Coronation Street double episode review, Friday 7 April 2017.
There was certainly a feeling of ‘once more unto the breach, dear friends’ as I geared up to watch last night’s Corrie. Except it wasn’t once more; I watched it twice. The myriad twists and turns at the moment require a special concentration and while I’m enjoying the drama, there are times when I’m admittedly struggling to keep track of all its nuances and complexities. This is an added challenge when you’re reviewing the programme and need to be sure of every detail.
A particular puzzle was understanding why Peter would leave such a voicemail on Simon’s phone, and on realising I wasn’t alone, I decided to take a look back at a number of previous episodes in an attempt to figure it out. As it happened, it was revealed last night that he was actually in Chloe’s at the time of the attack, and while I think I made a strong case for Peter’s innocence, and managed to pinpoint the probable juncture at which he would have departed for Chloe’s on the night, as we knew nothing about it until yesterday, and it was never televised, all the watching in the world wouldn’t have helped. As there could be other such instances, I think at this point, it’s best to just go along for the ride.
Things looked grim for Peter in last night’s double as his incriminating voicemail was revealed to an audience by Nick in the Bistro. This led to the above-mentioned revelation, that he had an altercation with Chloe which included her becoming injured in an accidental fall. Chris Gascoyne is playing all of this brilliantly, as ever, and I enjoyed the mixture of disbelief, cynicism and doubt on the faces of those listening to his confession. While he appears to be telling the truth, and his character is a victim of his past actions, it’s a tall order to believe every word, and Toyah should be canonised, as she continues to firmly stick by him. Although, you’d wonder how much that has to do with her obsession with getting pregnant.
It appeared he had no intention of approaching Chloe for an alibi before the phone message was exposed. But, as only his own family know about it, seemed to believe him, and the police don’t appear overly concerned with him, I don’t see why he didn’t just leave it. Instead, he goes around to plead with a woman who he called a “psychotic cow” not two weeks ago. When he arrived at her house last night and saw she hadn’t cleaned it up in the eleven days since it was trashed during their fight, that should’ve given him further clues as to her state of mind, but no. He begs her to tell the police the truth, but of course she lands him firmly in it by claiming he assaulted her the day before Ken’s attack.
Meanwhile Daniel, who I still can’t get enough of, claims to be visiting Oxford but leaves Sinead a letter. She catches him packed up and ready to go, and he admits it’s because everyone thinks he tried to kill Ken. She says she believes him and convinces him that running away will only look worse. They’re back together, again, and I reach for emergency biscuits for added sustenance.
I loved the scenes in which Roy collected Ken from hospital and brought him home to the café, and one dignified shot in particular where the two men walked down the hospital corridor together. Brian’s tactlessness on learning of his new housemate and Roy’s incredulity did make me laugh.
While preparing to record a new vlog at Nathan’s behest, Bethany finds a picture of him and Mel kissing on her laptop. Mel fails to reassure her, and she confronts Nathan. He accuses Bethany of childishness and she storms out. Of course, Sarah and Gary are delighted to hear it’s over, so much so that they don’t wait for Bethany to go upstairs before celebrating and she hears everything. Meanwhile, Nathan slams the till drawer shut on Mel’s hand with the chilling threat that she could be taking Bethany’s place. They continue to do a great job with this difficult story.
We’ve all been missing fun Eileen so, once her hangover dissipated, it was great to see her return from Julie’s with a smile, a sense of humour and a spring in her step. She’s thrilled to have won a car and her enthusiasm for learning to drive, and Phelan’s delicate suggestion that she hire a professional after a hair raising spin, was a welcome source of humour.
Sally and Jenny had a pertinent discussion on the dilemma of having to put up with abuse if a person wishes to use their popularity on social media to raise awareness for good causes. Sally is persuaded of the benefits of tolerating the trolling and decides to accept an offer to do an interview with Cheshire Haven. Tim’s not too pleased, however. This is an interesting topic; on the one hand, why should people let bullies deter them from doing good? But on the other, you can see Tim’s point too about allowing them a platform to abuse you. I think it’s a good vehicle to fostering debate on the subject.
Kevin Webster does irk me sometimes. Dev offers him free groceries when his card is declined, and he’s subjected to a tirade. Erica does the same, and he gives her a free valet? I’m not sold on this pair as a couple, if that’s where this is headed. I want to see Erica at the centre of a strong story which doesn’t necessarily revolve around a man.
All in all, an interesting pair of episodes with some very welcome humour in the form of Eileen, and a lovely act of humanity from Roy which ensured it wasn’t all dark. I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the Barlow drama and pondering over this whodunit, the central tenet of which has to be not seeing the actual attack so we can all draw our own conclusions. However, the revelation of a key scene in the build up to it which we did not see renders looking for clues a tad redundant, as it now throws absolutely everything open to possibility.
By Emma Hynes
This review also appears on the Coronation Street Blog.