Tag Archives: linda henry

Gastric bands, Macey Madness and Big Jim McDonald: Our Man In The North’s soap review of the 2014

1395713524_Les-Dennis-on-Coronation-Well what a soap year 2014 has been. EastEnders pushed its brand new Carter clan to the forefront of every storyline imaginable, culminating in a cracking Christmas crescendo while Emmerdale was at its whacky best with lakeside showdowns, suicidal cops and storage container kidnappings aplenty. Meanwhile, Corrie welcomed Ken Barlow and Kevin Webster back to the fold and triumphed with the storyline of Steve’s depression; but has been depressingly lacklustre elsewhere.
In a year where we’ve had explosions, suicides, donated sperm, secret children, identity theft, chaotic weddings, ill advised smooches, murderous looking sheep, irate Irish prisoners, devastating scars that look more like papercuts, long running (and I mean VERY long running) murder mysteries, face swapping returnees, pig thefts, schizophrenia, farming mishaps, horrific rapes, drug dramas and Norris learning to use a tablet, it is difficult to compile a list of highlights.
Nothing stops me, however, so here we go: a month by month reminder of the good, the bad and sheer nutty of 12 months in Walford, Weatherfield and the Dales. Enjoy and here’s to the next twelve months. Click below to get reading!

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EastEnders/Emmerdale/Coronation Street: Christmas crackers, chaos, carnage and….crap.

untitledAkin to over indulging in turkey, chocolates, Christmas pud and that ninth unnecessary glass of Baileys, Christmas Day is a time of an exhausting deluge of soaps. In exchange for making us sit through three whole hours of it (and if you’re a Downton Abbey fan, you’ll have been nursing square eyes on Boxing Day), we are assured that the episodes will be worth it by delivering epic festive drama, warmth, disaster and surprises by the bucket load.

If we’re going to be giving up our precious Christmas evenings (hey, I’m a busy man, I got a drinking game of Jenga as a gift) then the soaps should be pulling out all of the stops. It is an annual tradition that soaps pull out their big guns on the 25th December after all but this year has given us a bit of a mixed bag with my usual favourite Coronation Street falling disastrously flat while EastEnders lived up to it’s huge trailers and beyond, leaving me tired with so many family twists exploding out of the woodwork. Let’s take a closer (and, bitchier) look at what the three main shows had to offer…

Emmerdale: Bernice sleeps with Santa and Katie’s wedding ring calls her the village bike

imagesGYXMA91LIn an unusual tradition for Emmerdale, a couple had chosen to get married on Christmas Day (it was a whole year since this had happened), well and truly stealing Jesus’ thunder. It was Andy ‘wife beater’ Sugden and Katie ‘village bike’ Addyman’s second attempt at this whole matrimony thing and, much like last time, Andy’s spiteful brother Robert was an unwelcome spectre over proceedings albeit with a different face.

The siblings had been scrapping on their parent’s graves with one of them dressed as Geri Halliwell the previous night (keep it classy lads) so it was fair to say that relations between them weren’t exactly great on the day of the wedding. However, Robert’s bit of rough, Aaron, was on hand to give his part time nemesis and part time lover some words of advice that his ongoing venomous attitude is affecting his lil sister Victoria and so he offered full apologies to be taken back under Andy’s bulging bicep of a wing again.

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Halloween Special: TV’s Scariest moments

simpsons-shinning-treehouse-of-horror-homerWhat’s the best part about Halloween? Is it terrifying the elderly into handing over their possessions in exchange for you to leave them alone? Is it sticking on a pair of horns and going scantily clad to a drunken party which mildly passes itself off with a Halloween theme? Maybe it’s just a milestone which means it’s officially time to start panicking about Christmas. (Yeah, 7 weeks in case you’re wondering)

To us in Pauseliveaction, Halloween means one thing and one thing only. The chance to reflect on those spooktacular TV moments that made us hide behind a cushion in sheer terror, spilling our Fizzy Haribo ghost and ghouls shapes all over the blood red carpet. So without further a-boo, here is my rundown of some of the most ghoulish TV moments of all time…

 

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EastEnders: Walford’s longest (and darkest) day

Linda-stumbles-and-finds-her-way-to-the-bathroomWhile we were dragging ourselves from the comfort of our beds and into the grips of a wet, wintry Monday morning, the residents of Walford were still stuck on the same day that started over two weeks since.

