Tag Archives: Tim Metcalfe

Corrie Street 30 Apr. 2017

Terror in the Factory

It was scary this week, watching Sally be terrified. Ringing phones, texts saying “I see you” and a box left at the factory for her. It had a heart inside – an organ, not a Valentine. Turns out it was a pig’s heart, but still! Little wonder she cowered in the office.Sally terrified in factory office

Sally was so frightened she forgot all about her interview with Cheshire Haven magazine. Cheshire Haven! How could she possibly forget that! “Musthang Sally” has thoroughly cowed Upscale Sally.

musthang sally text messagesI don’t know where this trolling and stalking storyline came from. Did I miss an episode? Despite not really getting this, I am enjoying it. Because of Sally and Tim.

Sally is just fabulous. She goes from petrified to gentrified in a flash. But it’s convincing because you see her willing herself to overcome her fear. Safe at home, with Tim and her daughters, social-climbing Sally is back. So too is Social Justice Sally. Even after being scared half to death at the factory, she summons her courage and speaks at a public meeting at City Hall.mayor and dog with sally and girls

Probably one of the funniest scenes ever, as Sophie, Rosie and Sally run into the mayor and his dog Barry. Sally does Introductions: “Martin is the mayor, he’s gay” and “my lesbian daughter Sophie and my straight-identifying daughter Rosie”. Mayor Martin praises Sally, “so full of life”. Rosie agrees, “yeah, she’s so pro-life.” A Sally scowl, “don’t say that, Rosie!” Meanwhile, Rosie is obsessed with Barry, as if she’s never seen a dog before, like, close up.

sophie gets tim in roversBrilliant too is Tim. He  worries for her safety, and for himself. He can’t bear thinking that something bad might happen to her. When she disregards his advice, he washes his hands of her. He bowed out of the Cheshire Haven interview, seeing it as endangering herself unnecessarily. What she sees as publicity and networking, he sees as social-climbing and self-aggrandizement.

sophie and tim look in box at heartHer reluctance to shut herself off from social media confuses him. Some bad person is trolling you on-line and in real life, what’s to discuss? Stop giving them ammunition. She, however, doesn’t see it that way. Her work is important, a public presence is needed, etc.

tim tells sally he will get stalkerBut when she needs him, he is there. Sometimes he gets it right, like finding her at the factory. Sometimes, like at the City Hall meeting, it’s wrong. But for me? All week, both Tim and Sally have been perfect. Rosie and Sophie too.

Corrie Street 18 Dec. 2016

Pot Shards

tomato garden story joyreactor.com
Haven’t seen it? Click for larger view.

I didn’t see it coming, although I should have. It has passed through my Facebook newsfeed enough times. How to get the police to dig a garden for you, or chop your firewood.

When Tim spots the pottery urns that Tyrone and Freddie have salvaged, he has an idea. They are props from a local production of Aristophanes’ comedy Lysistrata. Tim offers to buy one of the pots. Freddie breaks it so Tim gets it for 50 pence. Good deal for him, he wanted it broken anyway.

Sally has dreamed up a new project for Tim. He’d like a garden allotment, she has decided. She tells him he will enjoy it. Next year, she tells him, they both will enjoy picnics there with salads dug straight from the garden. He looks thrilled.

So he puts the pottery shards in the garden soil. I thought he was going to try to convince Sally that their allotment was the site of an ancient ruin, and therefore could not be dug up for vegetables. Sally might well for fall it, but it would be very cruel. She is, after all, a city councillor.Tim comes back to see garden fully dug

But Tim’s plan was simpler and less cruel, at least toward Sally. A call to the Weatherfield Amateur Archeologists Society. And presto! On Wednesday, a small army diligently dig up the entire garden plot.amateur archeologists file past Tim to leave

The guy who was heading up the dig didn’t look too pleased when nothing of consequence was found. But perhaps he has learned a valuable lesson: check the “find” before wasting your time. Either the prop person at the theatre is extremely good at his or her job, or these archeology enthusiasts have not yet even reached amateur status.dig leader realizes pot shards were a scam

I am glad the writers thought to throw the word “amateur” in, though. The scene might still have been funny, but it would have been way over the top unbelievable otherwise. Also very funny to see another version of the garden-digging or wood-chopping joke.Tim smiles at his fully dug up garden plot

Corrie Street 16 Oct 2016

Celebrity

Funny how the timing of fiction sometimes perfectly matches reality. Celebrity – its connotations and effects – has been all over the news celebrity pic tim-takes-selfie-with-tommythe past week. And then, on our Canadian screens on Friday, it comes to Coronation Street.

