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Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Coronation Street Weekly Update - Apr 15 1997

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Dominating the storyline this week has been Derek's death and Mavis' bereavement. You know, I watch the Street every week, the characters come onto my TV screen and go after 30 minutes, 4 times a week and I watch it, enjoy it and get on with something else once it's finished. This week has been different. Thelma Barlow, who plays Mavis, has shown true, strong, emotional acting talent this week, pulling out all the stops to play the grieving widow. I had tears in my eyes more than once this week and while Derek was never one of my favourite characters, by the end of his funeral, even I was sorry to see him go!

Norris calls round to see Mavis who tells her that he will be attending the funeral on behalf of Hawthorne's Stationery company and gives Mavis a present which was found in Derek's car. It was Mavis' birthday present, a silver locket inscribed with something like "To my loving wife, all my love, Derek". Sob. Norris also gives her the personal contents of Derek's desk - 2 pairs of socks and a photo of Mavis. Sob. Rita proves what a great friend she is by supporting Mavis and making tea by the gallon and Mavis even eventually mellows towards Emily again.

Mavis asks Ken to say a few words about Derek at the funeral but when the vicar announces that a friend of Derek's wants to say a few words, up gets Norris instead with a very embarrassing speech about "Dirk - my friend and saviour". Mavis is not amused, but glad to find out that Angela couldn't attend the funeral. Derek's dour sister Edith turns up like a bad penny for the funeral, sent to make Mavis' day even more unpleasant than it already was. Edith overhears some of the neighbours talking about Derek out of earshot of Mavis, all confiding they found him a bit of joke and Edith tells Mavis what the others are saying about her deceased husband. Mavis stuns them all into silence by giving a little speech, telling them all she doesn't care what they say because she loved Derek, Derek loved her and they had shared a happiness that none of them could ever know. Sob.

Ashley asks his uncle Fred, hypothetically like, if a "friend" of his did something illegal, would he tell the police... we all know he's talking about Don torching Baldwin's factory of course. Mike is called into the police station again and takes his solicitor with him. The solicitor demands to know from the police officer if they will be charging Mike with arson and the officer grudgingly admits that no, they won't be charging Mike after all. Elated by this news, Mike takes Alma into the Rovers for a celebratory drink only to come face to face with Don Brennan who takes the news rather badly. Gloating, Mike throws a few pounds at Don across the bar telling him to take the money to cover his costs in petrol and matches. Later, Ashley gets worried and asks Jack for help when Don loses his temper and starts to smash chairs against the walls in his house. Jack and Ashley go round to see Don, worried that he might attempt suicide again. "There's no point in killing meself" he tells them "I'm dead already". (Later this week on CS we're getting a 1 hour special episode when Don takes Alma on a nightmare ride in his taxi as a way of getting back at Mike...)

Sulky student Andy goes to visit Steve in prison. Steve hasn't got time to give his brooding brother any sympathy and tells him to stop feeling sorry for himself. Steve gets a further 14 days sentence for arriving back at prison late last week after being involved in a bar fight. Liz also tells both Jim and Andy she isn't to blame for their lives being messed up and that she refuses to feel sorry for either of them.

Trisha spends the night with Ray, taking baby Brad with her after Vera and Jack refuse to baby-sit both Jamie and Brad together. Vera warns Ray not to get too involved with Trisha because "our Terry" will be coming back for his child any day now. Nonetheless, Trisha and Ray have started thinking about living together in Ray's house.

There's a great comic moment provided by Roy Cropper this week. Audrey is still giving the lorry driver (Big Ron) the come on, she's flirting like a school girl and doesn't know when she's gone too far. Big Ron comes back to the cafe for a little extra tea and crumpet at closing time, if you know what I mean, with Audrey, who can't understand why Ron won't take NO for an answer. He's trying to maul Audrey in the cafe when Roy comes downstairs from his sick bed and shouts at Ron "Oi, what're you doing with me mother?".


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