(Series 5, ep 7) It was black armbands for everybody this week – including Baby Genevieve – as the whole town pulled together to pay tribute to the funerial legend that was Daddy Simpson. As well as the sending off, there were also some arrivals. We had a cameo (for once, not from a Welshman), a return of an old favourite and (to my frustration) a revival of a familiar problem. Continue reading
Tag Archives: Stella
(Series 5, ep. 3) Pack up your flags and pepper spray – it’s field trip time for the Stella crew! The nurses went on an excursion to one of the deadliestest cities in the world – London. But it wasn’t every passer by being a “potential terrorist or lunatic” that caused the most disturbance for our heroine, it was an old boomerang love coming flinging full pelt back into her life. Continue reading
(Series 5, ep. 2) Stella was all car boots, former sherry swillers and name dropping this week but first of all we started with droppings of a different kind, picking up back in Michael’s allotment the morning after last week’s Christening. Stella and Michael are discussing the up and coming Town Event of the episode, the car boot sale, and making sure we’re aware of their episode theme and lack of finances. Fertiliser is one thing they don’t need to waste money on though, and as Glen Brannig appears with a bucket of his pet donkey’s manure to remind us of who their neighbours are we’re reassured that this episode will have a lot more than household accounts. Continue reading
(Series 5, ep. 1) Drinks all round – Tuesday nights are back to Pontyberry! While we may not be able to venture to Le Cafe De Les Alans for those drinks anymore, it looks as if the prodigal newsagent, Jagadeesh, has it covered. He’s swapped the cat food and stamps for beer taps and with it the town now has a new “cast gathering” set not owned by Scott Quinnell: The Frisky Fox. Continue reading
I recently made a trip to London to visit a childhood friend of mine. With both of us having moved on to concrete pastures away from our green-belted Scottish haven, it was inevitable that we would end up with a bottle of wine reminiscing long into the night. It’s fair to say that one of the most common causes of our laugher were discussions around the particular oddball characters or town quirks that formed the backdrop of our youth. Like a homemade patchwork quilt, we all have our distinctive squares coloured by different accents, houses or backgrounds, but the feel of it is the same. It provides a familiar comfort, even if at times it can be a little itchy or smothering.
Relating to the nostalgic intimacy of a tight-knit, eccentric community isn’t what drew me to Stella (it was the presence of the talented Ben Glover on the soundtrack that did that), but it is a main part of what got me hooked. It wasn’t a shock that such a vivid and relatable character-led comedy drama would come from Ruth Jones; the whirlwind success of Gavin and Stacey proved she is Queen of the small-town caricature, but there is something about the extra grit and emotion alongside this that gives Stella its own identity. Before the end of the first episode you already feel an attachment to the characters, both those who are there purely as eclectic village furniture and also those who fulfil the more dimensional roles. Continue reading
*THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS SPOILERS*
Speculation is rife that a new character heading to Coronation Street will be a lesbian. According to reports, the daughter of new character Stella (who is rumoured to be the long lost mother of Leanne) will arrive in coming weeks and quickly be revealed as a lesbian.
Eve is due to make her first appearance on the Street alongside Stella in the summer, after Stella rescues Leanne from an armed robbery at the bookies.
The news comes amid an ongoing row that Coronation Street is relying too much on gay characters. Some representatives of the media (no prizes for guessing which ones!) have suggested that there are far too many gay characters in the show for it to be realistic. They argue that with Sian, Sophie, Sean, Marcus, James and the recent one-off appearance from Todd and his boyfriend, that Coronation Street is presenting an unrealisitc portrayal of a British street.
Personally, I tune into Corrie to get away from real life and would probably choose to look outside of my window if I wanted to see a realistic street. it’s very easy to attack the gay ‘issue’ with the realism card… but then how many streets house numerous murders and have seen two tram crashes in forty years?
Coronation Street may be based on everyday life, but of course it will never be an accurate representation of a street in any way, not just the ratio of homosexuals to heterosexuals.
What are your thoughts on the argument? Does the sudden influx of gay characters not ring true for you? Are you excited for the arrival of Stella and Eve?
Leave any thoughts you have in the comments box.