Steve, Tim and Tyrone nearly swoon when they meet Weatherfield County footballer Tommy Orpington at the Rovers. He is there to meet with Michelle about his wedding. They happen to be there when he walks through from the back.

play-sheet-by-tim“Happen to be there,” after spending the day planning how to do that, by accident. Tim even worked out a play sheet on where to stand so that they would accidentally bump into him.

Their mouths hang open when they see him. They can barely reply when he says hello and introduces himself. Then they follow him like ducklings, eyes like huge saucers. He takes it in stride, he’s used to it.tim-steve-and-tommy

Probably the actors knew how to do the look of starstruck fans because they would see it on the faces of people who meet them in real life. The only thing that struck me as unrealistic was that everybody else in the bar wasn’t crowded around Tommy too or at least gawking more openly.

As for Michelle, Fiz and Audrey staying back from the cluster of men tyrone-leaps-from-the-tablearound Tommy, yes, I can see that. Michelle is trying to be professional in her business dealings with him. And although she’s not likely to say it, she believes fawning attention should be on her. Fiz appears to be struggling to deal with the fact that Tyrone slipped his leash. Instead of choosing to sit with her sipping his drink and discussing whatever, he took off like a shot to meet his hero. And Audrey? She’s just sitting back, enjoying the scenery, I think.women-watch-huddle-around-tommy

I googled Tommy Orpington to see if he is a real soccer player. He’s not. He’s actor Matt Milburn, formerly of Emmerdale. I’m surprised they didn’t get a real footballer to make a guest appearance. tyrone-stares-at-tommyCelebrity cameos work well for the celebrity and the show, usually. They can come back to bite you if you don’t watch yourself. Donald Trump and Billy Bush found that out last week.

Still, the fictional star footballer Tommy Orpington has made me a fan of the fictional Weatherfield County team.

hilda-coronationstreet-wikia-com_wiki_muralIn sad real life, Jean Alexander died Friday at the age of 90. She was for many years the incomparable Hilda Ogden. The rollers in her hair and the flying ducks on the “muriel” on her wall will never be forgotten. (A Guardian tribute)

In sad Corrie life, I was wrong last week about Maria’s reaction to Ozzy’s death. She and all did it beautifully. We will miss you, Ozzy,

Corrie Street Apr. 24/16

Sophie Cat Lady

Sophie describes her future to Tim: “Be by myself, get my own place, a Sophie cat lady describes life after maddiefew cats.” Sophie cat lady. Pity the poor cats. A cat lady puts the cats’ interests and comfort above her own. Sophie doing that? I don’t think so. Sophie’s concern is pretty much all about Sophie. Looking after cats would cut into her navel-gazing time.

Thankfully, Tim talked her off the ledge and convinced her that being happy should be her objective. Presumably, being “happy” and “a crazy cat lady” are mutually exclusive in Sophie’s worldview.

Sophie, I think, does enjoy the thought of a Miss Havisham existence, said-she-does-not-love-herlocked away from the world, mourning her lost love. Problem is, it seems she can’t be around a potential love interest without indeed falling in love.

So Sophie has got herself in the middle of Kate and Caz’s relationship, now headed for break-up. Being a mate, she tells herself and anyone who will listen. But pining away, with unsettled looks in Kate’s direction. Kate, with her own uncertainties about Caz, or marriage to her, or maybe being in a relationship at all, soon started looking back at Sophie.

this-girl-needs-to-figure-outAll this led to a big blow-up between Caz and Kate and their joint hen night being cancelled. The wedding appears to be cancelled too. Caz suspects something is going on between Kate and Sophie and warns Sophie off. But we know, and anyone on the street who has ever actually listened to Kate when the impending wedding is discussed knows, Kate has had cold feet about it since we met her. We just haven’t found out why.

you-as-a-crazy-cat-ladyWhatever the reason, I think Kate’s hesitations are wise. Caz is a bully. She’s also insecure about herself and their relationship. Not a good combination for the person involved with her. Kate might want to talk to Tyrone about that. His ex Kirsty was a cop and Caz is in the army. Both women are examples of the need for rigorous psychological testing before acceptance into jobs which give authority, power, and access to weaponry.

stay-well-clearAnd Kate? She’s accustomed to being indulged. A baby when her mother died, her father and older brother have humoured her in her whims and wishes. So she wants Caz and doesn’t, maybe wants Sophie, maybe wants to be settled in a relationship, maybe doesn’t. Whatever Kate is doing, Sophie should stay out of it, Tim warns.

as-happy-as-maddie-didIt is good that Tim is in Sophie’s  life. Despite his belief that he is a “rubbish parent”, he gives her the sympathy she wants and the common sense that she lacks herself and is unlikely to get from her mother.