It seems like an age ago that we were writing about the horrendous prospect of Phil Mitchell stripping at Sharon’s hen do and yet here we are, just a day on, as the most eventful day in EastEnders history continued to throw powerful drama our way. If a wedding, the reveal of an affair, a shooting, the death of a dog, a blossoming new romance, a couple splitting up, a text from Peggy Mitchell and a fugitive on the run wasn’t enough to cram into one day, Walford writers hit us with the most emotive punch yet, as Dean’s breakdown led to a harrowing attack on landlady Linda Carter.   Continue reading

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EastEnders: That dress is ruined

sharon phil eastendersI’ve not seen a single positive comment about Sharon’s wedding dress. It turns out it’s just as well she didn’t waste her money on something stunning from the Vivienne Westwood Bridal Collection, because she’s only gone and ruined it by getting it covered in blood. It’s not even her blood, either. “Phil’s been shot,” someone said. “Not again,” said Ian Beale, who’s been there and done that himself so it doesn’t impress him much.

Ronnie, knowing that faaamily comes before first aid, legged it with the gun. It was her gun anyway and she didn’t need the extra aggro, what with being pregnant and that. She only got it as far as the safe haven of the Arches, where it was last seen in the capable hands of Ben and Jay. “Capable” as in “of anything.”   Continue reading

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EastEnders: The wedding ends with a bang

shirley sharon phil eastendersThe gun which has been semi-concealed in a black and white checked bag for I don’t know how long has finally gone bang. When last seen it was in the trembling hands of Shirley, but there was a bit of a tussle for it between her, Phil and Sharon. The cameraman wisely got out of the way, so we were outside when the thing went off. Was anyone hurt? Tune in tonight etc.

Someone who was hurt, in a separate incident, was the Brannings’ dog. This dog is hardly ever seen, so when it appeared wagging its tail around the car that a drunk Abi was attempting to drive to Bolton on her own, it was no surprise that she didn’t get from “Mirror… signal…” to manoeuvre before there was a bang and a whimper. How hurt was the dog? Tune in tonight.

Abi wanted to get to Bolton in a hurry because Jay had just admitted he didn’t love her anymore and he loved Lola. Hence, he wouldn’t be joining Abi in Bolton after all. And he’s made her miss Freshers’ week as well.

Another person who’s decided to jog on (the Square is going to be empty soon at this rate) is Peter Beale. But why? And why did he ring policewoman Emma just after the wedding? Probably no point tuning in tonight on that one, because I doubt whether we’ll get those answers just yet.

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EastEnders: Mr and Mrs Phil Mitchell

sharon phil eastendersEveryone loves a soap wedding. It’s the chance for all the cast members who aren’t on holiday and assorted non-speaking extras to don their finery and fascinators. It’s a time of romance, happiness, firearms and that moving moment when the vicar/registrar asks if anyone knows any lawful impediment and the embittered ex/drunk relative/etc gets shakily to their feet to deliver the killer blow (sometimes literally) – that is, if both the bride and groom have actually turned up in the first place.

The wedding of Sharon and Phil on EastEnders (or “Mr and Mrs Phil Mitchell,” as they are styling themselves, which sounds strangely old-fashioned to me) was never going to be uneventful. Even if they’d been on their own on a desert island those two could concoct some drama between them. Their speeches were all about trust and fresh starts, and we in the audience were quietly reminded that this might be a tricky proposition by Shirley (whom Phil “slept with” very recently) glaring at the newlyweds across the wedding breakfast of poshed-up cockles & whelks and pie & mash.   Continue reading

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