leanne yet again about Simon’s out of control behaviour.

Too bad the words had no lasting impact on Tracy. Despite the immediate shock, her soul-searching next day was confined to coming up with justifications for her behaviour. And, of course, worrying about whether Robert was interested in Leanne. He must, in Tracy reacts to Robert saying you poisonous little bitchher mind, since he kept defending Leanne. But Robert is loyal. He told her that, after all he had thrown away for her, he would hardly walk out on her now. Reassured, she could go back to crowning herself mother of the year.

The Barlow children, Amy and Simon, don’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of growing up to be decent people. Amy is learning well the “poisonous” arts. She is being taught by a master.

Ken lives in the same household as Amy and spends a lot of time with Simon. One would hope he could exercise some influence in moderation, empathy and control. But then you look at his relationship with his children, and the grown-up products of his tracy with glass of red at bistro, not knowing leanne is enteringpaternal skills. Not a lot of hope there.

Maybe if Deirdre were still alive it would be different? I think Deirdre was able to be a much better mother to other people’s children than with her own. Look at Tracy. Deirdre stood by her no matter what, whether right or wrong. Commendable sentiment, perhaps, but the result is a narcissistic, even sociopathic adult who is now rearing her own child in her own image.

Poisonous or ethical

tracy watches leanne talk to robert at barLeanne, I think, is the most likely to be a good parent. She too is fiercely loyal to her child, and understanding of his fears and problems. But she has a moral code that she has fought hard to develop in herself and she wants to instill in him. She is hampered in this by her own insecurities about not being his “real” mother. Those insecurities are fed by Tracy and by Simon himself. If Peter were around, he’d probably feed them too if it served his purposes.

So the kids are growing up in a moral miasma. The ineffectual flapping who is looking after him, Tracy asks Leanne about Simonabout decency and respect from Ken and Leanne is countered by Tracy’s credo of defend yourself no matter what and attack anyone or anything that threatens you or your own. I pity the poor counsellor who has to take this mess on.

Corrie Street Aug. 2/15

Stuffed Marrow

Thursday, Tracy’s ex-husband comes to apologize to Ken for his deirdre-recipe-bookbehaviour after Deirdre’s funeral. Ken is looking through Deirdre’s cookbook. He tells Robert about her stuffed marrow – an endurance test to eat, he says, but he’d give anything to taste it just once more. Robert offers to make it.

It doesn’t matter to me how many secrets Robert Preston is hiding. It Julian-Kay-as-Robert_Preston-1996Tristan-Gemmell-Robert-2015doesn’t matter if he’s a totally different man from years ago. He has redeemed the poor stuffed marrow. Like Ken, that makes me feel disloyal to the memory of Deirdre. But, in truth, she did no good service to what is a wonderful dish.

stuffed marrowStuffed marrow, or stuffed zucchini, is hollowed out squash halves filled with a thick tomato and ground beef sauce baked with cheese on top. The flavours and textures of the zucchini and sauce make a lovely combination, it’s very easy to make and it needs the huge zucchinis that you really can’t use for anything else.

I have enjoyed all the scenes over the years with Deirdre’s stuffed ken-watches-robert-cookmarrow, and the eye-rolling about it from everyone but her. But I feared that Coronation Street did an injustice to the dish. If I, who love it, felt trepidation every time it was announced that she was making it, what would someone who had never eaten it feel if it were served to them?

It is so easy to make that I never thought about someone just not making it very well. I thought it was perhaps a personal vendetta robert-with-ringing-phoneagainst the vegetable on the part of a writer or producer. Mam’s never smelled like that, Tracy said, it smelled more like a dogfood factory. Ken didn’t disagree, saying he felt disloyal to Deirdre but was actually enjoying Robert’s version.

So, although the scene maligned Deirdre and her cooking skills, the reputation of the stuffed marrow was restored. And for that, no matter what might come, I thank Robert.

I also thank Martyn Hett for a wonderful stuffed marrow cooking lesson.