Corrie Street Mar. 6/16

Hmm, believe Phelan or Anna? I think Tim is the only one with his phelan-passes-timhead screwed on right. Looking at the damage Anna did to Phelan’s van, Tim tells Kevin that he figures Anna had her reasons. “Well, I know Anna, and she’s a good woman. Whereas him – he’s been on the street five minutes. I know who I’d trust.”

To argue Kevin’s side for a minute, it does seem that Anna went temporarily insane. Bashing the windshield in with an axe, breaking off mirrors, totally destroying the vehicle for apparently no reason. Kevin has dealt with a crazy not long ago, he knows people can do things that hurt others for reasons that make no sense to anyone else.

kev-and-tim-look-at-damage Anna did to vanBut. Anna has given him some of the reason she dislikes and distrusts Phelan. He knows there is more to it. Should he not give her the benefit of the doubt? Or redouble the effort to get the whole story? Maybe she owes him the whole truth. After all, Phelan has seemed to be nothing other than a good worker and friend to Kevin. Anna knows that Phelan has already ripped off Kevin, she even knows how he did it. She just can’t prove that he wrecked the garage wiring so that he could get work fixing it.

been-on-the-street-five-minutesIf she told Kevin the true story of Phelan’s evil, she might save their relationship and might save Kevin’s business. But he might not believe her. He might believe she was a willing participant in the sex for debt trade she made with Phelan. After all, Owen and Katy did not believe her and they benefited from her action.

So she is simply asking Kevin to take her words and actions on faith. But Tim is the only person who does. I guess I’m a little surprised that i-know-who-i-would-truston such a small street, the backstory of Phelan and the Armstrong-Windass family doesn’t resonate for other people. Why doesn’t Jason remember more about the animosity and difficulties that had to be obvious on the street? Phelan was very much present at that time, as were bailiffs emptying the Armstrong-Windass house, and Owen and Gary shouting and fighting. Even if no one else knows what exactly happened, I think Jason would remember that there were problems and Phelan was in the middle of them.

At the end of Friday’s episode, Kevin maybe is seeing the side of what the hell are you doingPhelan that he hasn’t seen, or wanted to see. With Tim’s words still in his head, I hope, he sees Phelan turning away from a frightened Anna backed against the wall of the café. I hope this time he takes Anna’s story, complete or incomplete as it may be, on faith.

Corrie Street Oct. 25/15

Sally's wedding with rita and sophieIt was the Bistro, not the Chapel of Love, but Sally was gonna get married. No guests, an officiant who had to get off to another wedding in a basketball court, and no sign of a groom, but Sally was undeterred. “Build it and they will come” was her mantra.

She had thought of that while going through her DVDs and finding Tim’s favourite, Field of Dreams. Yes, build it. They will come. So she Sally's wedding faye waitscarried on with the wedding plans. He will come, she assured all doubters.

And he did. Craig and Kevin went to see Tim at Anna’s flat. With Anna’s help they chivvied him into going to his own wedding, the one he had said was off.

Even Sally had given up hope. In they walked, the groom and his best Sally's wedding Tim walks inmen. A few guests, hurriedly gathered up from the pub by Sophie, joined the party.

Craig grabbed some flowers to use as boutonnieres. Tim held his in his hands like a bouquet and walked down the aisle to where Sally waited. Kevin and Craig fell in line behind him like bridesmaids.

Sally's wedding happensHe handed his single flower bouquet to Sally. And they were wed. I think it has to be one of the loveliest and funniest weddings I’ve ever seen on Coronation Street.

Corrie Street July 5/15

Thursday, Anna and Tim tell Faye there is another option for Miley. faye-in-kitten-shirtJackson’s parents want to raise her. Fay sits on the couch beside the baby’s bassinet and considers their futures. So quiet and sad, but emotionally detached. I was heartbroken, thanks to inspired choices of camera shots and costume.

Looking at Faye, all I could focus on was the kitten on her t-shirt. Sweet baby face of innocence. Then the camera moved to the baby-mileybassinet; another sweet innocent lay there gurgling happily. She was unaware that her future was in limbo. Would she be staying in the place familiar to her, talked to and held by the only voices and arms she knows? Or would she have to get used to being held by strangers in a new place, without comfort of returning to those she knows?

just-a-little-babyBut there’s a third baby face too, and that is Faye. Still a child herself, she wants to – and perhaps should – experience and enjoy growing up without being dragged into adulthood too soon by raising a child. There is no shortage of adults who are willing to care for Miley, but the children who produced her are not so sure.

Both Faye and Jackson realize the gravity of their situation, and they know that Miley is their responsibility. But they really are just too young to be anything but terrified by the thought. Having Miley faye-leans-over-bassinetaround is more like having a new baby sister than a child of their own. But it’s hard for either of them to articulate that to themselves, I think, let alone their parents.