Posted By Our Man In The North (more Corrie posts here)
I’m not a fan of Lord Sugar, but to his credit, he has working for him a pack of professionals so formidable, if there were an Olympic gladiatorial sport of savaging fools, I’d back this lot. And last night was the moment we’d all been waiting for this whole, rather marvellous series. This is the one episode of The Apprentice that makes the agony of watching earlier ones bearable. CV day is always going to be fun, because of the magnificent line-up of killer Claud, the ice-blue eyed Viglen boss, Bordan, litigator Alan Watts, regular sidekicks Karren and Nick, and our knowledge that every speck of self-deluded blagging previously uttered by the candidates will be used to wipe the floor with them. But my joy was unconfined in anticipation of the return of the metaphorically leather clad and whip wielding Margaret Mountford, a woman who it is not hard to imagine wears steel underwear. And she did not let her fans down. On his way to The Apprentice Careers Fair from Hell day, Stuart Baggs talked of needing ‘balls and minerals’. We knew what was coming. I could taste it before she opened her mouth. “Margaret!” Stuart gushed. “Do I know you?” she slashed back, like Zorro. “Ms Mountford?” he countered, tentative for perhaps the first time in his life.
Now I cannot help, with the rest of the country, being reasonably amused by the chutzpah (for which read also, ‘unadulterated drivelling bollocks’) that has emerged from Stuart Baggs. But after Lord Sugar’s lack of judgement last week keeping him in over Liz, and after seeing his utter lack of scruples in action time after time, more than anything else, I needed to see his comeuppance. And boy did we get that last night.
Highlights for me:
- Claude to Stuart “You’re not Stuart Baggs ‘the Brand’, you’re a 21 year old boy”
- Margaret, with that look where she’s shrivelling the extreme masculinity of any man, to posh boy Chris on his claim (on the basis of an RE A’ level) to be a ‘revered theology scholar’: “Do you know what ‘revered’ means? It’s when people hold you in awed respect”
- Margaret to Jamie, on his claim on his CV to have a third nipple, “Is that supposed to be funny?” (pause as even the very thick skin on his scrotal sac withers a little, until she slamdunks him) “It’s puerile.”
- Alan Watts to Stuart “You’re not very nice are you? You’ve got no ethics.”
- Stuart, in putting forward his business proposal to a dubious Margaret about inventing tracking microchips for pets: “No-one is like me. I’m the only candidate who can take Lord Sugar out of recession.”
- And this is my favourite. Claude to Stuart: “You’re not a big fish. You’re not even a fish.”
I have to kick off with an apology to Germany: entschuldigung, meine Damen und Herren, on behalf of the British nation and crisp eaters everywhere. You thought I was that famous ‘bilingual’ candidate, Stuart Baggs, for a minute then didn’t you? Equally fluent in bollocks and twattery. But no. I too can blether semi-literately with a bit of crap German thrown in too.
I know the twitter world was shocked when Christopher was Abgefeuert last night, but I’ve not forgiven him for the cleaning ad sexist crap, and neither was I impressed with the obnoxious and racist ‘I hate the Germans’ line last night either. It’s all very well pretending to Dara O’Briain that it was to do with football, but it wasn’t, and actually, he’s a dummkopf.
The critical point has arrived in the series when I’m almost (with some simultaneous text coaching by Qwerty) able to name most of the remaining fools, sorry, contestants, in The Apprentice. And I’m startled that the one person whose name I did remember, and not for good reasons, Stuart is still there. Mysterious, and not, we later discovered, a man who is much fun to go shopping with – in response to picking up a pair of £300 boots in the winning team’s shopping trip ‘You could buy a car with that’! You could buy a brain too, Herr Baggs. The most cringey moment of the show was when we saw a shot of some pale sausage in a bowl that looked all-too-much like pickled penis and Stuart said ‘I’ve got a white sausage too’. I’m sure you have young man. Just keep it zipped up.
But back to the task. There they all were, off to Germany to sell their own spectacularly unpleasant sounding crisp flavours. Stilton, curry wurst, goulash (and hello Hungary, sorry to you too chaps for how unrepentantly thick some of my fellow countrymen and women are), they all sounded pretty grim really, but both teams did pretty well at selling deep-fried potatoes to a country as fond as our own of eating potatoes, fat and salt.
But Stella’s team won, Chris and Jamie mysteriously avoided relegation in the boardroom, and it was Christopher who went, apparently for being ‘popular’ (oh how Lord Sugar gives away too much about his own messed up psyche at these moments). This programme, remarkably, put me off eating crisps (Gillian McKeith has the opposite effect)
I’m thinking Stella or Liz to win now.
For past blogs on The Apprentice, click here
Posted by Inkface