Two Episodes, Two Envelopes, Two Landladies….Two Paracetamol!

Coronation Street

Monday 14 October 2013 – 7.30pm and 8.30pm.

It was double trouble on tonight’s Corrie, and it wasn’t just David Platt that started the first episode on the backfoot as I struggled to remember the intricacies of the DNA plot and the whereabouts of the envelope that had done more miles than Postman Pat on overtime.

Okay, so David brought it to the hospital and left it behind, Leanne took it with her to give to him but ended up giving it to Gail, and we knew Gail had put it in the King’s Speech DVD box without so much as a peek inside! (Since when has she been known for keeping her nose out of David’s business?)

But there’s envelope number two. A hotel reservation that had to be booked as a cover up on the basis that it was the best poor Nick could come up with to fob off Leanne when she discovered the first envelope.

David’s frantic search for the first envelope continues, but he is forced to shove the hotel reservation envelope in a drawer as he is interrupted by Eva and Kylie. When he leaves, Kylie starts her own inexplicable search for nothing in particular, and lo and behold, she finds the hotel reservation envelope and presumes David is taking Tina away for the night.

While the DNA envelope manages to evade everyone, it is only outdone by Steve McDonald who is surely the master craftsman of deception. As Michelle swans around the Rovers gloating at her new position, it’s hard to believe she was so appalled and disgusted by the idea just one episode previous. It’s always a joy to see Tracy’s nose rubbed in it, but Steve’s likeability and Michelle’s nastiness the night before had me rubbing my hands together at the thought of her being  taken down a peg or two; and who better for the job than Corrie legend and landlady extraordinaire, Liz McDonald (Beverley Callard).

There simply wouldn’t be any justice if such a fantastic character wasn’t awarded a brilliant entrance, and boy did Corrie deliver. Kylie is on the warpath over the hotel reservation and is busy attacking Tina in the bar when Liz throws open the doors announcing “Surprise!” This was a hilarious scene, and a fine example of Corrie at its best. From the fight being thoroughly enjoyed by all in the bar, to Liz breaking it up as only she can, Michelle’s stunned face, and Steve feigning obliviousness by reading his magazine, it was sheer entertainment.

Kylie demands the truth from Tina, and the episode ends on this cliff-hanger. Of course in the second episode, Tina disappointingly doesn’t give anything away. You’d have to wonder why she, or anyone else, would allow themselves to be attacked for the sake of David Platt.

In the midst of all this there were some classic lines from Tracy who, however deplorable, can always be relied upon for a cutting remark, from Tina being “too busy trying to remember what shade of orange to paint yourself in the morning” to Deirdre’s suggested door plaque; “Abandon hope all who enter here”.

However, one line we could have done without came from Sean who asks Marcus if he’ll have his beer “in a straight glass”. It is arguable how effectively this whole story was dealt with, and I wonder if its continuance is really necessary, especially when there is no response of any worth to narrow minded comments like this. Marcus and Maria are expected to just take it, and we are supposed to find it funny – at least I think we are; there certainly seems to be no other purpose for it.

Meanwhile Roy is planning a surprise trip to Blackpool for Hayley, and humorous and touching scenes of Norris teaching him to dance show just how much he loves her. While it’s tinged with sadness for the lonely path that lies ahead of Roy, this show of affection by Norris demonstrates the capacity for even unlikely people to reach out to one another and it’s heartening to see such neighbourliness on the street which of late has worryingly become populated with less uplifting storylines and characters. Roy’s disastrous attempt at driving at the end of the second episode offered further sweetness and humour, as concerned onlookers Audrey and Fizz offered anxious encouragement. However, all may not be as it seems when it comes to Jane, Hayley’s terminally ill friend, as she looked less than pleased – even sinister – when Hayley departed for Blackpool.

Back at the Rovers, once Liz has dispensed with Tina and Kylie, she announces that she’s joint owner of the pub to a captive audience, not least Tracy who, unlike Michelle, revels in the news. Poor hapless Steve has our sympathies as he is berated throughout the second episode, and it’s not long before Liz and Michelle put the peacock feathers away and have a good chuckle at his expense.

Kylie and David make up, but everything goes pear shaped once more when Kylie visits Eva and the elusive DNA letter falls out of the King’s Speech box. I’d imagine George VI was less frustrated by his speech therapy than he would have been watching this. Eva snatches it from Kylie, and more lies ensue when Kylie denies being unfaithful and cites David’s lack of trust as a potential reason for his doubt as to Lily’s paternity. Kylie’s indifferent reaction on reading confirmation that David is Lily’s Dad did strike me as odd, but that wasn’t all.

Things took an even stranger turn when Kylie showed Nick the DNA letter, he pretends he’s never seen it, doesn’t take the opportunity to tell her that David knows about their infidelity, and tells her to put the letter back where she found it, that everything will be fine. As if we weren’t already confused enough about envelopes and the who-knows-what aspect of this story, now we are left even more addled about what is going on and where the story is going.

It gets even more perplexing when Kylie chooses not to reveal all to Gail despite the fact that they’ve been discussing the issue ad infinitum for the past few months. I was genuinely stumped, and can only assume there’s more intrigue to come.

After Kylie leaves the DVD box back with the letter inside, David bizarrely walks straight up to it, opens it, pockets the letter, and I have more questions. How did he know it was in that box? Did he not wonder why he didn’t come across it when he opened all the others searching for the letter? Is he not curious as to where it has been or with whom and how it suddenly arrived there out of the blue?

Corrie seems to raise more questions than offer answers of late which is in itself a source of great entertainment, but it was more than apt that David would set the blasted letter on fire over a plastic wheely bin at the end, because my head was melted!

Bring on Wednesday…

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