That’s where Tim has been brilliant this week. He, self-professed no contender for Father of the Year, has handled the situation sensitively and directly without ever pretending to know any of the faye-kisses-babyanswers. He listened to Faye when she freaked out at the christening. When Jackson’s parents suggested that they take Miley, he listened to them. He somehow talked Anna into hearing them out. And then he did something it seems no one else thought to do: he listened, and talked without lecturing, to Jackson.

Corrie Street Nov. 30/14

Illiteracy Skills

Faye reacts to illiteracy you-sent-me-messagesAmid all the tutting about ‘why didn’t your teachers notice?’ and ‘why didn’t you tell me?’, Faye made the best observation about Tim’s inability to read: “You must be dead clever”. Getting by in a word-based world when you can’t read has to take great skill. Hiding it from everyone, including your nearest-and-dearest, takes even more skill.

Sally, and pretty much the whole street, found out about Tim’s illiteracy. She made it all tim-in-letter-slotabout her, but that’s understandable at least to an extent. He did not adequately explain his frequent absences and his presence with Anna. Sally feared he and Anna were having an affair, and seeing him give Anna flowers seemed to confirm it. Even Maddie came to believe he was doing the dirty on Sally.

So, as Sally chucked his belongings out the upstairs window, he had little choice but to tell you-want-himher what he and Anna were really up to – reading lessons. He’s embarrassed that everyone knows. Sally goes from gobsmacked to self-recrimination, that she hadn’t noticed, to Tim-recrimination for not trusting her enough to tell her and ask her for help. After all, she points out, she has plenty of experience from helping Rosie and Sophie with their homework, and look how well they turned out.

annaAnna gets a chance to rub Sally’s nose in her erroneous conclusions about “Anna Slutty Windass” and plans to continue the lessons with Tim. But it will be duelling teachers because Sally quickly did her internet research and gathered her glossy magazines as teaching aids.

If I were Tim, I’d take up Faye’s offer of help.  Much more straightforward and much less emotionally loaded. Also she would be likely as good if not better at teaching. If I were the show’s producer, you-can-readI’d link this storyline to the new community centre. Where better to have adult literacy classes? It would bring the centre back to our screens and make use of a brand-new set. It would also show a real-life issue with both characters we know  and a larger community.  I would feel bad for subjecting poor Tim to Yasmeen’s attentions because, for sure, she’d be there with bells on.  But it would be fun to watch.

Corrie Street Oct. 12/14

When I’m Cleaning Widows

maddie-with-flyersI am liking the story of Tim’s problem with reading. It is fitting, and nice, that it is Maddie who has recognized his difficulties. It was Tim who, early on, recognized good qualities in her and shielded her as best he could from the wrath of Sally. Now she is doing the same for him. And, as she did, he is resisting her efforts.

I read an objection to this storyline (sorry, can’t find it now).  Tim made contact with Faye through Facebook. If he can’t read, how dirty-widows pamphlet for cleaning windowscould that happen? Fair point. But he can read a bit. He got the word “ref” when Sally pointed to a newspaper headline. Before he lived with Sally, he lived alone. There is no reason he would not be able to make some use of Facebook. He would have had the time to decipher words, even compose messages, with nobody around to question why it was taking him so long. Online posting is hardly the bastion of correct grammar.

He told Maddie that the letters look all “jumbled”. I wonder if the issue is dyslexia rather plenty-of-thingsthan not having learned to read. Whatever the problem is, he has developed coping strategies. It is someone like Maddie, attuned to survival without the correct tools, who recognizes his techniques.

For example, in Dev’s shop, when he hands Sally’s shopping list to Sophie saying “you know where everything is,” Sophie thinks he’s just being lazy or chauvinistic. Sophie has seen and heard all you-learn-new-waysthe same interactions with Tim and Sally that Maddie has, but she doesn’t pick up the cues of what they might mean. Sophie did not have problems in school and, for all her concern for social issues, she really doesn’t know much about society outside her own little street. Maddie does, and she saw right away that something more might be going on with Tim and his reluctance for paperwork.

It was his advertising flyer that put the cat amongst the pigeons. Of course, “dirty what-did-you-saymaddie-and-tim-watch-sally-on-phonewidows” was a mistake that the printer ought to have caught. But mistakes happen. My husband remembers hearing about an error made in a Canadian town’s commemorative pin. Flags – he’s not sure of the number, maybe seven – and the town’s motto, “Under 7 flags”, were on the pins.  But the printer omitted the ‘l’ in ‘flags’, No one noticed until after the pins had been handed out. Oops.

Here is George Formby’s 1936 song When I’m Cleaning Windows.