(Series 8, Ep.27) I’m loving Waterloo Road at the moment. It’s gloriously barmy, operating in an alternative universe where the real world has practically ceased to exist and only soap rules apply.
This week it was the wedding of the teacher with the pointy face and her boyfriend, who only arrived in this country from Malawi a few short weeks ago and has now been installed in the Waterloo Road basement with an Addams Family chair and various swooning females for company. And he has his own Waterloo Road polo shirt. No one else has one, so it must have been specially made for him.
If only he’d been specially made for Audrey, but no sooner had he set foot in his new basement than he was setting other parts of himself (don’t dwell) on Less Cockney Sonya. So smitten was Sonya that she was even decorating Audrey and Ndale’s wedding cake with the words “Congratulations Ndale and Sonya.” It was the finest wedding cake moment since Ruby Fry smashed up Rachel Mason’s cake back in series five.
Would she be the one standing up at the wedding at the moment the vicar asked if anyone knew any just impediment etc, shouting, “It’s me he loves! Me, I tell you!”? Well, no, because she’d already made a bigger discovery. Ndale was married already! Gasp. It turned out that his plan was just to use Audrey to get himself a visa, and then bring Mrs Ndale and the kids over from Malawi once he was settled with a job Down London. I can’t help thinking his scheme was not exactly watertight, but still. Audrey was left down but not beaten (can’t let the buffet go to waste!), Sonya was left down but forgiven, and Ndale was left in the hands of the police, on his way to being deported but pleased that he was about to see Mrs Ndale and the kids again.
As if this wasn’t enough fun for one episode, the teachers went on strike in protest against Cockney Lorraine (dress code: ankle boots)’s plan to make Waterloo Road fee-paying. It was Nikki Boston’s first day in the head teacher’s chair, so it wasn’t ideal that she had to contend with an army of supply teachers, who were mainly non-speaking extras so therefore quite easy to handle, apart from the superbly sarcastic and snappy Angus Deayton (“When the bell goes, I go”). Where were Nikki’s legendary army skills when she needed them? AWOL, that’s where. Frankly, she was rubbish and she knew it and resigned. Cockney Lorraine immediately offered Michael Byrne his old job back.
He, meanwhile, had been busily plotting a council coup. In a dangerous move, he plans to have Waterloo Road taken under the wing of the local authority to become – controversial, this – a normal school. He’ll have yet another fight on his hands, as Lorraine is planning to turn it into the Lorraine Donnegan Institute of Excellence – or L-DIE. She’s not thought that acronym through.
As well as Angus Deayton, the other newish teacher is Esther Fairclough, who spends her time grooming Lula for a life of militant activism. Between them they’re hatching a plan to infiltrate the dastardly Nox factory and cause some kind of mayhem, last week’s graffiti and death threats not having been quite enough. Angus Deayton attempted to tell Lula why animal testing might just have some benefits, but she got all hissy and threw a chair at him.
Dynasty Barry is moving in with Kevin Chalk, and Barry Barry is not pleased. He beat Master Chalk up a bit, which is becoming a regular occurrence for young Kev and he might want to consider martial arts lessons. But that looks like the least of his problems, as next week Carol Barry turns up. Hurrah! Carol, hardest of all the Barrys.
Posted by PLA (More Waterloo Road here)