There used to be a time when a soap airing an hour long edition meant that something huge and quite special was going to go down; it was event television if you like. But now, in the age of regular double episodes, it tends to just feel like two episodes mashed together (and often is) when Emmerdale or Corrie air for an hour.
Last night’s Coronation Street proved a very valuable exception as the hour long show flowed brilliantly and combined drama with comedy beautifully in the way that Corrie so uniquely does. What a treat for fans this was and it genuinely felt like it was an episode meant to be shown over this timeslot as opposed to it suddenly being the next day halfway through.
There were two main strands to the episode. The first was Tracy Barlow reaching the end of her tether and trashing Carla’s factory, and the other was Kevin Webster acquiring a new sofa. Yes, honestly. I know, on paper this doesn’t sound like a blockbuster plot but everyone can relate to the agony of trying to cram a sofa through an unwilling door threshold; it’s these little everyday situations that Corrie does so well. The Webster sofa-gate has been one of the best moments of my soap year and gave the divine Sally Dynevor and the writers behind her the perfect opportunity to reel out some fantastic lines. It also saw a much missed clash between Sally and Kevin and anything that involves Tim is always going to be worth a watch.
I have always loved the Websters, Sally in particular. I have said it before but her character development over the years from dowdy housewife, to temptress, to utter snob, to heartbroken victim, to feisty and snipey and everything in between has been just genius. Sally, as a character, is just as fresh and entertaining today as she has ever been and her relationship with Tim is a dream. I am loving having Kevin back where he belongs too; Michael Le Vell is a staple of Corrie and seeing Kevin back in the garage makes it feel like all is well in the Corrie universe again. The path they are taking Kevin on, by not going down the tempting route of putting him back with Sally, has been great for all three characters. I absolutely adore how Tim and Kev have become best pals and often compare notes on Sally (last night neither could agree on what Sally’s favourite colour was. I say maroon after the blazer colour of the Oakhill uniform Rosie had to wear but Kevin is convinced it’s blue).
Anyway, it transpired that her favourite colour at the very least wasn’t bright red, which was the colour of Kevin’s ever-so-subtle new DFS number. After a struggle with Owen and Jason (and an ongoing argument about whether to lift on the count of two or three) it soon became clear that this settee was not going to get into Kev’s abode. Enter Tim, who had just been told off by Sally for not being more decisive on what to have for dinner. Tim argued that he didn’t want to waste a pie night until he really needed one; something which myself and colleague Sue agreed was definitely a fair point for any Northerner to raise. Anyway, Tim decided it was time to man up and boldly offered to do a sofa swap with Kevin.
Sally meanwhile, had had a stressful day at the office herself as she struggled with being upstaged by new recruit Alya and her degree in textiles and design. Sally had nominated herself to be in charge for the day whilst Michelle and Carla were out being manhandled by one hunky male and one very butch female masseuse. However, the client she was doing business with (and also the guy who went on to flog his hideous sofa to Kevin) was far more impressed with Alya. I can’t for a moment think why, but I’d at least like to think her knowledge of design had a little bit to do with it.
Arriving home to see the bright red monstrosity in her living room (or Mick Jagger blowing a raspberry as Sally affectionately deemed it) did not go down well at all and Sally marched round for a row with Kevin, who was not shifting. Kevin and Tim had carried out that long known male contract-binding procedure from caveman times – they had shaken hands, so there was no way back. It was only when Alya clocked the sofa and pointed out how expensive it looked that Sally started to thaw to her new piece of furniture.
You’ll be glad to know that the sofa drama still has some mileage left to play out and if the scenes are as hilarious as they were last night, then we’re in for a treat. The trio of Sally, Tim and Kevin never fails to brighten up the screen.
Elsewhere, Tracy was reaching breaking point and was being uncharacteristically rude by not listening to Beth when she was speaking about her upcoming 80s wedding. Tracy, bless her, had other things on her mind, namely making Carla pay for wrecking her life. A phone call telling her that Rob was to be sentenced didn’t help and Tracy let herself into Underworld and started wrecking the place. I had just come up with my best blog joke yet about Tracy getting her knickers in a twist when Carla returned and was stunned to see what Tracy had been up to. I was ready for something catastrophically huge given Coronation Street’s legendary history for executing catfights, but in reality Carla just pushed Tracy onto a cardboard box and she burst into tears like a petulant child. After a heart to heart where Carla tried to get through to Tracy that she was finding it hard too, Carla seemed happy that there had been an uneasy truce made and they could finally move on. Is it really going to be that easy to escape a grudge from the demonic Tracy Barlow? Well, no, but it was an optimistic try.
Earlier, Carla had been massaged by a brute of a woman who had displaced numerous of the knicker stitching boss’s vertebrae during an outing to a spa with Michelle. It wasn’t at all relaxing, as Michelle spent the time moaning about Steve and her growing debts due to Tracy’s cancelled wedding. Even the cucumber over Carla’s eyes was starting to wilt in despair. However, they did have an interesting conversation about dating websites, which made me look Carla up. I found her profile on WeatherfieldDating.com and replicate it for you here.
Carla ‘FoxyKnickers’ Connor 2k14
Would Like to Meet: Having dated extremely successful men and bin men; looking for someone in between; someone I can remain superior to but who doesn’t come home smelling of excrement and wheelie bin juice. Ideally, I’m seeking someone who is not psychotic and who won’t hold me hostage in my beloved factory. Been there, done that, thank you very much.
About me: I am a successful entrepreneur and I know a thing or two about female undergarments. Rawr! I’m sexy, take care of my appearance and I am dynamite in the bedroom. In my spare time I like to think of myself as a conisseur of fermented grapes (particularly the red ones) and I enjoy the occasional spa day and fleeing my local home every once in a while.
Where to find me: Underworld, The Rovers, my flat or Weatherfield Crown Court giving evidence.
Loves: Red Wine, Sarcastic quips
Hates: Scottish accents, re runs of the Bill starring Andrew Lancel and alcoholics who aren’t me
Come on boys, get in touch! I don’t bite- unless I really like you!
Elsewhere on the Street, Todd braved the outside world by going on a night out with Sean, which is surely everyone’s worst nightmare whilst paramedic wannabe Katy was spewing up at the sight of a man breaking a finger in the gym. Back to the drawing board then, eh love?
What did you think of last night’s Corrie? An hour of sheer joy or did it leave you feeling couchy? I mean grouchy; sorry, these jokes are no pun are they? Let me know using the comments box below or come and sit on my Twitter sofa for a chat; it’s nowhere near as eccentric as Kevin’s! https://twitter.com/Our_manPLA
Written By Our Man In The North